That cup of coffee may wake you up in the morning, but it also may be shifting your teeth, according to a recent study. Researchers at Sichuan University, Peking University, and Sun yat-sen University in China have found that the daily intake of caffeine may enhance orthodontic tooth movement (OTM) through increasing osteoclastogenesis.
The researchers performed orthodontic treatment on a pair of groups of 15 randomly assigned rats each. One group ingested 25 mg/kg of body weight of caffeine per day, while the other group had plain water. After 3 weeks, the researchers assessed the degree of tooth movement and the effect on the periodontium.
The caffeine group of rats showed a significantly greater rate of tooth movement than the control group. The immunohistochemical staining additionally revealed that the caffeine group had significantly more tartrate-resistant acid phosphate-positive (TRAP+) osteoclasts and higher receptor activator of nuclear factor kappa-B ligand (RANKL) expression in the compressed periodontium.
Also, the researchers established a model that mimicked the essential OTM bioprocess, including a periodontal ligament tissue model (PDLtm) and a co-culture system of osteoblasts (OBs) and osteoclast precursors (pre-OCs). After being subjected to static compressive force with or without caffeine administration, the conditioned media from the PDLtm were used for the OB/pre-OC co-cultures to induce osteoclastogenesis.
Caffeine at 0.01 millimolars significantly enhanced the compression-induced expression of RANKL and cyclooxygenase, as well as prostaglandin E2 production in the PDLtm. Furthermore, the caffeine and compression conditioned media induced significantly more TRAP+ OC formation compared to compression alone.
The study, “Caffeine May Enhance Orthodontic Tooth Movement Through Increasing Osteoclastogenesis Induced By Periodontal Ligament Cells Under Compression,” was published by the Archives of Oral Biology.