Could a new drug for Alzheimer’s disease pave the way for advances in oral care? Dr Micahel Sultan

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  Posted by: Dental Design      1st September 2019

A recent news piece that caught my eye explained how a new drug developed to treat Alzheimer’s disease effectively improved some aspects of the condition by targeting the bacteria responsible for periodontitis.

This article, published in NewScientist, pointed out that though the drug is in very early stages, it has shown some improvements to molecules in both the blood and the spinal fluid of test subjects.[i]This is interesting as for a long time it was theorised that the disease was possibly caused by a build-up of protein in the brain called amyloid. However, this has since proven to not be the case, and more recent theories propose that this protein is rather a bi-product of the condition rather than the cause.

Regardless, the efficacy of this drug in targeting oral bacteria is something that the profession should be excited about. We’ve known for a long time that oral bacteria are responsible for exacerbating existing conditions such as heart diseases, liver diseases and even stroke. There are multiple other conditions that may have links with oral bacteria as well, such as diabetes.

So, imagine if this drug could be perfected and refined for use beyond Alzheimer’s disease patients? What if you could isolate the oral bacteria targeting behaviour and make it a consumer product for daily use? This could have huge implications for the treatment of a wide range of diseases and our general oral health moving forwards.

As always, we cannot know the true possibilities of this drug until development continues. However, I think the potential is clear, and I for one cannot wait to see what the future may bring.


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[i]NewScientist. Experimental Alzheimer’s Drug Targets Gum Disease Bacteria. Link:[Last accessed July 19].

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