Researchers at King’s College London have identified a drug that can regenerate teeth from the inside out and repair cavities. This discovery may consign artificial fillings to history.
Researchers found that the drug Tideglusib, which was previously used in Alzheimer’s clinical trials, stimulates the stem cells contained in teeth. This drug improves the tooth’s natural ability to heal itself by generating new dentine, the dense bony tissue under the enamel.
As per lead author Paul Sharpe, “The simplicity of our approach makes it ideal as a clinical dental product for the natural treatment of large cavities, by providing both pulp protection and restoring dentine. In addition, using a drug that has already been tested in clinical trials for Alzheimer’s disease provides a real opportunity to get this dental treatment quickly into clinics.”
Restoring the tooth’s original dentine structure is better because at present dentists use dental cement to treat cavities that not only weaken the tooth but also leave it prone to future infections.
Dr. Nigel Carter, CEO of the Oral Health Foundation said, “Creating a more natural way for the tooth to repair itself could not only eliminate these issues but also be a far less invasive treatment option for patients. With dental phobia still being very common, using a natural way to stimulate the renewal of dentine could be an especially comforting proposal for these groups, for which undergoing treatment can often be a cause of great anxiety.”