New research shows that stem cells from human urine could be used to regrow teeth.
Pluripotent stem cells generated from human urine cells have been used to grow teeth-like structures in a group of mice, as a new study published in Cell Regeneration journal shows.
This laboratory-based study could illuminate the possibility of using urine as an easier source to obtain stem cells rather than by existing means – such as obtaining a sample of bone marrow.
Researchers reported that, after three weeks, up to 30% of mice developed a tooth-like structure. These teeth-like structures only had one third of the hardness of human teeth, but contained dental pulp, dentin, enamel space and enamel organ.
Despite its relative success, the experiment has attracted a certain amount of criticism. Caution must be necessitated when generalising findings from animal research to humans. Nevertheless, the future of regenerative therapies in dentistry is looking positive with continued progress.