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Health Agencies Update
May 21, 2003

Twins Sought for Study of Autoimmune Diseases

JAMA. 2003;289(19):2491. doi:10.1001/jama.289.19.2491-a

The tooth fairy has a good thing going: For mere pocket change, the sprite acquires a rich cache of stem cells with each "baby tooth" collected.

Typically shed around age six, baby teeth contain one to two dozen stem cells, say researchers from the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research in Bethesda, Md, whose findings were published on April 25 in the online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (http://www.pnas.org/). What's more, these cells appear to be more versatile and longer-lived than so-called adult stem cells.

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