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Application of Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells Reprogrammed from Dental Pulp Cells: a Novel Approach for Tooth Regeneration

Author(s): Xiaoyan Zhou | Fang Zhang | Lu Liu | Xi Wei

Journal: Dental Hypotheses
ISSN 2155-8213

Volume: 2;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 38;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: Dental pulp cells | Oct-4 | Sox-2 | Induced pluripotent stem cells | Tooth regeneration.

Introduction: Candidate human dental stem/progenitor cells have been isolated and charac-terized from dental tissues and shown to hold the capability to differentiate into tooth-generating cells. However, ad-vances in engineering a whole tooth by these stem cells are hindered by various factors, such as the poor availability of human primitive tooth bud stem cells, difficulties in isolating and purifying dental mesenchymal stem cells and ethical controversies when using embryonic oral epithelium. As a result it is meaningful to find other autologous dental cells for the purpose of reconstructing a tooth.The hypothesis: Previous studies demonstrated that somatic cells can be reprogrammed into induced pluripotent stem cells by ex-ogenous expression Oct-4 and Sox-2. On the basis of these findings we can reasonably hypothesize that when transfected with specific transcription factors Oct-4 and Sox-2, dental pulp cells, the main cell in pulp, could also be reprogrammed into induced pluripotent stem cells, which are considered to be of best potential to regenerate a whole tooth. Evaluation of the hypothesis: After transfection with Oct-4 and Sox-2 into human dental pulp cells, the positive colonies are isolated and then identified according to the characteristics of iPS cells. These cells are further investigated the capability in differentiating into ameloblasts and odontoblasts and finally seeded onto the sur-face of a tooth-shaped biodegradable polymer scaffold to detect the ability of constructing a bioengineered tooth.
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