Researchers from the University of Adelaide, led by Dr. Kylie Ellis, have discovered that dental pulp stem cells [DPSC] have the ability to differentiate into complex networks of cells closely resembling neurons found in the brain. According to Dr. Ellis, “Stem cells from teeth have great potential to grow into new brain or nerve cells, and this could potentially assist with treatments of brain disorders, such as stroke.” She goes on to say “ultimately, we want to be able to use a patient’s own stem cells for tailor-made brain therapy that doesn’t have the host rejection issues commonly associated with cell-based therapies. Another advantage is that dental pulp stem cell therapy may provide a treatment option available months or even years after the stroke has occurred.” Current drug treatment therapies for stroke victims must be administered almost immediately following the stroke – within hours. This severely limits their application as most stroke victims don’t have access to these treatments within that timeframe.
The ability to differentiate into neural tissue is just one example of the ‘plasticity’ inherent in dental pulp stem cells. DPSC have also been differentiated into insulin producing pancreatic beta cells, beating cardiomyocytes, muscle, bone, cartilage and, not surprisingly, teeth; to name some of the many tissues researchers have been able to direct DPSC to differentiate into. This makes them a source of stem cells for potential therapies to treat a broad range of disease, trauma and injury.
To learn more about stem cells, and how families can bank their own valuable stem cells by recovering the very powerful dental pulp stem cells during routine dental procedures; such as wisdom teeth extractions or the during the loss of baby teeth, visit StemSave or call 877-783-6728 (877-StemSave) today.
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