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Cutting Edge: Dentistry and Stem Cells

September 22nd, 2009 · 2 Comments

In light of the 2009 World Stem Cell Summit in Baltimore this week, DentalBlogs brings you the news on stem cell research and procedures in dentistry. Dental Pulp Stem Cells (DPSC) can differentiate into various types of cells, then multiply to rebuild tissue. Embryonic cord stem cells have been used to regenerate blood cells, but dental stem cells can create many other types of tissues, such as connective, muscular, bone, dental, and even neuronal.

Recently, DentalBlogs posted an article regarding the successful implantation of stem cells that resulted in a mouse growing a new tooth. According to a Nova Southeastern University survey, 96% of dentists predict that stem cell regeneration will “dominate the future of dentistry.” More than half of surveyed dentists believe that they will have the technology to implement stem cell regeneration with patients in the next decade.

This video reviews the history of stem cell research.

Johns Hopkins Medicine: A Century of Stem Cells

Aside from research for dental tissue generation, dentists have a unique opportunity to work with preservation labs that store patients’ baby teeth or extracted adult teeth. Children’s primary teeth and third molars are the best source for dental stem cells. The stems cells from these teeth are extracted and cryogenically frozen for future use, should the need arise. One tooth can yield 20 to 50 stem cells that are multiplied into 5 to 20 million. Stored stem cells can be used on the donor patient or his/her close relatives.

Dental stem cells can be used to treat leukemia, cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, and a long list of diseases and illnesses. The FDA has not yet approved applications for dental stem cell use because research is too new. The first FDA-condoned stem cell trial on humans was conducted this year. However, reputable stem cells banks are FDA approved.

Dental stem cell banks such as Cryo Tooth, Store-A-Tooth, and StemSave have sprung up across the globe. Fees range, depending upon the length of time cells are stored, from about a hundred dollars annually to lifetime preservation, which can cost a few thousand dollars. Processing fees are separate.

StemSave offers a starter package for enrolled dentists. It includes patient brochures, posters, a transport kit, online accounting, and continuing education courses. If you want to learn more about dental stem cell research and preservation, StemSave’s website is a great place to start. Sign up for the blog, join the discussion, or review published research at your convenience.

Tags: Clinical · News

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Dentist Richmond Hill // Sep 27, 2009 at 10:21 am

    This research in stem cells and applications in dental field has the potential to drastically change the way we practice dentistry.

  • 2 Pray for this new dental technology! // Oct 1, 2009 at 12:57 pm

    Could this new stem cell technology be used to replace fillings for new dentin and enamel? Sign me up!!!!

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