Promising Gingivitis Treatment

Researchers in the Schoenfisch Group, in collaboration with colleagues from the UNC School of Dentistry's Periodontal, and Oral and Craniofacial departments, evaluated the in vivo antibacterial activity of NO-releasing hyperbranched polymers against Porphyromonas gingivalis, a key oral pathogen associated with periodontitis, using a murine subcutaneous chamber model.

In work published in Molecular Pharmaceutics, the scientists describe how escalating doses of NO-releasing polymers, 1.5, 7.5, and 37.5 mg/kg, were administered into a P. gingivalis-infected chamber once a day for three days. Chamber fluids were collected on day four, with microbiological evaluation indicating a dose-dependent bactericidal action.

In particular, NO-releasing polymers at 37.5 mg/kg, 1170 mu g of NO/kg, achieved complete bacterial eradication, a >6-log reduction in bacterial viability, demonstrating greater efficacy than amoxicillin, similar to 4-log reduction in bacterial viability, a commonly used antibiotic. Time-kill assays further revealed that largest dose, 37.5 mg/kg; 1170 mu g of NO/kg, resulted in similar to 3-log killing of P. gingivalis after only a single dose.

Based on the achieved results, the potential clinical utility of NO-releasing hyperbranched polymers appears promising, particularly for oral health applications.