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J Endod. 2008 Aug;34(8):962-9. doi: 10.1016/j.joen.2008.04.009.

Dental pulp tissue engineering with stem cells from exfoliated deciduous teeth.

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Department of Cariology, Restorative Sciences, and Endodontics, University of Michigan School of Dentistry, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1078, USA.


Stem cells from human exfoliated deciduous teeth (SHED) have been isolated and characterized as multipotent cells. However, it is not known whether SHED can generate a dental pulp-like tissue in vivo. The purpose of this study was to evaluate morphologic characteristics of the tissue formed when SHED seeded in biodegradable scaffolds prepared within human tooth slices are transplanted into immunodeficient mice. We observed that the resulting tissue presented architecture and cellularity that closely resemble those of a physiologic dental pulp. Ultrastructural analysis with transmission electron microscopy and immunohistochemistry for dentin sialoprotein suggested that SHED differentiated into odontoblast-like cells in vivo. Notably, SHED also differentiated into endothelial-like cells, as demonstrated by B-galactosidase staining of cells lining the walls of blood-containing vessels in tissues engineered with SHED stably transduced with LacZ. This work suggests that exfoliated deciduous teeth constitute a viable source of stem cells for dental pulp tissue engineering.

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