Today's Dental News

Tooth Protein May Lead to Bone Regeneration

A newly discovered protein may lead to numerous health benefits.

Bioengineers at Queen Mary University of London found a protein that may aid patients suffering from osteoporosis or bone fractures. The protein statherin, which is usually found in the formation of enamel, can actually lead to bone growth.

The information appears in the journal Biomaterials.

The research team generated bioactive membranes from segments of different proteins to demonstrate which protein played the role in stimulating bone growth. The bone-stimulating aspect of the protein was tested in a rat model. The researchers employed analytical techniques to visualize and measure the calcified tissue.

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Stem Cells May be Used to Grow Teeth

Stem cells may be closer to being implemented.

The ability to turn stem cells into new teeth will be showcased at the Royal Society’s Summer Science Exhibition. Stem cells would likely be a more effective way to replace missing teeth because of the costs of implants, in addition to the difficulty in making sure the implants last for a long period of time.

It’s possible that the teeth grown from stem cells could be implemented in mice within five years, according to Paul Sharpe, Dickinson Professor of Craniofacial Biology at King’s College London Dental Institute.

It’s also plausible for teeth to be grown from embyronic cells but using adult cells and growth-stimulating chemical factors is more likely to make it to the market at an affordable price.

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Sugar’s Impact on Tooth Decay Still Major Concern

Many people don’t realize it but the adverse impact of sugar intake is just as bad for teeth as it is for the increased risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

The information came to the forefront again because of new plans soon to be underway in the United Kingdom. Food and all things that a person consumes are just as important to one’s oral health as other aspects. This issue is a pressing matter based on the amounts of sugary drinks children consume these days.

Toothy decay results from the acid produced when sugar and oral bacteria combine. A review of studies conducted by the World Health Organization supports the link involving the level of sugar consumed and the onset of cavities. The risk of tooth decay is reduced when the level of sugar intake is less then 10 percent of the caloric intake.

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New Method May Heal Teeth Without Pain

A new technique may have what it takes to aid tooth healing in a pain-free manner.

Electrically accelerated and enhanced remineralization would serve to heal teeth without drilling and filling cavities. The method is being developed by Reminova, a spinoff of King’s College London.

The new technique differs from previous methods because there would be a small electric current to push the mineral to the tooth from the damaged site. This method could be offered in dentists’ offices.

People currently use fluoride to combat the impact of sugary or acidic substances they consume. But those sugary and acidic substances can’t always be thwarted.

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Rare Genetic Trait Discovered in Skull

The skull of a man who likely had trouble eating was recently discovered.

Experts at the University of Saskatchewan dug up the skull of a man afflicted with agenesis—a condition in which the two central bottom teeth never form. The skull was recovered in modern-day Siberia and the Bronze Age settler was likely buried about 4,000 years ago. The man most likely died due to an arrowhead fragment embedded in his jaw.

The agenesis gene is extremely rare. Experts say it only impacts 0.5 percent of people.

The experts used radiocarbon dating to determine that the skull belonged to a male who was in his late 30s or was around 40.

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