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ACS Biomater Sci Eng. 2017 Dec 11;3(12):3469-3479. doi: 10.1021/acsbiomaterials.7b00378. Epub 2017 Oct 18.

Using biomimetic polymers in place of noncollagenous proteins to achieve functional remineralization of dentin tissues.

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Molecular Foundry, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, CA, 94720.
Department of Preventive and Restorative Dental Sciences, University of California, San Francisco, CA, 94143.
Physical Sciences Division, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA 99352.
Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Washington, Seattle, WA, 98195.


In calcified tissues such as bones and teeth, mineralization is regulated by an extracellular matrix, which includes non-collagenous proteins (NCP). This natural process has been adapted or mimicked to restore tissues following physical damage or demineralization by using polyanionic acids in place of NCPs, but the remineralized tissues fail to fully recover their mechanical properties. Here we show that pre-treatment with certain amphiphilic peptoids, a class of peptide-like polymers consisting of N-substituted glycines that have defined monomer sequences, enhances ordering and mineralization of collagen and induces functional remineralization of dentin lesions in vitro. In the vicinity of dentin tubules, the newly formed apatite nano-crystals are co-aligned with the c-axis parallel to the tubular periphery and recovery of tissue ultrastructure is accompanied by development of high mechanical strength. The observed effects are highly sequence-dependent with alternating polar and non-polar groups leading to positive outcomes while diblock sequences have no effect. The observations suggest aromatic groups interact with the collagen while the hydrophilic side chains bind the mineralizing constituents and highlight the potential of synthetic sequence-defined biomimetic polymers to serve as NCP mimics in tissue remineralization.


Nanoindentation; Peptoids; SEM; TEM; dentin remineralization; in-situ AFM

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