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Did you know alligators can replace each of their teeth up to 50 times in their life? Humans are unique among vertebrates for being able to replace our teeth only once. But new insights into how alligators replace their teeth may help stimulate the same process in ours.
Professor Cheng-Ming Chuong, M.D., Ph.D., has discovered novel molecular and cellular mechanisms in alligators that promote tooth renewal. Researchers have found that alligator teeth are made up of three parts: a functional tooth, a replacement tooth, and the dental lamina. This lamina contains stem cells that grow into new teeth.
As for the next steps, the team hopes to isolate cells from the alligator lamina to see if they can develop teeth in-lab. They will also look into the molecular mechanisms of repeated renewal and apply these concepts to regenerative medicine in the future.
Dental grills (also known as “grillz”) might draw attention to your teeth and your smile, but they are actually terrible for your teeth. If you have ever seen a music video featuring someone wearing grills, then you are likely looking at dental grills that are made from gold, silver, or another precious metal. While expensive […]
It’s a feeling we’ve all experienced at some point or another: a parched, gritty, can’t-get-water-fast-enough sensation that’s unpleasant at best and dangerous at worst. Xerostomia, or dry mouth, is a medical condition that we tend to write off as mere dehydration. While taking a big gulp of water can help in the short-term, if your […]
If you have a pet at home, you may have taken them for a dental checkup. That’s right, animals—especially pets and zoo animals—often need dental care. Periodontal disease is one of the biggest reasons animals lose teeth. This is particularly true for pets and zoo animals in captive who decidedly live longer than they would […]
While endodontists are known as specialists in root canal therapy, they actually specialize in saving teeth by working with the inside of the tooth. Endodontists can do a variety of surgeries to save your natural tooth. One of these surgeries is called an apicoectomy. An apicoectomy is needed when conventional root canal treatment cannot treat […]
There are a few benefits as to why pacifiers should be given to babies. Research has shown that pacifiers can actually help reduce incidences of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). Babies who suck on pacifiers during sleep don’t fall into as deep a sleep as those who don’t suck on pacifiers. This means that if […]
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