Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Molar power: Milk teeth wanted for stem cell palace art project

Date:
April 1, 2011
Source:
Imperial College London
Summary:
Children across Britain are being asked to donate their milk teeth to create “Palaces”, a spectacular glittering sculpture made from crystal resin and decorated with retired pearly whites. The project is a part of an art-science collaboration that aims to inspire the nation with the regenerative potential of adult stem cells.

Children across Britain are being asked to donate their milk teeth to create "Palaces" -- a spectacular glittering sculpture made from crystal resin and decorated with retired pearly whites. The project is a part of an art-science collaboration that aims to inspire the nation with the regenerative potential of adult stem cells.

Related Articles


Artist Gina Czarnecki and stem cell biologist Professor Sara Rankin from Imperial College London hope that thousands of children will contribute to their participatory art project -- one aim of which is to raise awareness of different sources of stem cells in the body, as well as questioning contemporary belief systems that dismiss age-old myth and folklore. Along with a form to send in with one's tooth, the project website provides a token which children can leave under their pillow to inform the Tooth Fairy of their donation to her palace.

The finished artwork will resemble a coral castle under water, two metres high and two metres wide, made from donated milk teeth. It is due to go on display at the Bluecoat, Liverpool in December 2011, and at the Science Museum in London in 2012.

In recent years, scientists have discovered that discarded body parts such as bones from joint replacements, umbilical cords, and fat from liposuction are unexpectedly rich sources of stem cells -- master cells of the body that can proliferate indefinitely to replace lost or damaged tissue. Medical researchers are beginning to uncover the huge therapeutic potential of these adult stem cells for treatment of illness and injuries, including broken bones, heart disease and cancer.

Adult stem cells can also be extracted from the pulp of milk teeth. Scientists are investigating the potential of these cells to grow new teeth.

"The artwork will provide a focus to engage young people with this research and increase awareness, understanding and informed debate about these new biomedical possibilities and their social, cultural and ethical implications," says Professor Sara Rankin, from the National Heart and Lung Institute at Imperial College London.

"At the moment the debate around stem cell research is predominantly focused around ethical issues associated with the use of embryonic stem cells. We want to promote awareness about adult stem cells, such as those found in bone marrow or umbilical cord, which could be used to develop new treatments without any ethical issues."

"Different cultures have different traditions about where these teeth go, and what they are used for," said artist Gina Czarnecki. "Through exhibition and informed discussion, we're looking to explore the questions this raises about the value of waste matter and our attitudes to our own bodies as sources and beneficiaries of recyclable material."

The project's website: http://www.palaces.org.uk


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Imperial College London. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Imperial College London. "Molar power: Milk teeth wanted for stem cell palace art project." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 April 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110330101038.htm>.
Imperial College London. (2011, April 1). Molar power: Milk teeth wanted for stem cell palace art project. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110330101038.htm
Imperial College London. "Molar power: Milk teeth wanted for stem cell palace art project." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110330101038.htm (accessed November 24, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, November 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Late Cocoa Leaves Bitter Taste

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Late Cocoa Leaves Bitter Taste

AFP (Nov. 23, 2014) The arable district of Kenema in Sierra Leone -- at the centre of the Ebola outbreak in May -- has been under quarantine for three months as the cocoa harvest comes in. Duration: 01:32 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Don't Fall For Flu Shot Myths

Don't Fall For Flu Shot Myths

Newsy (Nov. 23, 2014) Misconceptions abound when it comes to your annual flu shot. Medical experts say most people older than 6 months should get the shot. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
WFP: Ebola Risks Heightened Among Women Throughout Africa

WFP: Ebola Risks Heightened Among Women Throughout Africa

AFP (Nov. 21, 2014) Having children has always been a frightening prospect in Sierra Leone, the world's most dangerous place to give birth, but Ebola has presented an alarming new threat for expectant mothers. Duration: 00:37 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) Researchers in Beijing discovered a gene called 5-HTA1, and carriers are reportedly 20 percent more likely to be single. 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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

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