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Salivary Biomarkers of Gingivitis

On March 21st 2014 during the 43rd Annual Meeting & Exhibition of the American Association for Dental Research in Charlotte, North Carolina, Craig Miller, University of Kentucky, Lexington presented research showing that salivary biomarkers for gingivitis reveal important information personalized treatment of this gum disease

A release from the International and American Associations for Dental Research notes that salivary biomarkers have been studied to help determine the presence, risk, and progression of periodontal disease. However, clinical translation of salivary biomarkers from bench to chairside requires studies that identify biomarkers associated with the continuum of phases between health and periodontal disease. Thus, the objective of this study was to identify salivary biomarkers associated with gingivitis.

Forty gingivitis subjects and 40 persons with gingival health who had more than 20 teeth were studied. Unstimulated saliva was collected from all subjects at baseline and seven to 30 days later, an additional sample was collected from gingivitis subjects seven to 30 days post-dental prophylaxis. Clinical parameters of periodontal disease were recorded at baseline and the final visit. Salivary concentrations were measured using Luminex®.

Gingivitis subjects had significantly higher bleeding on probing (BOP), plaque index and gingival index than healthy subjects (P<0.002). All gingivitis subjects showed a significant drop in BOP post-treatment, with 90% of subjects falling below 12% affected sites. Concentrations of MIP-1a and PGE2 were significantly higher in the gingivitis group than the healthy group (2.4X and 2.1X, respectively; P<0.003). IL-1 was the only biomarker that showed a significant decrease in mean concentration after dental prophylaxis in the gingivitis group. Individuals with elevated levels of PGE2 +/- the other biomarkers were > 35.3X more likely to have gingivitis as determined by odd ratio analyses (P=0.001).

These findings indicate that salivary PGE2 has the potential for discriminating gingivitis from health. Also, patients who return to health clinically after dental prophylaxis appear to continue to produce inflammatory mediators for weeks. These findings have potential important implications on the decision-making process in the emerging field of personalized oral health care.

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