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Treating Incipient Dental Caries In Children, A New Method Developed

WASHINGTON, U.S.: Prevention of dental caries in children is the best way to improve their oral health; however, many patients would be thrilled to have access to an alternative if their teeth did develop caries and needed restorative work. In new research, scientists from the University of Washington have developed a method that uses proteins to remineralize tooth enamel to treat white spot lesions and incipient caries.

Peptides derived from amelogenin is used by the researchers. This is the protein which is crucial to forming enamel, that biomineralize as the key active ingredient in the new technology. I order to assess the effect of peptides , a group of participants received artificially created lesion on their teeth. the remineralization ability of the peptides was tested against variations of fluoride alone or combined with peptides, among others.

The results showed that , participants who received the peptides alone showed a 10 μm thick remineralization layer. This the researchers believe, that the peptides could rebuild and strengthen enamel on a daily basis, when part of a well planned  preventive dental care routine. Once fully developed, the technology could then be used in both private and public health settings. It5 could find its applications in biomimetic toothpaste, gels, solutions and composites, as a safe alternative to existing dental procedures and treatments.

Commenting on their new discovery, head researcher Mehmet Sarikaya, Professor of Materials Science and Engineering and adjunct professor at the Department of Chemical Engineering and Department of Oral Health Sciences at the University of Washington, said: “Remineralization guided by peptides is a healthy alternative to current dental health care.”

Researchers believed that this could benefit some lower socio economic groups who have suffered from oral disease despite the past centenary seeing an improvement in global oral health. They quoted a recent report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on the prevalence of dental cavities in Americans indicated that caries is again on the rise—suggesting a regression in the progress of previous years.

The study, titled “Biomimetic tooth repair: Amelogenin-derived peptide enables in vitro remineralization of human enamel,” was published in ACS Biomaterials Science and Engineeringon March 9, 2018.

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