Did you know that rodent incisors never stop growing? They gnaw and chew through just about anything. They need to wear down those incisors, which, if left unchecked, could go so long that the animal might not be able to bite and starve. This dental development gives researchers insight into how to regenerate human teeth, which could change the way dental restorations—crowns, bridges, and “fillings”—are handled by the dentist.
In the study to be published in Development Cell, the research team compares the cells that become mouse incisors with those that become molars, which, as in humans, stop developing after crown formation.
But perhaps the simplest approach to repairing cavities by regrowing teeth involves the use of tideglusib, an experimental Alzheimer’s drug. Tideglusib switches off an important enzyme designated GSK-3. In Alzheimer’s disease, GSK-3 contributes to the formation of plaques and fiber bundles in the brain. But it’s relevant to the teeth because GSK-3 keeps our body from continuing to grow new dentine.
Tideglusib can stop the action of GSK-3, it can allow our body to grow replacement dentine. The procedure is relatively simple. Collagen sponges soaked in tideglusib are placed in the cavity. Then the body begins to grow new dentine, which replaces the collagen that the body absorbs.
But this technology is still remarkably advanced, and it may be ready in a relatively short period of time. Assuming, of course, we don’t discover any serious side effects related to tideglusib. GSK-3 is involved in many important processes in the body, so inhibiting it could very well have unexpected consequences.
“If we can someday use this knowledge to reactivate those stem cells, then we could regrow part of the root,” says study leader Yang Chai, associate dean of research and chair in craniofacial molecular biology at USC’s Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry.
The discovery means that, in time, a dentist might one day reach for a living tooth regenerated in a lab to replace a broken tooth instead of amalgam or porcelain, Chai explains.
Looks like in the near future we will have the opportunity to have natural teeth even if many of them have been lost. This might be the future replacement for dentures, but in the mean time, dental implants plays the function of helping to stop bone loss and deterioration! You can replace dentures with Snap in Dentures and it will give you the stability you need to laugh and eat, it will also improve your health!
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