Background: Cementogenesis is sensitive to altered local phosphate levels; thus, we hypothesized a cementum pheno-type, likely of decreased formation, would be present in the teeth of X-linked hypophosphatemic (Hyp) mice. Mutations in the phosphate-regulating gene with homologies to endo-peptidases on the X chromosome (Phex) cause X-linked hy-pophosphatemia, characterized by rickets, osteomalacia, and hypomineralized dentin formation, a phenotype recapitulated in the Hyp mouse homolog. Here, we report a developmental study of tooth root formation in Hyp mouse molars, focusing on dentin and cementum. Methods: Light and transmission electron microscopy were used to study molar tissues from wild-type (WT) and Hyp mice. Demineralized and hematoxylin and eosin-stained tissues at developmental stages 23 to 96 days postcoital (dpc) were examined by light microscopy. Immunohistochemistry methods were used to detect bone sialoprotein (BSP) distribution in Hyp and WT mouse molar tissues, and transmission electron microscopy was used to study similar molar tissues in the non-demineralized state. Results: Dentin in Hyp mice exhibited mineralization defects by 33 dpc, as expected, but this defect was partially corrected by 96 dpc. In support of our hypothesis, a cementum phenotype was detected using a combination of immunohis-tochemistry and transmission electron microscopy, which included thinner BSP-positive staining within the cementum, discontinuous mineralization, and a globular appearance compared to WT controls. Conclusion: Mutations in the phosphate-regulating Phex gene of the Hyp mouse resulted in defective cementum development.
- X-linked hypophosphatemic
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