Xerostomia is the subjective feeling of dry mouth, and it is often related to salivary hypofunction. Besides medication-related salivary hypofunction, Sjögren syndrome and head-and-neck radiation are two common etiologies that have garnered considerable attention. Approaches to treating and/or preventing salivary hypofunction in patients with these conditions will likely incorporate gene therapy, stem cell therapy, and tissue engineering. Advances in these disciplines are central to current research in the cure for xerostomia and will be key to eventual treatment.
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