Stem Cell Research May Put an End to Root Canals

Stem cell research is charting new territory in the treatment for healing damaged teeth.

Scientists from the University of Nottingham and Harvard University’s Wyss Institute believe their new treatment strategy may one day replace root canals.

Regenerative Treatment Strategy

When dental pulp disease and injury happen, a root canal is typically performed to remove the infected tissues, explained Dr. Adam Celiz, Marie Curie Research Fellow at the University of Nottingham.

Instead of the current dental materials used on fillings, which are toxic to cells, the new approach harnesses stem cells instead. The process works by stimulating native stem cells inside teeth, triggering repair and regeneration of pulp tissues.

“We’re trying to provide an alternative material, an alternative therapy,” Celiz said because the current method involves the invasively removing all of the infected pulp tissue.

Minimally Invasive Benefits

The stem cell procedure is in the early stages of development. It’s been tested in cell cultures and it will be years before it can be tested on people.If successful, a treatment like this could someday offer significant minimally invasive benefits for millions of dental patients each year.

Source: CBS News

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