Original paper

A case of bilateral macrodontia of mandibular second premolars from a Chalcolithic context in the Iberian Peninsula

López-Onaindia, Diego; de Amezaga, Amaia Otxoa; Subirà, M. Eulàalia

Anthropologischer Anzeiger Volume 72 No. 3 (2015), p. 359 - 368

published: Sep 1, 2015

DOI: 10.1127/anthranz/2015/0462

BibTeX file

ArtNo. ESP140007203007, Price: 29.00 €

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Isolated macrodontia, consisting of the gigantism of a single tooth, is an extremely rare condition. Only 16 cases of isolated macrodontia of mandibular second premolars have been reported to date. Although the aetiology of this phenomenon remains unknown, many authors have related it to the control of the apoptotic process, leading to the patterning and size of dental cusps. There is not a clear genetic inheritance pattern since only two of those 16 cases correspond to close relatives. To our knowledge, there have been no reports of isolated macrodontia of mandibular second premolars in archaeological remains. Cova del Pantà de Foix site is a Chalcolithic sepulchral cave situated in the North-East of the Iberian Peninsula in which the remains of at least 30 individuals were recovered. Most of these individuals show several signs of environmental stressors. The current study presents the first case of isolated bilateral macrodontia of mandibular premolars from an archaeological context, corresponding to a young male individual discovered in this site. This condition could be the last consequence of environmental factors epigenetically affecting apoptosis processes in early tooth development and a possible genetic predisposition to show a shapedeviation in the dentition.


dental anomalyprehistoryepigeneticiberian peninsula