Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Mice Teeth Explain The Troubles With Human Wisdom Teeth

Date:
September 27, 2007
Source:
University of Helsinki
Summary:
Mice teeth can explain human troubles with the wisdom teeth, according to scientists. For a long time scientists have suspected that genetic and developmental interactions may also influence species-specific properties. Now, researchers show how development affects the evolution of teeth, and have devised a simple developmental model to predict aspects of teeth across many species.

During evolution, many of a species' properties are shaped by ecological interactions. This is readily evident in mammalian teeth, whose many features closely reflect what each species eats.

However, for a long time scientists have suspected that genetic and developmental interactions may also influence species-specific properties. Now, researchers at the University of Helsinki's Institute of Biotechnology show how development affects the evolution of teeth, and have devised a simple developmental model to predict aspects of teeth across many species. The results were published in Nature.

In the study in the field of evolutionary developmental biology, the researchers Kathryn Kavanagh, Jukka Jernvall and Alistair Evans in the Institute of Biotechnology of the University of Helsinki first studied cheek tooth, or molar, development in mice. Similarly to human teeth, mouse molars develop from front-to-back so that the first molar appears first and the posterior molars bud sequentially along the jaw.

Normally the last molar to develop is the third, or wisdom tooth. Experiments on cultured mouse molars revealed that the size and number of posterior molars depend on previously initiated molars. The mechanism, called an 'inhibitory cascade', acts much like a ratchet that cumulatively increases size differences of teeth along the jaw. By quantifying their experiments, the researchers constructed a simple mathematical model which they then used to predict relative size and number of molars across many other mouse and rat species.

They show that the model accurately predicts tooth proportions and numbers, one curious effect being that the second molar makes up one-third of total molar area, irrespective of species-specific molar proportions.

This new research demonstrates that with advances in the study of the molecular regulation of development, it is now possible to identify how development influences evolution. And this may help explain the troublesome wisdom teeth of modern humans - the blame may lie within a weak inhibitory cascade that allows the development of the last molar in a jaw that is too small.

The article Predicting evolutionary patterns of mammalian teeth from development by K. Kavanagh, J. Jernvall and A. Evans will be published in Nature September 27th.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Helsinki. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Helsinki. "Mice Teeth Explain The Troubles With Human Wisdom Teeth." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 September 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/09/070926172246.htm>.
University of Helsinki. (2007, September 27). Mice Teeth Explain The Troubles With Human Wisdom Teeth. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 2, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/09/070926172246.htm
University of Helsinki. "Mice Teeth Explain The Troubles With Human Wisdom Teeth." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/09/070926172246.htm (accessed September 2, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

U.N. Says Ebola Travel Restrictions Will Cause Food Shortage

U.N. Says Ebola Travel Restrictions Will Cause Food Shortage

Newsy (Sep. 2, 2014) The U.N. says the problem is two-fold — quarantine zones and travel restrictions are limiting the movement of both people and food. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Get on Your Bike! London Cycling Popularity Soars Despite Danger

Get on Your Bike! London Cycling Popularity Soars Despite Danger

AFP (Sep. 1, 2014) Wedged between buses, lorries and cars, cycling in London isn't for the faint hearted. Nevertheless the number of people choosing to bike in the British capital has doubled over the past 15 years. Duration: 02:27 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Can You Train Your Brain To Eat Healthy?

Can You Train Your Brain To Eat Healthy?

Newsy (Sep. 1, 2014) New research says if you condition yourself to eat healthy foods, eventually you'll crave them instead of junk food. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

Newsy (Aug. 30, 2014) A new study suggests 100 percent of adult humans (those over 18 years of age) have Demodex mites living in their faces. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins