Goodbye to fillings: a new technique allows the teeth to regenerate themselves

They look like pebbles, inert pieces of calcium and phosphorus that brush a few times a day. But despite this rocky look, teeth are living systems and very complex. In fact, many of the problems that daily dentists have is because our techniques do not get along with the dynamic character of the dentures.
A group of dentists at King's College in London has been proposed to make forget the traditional cements (prone to future infections, to erode and even falling) and to wager by using a secret weapon: the natural ability of the tooth to repair itself .
The secret is in the pulp

That secret weapon is called dental pulp or, more specifically, the stem cells from the dental pulp . The pulp is a loose connective tissue that is protected by dentin and enamel in the very heart of each tooth.
It is a natural mechanism that we have known for a long time and that is used to fix small cracks or holes in the dentin. Paul Sharpe and his team have realized that a drug used in the treatment of Alzheimer's, tideglusib, can enhance the mechanism to gradually regenerate complete teeth .
Studies in mice

The technique, for now, has only been tested in mice . The researchers filled the teeth of the rodents with a biodegradable sponge dipped in tideglusib and sealed with a dental adhesive. According to preliminary data, it works: after a couple of weeks, teeth and had better results than those of traditional cements and dentin had regenerated to fill the entire gap .
Studies with humans, at the end of the year

Doubt, as the researchers themselves acknowledge, is whether it will work on larger teeth (and holes). That is, it will work in humans. The good results in animals and the fact that the safety of tideglusib has already been demonstrated (in studies on Alzheimer's), make the first tests in humans have been programmed very soon. Before the end of 2017 we will have the first results .
Sadly, for those who hate going to the dentist, the news is not as good as it might seem. If confirmed, the technique would be a revolution against cements used today . That means that fillings would be more durable and of better quality. But I'm afraid that the job of the dentist and his drill removing tooth decay will still be necessary. Let us not lose hope.

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