Experimental Animal Models in Periodontology: A Review

Xavier Struillou1, Hervé Boutigny1, Assem Soueidan1, Pierre Layrolle2, 3, *
1 Department of Periodontology, Faculty of Dental Surgery, University of Nantes, 1 Place Alexis Ricordeau, 44042 Nantes, France
2 Inserm, U957, LPRO, Faculty of Medicine, University of Nantes, 1 rue Gaston Veil, 44035 Nantes, France
3 ERT 2004, Clinical Research in Odontology and Osteoarticular, Faculty of Dental Surgery, University of Nantes, 1 Place Alexis Ricordeau, 44042 Nantes, France

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© Struillou et al.; Licensee Bentham Open.

open-access license: This is an open access article licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted, non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the work is properly cited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Inserm U957, Faculty of Medicine, Nantes, France; Tel: + 33 2 72 64 11 43; Fax: +33 2 40 41 28 60; E-mail:


In periodontal research, animal studies are complementary to in vitro experiments prior to testing new treatments. Animal models should make possible the validation of hypotheses and prove the safety and efficacy of new regenerating approaches using biomaterials, growth factors or stem cells. A review of the literature was carried out by using electronic databases (PubMed, ISI Web of Science). Numerous animal models in different species such as rats, hamsters, rabbits, ferrets, canines and primates have been used for modeling human periodontal diseases and treatments. However, both the anatomy and physiopathology of animals are different from those of humans, making difficult the evaluation of new therapies. Experimental models have been developed in order to reproduce major periodontal diseases (gingivitis, periodontitis), their pathogenesis and to investigate new surgical techniques. The aim of this review is to define the most pertinent animal models for periodontal research depending on the hypothesis and expected results.

Keywords: Periodontal disease, animal models, biomaterials, periodontal surgery.