Figure 1519

Odontoblast process of a young odontoblast. This election micrograph shows a process of the odontoblast entering a dentinal tubule. The process extends into the predentin and, after passing the miner alization front (arrows), lies within the dentin. The collagen fibrils in the predentin are finer than the more mature, courser fibrils of the mineralization front and beyond, x 34,000.

nal tubules and contact odontoblast processes. The odontoblast processes are believed to serve a transducer function in transmitting stimuli from the tooth surface to the nerves in the dental pulp. In teeth with more than one cusp, pulpal horns extend into the cusps and contain large numbers of nerve fibers. More of these fibers extend into the dentinal tubules than at other sites. Because dentin continues to be secreted throughout life, the pulp cavity decreases in volume with age.

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