FDA Approves New Gum Grafts

A new gum graft technique promises to give patients with receding gums a less-painful surgical alternative.

Mar 14, 2012
Sabrina Richards

WIKIMEDIA COMMONS, DOZENIST

Surgery for receding gums can be painful, as tissue from the roof of a patient’s mouth is removed and transplanted to the scanty gum area. A new technique, approved last week (March 9) by the US Food and Drug Administration, may alleviate some of this pain, reported The Boston Globe. Tissue regeneration is promoted by the transplantation of human keratinocytes and fibroblasts grown on a bovine collagen scaffold, called Gintuit by its creator, Massachusetts-based biotech Organogenesis Inc.

A clinical trial showed that Gintuit successfully promoted gum regeneration, though not quite as well as the standard method, and was preferred by patients. Organogenesis’s press release also notes that Gintuit-regenerated tissue better matched patients’ own gum tissue than tissue grafted from the roof of the mouth.

“It’s very attractive to patients to not have to cut open the roof of the mouth in procedures,” Geoff MacKay, chief executive of Organogenesis, told The Globe, adding that Gintuit will also help reduce the number of surgeries necessary.