View Full Version : Grow-your-own to replace false teeth

12-29-09, 03:22 PM
The British institution of dentures sitting in a glass of water beside the bed could be rendered obsolete by scientists who are confident that people will soon be able to replace lost teeth by growing new ones.
Instead of false teeth, a small ball of cells capable of growing into a new tooth will be implanted where the missing one used to be.

The procedure needs only a local anaesthetic and the new tooth should be fully formed within a few months of the cells being implanted.

Paul Sharpe, a specialist in the field of regenerative dentistry at the Dental Institute of King's College, London, says the new procedure has distinct advantages over false teeth that require a metal post to be driven into the jaw before being capped with a porcelain or plastic tooth.

"The surgery today can be extensive and you need to have good solid bone in the jaw and that is a major problem for some people," Professor Sharpe said.

The method could be used on far more patients because the ball of cells that grows into a tooth also produces bone that anchors to the jaw.

The choice of growing a new tooth is likely to appeal to patients. "Anyone who has lost teeth will tell you that, given the chance, they would rather have their own teeth than false ones," said Prof Sharpe. The average Briton over 50 has lost 12 teeth from a set of 32.

The procedure is fairly simple. Doctors take stem cells from the patient. These are unique in their ability to form any of the tissues that make up the body. By carefully nurturing the stem cells in a laboratory, scientists can nudge the cells down a path that will make them grow into a tooth. After a couple of weeks, the ball of cells, known as a bud, is ready to be implanted. Tests reveal what type of tooth - for example, a molar or an incisor - the bud will form.

Using a local anaesthetic, the tooth bud is inserted through a small incision into the gum. Within months, the cells will have matured into a fully-formed tooth, fused to the jawbone. As the tooth grows, it releases chemicals that encourage nerves and blood vessels to link up with it.

Tests have shown the technique to work in mice, where new teeth took weeks to grow. "There's no reason why it shouldn't work in humans, the principles are the same," said Prof Sharpe.

His team has set up a company, Odontis, to exploit the technique, and has won 400,000 from the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts and the Wellcome Trust.


12-29-09, 03:46 PM
Pretty cool.

12-29-09, 06:37 PM
Very similar to Platelet Rich Plasma therapy that veterinarians have been practicing for a few years to expedite healing of serious injuries and rejuvenate mechanics. Muscle, tendons and ligaments in particular. Derived and concentrated from the animals own blood, there is little or no chance of rejection.
Imagine healing, rebuilding or replacing your own worn out body parts!? I can't believe the ignorance and fear flying around trying to squash stem cellshttp://www.leatherneck.com/forums/images/icons/icon6.gif, the most enlightening and ground breaking bio-research in the history of the freaking world!!


12-29-09, 07:04 PM
That's good to hear, I've always dreaded having my teeth fall out. At least we can all go out to bars and not worry about losing teeth from time to time.

Phantom Blooper
12-29-09, 07:38 PM
When I was a child and teething....there wasn't anything to take the pain away from cutting a tooth.....if there was my parents didn't use it.

They used good old liquor and rubbed it on the gums in small quanties...I guess not to waste that precious gold elixir.

So if you grow new teeth with implanted cells and you start cutting new teeth...is that going to be a good excuse to rub some golden elixir on the gums and the rest down the hatch for the pain?

They mention nothing of a prototype ...except on Mickey Mouse.

If the dentist gets to sniffing that laughing gas you may be running around town smiling with a double row of teeth like Jaws.

Choose your dentist well.


12-29-09, 08:13 PM

12-29-09, 08:31 PM
Your own stem cell? Not from a farm fetis?