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The root canal system: A channel through which we can seed cells into grafts

Gu Cheng, Zu-Bing Li

The State Key Laboratory Breeding Base of Basic Science of Stomatology (Hubei-MOST) & Key Laboratory of Oral Biomedicine Ministry of Education, School & Hospital of Stomatology, Wuhan University, Wuhan, China (mainland)

Med Sci Monit 2014; 20:624-627

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.890057

Available online:

Published: 2014-04-16

Abstract: Bone tissue engineering is bringing hope to patients with jawbone defects, but this technology works well only for small- to moderate-sized jawbone defects. For large segmental jawbone defects, it is difficult to form the functional vascular networks within the graft due to limited diffusion of nutrition and uneven distribution of seed cells. From the standpoint of bionics, seed cells should be continuously transmitted into the graft to replace the necrotic cells during the entire process of bones regeneration. However, the existing one-time inoculation method (OIM) fails to achieve this goal because it is almost impossible to re-open the wound and inoculate cells into grafts that have already been implanted into the body. Inspired by the anatomical structure of jawbones, we hypothesize that the root canal in teeth of jawbones could be used as a channel through which seed cells could be delivered into the graft. Therefore, the multiple-times inoculation method (MIM) could be achieved via the root canal system if defects are located on the maxillofacial bones with teeth. Both osteogenesis and vascularization would be promoted to a large extent because the engineered construct has a limitless supply of seed cells and growth factors.

Keywords: Dental Pulp Cavity - physiology, Cell Transplantation, Models, Biological, Tissue Engineering - methods