Skip to comments.Smile! A new Canadian tool can re-grow teeth say inventors
Posted on 06/28/2006 4:10:41 PM PDT by AntiGuv
Snaggle-toothed hockey players and sugar lovers may soon rejoice as Canadian scientists said they have created the first device able to re-grow teeth and bones.
The researchers at the University of Alberta in Edmonton filed patents earlier this month in the United States for the tool based on low-intensity pulsed ultrasound technology after testing it on a dozen dental patients in Canada.
"Right now, we plan to use it to fix fractured or diseased teeth, as well as asymmetric jawbones, but it may also help hockey players or children who had their tooth knocked out," Jie Chen, an engineering professor and nano-circuit design expert, told AFP.
Chen helped create the tiny ultrasound machine that gently massages gums and stimulates tooth growth from the root once inserted into a person's mouth, mounted on braces or a removable plastic crown.
The wireless device, smaller than a pea, must be activated for 20 minutes each day for four months to stimulate growth, he said.
It can also stimulate jawbone growth to fix a person's crooked smile and may eventually allow people to grow taller by stimulating bone growth, Chen said.
Tarek El-Bialy, a new member of the university's dentistry faculty, first tested the low-intensity pulsed ultrasound treatment to repair dental tissue in rabbits in the late 1990s.
His research was published in the American Journal of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics and later presented at the World Federation of Orthodontics in Paris in September 2005.
With the help of Chen and Ying Tsui, another engineering professor, the initial massive handheld device was shrunk to fit inside a person's mouth.
It is still at the prototype stage, but the trio expects to commercialize it within two years, Chen said.
The bigger version has already received approvals from American and Canadian regulatory bodies, he noted.
Wow, I wonder how long it would take for FDA approval? I had a molar removed a few years ago, I didn't want to spend the money to get a porcelain replacement.
Wow. I wonder if it works on soft tissue too? Could be used to regenerate pancreatic cells in diabetics?
Damned! I just spent thousands of dollars on crowns and veneers.
Great I need a new eye tooth
Interesting indeed. I remember reading an article about regrowing teeth with stem cells. Working on this in England, I think.
Here you go...you wished for it, looks like you might get it. Hope it's not hype.
Willing to be a guinea pig for this.
...and it STAYS stimulated, so a new, full set of teeth begins growing in every 3-4 years, forcing the extraction of the previous set.
Canadian scientist ping.
I wonder if it will be useful for people with osteoporosis.
Land shark. ;B
If this works, I doubt they'll charge a whole lot less for the "new tooth" treatments as opposed to the cost of crowns and veneers, so...
I was just kidding about the disappointment. This stuff is years away from actually being a feasible treatment. I wouldn't be surprised if this were priced higher than conventional cosmetic dental restoration methods. I would rather have real teeth than porcelain crowns on my upper incisors. Quite frankly it would be great if I could grow a new set of teeth every 25 years or so. All my teeth were discolored by exposure to tetracycline, and it is impossible to get rid of that discoloration. I got a couple of veneers on my bicuspids just so I could get a lighter shade of across all four teeth.
That would be a huge boon to almost everyone, myself included.
All my teeth were discolored by exposure to tetracycline, and it is impossible to get rid of that discoloration.
I feel your pain, as a kid I lived in a city that overdid the flouride in the water supply, with a similar result.
Please send me a FReepmail to get on or off this Canada ping list.
Years ago, I read a report ( with no further confirmation ) about a woman nearly a hundred years old who grew a new set of teeth. Always wondered about it.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.