Science Friday: Growing Replacement Teeth

Growing new teethAs reported by Bio News and MedIndia, Professor Takashi Tsuji and a team from the Tokyo University of Science, Japan implanted stem cells programmed to become teeth into an adult mouse’s kidney, and after two months a perfect molar had developed.

According to the reports, the tooth had the vital bone and periodontal ligaments needed for attachment, and so the team then transplanted it into another mouse’s lower jawbone.

Six weeks later, all the right blood and nerve connections had been made, allowing the bioengineered tooth to function as though it had grown naturally.

‘The bioengineered teeth were fully functional… there was no trouble biting and eating food after transplantation,” explained Dr Masamitsu Oshima, co-author of the study.

This opens up the possibility of new teeth being regenerated in the area where teeth are missing or need to be replaced.

Hopefully at some point in the near future, once a tooth has been extracted it can be regenerated for replacement. This would be a major improvement in dental care.

Can you imagine life without missing teeth?

For more on this fascinating development see:  Mouse Gets Lab-grown Tooth Transplant and Tooth Regeneration: A Reality of Stem Cell and Tissue Engineering

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