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J Craniofac Genet Dev Biol. 1991 Oct-Dec;11(4):338-49.

Molecular determinants during dental morphogenesis and cytodifferentiation: a review.

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Department of Basic Sciences (Biochemistry), School of Dentistry, University of Southern California, Los Angeles.


Craniofacial development provides a number of opportunities to investigate the cellular and molecular biology of morphogenesis, cytodifferentiation, tissue-specific extracellular matrix (ECM) formations, and biomineralization. Regulatory processes associated with mandibular morphogenesis and specifically tooth formation are being investigated by the identification of when and where molecular determinants such as cell adhesion molecules (CAMs), substrate adhesion molecules (SAMs), and tissue-specific structural gene products are expressed during sequential developmental stages. Based upon in vitro organotypic culture studies in serumless, chemically defined medium, instructive and permissive signaling has been found to be required for both mandibular and dental morphogenesis and cytodifferentiation. For example, intrinsic developmental instructions (autocrine and paracrine factors), independent of long-range hormonal or exogenous growth factors, mediate morphogenesis from the initiation of the dental lamina through crown and initial root stages of tooth development. This review summarizes recent results using experimental embryology, organ culture, recombinant DNA technology, and immunocytology to elucidate mechanisms responsive to instructive epithelial-mesenchymal interactions associated with mandibular morphogenesis, tooth positional information, and subsequent tooth crown and initial root development.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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