Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are non-specialized cells that have the property of self-renewal and differ in several ways from specialized cells. They are identified in a large number of adult tissues, such as skin, adipose tissue, peripheral blood, bone marrow, pancreas, intestine, brain, hair follicles and dental tissues, being an attractive source for tissue engineering. Currently, as MSCs constitute the means by which some tissues are generated during development, they have attracted interest to restore those tissues that are sick or damaged after birth. In recent years, important advances have been made in the research and knowledge of the MSCs and their potential to be used in cell therapies for a wide variety of medical treatments, such as spinal cord injuries, myocardial infarction, Parkinson`s disease, diabetes, among others. Because of their location and given that isolating them is not an easy task as there could be clinical complications, it is necessary to identify accessible sources of MSCs in order to be less invasive and traumatic, trying at the same time to guarantee cell viability, and preserving their proliferation and differentiation capacity. Tissues of dental origin are considered an effective and easily accessible source for obtaining MSCs, collectively referred as Dental Stem Cells (DSC), which have been shown to have the ability to generate adherent and clonogenic cell clusters in vitro. In addition, they proliferative and differentiate into several cell types, representing an alternative to be used in regenerative medicine to treat various types of diseases of immune, degenerative or traumatic origin. The aim of this review is to introduce the concept of mesenchymal stem cells derived from several dental tissues, describe their phenotype, differentiation capacity and their potential use in tissue engineering.
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