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Bioceramic Material May Add to Periodontal Armamentarium


New research suggests that a bioceramic material used in spinal implants may have potential to help clinicians better manage periodontal disease. An international team led by Giuseppe Pezzotti, PhD, of the Ceramic Physics Laboratory, Kyoto Institute of Technology in Kyoto, Japan, is studying the antimicrobial effects of silicon nitride on Porphyromonas gingivalis, one of the bacteria species responsible for periodontitis.

In “Silicon Nitride Bioceramics Induce Chemically Driven Lysis in Porphyromonas gingivalis,” published in the American Chemical Society’s journal Langsmuir, the team investigated how the ceramic material changes the metabolism of P. gingivalis. They found that chemical reactions at the surface trigger degradation of the bacteria’s nucleic acid, reduce lipid concentrations, and “drastically reduce” phenylalanine levels. Lysis was confirmed by conventional fluorescence spectroscopy, and the bacteria’s metabolism was traced with the aid of in situ Raman microprobe spectroscopy.

Exploiting the surface chemistry of silicon nitride bioceramics, the authors suggest, could be helpful in counteracting P. gingivalis in an alkaline pH environment.

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