The newest tool to fight cavities? Stem cells

University of Plymouth researchers are studying a stem cell that encourages continuous tooth growth in mice, New Atlas reports.

What you should know:

1. The England-based researchers are studying how mesenchymal stem cells create new dentin — the tough tissue that covers teeth — in mice.

2. Molecular gene Dlk1 produces the stem cells. The gene plays a role in both tooth regeneration and injury recovery.

3. The team believes its work is helping to advance the understanding of how stem cell regeneration can affect tissue.

4. While their work is promising, the researchers are years away from understanding if such regeneration can be developed for and used on humans.

5. The researchers aren't alone in their efforts, however. Philadelphia-based University of Pennsylvania researchers used stem cells from patients' baby teeth to repair injuries to their permanent teeth.

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