Evidence from systematic reviews on photobiomodulation of human bone and stromal cells: Where do we stand?

Serena Incerti Parenti, Matilde Tschon, Maria Sartori, Andrea Visani, Elena Aroni, Milena Fini, Giulio Alessandri-Bonetti

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


This study summarizes the available evidence from systematic reviews on the in vitro effects of photobiomodulation on the proliferation and differentiation of human bone and stromal cells by appraising their methodological quality. Improvements for future studies are also highlighted, with particular emphasis on in vitro protocols and cell-related characteristics. Six reviews using explicit eligibility criteria and methods selected in order to minimize bias were included. There was no compelling evidence on the cellular mechanisms of action or treatment parameters of photobiomodulation; compliance with quality assessment was poor. A rigorous description of laser parameters (wavelength, power, beam spot size, power density, energy density, repetition rate, pulse duration or duty cycle, exposure duration, frequency of treatments, and total radiant energy), exposure conditions (methods to ensure a uniform irradiation and to avoid cross-irradiation, laser-cell culture surface distance, lid presence during irradiation) and cell-related characteristics (cell type or line, isolation and culture conditions, donor-related factors where applicable, tissue source, cell phenotype, cell density, number of cell passages in culture) should be included among eligibility criteria for study inclusion. These methodological improvements will maximize the contribution of in vitro studies on the effects of photobiomodulation on human bone and stromal cells to evidence-based translational research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalArchives of Biochemistry and Biophysics
Publication statusPublished - May 30 2020


  • Animals
  • Cell Differentiation/radiation effects
  • Cell Proliferation/radiation effects
  • Humans
  • Low-Level Light Therapy
  • Osteocytes/metabolism
  • Stromal Cells/metabolism
  • Systematic Reviews as Topic


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