Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Could Rodent Teeth be the Answer to Stem Cell Regeneration?

Rally Bunny.jpg
For the past several years, researchers have been trying to figure out exactly what causes stem cells to kick in and function in a regeneration situation.
All rodents (including “Leo the Bunny” shown above), continue to grow their incisors through their life.  In fact, if they do not wear their teeth down by chewing & gnawing the incisors can grow terrifyingly long & cause all kinds of problems.
To that end, researchers at the University of California San Francisco have been studying the teeth of mice (another rodent) to see what the factors are & could those factors help to grow new organs and teeth someday.
Here is a brief excerpt:
"As we grow older our teeth start to wear out, and in nature, once you don't have your teeth anymore, you die. As a result, mice and many other animals - from elephants to some primates - can grow their teeth continuously," said UC San Francisco's Ophir Klein, MD, PhD, a professor of orofacial sciences in UCSF's School of Dentistry and of pediatrics in the School of Medicine. "Our lab's objective is to learn the rules that let mouse incisors grow continuously to help us one day grow teeth in the lab, but also to help us identify general principles that could enable us to understand the processes of tissue renewal much more broadly."

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