Aims: To use experimental periodontitis models in rats to investigate the correlation between local expression of the complement components C3b and C4b in periodontal tissues and disease severity, and to assess the therapeutic effects of targeting C3b/C4b on inflammatory bone loss. Materials and Methods: The gingival expression of C3, C3b, and C4b in animal experimental periodontitis models were analysed immunohistochemically. The therapeutic effects of the C3b/C4b inhibitor (SB002) on ligation-induced experimental periodontitis was examined using biochemical, histological, and immunohistochemical analyses. Results: The gingival expression levels of C3, C3b, and C4b were positively correlated with the severity of periodontitis. Moreover, both single and multiple injections of the C3b/C4b inhibitor had preventive and therapeutic effects on alveolar bone loss in ligation-induced experimental periodontitis with no associated adverse consequences. Conclusions: The association between C3b/C4b and periodontitis may provide a basis for the development of novel therapeutic strategies for periodontitis and other inflammatory diseases.
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