A useful anti-caries drug for Alzheimer’s?
British researchers have found how to treat cavities of decayed teeth quickly: by stimulating their natural regeneration process with a molecule tested against Alzheimer’s disease. They see this as an alternative to filling.
Tideglusib is a molecule currently undergoing clinical trials for the treatment of one of the most common neurodegenerative diseases, Alzheimer’s disease, but it can also be very useful for teeth. Researchers at King’s College in London have found ways to use it to stimulate the renewal of dental pulp regenerative stem cells, a process that is very useful when it is infected with trauma.
To protect the tooth from infection a thin layer of dentin is produced naturally to surround the dental pulp, but it is insufficient actually to repair large cavities. To treat these cavities, dentists fill the holes using plastic cement or fillings, such as silicon-based products.
However, this adhesive remains in the tooth and does not disintegrate naturally, which means that the mineral level of the tooth is never completely restored. The new biological approach that the researchers evoke in their study thus places on the natural ability of teeth to repair themselves. This would generate new dentin to great cavities, which could potentially reduce the need for filling.
A simpler and quicker method
A more natural solution for the patient, and a lower risk of complications for dentists. Indeed, the use of cement or dental fillings has its limitations since it can cause infections and involves frequent changes. Moreover, when these techniques do not work, or an infection occurs again, dentists have to treat an infected area larger than before, or even possibly extract the tooth.
In addition to Tideglusib, the researchers used another molecule, glycogen synthase, and biodegradable collagen sponges. These are used to administer the treatment, which combines these two molecules, on a tooth that has a decay. In mice whose teeth were punctured with small holes, the researchers found that the sponge had deteriorated over time and that the new dentin had replaced it.
Repair is complete
Thus, the stem cells of the teeth did generate dentin at high speed, and the restoration was complete and natural. These sponges are also commercially available and clinically approved, which would allow the rapid use of this method in dental clinics.
“The simplicity of our approach makes it ideal for use with a dental product that aims to treat cavities, producing both pulp protection and dentin regeneration,” explains the principal Author of the study, Professor Paul Sharpe. Moreover, using a drug that has already passed clinical tests for Alzheimer ‘s disease presents a real opportunity to use it quickly. ”
However, this method is not miraculous since it would still be necessary to submit to the dentist ‘s strawberry to remove the decayed parts of the tooth.