New research identifies the mechanism connecting gum disease with systemic health

October 22, 2020

Researchers from University of Toronto's Faculty of Dentistry believe they've found the way the body connects its response to gum disease to its response to other systemic inflammatory issues.

Researchers from the University of Toronto's Faculty of Dentistry believe they've identified the mechanism connecting gum disease to other systemic health conditions.

In a study published in the October 2020 issue of the Journal of Dental Research, the team presents their findings that neutrophils, specialized immune system cells, are generated to fight the bacterial infections causing periodontitis, but the body generates them in such an abundance that they spread throughout the body, and go on the offense against any inflammatory condition.

These specialized white blood cells are primed to quickly release cytokine, which can create the harmful cytokine storms seen in many inflammatory conditions. The initial study was conducted via in vivo models and then confirmed via a controlled clinical experiment.

Further research into the connection between neutrophils and inflammatory conditions is ongoing.

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