DOI: 10.1111/jre.13170 ISSN: 0022-3484

Quercetin promotes autophagy to alleviate cigarette smoke‐related periodontitis

Jinrui Yu, Zheng Jing, Danfeng Shen, Mingcong Yang, Kehao Liu, Kai Xiang, Chongjing Zhou, Xuerui Gong, Yangjia Deng, Yuzhou Li, Sheng Yang
  • Periodontics


Background and Objectives

Cigarette smoking has been reported as an independent risk factor for periodontitis. Tobacco toxins affect periodontal tissue not only locally but also systemically, leading to the deterioration and recurrence of periodontitis. However, the mechanism of cigarette smoke‐related periodontitis (CSRP) is unclear and thus lacks targeted treatment strategies. Quercetin, a plant‐derived polyphenolic flavonoid, has been reported to have therapeutic effects on periodontitis due to its documented antioxidant activity. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of quercetin on CSRP and elucidated the underlying mechanism.


The cigarette smoke‐related ligature‐induced periodontitis mouse model was established by intraperitoneal injection of cigarette smoke extract (CSE) and silk ligation of bilateral maxillary second molars. Quercetin was adopted by gavage as a therapeutic strategy. Micro‐computed tomography was used to evaluate the alveolar bone resorption. Immunohistochemistry detected the oxidative stress and autophagy markers in vivo. Cell viability was determined by Cell Counting Kit‐8, and oxidative stress levels were tested by 2,7‐dichlorodihydrofluorescein diacetate probe and lipid peroxidation malondialdehyde assay kit. Alkaline phosphatase and alizarin red staining were used to determine osteogenic differentiation. Network pharmacology analysis, molecular docking, and western blot were utilized to elucidate the underlying molecular mechanism.


Alveolar bone resorption was exacerbated and oxidative stress products were accumulated during CSE exposure in vivo. Oxidative stress damage induced by CSE caused inhibition of osteogenic differentiation in vitro. Quercetin effectively protected the osteogenic differentiation of human periodontal ligament cells (hPDLCs) and periodontal tissue by upregulating the expression of Beclin‐1 thus to promote autophagy and reduce oxidative stress damage.


Our results established a role of oxidative stress damage and autophagy dysfunction in the mechanism of CSE‐induced destruction of periodontal tissue and hPDLCs, and provided a potential application value of quercetin to ameliorate CSRP.

More from our Archive