Thesleff,I., Mackie,E., Vainio,S., and, Chiquet-Ehrismann,R.
Changes in the distribution of tenascin during tooth development.
Development 101(2):289-296 (1987).
Tenascin is an extracellular matrix molecule that was earlier shown to be enriched in embryonic mesenchyme surrounding the budding epithelium in various organs including the tooth. In the present study tenascin was localized by immunohistology throughout the course of tooth development in the mouse and rat using polyclonal antibodies against chick tenascin. The results indicate that tenascin is expressed by the lineage of dental mesenchymal cells throughout tooth ontogeny. The intensity of staining with tenascin antibodies in the dental papilla mesenchyme was temporarily reduced at cap stage when the tooth grows rapidly and undergoes extensive morphogenetic changes. During the bell stage of morphogenesis, the staining intensity increased and tenascin was accumulated in the dental pulp even after completion of crown development and eruption. Tenascin was present in the dental basement membrane at the time of odontoblast differentiation. The dental papilla cells ceased to express tenascin upon differentiation into odontoblasts and tenascin was completely absent from dentin. It can be speculated that the remarkable expression of tenascin in the dental mesenchymal cells as compared to other connective tissues is associated with their capacity to differentiate into hard-tissue- forming cells.

Last edited 10.12.2004 by P.N.