Diverse stem cells for periodontal tissue formation and regeneration

Genesis. 2022 Sep;60(8-9):e23495. doi: 10.1002/dvg.23495. Epub 2022 Aug 2.


The periodontium is comprised of multiple units of mineralized and nonmineralized tissues including the cementum on the root surface, the alveolar bone, periodontal ligament (PDL), and the gingiva. PDL contains a variety of cell populations including mesenchymal stem/progenitor cells (MSCs) termed PDLSCs, which contribute to periodontal regeneration. Recent studies utilizing mouse genetic models shed light on the identities of these mesenchymal progenitors in their native environment, particularly regarding how they contribute to homeostasis and repair of the periodontium. The current concept is that mesenchymal progenitors in the PDL are localized to the perivascular niche. Single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq) analyses reveal heterogeneity and cell-type specific markers of cells in the periodontium, as well as their developmental relationship with precursor cells in the dental follicle. The characteristics of PDLSCs and their diversity in vivo are now beginning to be unraveled thanks to insights from mouse genetic models and scRNA-seq analyses, which aid to uncover the fundamental properties of stem cells in the human PDL. The new knowledge will be highly important for developing more effective stem cell-based regenerative therapies to repair periodontal tissues in the future.

Keywords: dental follicle; mesenchymal progenitor cells; mouse genetic models; periodontium.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Humans
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cells*
  • Mice
  • Periodontal Ligament
  • Periodontium*
  • Stem Cells