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Adv Exp Med Biol. 2018;1077:31-40. doi: 10.1007/978-981-13-0947-2_3.

Growth and Differentiation of Dental Stem Cells of Apical Papilla on Polycaprolactone Scaffolds.

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Department of Anatomy, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, UAE University, Al-Ain, United Arab Emirates.
Department of Endodontics, Hamdan Bin Mohamed College of Dental Medicine, Mohamed Bin Rashid University of Medicine and Health Sciences, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Department of Chemistry, College of Science, UAE University, Al-Ain, United Arab Emirates.
Department of Endodontics, Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine, Boston University, Boston, MA, USA.
Department of Preventive & Restorative Dental Sciences, School of Dentistry, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA.
Department of Anatomy, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, UAE University, Al-Ain, United Arab Emirates.


Biodegradable scaffolds are useful tools in the field of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. The aim of this study was to test the potential of the human stem cells of apical papilla (SCAP) to attach, proliferate and differentiate on a polycaprolactone (PCL)-based scaffolds. SCAP were extracted from the root apical papillae of freshly extracted immature premolar teeth by using enzymatic digestion. Porous PCL scaffolds were fabricated using particle leaching method and NaCl or mannitol as porogens. SCAP of passage 3 were seeded on non-porous and porous PCL scaffolds for up to 14 days. For control, cells were cultured on glass coverslips. Picogreen DNA quantification was used to assay for cell proliferation. Cell differentiation and development of calcification nodules were examined using scanning electron microscopy and alizarin red staining. SCAP showed a comparable attachment, growth and proliferation patterns on PCL scaffolds and coverslips. Cell proliferation was enhanced on mannitol scaffolds at all time points. Calcification nodules were detected in all PCL scaffolds while it was not present on glass coverslips. These nodules were detected on NaCl-scaffolds by day 7 and on mannitol and non-porous scaffolds by day 14. In conclusion, SCAP were able to attach, proliferate and differentiate on PCL scaffolds without using any inductive media, indicating their potential application for dental tissue regeneration.


Calcification nodules; Dental stem cells; Polycaprolactone; Porous scaffolds; Regenerative endodontics; Stem cells of apical papilla

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