Journal of the Japanese Association of Regenerative Dentistry
J Jpn Assoc Regenerative Dent Vol.5(2) pp.94-104
ISSN 1348-9615


The Strategy and Development of the Research for Tooth Regenerative Therapy as Future Organ Replacement Regenerative Therapy

Etsuko IKEDA1,2, Kazuhisa NAKAO1,2, Takashi TSUJI1,2
1Faculty of Industrial Science and Technology, Tokyo University of Science, 2Tissue Engineering Research Center, Tokyo University of Science

In regenerative therapy, stem cell transplantation therapies have been developed to treat organ dysfunction due to injury or disease. The ultimate goal of regenerative therapy is to achieve organ replacement using regenerative therapies by developing fully functioning bioengineered organs. In the dental field, therapies for the missing teeth have already been established such as bridge and implant therapy. In addition, "tooth regeneration", which involves a process of regenerating a tooth by reconstituting bioengineered tooth germ, has been developed, and researches for regenerative medicine has made the most progress in teeth. Recently, we developed a bioengineering method for forming three-dimensional tooth germ that could generate a complete tooth from dissociated single tooth germ cells. The bioengineered tooth germ was shown to generate a structurally correct tooth in a tooth cavity in vivo. Regeneration of the entire tooth requires further researches for development of technologies such as generating a tooth by using stem or precursor cells from patients, controlling tooth morphology, and shortening the treatment period. Also, researches into tooth regeneration will provide basic techniques that may possibly be applied for other organs, and such researches are expected to be propelled as the useful model for the consideration of strategies in future organ replacement therapies.

Keyword: tooth regeneration, organ replacement therapy, bioengineering method