A novel method for banking dental pulp stem cells

Silvia Gioventù, Gabriella Andriolo, Ferruccio Bonino, Stefania Frasca, Lorenza Lazzari, Elisa Montelatici, Franco Santoro, Paolo Rebulla

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Dental pulp stem cells (DPSC), a cell type of mesenchymal origin showing high proliferation and plasticity, are an emerging source of adult stem cells offering interesting features in view of potential applications in regenerative medicine. These features prompted us to develop a new method to cryopreserve DPSC inside a whole tooth, thus avoiding the need to purify the cells before cryopreservation and reducing the initial costs and workload of tooth banking. In this study we cryopreserved 4 human deciduous whole teeth after digging micro-channels into the tooth with an Nd:YAG laser beam (laser piercing) to allow the cryopreservative to reach the dental pulp and preserve the cells at -80 °C. Then, we isolated, expanded and characterized in vitro the stem cells after tooth thawing and mechanical fracture. In parallel, we characterized cells extracted from 2 teeth cryopreserved without laser piercing and from 4 non cryopreserved, non laser pierced, freshly fractured teeth. Our data demonstrate that DPSC isolated from laser pierced cryopreserved teeth show mesenchymal stem cells morphology, immunophenotype, viability and proliferation rate similar to those of cells isolated from fresh, non cryopreserved teeth, whereas significant loss of cell viability and proliferation rate was shown by cells isolated from teeth cryopreserved without laser piercing. These data support the use of this method for prospective whole tooth banking.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-206
Number of pages8
JournalTransfusion and Apheresis Science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2012


  • Dental pulp stem cells
  • Human deciduous teeth
  • Nd:YAG laser

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology


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