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Little is known about the effect of aging on characteristic functions of pulp cells. When damaged pulp is recovered and mineralized tissue is formed to protect remaining pulp tissue, the general responses of pulp tissue after adequate stimuli (pulp cell proliferation and activation of alkaline phosphatase [ALPase]) are thought to be essential. In this study, we compared proliferative ability and ALPase activity between cultures of human pulp (HP) cells obtained from young and aged donors. The in vitro proliferative lifespan of HP cells from young donors was longer than HP cells from aged donors. Growth rates and ALPase activity of HP cells decreased with increasing donor age. These findings suggest that impaired repair of pulp and dentin in aged patients is partly due to a decrease in the proliferative ability and ALPase activity in aged pulp cells.