P o t e n t i a l c l i n i c a l a p p l i c a t i o n s wi t h d e n t a l s t em c e l l s
While research is early, it is progressing quickly and showing great promise. Dental stem cells have already been used to successfully regrow jawbone and treat periodontal disease in people, and scientists and clinicians are investigating many additional uses for stem cells in the near future. These new stem cell therapies are known as ”regenerative medicine.”
T e e t h a r e a c o n v e n i e n t, p l e n t i f u l s o u r c e o f s t em c e l l s
Stem cells help the body renew and repair itself. For decades, doctors have used adult stem cells from bone marrow and umbilical cord blood to treat diseases. In 2000, stem cells were discovered in teeth, complementary to those found in cord blood. Dental stem cells are readily available in baby teeth which are getting ready to fall out and other healthy teeth, such as wisdom teeth, which need to be extracted. Stem cells from teeth can be easily collected and cryopreserved for future dental and medical applications. Research published in 2011 showed that dental stem cells can produce insulin, suggesting they could eventually play a role in treating Type 1 diabetes.