Stem cells hold the key to wound healing, as they develop into specialised cell types throughout the body – including in teeth.
Now an international team of researchers has found a mechanism that could offer a potential novel solution to tooth repair.
Published today in Nature Communications, the study showed that a gene called Dlk1 enhances stem cell activation and tissue regeneration in tooth healing.
The work was led by Dr Bing Hu from the University of Plymouth’s Peninsula Dental School, with collaboration from researchers worldwide*.
The science behind the discovery
Dr Hu and his team discovered a new population of mesenchymal stem cells (the stem cells that make up skeletal tissue such as muscle and bone) in a continuously growing mouse incisor model. They showed that these cells contribute to the formation of tooth dentin, the hard tissue that covers the main body of a tooth.
Importantly, the work showed that when these stem cells are activated, they then send signals back to the mother cells of the tissue to control the number of cells produced, through a molecular gene called Dlk1. This paper is the first to show that Dlk1 is vital for this process to work.
In the same report, the researchers also proved that Dlk1 can enhance stem cell activation and tissue regeneration in a tooth wound healing model. This mechanism could provide a novel solution for tooth reparation, dealing with problems such as tooth decay and crumbling (known as caries) and trauma treatment.
Further studies need to take place to validate the findings for clinical applications, in order to ascertain the appropriate treatment duration and dose, but these early steps in an animal model are exciting, as Dr Hu explains.
What the authors say
Dr Hu, who is also part of the University’s Institute of Translational and Stratified Medicine (ITSMed), said:
“Stem cells are so important, as, in the future, they could be used by laboratories to regenerate tissues that have been damaged or lost due to disease – so it’s vital to understand how they work. By uncovering both the new stem cells that make the main body of a tooth and establishing their vital use of Dlk1 in regenerating the tissue, we have taken major steps in understanding stem cell regeneration.
“The work has taken place in lab models at this stage, and further work needs to be done before we can bring them in to human use. But it’s a really big breakthrough in regenerative medicine that could have huge implications for patients in future.”
Professor Christopher Tredwin, Head of Peninsula Dental School and co-author of the paper, said:
“We are highly excited by the recent progresses in Dr Bing Hu’s group. This new work, together with a recent high-impact paper published in The EMBO Journal (doi: 10.15252/embj.201899845), which is about another type of stem cells in the tooth: epithelial stem cells, puts Plymouth at the front of the world’s dental and craniofacial stem cell research and regenerative medicine. We expect those researchers will soon provide dental patients better time and cost-effective solutions to serious tooth problems – from trauma to caries.”
The Latest on: Self-repairing teeth
via Google News
The Latest on: Self-repairing teeth
- Coronavirus Update / National Politics With Ken Rudin / Weather In Californiaon March 16, 2020 at 9:14 am
Washington Post health and medicine reporter Lenny Bernstein with the latest on the nationwide coronavirus outbreak Political Junkie Ken Rudin discusses the democratic presidential race and the ...
- Mechanisms: Ode To The Zipperon March 13, 2020 at 5:00 pm
Intended for the shoe and boot market, Judson’s device has all the recognizable parts of a modern zipper — rows of interlocking teeth with a slide mechanism to mesh and unmesh the two sides.
- Self-Repairing Teeth Could Be The Norm In The Futureon March 13, 2020 at 6:26 am
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A team of scientists at King’s College London (KCL) in the United Kingdom have found further proof that a future natural tooth repair method is possible. Over the last five years, ...
- Coronavirus In California / Political Junkie Ken Rudin / 2020 Censuson March 9, 2020 at 7:52 am
Infectious disease expert Dr. Dean Blumberg, Sacramento County Department of Health Services Director Dr. Peter Beilenson, epidemiologist Dr. Megan Murray & CapRadio Reporters Nicole Nixon and ...
- Dr. Peter J. Harrison March 8, 2020 at 5:00 pm
Dr. Peter J. Harris is an internist in Plainville, Connecticut. He received his medical degree from Stony Brook University School of Medicine and has been in practice for more than 20 years ...
- Smart (Digital) Mirror Market Analysis By Growth, Emerging Trends And Future Opportunities Till 2027on March 5, 2020 at 4:00 pm
The smart mirrors use the technology such as electro chromic technology, self-dimming technology, self -cleaning mirrors and self-repairing mirrors. The Global smart mirror market is expected to ...
- Self Repairing Cities Project Continues to Make Progress with Flying Road-Fixing 3D Printerson December 3, 2018 at 8:52 am
The Self Repairing Cities project is working to create ... and Wei Yan from the Department of Architecture were inspired by dental technology to 3D print concrete patches for the spall damage.
- This Week's Doctor Who Gave Some 'Who' Back to the Doctoron October 16, 2018 at 11:29 am
was strong-armed by the Stenza (the tooth-faced warrior race Tim Shaw was from) into being a testing ground for horrifying weapons research. If the Stenza do become important to the arc of this ...
- Autonomous Robots Mounted to Drones Could 3D Print Asphalt to Fix Potholes Overnighton June 13, 2018 at 2:25 pm
This isn’t the first time 3D printing has been put to work fixing damaged roads, but the project is actually part of a larger Leeds initiative to create what’s known as a Self Repairing City.
- What are heavy duty zippers?on December 25, 2016 at 11:18 pm
Usage of zipper in today's world has smoothened the work of tailors as they can be sewn directly on the garment than clamping the teeth on the cloth. There are some zippers that are characterized ...
via Bing News