Research Shows Promise for Vaccine for Treating Chronic Periodontitis
A study published in NPJ Vaccines is raising hopes that a vaccine for chronic periodontitis might not be far off.
A study published in NPJ Vaccines is raising hopes that a vaccine for chronic periodontitis might not be far off. The paper, “A Therapeutic Porphyromonas gingivalis Gingipain Vaccine Induces Neutralising IgG1 Antibodies That Protect Against Experimental Periodontitis,” is the result of 15 years of study by researchers at the Oral Health Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) at the University of Melbourne, who are working to develop the vaccine in partnership with the Australian biopharmaceutical company CSL Limited.
In a statement, the university suggests the vaccine has the potential to eliminate or reduce the need for surgery and antibiotics in treating severe periodontitis. Eric Reynolds, CEO of the Oral Health CRC, says it is hoped the vaccine will substantially reduce tissue destruction in patients harboring Porphyromonas gingivalis.
The findings represent analysis of the vaccine’s effectiveness by collaborating groups based in Melbourne and Cambridge, Massachusetts. According to the study, the vaccine targets enzymes produced by P. gingivalis and works by triggering an immune response that generates antibodies to neutralize the pathogen’s toxins. Because chronic periodontitis is a risk factor for conditions such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, dementia, pancreatic cancer and rheumatoid arthritis, the authors suggest the vaccine may have broader health benefits, as well. Clinical trials could begin in 2018.
From Decisions in Dentistry. January 2017;3(1):12.