Soon, dental fillings may be left in the dustbin of history, and all that thanks to a recent discovery of one drug, which is called Tideglusib. The drug was initially developed and trialed to treat Alzheimer’s disease. During the test trials, scientist discovered that it also happens to promote the natural tooth regrowth mechanism. In praxis, this means that teeth itself will repair cavities.
How does It work?
The Tideglusib drug works by stimulating stem cells in the pulp of teeth, which are the source of new dentine. Dentine is the mineralized substance beneath the tooth enamel which gets eaten away by tooth decay.
Teeth can naturally regenerate dentine without assistance, but this happens only under certain circumstances. The pulp should usually be exposed to infection (like tooth decay), or maybe by trauma, to prompt the production of dentine. But, even after that, the tooth will only have the ability to regrow a fragile layer naturally, which is not enough to repair cavities caused by tooth decay. This drug will change this outcome, as it turns off the GSK-3 enzyme, which stops dentine from forming.
Tooth Regrowth Research
In the conducted research, the team inserted some small, biodegradable sponges that were made of collagen soaked in Tideglusib into cavities. Then, the sponges triggered dentine growth, and within six weeks, the damage was repaired completely. The collagen structure of the sponges melted away, leaving just the whole tooth.
But, this procedure has just been used in mouse teeth. Still, as the Professor and lead author of the King’s College London Dental Institute, Paul Sharpe told The Telegraph:
“Using a drug which was already tested in clinical trials for Alzheimer’s disease provides a real opportunity to get this dental treatment quickly into clinics.”
He also added:
“Our approach’s simplicity makes it ideal as a clinical dental product used for the natural treatment of large cavities, in that way providing both: restoring dentine and pulp protection as well.”
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