Teeth Modifications in Mammals

The tooth develops partly from the epidermis and partly from the mesenchyme of dermis. Its enamel is derived from the epidermis and the remaining parts from the mesenchyme. Mammalian teeth develop in two sets. The milk or deciduous teeth develops from the buccal epithelium of the gums which are replaced later by the permanent teeth.

In the beginning the buccal epithelitim of the gum sinks down forming the t ridge. Simultaneously, the cells of malpighian layer of epidermis grow and move into the epidermis forming the dental lamina. Along the dental Lamina, the mesenchymal cells multiply and condense into a dental papilla or tooth bud. This grows upwards and pushes the dental kA Thereby an inverted cup form assumed The malpighian cells become markedly columnar and are known as ameloblasts. The mesenchymal ce are differentiated into a layer of odontoblast cells.


The tooth bud is now as ‘enamel organ’. The ameloblast cells secrete enamel’ towards their inner side, while the odontobiasts secrete ‘dentine’. The enamel sur rounds the upper part of dentine like a cap. The remaining mesenchyme cells of the dental papilla form the ‘pulp’ and the cavity of the enamel organ modifies into the pulp cavity. Sooner, the development of the tooth is completed,. The jaw bone forms a socket or alveolus around its base. The tooth increases in size by the secretion of more or mote dentine and finally emerges out from the gum. The odontoblasts now secrete cement around the neck and root of the tooth narrowing the pulp cavity.
In majority of the mammals, the odontoblasts stop functioning after the development of tooth and the tooth stops growth. In some cases, like incisors; of rodents and tusks of elephants, the odontobiasts are functional throughout the life and the teeth continue to grow.