Are Alligators the Answer to Tooth Renewal?
Many animals, but specifically vertebrates, can replace teeth as they lose them. Humans only replace their teeth once, and scientists have been wondering why. They have been studying alligator stem cells to help them figure out a way of stimulating tooth growth in humans.
Led by the Keck School of Medicine of USC, a global team of researchers have discovered cellular mechanisms in tooth renewal in alligators that is unique to them. They have been studying alligator stem cells because they have an organised tooth structure similar to that of humans. They have about eighty teeth that can be replaced up to fifty times over their lifetime, making them an ideal comparison for human teeth.
The researchers found that alligator tooth units are structured to allow for a smooth transition from dislodgement of the functional tooth to the replacement of the new tooth. Using microscopic imaging techniques, they have discovered that the dental lamina, which is a band of tissue that is necessary to tooth renewal found in the gum, has stem cells contained within it.
The researchers hope to go on to isolate these stem cells and use them to regenerate teeth in a laboratory environment.
Other researchers have managed to create teeth in the lab, but haven’t been able to stimulate human gum tissue to produce tooth-inducing signals. This is what the researchers at the Keck School of Medicine are hoping to achieve.
However, though their aim in the future is to allow human dental patients to grow their own replacement teeth, this reality is a long way off. For now, there are a range of options to choose from to give you the set of pearly whites that you deserve. From dental implants to false teeth, there is no need to suffer.
If you think you can’t afford to pay for your new smile, think again. Many patients who want to boost their confidence with a beautiful smile are now getting their dental treatment abroad. Going to a dentist abroad could mean that you save up to 70% of what you may be charged in the UK. Offering affordable prices and world class service, there is no need to be overcharged by UK dentists any more. So instead of waiting around for alligator stem cells or UK prices to go down, go abroad and get your perfect smile for a fraction of the price.