Dental plaque, tooth decay, and the bacteria responsible
Dental plaque is a white substance which forms on the surface of teeth. Removing it is the main reason we brush our teeth, for it consists of layers of bacteria which release acids and other deleterious substances. The unpleasant feeling in our mouth in the morning is the result of this bacteria proliferating.
Dental plaque consists of the bacterium Streptococcus mutans, which is the main causative agent of tooth decay.
Synthesis of insoluble glucan and adhesion to teeth
How exactly does S. mutans adhere to teeth and thereby cause tooth decay? It secretes a sticky substance called insoluble glucan, which functions as a glue allowing the bacterium to adhere to the tooth surface.
S. mutans produces insoluble glucan from sucrose using an enzyme called glucosyltransferase (GTase). This is why eating sweets may lead to tooth decay: they contain a lot of sucrose (sugar). GTase thus plays a key role in allowing S. mutans to adhere firmly to teeth. Research has shown that S. mutans causes much less tooth decay when a mutation makes it unable to synthesize insoluble glucan.
GTase is extracted from S. mutans bacteria and used to immunize chickens, thus provoking an immune response. Anti-Gtase IgY antibodies created are naturally transferred to the egg yolk, which serves as a source for preparing specific IgY materials. This IgY can be added to functional foods like candy or gum, or mouth wash liquids for prevention of dental caries.
Gum disease, or periodontitis, is an infection of the tissues that surround and support your teeth. The disease causes inflammation of the gums, which results in receding gums and, ultimately, tooth loss. Inflammation also causes suppuration of the gums, resulting in bad breath. In Japan about 80% of those over 40 are said to have gum disease.
Gum disease is caused by infectious bacteria, one of which is Porphyromonas gingivalis. P. gingivalis is averse to oxygen, so it burrows into the dental plaque lining teeth. Then it releases protein-decomposing enzymes called gingipains to break down gum tissue for nutrients. As the bacterium burrows ever deeper and break down ever more gum tissue, the gums become inflamed and periodontal pockets are formed.
Here we introduce the effective mechanism of anti-gingipain IgY and recent progress of using the IgY in prevention of periodontitis in humans.
Gum disease in pets
Not only in human but also in pets, gum disease is also a serious problem, especially small size dogs and cats. Some bacterial pathogen is also common with human and pet, and P. gingivalis is one of them. In case of pets, it is very difficult to prevent gum disease by oral care in daily life.. Here we introduce some achievements from our study to apply anti-gingipain IgY in pet foods.
Candida albicans is a member of the indigenous microbial flora of the gastrointestinaltract, mucocutaneous membranes, and oral cavity in healthy humans. Although C. albicans rarely causes infections in healthy human without predisposing factors, patients under chemotherapy for cancer, immunosuppressive therapy,or prolonged antibiotic therapy can suffer from mucosal, cutaneous, or systemic candidiasis. Oropharyngeal candidiasis is the most common opportunistic infection associated with oral injuries and hyposalivation.
Here we introduce the mechanism of anti-Candida IgY and recent progress of our research on this infection.
Helicobacter pylori and its infection rate
Digestive system diseases are very common, and 90% of patients with gastritis or gastric ulcers are also infected with Helicobacter pylori. H. pylori plays such a significant role in ulcers that ulcer treatments often begin with H. pylori removal. ...read more
Diarrhea caused by Rotavirus
Rotavirus is the leading single etiologic agent of severe diarrhea amonginfants and young children worldwide during the first five years of life. It is responsible for over 500,000 deaths in infants and young children mostly in developing countries each year which represent approximately 5% of all deaths. Rotaviruses have also been implicated as causative agents ...read more
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