Study of biomaterial-induced macrophage activation, cell-mediated immune response and molecular oxidative damage in patients with dermal bioimplants

Olga Sánchez, Víctor Rodríguez-Sureda, Carmen Domínguez, Teresa Fernández-Figueras, Angel Vilches, Elisa Llurba, Jaume Alijotas-Reig

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25 Citations (Scopus)


Several soft-tissue dermal fillers have been reported to provoke immunogenicity and may cause adverse reactions despite claims regarding their safety. This study aimed to assess biomaterial-induced macrophage activation, cell-mediated immune response and oxidative stress in 169 patients with dermal bioimplants. To this end, we analysed plasma concentrations of myeloperoxidase (MPO), the chitinase-like proteins chitotriosidase and YKL-40 and molecular oxidative damage. The present study shows, for the first time, that the components of innate immunity: chitotriosidase and YKL-40, are significantly higher in patients with certain bioimplants and these markers of monocyte/macrophage activation rose progressively as adverse reactions (AR) evolved. Plasma MPO levels increased 4-fold in filler users with AR and 3-fold in those without. Analysis by filler type showed subjects injected with calcium hydroxylapatite, methacrylate, acrylamides and silicone to have values significantly above those of non-filler subjects for at least two plasma biomarkers, probably because the afore-mentioned biomaterials are permanent and prone to trigger AR in the long term. By contrast, hyaluronic acid alone elicited little immune response. Plasma concentrations of markers of oxidative damage to lipids and proteins were found to be significantly higher in users of four of the nine dermal fillers studied. These diffusible products of molecular peroxidation would stem from the reaction catalysed by MPO that generates potent oxidants, leading to cell oxidative damage which, in turn, may exert deleterious effects on the organism. Overall, the results of this study on the effects of a range of dermal fillers point to chronic activation of the immune response mediated by macrophages and PMNs. The increases in plasma of MPO, chitotriosidase and YKL-40 proteins and products of macromolecular peroxidation suggests that these molecules could serve as blood-based biochemical markers and alert to the risk of chronic immune system activation and development of adverse events that may arise from the use of certain bioimplants. © 2011 Elsevier GmbH.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)44-53
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2012


  • Bioimplants
  • Chitotriosidase
  • Dermal fillers
  • Innate immunity
  • Myeloperoxidase
  • Oxidative stress
  • YKL-40


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