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J Appl Biomater Funct Mater. 2018 Jul 26:2280800018784230. doi: 10.1177/2280800018784230. [Epub ahead of print]

BMP-2 and type I collagen preservation in human deciduous teeth after demineralization.

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1 Politecnico di Milano Research Unit, National Interuniversity Consortium of Materials Science and Technology - INSTM, Milan, Italy.
2 Department of Chemistry, Materials and Chemical Engineering "Giulio Natta", Politecnico di Milano, Milan, Italy.



Great interest has recently been focused on tooth and tooth derivatives as suitable substrates for the treatment of alveolar bone defects. Here, we propose the use of demineralized baby teeth (BT) as potential grafting materials for bone augmentation procedures.


Particles of human BT (Ø < 1 mm) were demineralized by means of a chemical/thermal treatment. Demineralized BT particles were thoroughly characterized by scanning electron microscopy/energy dispersive X-ray analyses to evaluate the effects of the demineralization on BT topography and mineral phase composition, and by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA) to quantify collagen and bone morphogenetic protein-2 (BMP-2) protein contents. The response of SAOS-2 cells to exogenous BMP-2 stimulation was evaluated to identify the minimum BMP-2 concentration able to induce osteodifferentiation in vitro (alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity).


The demineralization treatment led to a dramatic decrease in relative Ca and P content (%) of ≈75% with respect to the native BT particles, while preserving native protein conformation and activity. Interestingly, the demineralization process led to a rise in the bioavailability of BMP-2 in BT particles, as compared to the untreated counterparts. The BMP-2 content found in demineralized BT was also proved to be very effective in enhancing ALP activity, thus in the osteodifferentiation of SAOS-2 cells in vitro, as confirmed by cell experiments performed upon exogenously added BMP-2.


In this study we demonstrate that the BMP-2 content found in demineralized BT is very effective in inducing cell osteodifferentiation, and strengthens the idea that BTs are very attractive bioactive materials for bone-grafting procedures.


BMP-2; Baby teeth; collagen; demineralization


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