Study Summary: Bad teeth gums linked to heart disease


    Study Summary: Bad teeth gums linked to heart disease

  • 1 Periodontitis linked to heart disease

    Periodontitis is an inflammatory disease affecting the tissues that surround and support the teeth. A bacteria from it can cause heart disease. 

  • 2 Periodontal pathogen causes changes in gene expression

    The study identified that a bacteria Porphyromonas gingivalis causes changes in gene expression that increase inflammation and atherosclerosis in aortic smooth muscle cells of the heart.

  • 3 The Swedish study was published in 2015

    The study was done in 2015 and published in Infection and Immunity, a journal of the American Society for Microbiology. The research was led by Torbjörn Bengtsson of the Department of Clinical Medicine in Sweden.

  • 4 Bacteria was found in artery plaques

    Bacteria Porphyromonas gingivalis has been found in coronary artery plaques of people who suffered a heart attack. It can also cause and accelerate formation of coronary and aortic atherosclerosis.

  • 5 Human aortic smooth muscle cells were infected with bacteria

    The study found that bacteria increased inflammation which then lead to atherosclerosis. It did that by expression of the pro-inflammatory angiopoietin 2, while decreasing expression of the anti-inflammatory angiopoietin 1.

  • 6 'Angiopoietin 2 directly increases the migration of aortic smooth muscle cells'

    Boxi Zhang, one of the study's authors, said : 'Angiopoietin 2 directly increases the migration of aortic smooth muscle cells. The migration of smooth muscle cells is involved in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis.'

  • 7 'The mechanism between two diseases is clarified'

    Zhang finished by saying that 'Our research clarifies the mechanism behind the association of periodontitis and cardiovascular disease. Our aim is to find biomarkers that can help us diagnose and treat both diseases.'