Regrowing Teeth: Understanding human tooth regeneration

Tuesday, September 26, 2017 02:19 PM

Perhaps, you’re wondering why humans only have two sets of teeth. Unlike the human hair which regenerates multiple times in a lifetime, human tooth regeneration only happens once. Primary set of teeth is replaced when our deciduous teeth, commonly called as milk or baby teeth, is lost. Tooth regeneration is common to primitive animals but humans have limitations because of fewer stem cells around. This is the case that scientists are aiming to achieve so as to easily assist tooth regrowth by using stem cells.

Scientists are trying to achieve dental breakthroughs through restoring tooth tissues instead of performing other painful treatments. These regenerative methods prompt the body to regrow tissues and organs to assist future dental treatments. Understanding this regenerative medicine is still far off according to researchers in the University of California. Researchers are now studying alligator’s teeth and are finding out if regenerative processes can be done also to humans. Studies utilized alligator’s teeth since it is precisely similar to human’s teeth. Cheng Ming Chuong, lead author of the said research, claims that DNA of humans has the capability to regrow teeth and regenerate other parts of the body through its genetic material. However, that code responsible for the regenerations is not turned on.

Researchers from South Korea, Japan, United States and the United Kingdom focused all their effort in identifying the process of regenerating living tooth tissue which is commonly termed as pulp. The experimental stage is on a slow pace but if successfully completed, this breakthrough will further eliminate the painful root canal procedure.

Challenges are underway such as the right restructuring of the possible living tissue in the mouth according to Rena D’Souza, professor of biomedical sciences at Baylor College of Dentistry. If findings will be successfully completed, this advancement will benefit those who have diseases leading to teeth loss.

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