Written by Dentistry Today Monday, 11 March 2013 15:50
Gum cells were recently used as a way of growing new teeth—something that could be a major breakthrough in dentistry.
Based on this King’s College (London) research, missing teeth could one day be grown from gum cells.
To successfully grow the teeth, the researchers took epithelial cells from the gums and combined them with mesenchyme cells from mice. The research team then managed to promote the growth of new teeth through the epithelial gum cells.
The researchers later transplanted the combination of cells into the mice, which produced the development of human/mouth teeth that had a working root system.
The information appeared in the Journal of Dental Research.
The research team warned for patience, however. It still may take years before dentists can implement this process with humans.
Researchers will have to find a way to acquire a supply of mesenchyme cells that would result in a feasible way to grow these teeth in humans on a consistent basis. If the right amount of mesenchyme cells is found, the research team can proceed with the next step toward making this practice widespread.