A new bioactive dental filling material could help teeth repair, according to a team at the University of Nottingham.
The new material aims to stimulate tooth stem cells to help encourage the growth of pulp and dentine, potentially eliminating the need for traditional fillings, and it won second prize recently in the Royal Society of Chemistry’s Emerging Technologies competition, with judges describing it as a ‘new paradigm for dental treatments’.
‘Existing dental fillings are toxic to cells and are therefore incompatible with pulp tissue inside the tooth,’ Adam Celiz, a research fellow at the University of Nottingham, said.
‘In cases of dental pulp disease and injury a root canal is typically performed to remove the infected tissues.
‘We have designed synthetic biomaterials that can be used similarly to dental fillings but can be placed in direct contact with pulp tissue to stimulate the native stem cell population for repair and regeneration of pulp tissue and the surrounding dentine.’