When the maintenance of tooth in vital condition is no longer possible, the conventional treatment philosophy advocates the endodontic treatment to retain it in a functional state. A paradigm shift of this thinking manifested with revascularization/regenerative procedures. Regenerative endodontics is the creation and delivery of tissues to replace diseased, missing, and traumatized pulp. This review provides an overview of regenerative endodontics and possible techniques that will allow regenerative endodontics to become a reality. These potential techniques include root- canal revascularization, postnatal (adult) stem cell therapy, pulp implant, scaffold implant, three- dimensional cell printing, injectable scaffolds, and gene therapy. These regenerative endodontic techniques will possibly involve some combination of disinfection of infected root canal systems with apical enlargement to permit revascularization and use of stem cells, scaffolds, and growth factors. Although the challenges of introducing endodontic tissue engineering therapies are substantial, the potential advantages to patients and the profession are equally ground breaking. Patient demand is staggering both in scope and expense, because tissue engineering therapy offers the chance of restoring natural function instead of surgical placement of an artificial prosthesis.
Key words: Regenerative endodontics, revascularization, pulp stem cells, tissue engineering, scaffolds, growth factors.