Gum disease is initiated by bacteria populating dental plaque and may eventually result in tissue and tooth loss.
Gum disease is similar to other chronic inflammatory diseases such as arthritis, where inflammation causes tissue damage and is responsible for the disease.
To date, the prevention of gum disease is limited to successful oral hygiene and regular professional care. However, despite these preventive actions, plaque control is not enough to prevent disease in susceptible individuals with a high inflammatory response.
Researchers presented their findings during the 35th Annual Meeting of the American Association for Dental Research are introducing Resolvins, a new family of biologically active products of omega-3 fatty acids. They are natural endogenous regulators of the inflammatory response.
Since it is now known that inflammation plays a critical role in many diseases, including heart diseases and asthma, experiments were carried out to test the actions of the newly described EPA (eicosapentanoic acid)-derived Resolvin E1 (RvE1) in regulating tissue destruction and resolving inflammation in gum disease. Experimental gum disease characterized by tissue inflammation and bone loss was stimulated in rabbits by the application of specific bacteria that cause human gum disease.
The results of this study showed that topical application of RvE1 in experimental gum disease provided remarkable protection against soft tissue and bone loss associated with gum disease (periodontitis). Analysis of these data supports the concept that inflammation is a good therapeutic target in the treatment of periodontal disease.