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The effect of tobacco on oral mucosal renewal & regeneration

Institution: University of California, San Francisco
Investigator(s): Ophir Klein, M.D.,Ph.D.
Award Cycle: 2019 (Cycle 28) Grant #: 28IR-0055 Award: $934,501
Subject Area: Oral Disease and Dental Health
Award Type: High Impact Research Project Award

Initial Award Abstract

The oral cavity is a dynamic environment in which cells must regularly handle bacterial, chemical, and physical insults. To cope with these stresses, the lining of the oral cavity is highly regenerative, with an average turnover of several days. However, the cellular and molecular mechanisms by which this regeneration is achieved are relatively unexplored, and little research has been done to identify stem or progenitor cells in the oral epithelium. An understanding of how stem and progenitor cells regenerate the oral epithelium is of great clinical importance, as there are many oral pathologies, such as mucositis and tobacco-induced cancer that likely involve defects in this process. In this study, we will lay the foundation for understanding how tissue homeostasis of the oral epithelium is maintained by stem and/or progenitor cells under normal and injury conditions.