New technology aims to repair the after-effects of gum disease

Feb 01, 2010

Advances in tissue engineering are offering the promise of being able to restore lost bone and gum tissue following periodontal disease.

About a third of the population are affected by chronic inflammatory which can result in loss of the bone and other tissues that support our teeth.

Professor Saso Ivanovski, Listerine Chair in Periodontology at Griffith's School of Dentistry and Oral Health, said even when the infection or inflammation was brought under control, people can be left with an unsightly appearance and poor function.

The colloquial expression 'long in the tooth' is often used to describe people and things of a significant age, however the unsightly effects of severe gum disease and gum retraction leading to wobbly teeth are not confined to the elderly.

"Smoking, uncontrolled diabetes, stress and are some of the risk factors for gum disease, which affects people of all ages," he said.

Advanced disease affects about 10 per cent of the population.

Over recent years, Professor Ivanovski's research at the Griffith Institute for Health and Medical Research has been focussed on growing layers of cells such as and gingival (gum) for restoring damaged smiles.

"Previous work was involved in looking at the growth factors and optimal cell types for regenerating destroyed tissue."

"Now we are using new technology to harvest sheets of these and transfer them safely to the surface of the tooth root," he said.

Laboratory studies indicate that the cells can be successfully grafted with periodontal repair taking about six months.

Professor Ivanovski said the technique had already been shown to be useful in other applications such as harvesting cells for skin grafts and other injured tissues.

Explore further: Cochrane Review of RDT for diagnosis of drug resistant TB

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Smoking is a major cause of gum disease: study

Apr 30, 2008

Almost a third of the more than two million cases of gum disease among Australians are caused by smoking, according to research by University of Adelaide researchers in the Australian Research Centre for Population ...

Maintaining healthy teeth and gums is a wise investment

Feb 06, 2009

Faced with plummeting investments and an unsteady job market, many Americans are feeling the effects of the recent economic crisis. In fact, a recent study by the American Psychological Association found that over 80 percent ...

New treatment for receding gums: No pain, lots of gain

Jul 01, 2009

Tufts dental researchers conducted a three-year follow-up study that examined the stability of a treatment option for receding gums and found that complete root coverage — the goal of the surgery — had been maintained. ...

A healthy color: Testing for gum disease

Apr 10, 2009

Researchers at Temple University Maurice H. Kornberg School of Dentistry found that a color-changing oral strip is as effective in detecting periodontal disease as traditional methods, and is easier and less costly to administer.

Go green for healthy teeth and gums

Mar 05, 2009

With origins dating back over 4,000 years, green tea has long been a popular beverage in Asian culture, and is increasingly gaining popularity in the United States. And while ancient Chinese and Japanese medicine believed ...

Recommended for you

Cochrane Review of RDT for diagnosis of drug resistant TB

13 minutes ago

Researchers from the Cochrane Infectious Diseases Group, hosted at LSTM, have conducted an independent review to examine the diagnostic accuracy of the GenoType MTBDRsl assay for the detection of resistance ...

Africans in New York complain of Ebola stigma

4 hours ago

Members of the west African community in New York complained Wednesday that their children were being bullied at school and businesses were losing money because of hysteria over Ebola.

Ebola expert says China at risk, seeks Japan aid

4 hours ago

A scientist who helped to discover the Ebola virus says he is concerned that the disease could spread to China given the large numbers of Chinese workers traveling to and from Africa.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.