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Identifying the role of Lgr5 in adult salivary gland homeostasis and repair following injury

Grant number: 15/03418-1
Support type:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Post-doctor
Effective date (Start): May 04, 2015
Effective date (End): May 03, 2016
Field of knowledge:Health Sciences - Dentistry
Principal researcher:Silvia Vanessa Lourenço
Grantee:Sheyla Batista Bologna Lopes
Supervisor abroad: Abigail Saffron Tucker
Home Institution: Faculdade de Odontologia (FO). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Research place: King's College London, England  
Associated to the scholarship:14/15214-9 - Sjögren's Syndrome Sialadenitis x lupus Sialadenitis: clinicopathological correlation and proteomic analysis of saliva, BP.PD


Salivary glands (SG) comprise the main tissue responsible of secreting saliva in the oral cavity. The reduction or even the lack of saliva is the most common reason that leads to the subjective feeling of dry mouth known as xerostomia. In general, the consequences of xerostomia affect oral physiological functions as speech, taste, mastication, and more importantly increases the risk of infections in teeth surface and oral mucosa. Inflammatory diseases, genetic disorders and radiotherapies are the main causes of this condition, raising the need of new regenerative treatments for those individuals, especially focusing on stem/progenitor cells based therapy.There are evidences that Lgr protein family is involved in regenerative processes, being mainly expressed in epithelial cells. Lgr5 has been particularly correlated to the regeneration of several glandular tissues such as mammary glands and kidneys. Based on these latest findings, SG regeneration can potentially be under Lgr5 modulation, might expressing the presence of stem/progenitor cell population. This project therefore aims to identify the presence of Lgr5 in damaged and nondamaged adult salivary glands and to understand the regenerative capacity of Lgr5+ cells in salivary glands, taking advantage of novel transgenic mouse lines used as experimental models of SG injury/repair. (AU)

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