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People who don't brush, floss or visit the dentist regularly may find themselves experiencing periodontitis, also known as gum disease. This condition affects millions of Americans, and in its most severe form it may affect the rest of the body. According to a recent study from researchers at the University of Pennsylvania, there may be a way to halt the progression of gum disease.
The scientists injected a molecule in the gums of mice that was found to help prevent the development or the spread of periodontitis. They used a method called complement therapeutics, which refers to the complement system, a component of the immune system that can both help clear infection and trigger inflammation.
"The complement inhibitors, some of which are in clinical trials, developed by my group are now tested in various periodontal disease animal models and we hope soon to initiate clinical trials in human patients," said researcher John Lambris.
According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, whether gum disease is stopped, slowed or gets worse depends on whether the individual who has it is willing to practice proper dental health habits such as brushing, flossing and visiting the dentist.
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