Unveiling Stem Cell Heterogeneity Toward the Development of Salivary Gland Regenerative Strategies

  • Ganokon Urkasemsin
  • Joao N. FerreiraEmail author
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 1123)


Epithelial damage in the salivary gland (SG) resulting in irreversible dry mouth can be commonly induced by gamma radiation therapy. This radiation depletes the SG stem/progenitor cell niche slowing healing and natural gland regeneration. Biologists have been focused in understanding the development and differentiation of epithelial stem and progenitor cell niches during SG organogenesis. These organogenesis studies gave insights into novel cell-based therapies to recreate the three-dimensional (3D) salivary gland (SG) organ, recapitulate the SG native physiology, and restore saliva secretion. Such therapeutical strategies apply techniques that assemble, in a 3D organotypic culture, progenitor and stem cell lines to develop SG organ-like organoids or mini-transplants. Future studies will employ a combination of organoids, decellularized matrices, and smart biomaterials to create viable and functional SG transplants to repair the site of SG injury and reestablish saliva production.


Exocrine glands Salivary glands Radiotherapy Sjögren’s syndrome Hypofunction Dry mouth Xerostomia Regenerative medicine Tissue engineering Epithelial cell Progenitor cell Stem cell Three-dimensional cultures Bio-printing 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Veterinary Science, Department of Preclinical and Applied Animal ScienceMahidol UniversityNakhon PathomThailand
  2. 2.Center of Excellence in Regenerative Dentistry, Faculty of DentistryChulalongkorn UniversityBangkokThailand
  3. 3.National University of SingaporeSingaporeSingapore

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