Role of epithelial-stem cell interactions during dental cell differentiation

Makiko Arakaki, Masaki Ishikawa, Takashi Nakamura, Tsutomu Iwamoto, Aya Yamada, Emiko Fukumoto, Masahiro Saito, Keishi Otsu, Hidemitsu Harada, Yoshihiko Yamada, Satoshi Fukumoto

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95 Citations (Scopus)


Epithelial-mesenchymal interactions regulate the growth and morphogenesis of ectodermal organs such as teeth. Dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs) are a part of dental mesenchyme, derived from the cranial neural crest, and differentiate into dentin forming odontoblasts. However, the interactions between DPSCs and epithelium have not been clearly elucidated. In this study, we established a mouse dental pulp stem cell line (SP) comprised of enriched side population cells that displayed a multipotent capacity to differentiate into odontogenic, osteogenic, adipogenic, and neurogenic cells. We also analyzed the interactions between SP cells and cells from the rat dental epithelial SF2 line. When cultured with SF2 cells, SP cells differentiated into odontoblasts that expressed dentin sialophosphoprotein. This differentiation was regulated by BMP2 and BMP4, and inhibited by the BMP antagonist Noggin.Wealso found that mouse iPS cells cultured with mitomycin C-treated SF2-24 cells displayed an epithelial cell-like morphology. Those cells expressed the epithelial cell markers p63 and cytokeratin-14, and the ameloblast markers ameloblastin and enamelin, whereas they did not express the endodermal cell marker Gata6 or mesodermal cell marker brachyury. This is the first report of differentiation of iPS cells into ameloblasts via interactions with dental epithelium. Co-culturing with dental epithelial cells appears to induce stem cell differentiation that favors an odontogenic cell fate, which may be a useful approach for tooth bioengineering strategies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10590-10601
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Mar 23

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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