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J Tissue Eng Regen Med. 2008 Mar-Apr;2(2-3):117-25. doi: 10.1002/term.71.

In vivo evaluation of human dental pulp stem cells differentiated towards multiple lineages.

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Department of Periodontology and Biomaterials, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, Nijmegen, The Netherlands.


An increasing number of investigations supports that adult stem cells have the potential to differentiate into matured cell types beyond their origin, a property defined as plasticity. Previously, the plasticity of stem cells derived from dental pulp (DPSC) has been confirmed by culturing cells in lineage-specific media in vitro. In the current study, the in vivo differentiation or maturation potential of DPSC was further analysed, by transplanting human DPSC/collagen scaffold constructs into subcutaneous tissue of immunocompromised mice. Cells received odontogenic, adipogenic or myogenic pre-induction, whereas control samples received no stimulation. Also blank collagen scaffolds were implanted. The results indicated that seeded cells produced tissue within the implanted constructs after 3 weeks of implantation. According to morphological and phenotypical changes, the pre-induced DPSC showed the ability to further differentiate along odontogenic, myogenic and adipogenic pathways in vivo. Moreover, DPSC without pre-treatment were able to spontaneously differentiate along odontogenic and adipogenic directions in vivo. However, only limited mature morphological changes were detected in histology. In summary, stem cells derived from human dental pulp form a suitable source for tissue engineering and cell-mediated therapy, although additional analyses should be considered.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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