Lab grows teeth

Discovery could put an end to fillings and dentures

Some excellent news for the Dany Heatley’s of the world: researchers believe they have found a way to grow teeth in the laboratory. A team from Oregon State University have identified the gene responsible for the growth of enamel, the outer hard covering that cannot grow back naturally. The gene that produces the enamel cells, Ctip2, has several other functions involving immune responses and the development of skin and nerves. Since other scientists have already grown the inner part of the tooth in animals, the discovery could be used to grow the whole missing tooth. Alternatively, it could strengthen damaged enamel, cutting decay and eliminating the need for fillings or dentures.

BBC News