Research published by two university laboratories in China gives new hope to tooth decay sufferers. It shows that modified dental pulp stem cells could promote dental tissue regeneration.
The research, published in STEM CELLS Translational Medicine, shows that when human dental pulp was modified to over-express Platelet-Derived Growth Factor-BB (PDGF-BB), the cells significantly enhanced tissue regeneration.
Although the dental pulp stem cells weren't able to repair the tooth directly, this new breakthrough could mean the end of pain and discomfort for those with toothache. Firstly, the authors of the study transduced multipotent, early passage dental pulp stem cells (hDPSCs) with a PDGF-BB expression vector. This generated cells that displayed heightened proliferation and elevated levels of odontogenic marker genes - which are involved in tooth development. The modified stem cells also attached and spread well on the surface of calcium phosphate cement (CPC) applied for implantation.
PDGF-BB modified cells generated more dentin-like mineralized tissue surrounded by highly vascularized dental pulp-like connective tissue at 12 weeks when compared to unmodified hDPSCs
- Zhang, W et al., Shanghai Jiao Tong University