Stem cells are unspecialized cells, which have the capacity to self-renew and generate differentiated
cell types. They hold great promises in regenerative medicine, which has the potential to
revolutionize our approach to treat diseases and alleviate problems caused by trauma and aging. The
dental field has been an active area for researching stem cell based therapies and a great effort has
been made to develop strategies for utilizing embryonic stem cells (ESCs), adult dental stem cells and
more recently, induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells in tooth regeneration. In this review, we focus on these three main
sources of stem cells, describe findings that have laid the foundation for using these cells in tooth regeneration, and discuss
the potential as well as challenges of tooth bioengineering in clinical application.
Keywords: Embryonic stem cell, dental epithelial stem cell, dental stem cell, induced pluripotent stem cells, mesenchymal
stem cell, tooth regeneration, tissue engineering.
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