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Cells Tissues Organs. 2009;189(1-4):268-74. doi: 10.1159/000151447. Epub 2008 Aug 14.

Isolation of distinct progenitor stem cell populations from dental pulp.

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Tissue Engineering and Reparative Dentistry, School of Dentistry, Cardiff University, Cardiff, UK.


The present study compared the cellular characteristics of progenitor stem cell populations present in adult dental pulp, isolated by different methods utilizing 2 different features of stem cell biology. One population expressing high levels of beta1 integrin was isolated by preferential selection of adherent cells to fibronectin over 20 min. In an alternative approach, cells expressing the embryonic neural crest cell marker, low-affinity nerve growth factor receptor (LANGFR), were selected by magnetic-activated cell sorting. For each method, clonal cell lines were established and expanded in culture. One clone derived via the respective methods was examined for embryonic/progenitor cell markers by immunocytochemistry and RT-PCR. Both clonal populations demonstrated the expression of stro-1 and stained positive for vimentin, demonstrating mesenchymal lineage. Of note, cells selected for LANGFR cells demonstrated the additional expression of CD105 and Notch 2. For both clonal populations, expanded cultures demonstrated the ability to differentiate into osteoblasts, adipocytes and chondrocytes. These results would suggest the potential isolation of 2 progenitor cell populations exhibiting different cellular characteristics in terms of their embryonic nature. The potential for both cell populations to derive from a common origin is discussed.

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