Histological Techniques for the Study of the Dentogingival Junction: A Scoping Review Using the Anatomical Quality Assurance Checklist (AQUA)

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Jaime Correa-Aravena; Bélgica Vásquez; Tamara Otzen; Carlos Manterola & Nicolás E. Ottone


The dentogingival junction (DGJ) is an adaptation of the oral mucosa composed of epithelial and connective tissues intimately related with the mineralised tissues of the tooth. The histological evidence available is mainly based on studies in animals, separate evaluations of hard and soft tissues, and studies using conventional histological techniques that eliminate the enamel from preparations. The aim of this study was to carry out a review of the existing evidence on histological techniques available for study of the tooth and periodontium in conjunction in humans. A scoping review was carried out of the available literature referring to study of the tooth and the periodontium in conjunction in humans, in the Web of Science (WoS), EMBASE, Scopus and SciELO databases, using the terms "Histological Techniques"[Mesh]) and "Epithelial Attachment"[Mesh]. One hundred and fifty-nine articles were found, of which 54 were selected for full- text reading. Ten were finally included in the qualitative synthesis, and we applied the Anatomical Quality Assurance (AQUA) checklist for analysis the methodological quality of the selected articles. The results showed that the only articles with a low risk of bias in all five domains according to the AQUA criteria corresponded to Silva et al. (2011) and Agustín-Panadero et al. (2020). Finally, we conclude that the quality of the histological sections to observe tissues that simultaneously contain the tooth and the periodontium, is conditioned by the selected technique and by the care required in certain specific tasks during the histological processing of the samples.

KEY WORDS: Histological techniques; Epithelial insertion; Histological analysis; Junctional epithelium; Dentogingival junction; AQUA checklist.

How to cite this article

CORREA-ARAVENA, J.; VÁSQUEZ, B.; OTZEN, T.; MANTEROLA, C. & OTTONE, N. E. Histological techniques for the study of the dentogingival junction: A scoping review using the Anatomical Quality Assurance checklist (AQUA). Int. J. Morphol., 41(3):926-936, 2023.