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J Dent Res. 2005 Nov;84(11):1021-5.

Cementum and dentin in hypophosphatasia.

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  • 1Department of Periodontology, Academic Center for Dentistry Amsterdam (ACTA), Universiteit van Amsterdam, and Vrije Universiteit, Louwesweg 1, 1066 EA Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


Hypophosphatasia (HPP) often leads to premature loss of deciduous teeth, due to disturbed cementum formation. We addressed the question to what extent cementum and dentin are similarly affected. To this end, we compared teeth from children with HPP with those from matched controls and analyzed them microscopically and chemically. It was observed that both acellular and cellular cementum formation was affected. For dentin, however, no differences in mineral content were recorded. To explain the dissimilar effects on cementum and dentin in HPP, we assessed pyrophosphate (an inhibitor of mineralization) and the expression/activity of enzymes related to pyrophosphate metabolism in both the periodontal ligament and the pulp of normal teeth. Expression of nucleotide pyrophosphatase phosphodiesterase 1 (NPP1) in pulp proved to be significantly lower than in the periodontal ligament. Also, the activity of NPP1 was less in pulp, as was the concentration of pyrophosphate. Our findings suggest that mineralization of dentin is less likely to be under the influence of the inhibitory action of pyrophosphate than mineralization of cementum.

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