Current Oral Health Reports

, Volume 3, Issue 4, pp 302–308 | Cite as

Progress in Bioengineered Whole Tooth Research: from Bench to Dental Patient Chair

  • Elizabeth E. Smith
  • Pamela C. YelickEmail author
Orodental Regenerative Medicine (M Bartold, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Orodental Regenerative Medicine



Tooth loss is a significant health issue that affects the physiological and social aspects of everyday life. Missing teeth impair simple tasks of chewing and speaking and can also contribute to reduced self-confidence. An emerging and exciting area of regenerative medicine-based dental research focuses on the formation of bioengineered whole tooth replacement therapies that can provide both the function and sensory responsiveness of natural teeth. This area of research aims to enhance the quality of dental and oral health for those suffering from tooth loss. Current approaches use a combination of dental progenitor cells, scaffolds and growth factors to create biologically based replacement teeth to serve as improved alternatives to currently used artificial dental prosthetics.


This article is an overview of current progress, challenges, and future clinical applications of bioengineered whole teeth.


Recent accomplishments suggest that whole tooth bioengineering for human tooth replacement is indeed possible and, in fact, is the future of dentistry.


Odontogenesis Tooth loss Cell differentiation Odontoblasts Ameloblast Dentin 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Elizabeth E. Smith declares that she has no conflict of interest.

Pamela C. Yelick reports that she has two patents pending, one relevant to the field of study, and one that is not.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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© Springer International Publishing AG 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Cell, Molecular, and Developmental Biology, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical SciencesTufts University School of MedicineBostonUSA
  2. 2.Department of OrthodonticsTufts University School of Dental MedicineBostonUSA
  3. 3.Division of Craniofacial and Molecular Genetics, Department of OrthodonticsTufts University School of Dental MedicineBostonUSA
  4. 4.Department of Biomedical EngineeringTufts UniversityMedfordUSA

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