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Bio Tooth Replacement : Stem Cells : Animal Testing

Date: April 10, 2013 Author: William Lawson Category: News Comments: 0

Where do you stand on this??

Growing stem cells is one thing, but testing on animals is another, a very controversial topic even if they are mice. Sure we all want to be able to grow teeth to save having a drill into our jawbone but isn't there another way??

In the latest work at Kings College, the Dental team combined human gum cells with the cells in mice responsible for teeth growth and transplanted them into mice. Creating a hybrid human/mouse teeth containing dentine and enamel, as well as viable roots. An amazing achievement certainly but for animal rights protesters another thing altogether.

For me personally speaking yes I do care about animals and think that it's pretty awful to test out these things on mice but then consider the wider implications of what this will do for innovation in patient care in 5, 10 and 20 years time, I am sure there are many more people who are extremely passionate on this subject...

But let's look at the benefits for dentistry, it's an amazing concept of being able to actually grow a tooth from cells and although the technique is unlikely to allow scientists to specifically grow the exact canine, incisor or molar required, dentists will be able to re-shape the tooth crown according to its position in the jaw, so giving the patient the desired aesthetics.

For me I think its a good thing for the industry as well as it will give another tier of profitablity, a cash cow so to speak. To begin with it will be extremely expensive but after a few years once adopted it will come down in price. But Hey Folks can't we try it out on some animals that have lost their teeth or something...

Maybe old people would be another option, surely there are some people out there who would consider signing up to a testing program like this rather than these poor mice.

All of this said, a lot of work needs to go into finding sources of human cells that can be obtained in sufficient numbers to make biotooth formation a viable alternative to dental implants.

We Would love to see some comments on this extremely controversial topic so please comment and let us know what the dental community thinks on this...

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About the Author

William Lawson is the CEO of GetWise Marketing, bringing fresh ideas to dental marketing...

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