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Targeted Cell Recruitment During Organogenesis And Regeneration: Glia Makes The Tooth
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This ERC Consolidator Grant project studies targeted cell recruitment during organogenesis and regeneration: glia makes the tooth.

Recently we discovered a new phenomenon in developmental biology – recruitment of stem cells from the pervasive peripheral nerves. We demonstrated that majority of melanocytes – our pigment cells, are born from peripheral glial cells. To further extend this far-reaching principle we will use tooth development as a model. Current opinion holds that innervation of the tooth has a minor or no role in making a structure of the tooth during development and adulthood. On the contrary, our preliminary data suggest that sensory nerve contributes pulp cells and matrix producing cells of odontoblast lineage to the growing tooth. Our hypothesis implies that nerve-associated glial cells can be recruited from the nerve by unknown molecules inside of the tooth environment, and that these recruited cells are capable of producing pulp and odontoblasts.

We propose to address the role of a sensory nerve as a provider of dental stem cells during the development, adulthood and regeneration. To address our hypothesis we developed innovative approaches: we will use advanced genetics tracing with multicolor reporters, novel unconventional individual cell transcriptome analysis, transgenic mice with modifications in signaling, microsurgery and grafting, and 3D-imaging of tooth structures. The medical implication of this project will include better understanding of tooth regeneration providing new approaches to dentin recovery and tooth restoration following trauma.

MedUni Vienna Researchers

Profile picture of Head of Project, Igor Adameyko, PhD

Igor Adameyko, PhD

Center for Brain Research
Department of Molecular Neurosciences

Project Team Members

Jan Krivanek
Julian Petersen
Marketa Kaucka-Petersen
Tatiana Chontorotzea


Programm / ProgrammeH2020
Call/TopicERC-2014 - Consolidator Grant
Project duration01.08.2015 – 31.07.2020
EU contribution – MedUni Vienna€ 1.964.338
EC contribution – total project€ 1.964.338