news for soda lovers: Scientists appear to be one step closer to being able to
regenerate teeth in humans. A study in Developmental Biology explains how
sharks and other marine life are able to regrow teeth continuously throughout
now, that process had been “poorly understood and [remained] virtually
uncharacterized from a developmental genetic standpoint.” Researchers at the
University of Sheffield studying the embryos of catsharks discovered a “special
set of epithelial cells” called dental lamina that are responsible for
regenerating teeth, according to a press release.
genes goes back 450 million years and are likely responsible for producing the
first teeth in vertebrates, as well as generating all the teeth since,
including those in humans. In fact, humans have the same dental lamina, but
they produce teeth only twice (“baby” teeth, then the adult versions) before
the cells disappear. Researchers believe it’s possible for this research to
eventually help people who’ve lost teeth.