Regulation of root patterns in mammalian teeth

Hyejin Seo, Jinsun Kim, Jae Joon Hwang, Ho Gul Jeong, Sang Sun Han, Wonse Park, Kanghyun Ryu, Hong Seomun, Jae Young Kim, Eui Sic Cho, Joo Cheol Park, Kyung Seok Hu, Hee Jin Kim, Dong Hyun Kim, Sung Won Cho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Mammalian teeth have diverse pattern of the crown and root. The patterning mechanism of the root position and number is relatively unknown compared to that of the crown. The root number does not always match to the cusp number, which has prevented the complete understanding of root patterning. In the present study, to elucidate the mechanism of root pattern formation, we examined (1) the pattern of cervical tongues, which are tongue-like epithelial processes extending from cervical loops, (2) factors influencing the cervical tongue pattern and (3) the relationship among patterns of cusp, cervical tongue and root in multi-rooted teeth. We found a simple mechanism of cervical tongue formation in which the lateral growth of dental mesenchyme in the cuspal region pushes the cervical loop outward, and the cervical tongue appears in the intercuspal region subsequently. In contrast, when lateral growth was physically inhibited, cervical tongue formation was suppressed. Furthermore, by building simple formulas to predict the maximum number of cervical tongues and roots based on the cusp pattern, we demonstrated a positive relationship among cusp, cervical tongue and root numbers. These results suggest that the cusp pattern and the lateral growth of cusps are important in the regulation of the root pattern.

Original languageEnglish
Article number12714
JournalScientific reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Dec 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank J. Jernvall and I. Thesleff in University of Helsiki for constructive discussions and experimental guidance. This work was supported by the Bio & Medical Technology Development Program of the National Research Foundation (NRF) funded by the Korean government (MEST) (NRF-2012M3A9B2052522). This research was supported by BK21 PLUS Project, Yonsei University College of Dentistry.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 The Author(s).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General


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