Targeting histone deacetylase 9 represses fibrogenic phenotypes in buccal mucosal fibroblasts with arecoline stimulation

Po Yu Yang, Chih Yuan Fang, Shih Chi Cho, Shiao Pieng Lee, Heng Yi Liao, Yi Wen Liao, Cheng Chia Yu, Pao Hsien Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background/purpose: Oral submucosal fibrosis (OSF) is a premalignant disorder positively associated with betel nut chewing. Recent studies supported the promising benefits of histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors for fibrosis treatment. Here we aim to clarify the pro-fibrogenic role of HDAC9 in regulating OSF. Materials and methods: Healthy and OSF specimens were collected to investigate the clinical significance of HDAC9. Chronic arecoline treatment process was used to induce arecoline-mediated myofibroblasts-related activation of primary buccal mucosa fibroblasts (BMFs). Functional analysis of collagen gel contraction, transwell migration, and wound-healing assays were performed to assess the change in pro-fibrogenic properties of BMFs and fibrotic BMFs (fBMFs). Lentiviral-mediated HDAC9 knockdown was used to verify the role of HDAC9 in the pro-fibrogenic process. Results: We found that arecoline significantly increased the mRNA and protein expression of HDAC9 of BMFs in a dose-dependent manner. Knockdown of HDAC9 in BMFs reversed the strengthened effects of arecoline on collagen gel contraction, cell migration, and wound-healing ability. We further demonstrated that knockdown of HDAC9 in fBMFs significantly attenuated its inherent pro-fibrogenic properties. Furthermore, we confirmed a significantly increased expression of HDAC9 mRNA in OSF compared to normal tissues, which suggested a positive correlation between the up-regulation of HDAC9 and OSF. Conclusion: We demonstrated that silencing of HDAC9 inhibited arecoline-induced activation and inherent pro-fibrogenic properties, suggesting potential therapeutics by targeting HDAC9 in the OSF treatment.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Dental Sciences
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2023


  • HDAC9
  • Histone deacetylase
  • Oral submucous fibrosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dentistry(all)


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