Tooth Enamel, the Result of the Relationship between Matrix Proteins and Hydroxyapatite Crystals
Enamel, a structure of epithelial origin, represents a protective tooth cover. The cells responsible for the formation of enamel, ameloblasts, are lost at the time of tooth eruption, so that enamel becomes an acellular structure that can no longer regenerate. In order to compensate for this particular phenomenon, enamel has acquired a complex structural organization and a high mineralization degree, in its mature state. This reflects the particular life cycle of ameloblasts and the unique physico-chemical characteristics of matrix proteins, which regulate the formation of the extremely long crystals of enamel. These characteristics differentiate enamel from all the other tissues of the organism.