Periodontal disease is one of the most prevalent oral diseases, affecting 78 million people in the United States. Periodontal disease (also known as gum disease) can range from gum inflammation to serious disease results in severe damage of the soft tissue and bones that support the teeth. While this oral disease remains an issue at large, researchers at the University of Pittsburgh may have found an innovative way to keep this disease at bay. They have discovered that certain immune system cells can be brought right to the inflamed tissues, resulting in effective treatment.
When dentists see that patients have symptoms of periodontal disease, the usual recommendation is proper oral hygiene. Through daily brushing and flossing, one is able to prevent plaque and eventually tartar from forming near the gum line. These strategies aim to keep the growth of oral bacteria at bay. Dr. Charles Sfeir, the director of the Center Regeneration at the University’s School of Dental Medicine notes that these are ways to keep the bacteria from triggering sever inflammation in the oral cavity; however, there needs to be a method to prevent the underlying problem, which is the overreaction of the immune system that results in an adverse response to oral bacteria.
Within a healthy mouth, there is a response system between the immune system and bacteria that prevents infection without starting up inflammation. However, when there is too much bacteria in the oral cavity (due to lack maintenance of oral health), the immune system is on overdrive, leading to harmful consequences on oral tissues. The scientists have discovered that these disease tissues are low on a group of immune cells called the regulatory T-cells, which is responsible for informing immune cells to stand down, stopping the inflammatory response. These researchers believe that when more of these regulatory T-cells are brought back to the gums, the inflammatory response will be contained. The researchers are on their way in developing new technology that can deliver these immune cells to where they are lacking. With this new system, perhaps inflammation, thus periodontal disease may potentially be kept at bay. If you have any more questions, feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group ; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or firstname.lastname@example.org