Study suggests dental caries may have new bacterial cause

Research conducted at Okayama University is pointing to the fact that the usual culprit when it comes to dental caries, Streptococcus mutans, may not be the only bacterial game in town.

Releasing their results with a caveat on wider applicability due to the fact that the study’s subjects were all students of the university and did not include a wider cross-section of the community, the researchers noted an “abundance of the Prevotellaceae and Veillonellaceae bacterial families and Alloprevotella and Dialister genera”.

Both of these bacterial family groups are known to produce acid suggesting that dental caries may require preventive measures that don’t solely focus on S mutans.

Leader of the study, Dr. Yoko Uchida-Fukuhara, while admitting that wider applicability may be an issue, acknowledged that there could be great benefit arising from the study.

“For many years, our group has been conducting population studies to reduce oral diseases. We believe that the results of this new study will help us develop novel strategies to prevent dental caries, and our students will achieve greater life satisfaction because of better teeth and oral health.”

For more on this story, go to “Researchers Identify New Bacterial Suspects Behind Dental Caries”

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