How Tooth Enamel Forms May Help Restorative Dentistry

Science Friday: How Tooth Enamel Forms May Help Restorative Dentistry

UPMC: How Tooth Enamel Forms May Help Restorative Dentistry

As reported by UPMC, researchers at the University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine are studying the process of tooth enamel biomineralization, which could lead to novel nanoscale approaches to developing biomaterials.

The findings were reported online in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences:

Elia Beniash, Ph.D., associate professor of oral biology, Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine and his team found that amelogenin molecules self-assemble in stepwise fashion via small oligomeric building blocks into higher-order structures.

Just like connecting a series of dots, amelogenin assemblies stabilize tiny particles of calcium phosphate, which is the main mineral phase in enamel and bone, and organize them into parallel arrays. Once arranged, the nanoparticles fuse and crystallize to build the highly mineralized enamel structure.

In the report, Dr. Beniash said, “This gives us insight into ways that we might use biologic molecules to help us build nanoscale minerals into novel materials, which is important for restorative dentistry and many other technologies.”

To read the full report see: Connecting the Dots: Pitt School of Dental Medicine Team Describes How Enamel Forms.

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