Evaluating the efficacy of human dental pulp stem cells and scaffold combination for bone regeneration in animal models: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Amin Namjoynik, Md Asiful Islam, Mohammad Islam (Lead / Corresponding author)

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6 Citations (Scopus)
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Introduction: Human adult dental pulp stem cells (hDPSC) and stem cells from human exfoliated deciduous teeth (SHED) hold promise in bone regeneration for their easy accessibility, high proliferation rate, self-renewal and osteogenic differentiation capacity. Various organic and inorganic scaffold materials were pre-seeded with human dental pulp stem cells in animals, with promising outcomes in new bone formation. Nevertheless, the clinical trial for bone regeneration using dental pulp stem cells is still in its infancy. Thus, the aim of this systematic review and meta-analysis is to synthesise the evidence of the efficacy of human dental pulp stem cells and the scaffold combination for bone regeneration in animal bone defect models.

Methodology: This study was registered in PROSPERO (CRD2021274976), and PRISMA guideline was followed to include the relevant full-text papers using exclusion and inclusion criteria. Data were extracted for the systematic review. Quality assessment and the risk of bias were also carried out using the CAMARADES tool. Quantitative bone regeneration data of the experimental (scaffold + hDPSC/SHED) and the control (scaffold-only) groups were also extracted for meta-analysis.

Results: Forty-nine papers were included for systematic review and only 27 of them were qualified for meta-analysis. 90% of the included papers were assessed as medium to low risk. In the meta-analysis, qualified studies were grouped by the unit of bone regeneration measurement. Overall, bone regeneration was significantly higher (p < 0.0001) in experimental group (scaffold + hDPSC/SHED) compared to the control group (scaffold-only) (SMD: 1.863, 95% CI 1.121–2.605). However, the effect is almost entirely driven by the % new bone formation group (SMD: 3.929, 95% CI 2.612–5.246) while % BV/TV (SMD: 2.693, 95% CI − 0.001–5.388) shows a marginal effect. Dogs and hydroxyapatite-containing scaffolds have the highest capacity in % new bone formation in response to human DPSC/SHED. The funnel plot exhibits no apparent asymmetry representing a lack of remarkable publication bias. Sensitivity analysis also indicated that the results generated in this meta-analysis are robust and reliable.

Conclusion: This is the first synthesised evidence showing that human DPSCs/SHED and scaffold combination enhanced bone regeneration highly significantly compared to the cell-free scaffold irrespective of scaffold type and animal species used. So, dental pulp stem cells could be a promising tool for treating various bone diseases, and more clinical trials need to be conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of dental pulp stem cell-based therapies.
Original languageEnglish
Article number132
Number of pages32
JournalStem Cell Research and Therapy
Publication statusPublished - 15 May 2023


  • Systematic Review
  • Meta-analysis
  • Bone Regeneration
  • Scaffolds
  • Dental Pulp Mesenchymal Stem Cells
  • animal bone defect model
  • Bone regeneration
  • Dental pulp mesenchymal stem cells, animal bone defect model
  • Systematic review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology (miscellaneous)
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Cell Biology


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