Repair of periodontal soft and hard tissue defects caused by periodontal disease or trauma is a major goal of reconstructive therapy. The field of regenerative medicine combines advances in materials science and the life sciences to repair tissues and organs. Periodontal tissue engineering has been achieved with limited success by the use of a variety of biomaterials such as osteoconductive scaffolds, barrier membranes, and block grafting techniques. Over the past decade investigators have begun to use signaling molecules such as growth factors, including platelet-derived human growth factor and bone morphogenetic proteins, and biomimetic peptides to restore lost tooth support due to damage to the alveolar process. This presentation will review emerging therapies in the areas of materials science, growth factor biology, and cell/gene therapy for clinical application. In addition, the presentation will highlight the use of polymeric delivery systems and image-based scaffolding technologies that aid in the targeting of proteins, genes, and cells to oral and periodontal lesions for reconstruction of periodontal and peri-implant defects.
William Giannobile, DDS, MS, DMedSc, is the Najjar Endowed Professor of Dentistry and Biomedical Engineering and the Director of the Center for Oral Health Research at the University of Michigan School of Dentistry. He received his DDS and an MS in oral biology from the University of Missouri. He later received a certificate in periodontology and a DMedSc degree in oral biology from Harvard University.