In an article by Amel Ben Lagha and et al titled “Wild Blueberry (Vaccinium angustifoliumAit.) Polyphenols TargetFusobacterium nucleatumand the Host Inflammatory Response: Potential Innovative Molecules for Treating Periodontal Diseases,” a discussion is made that blueberry extract could be used for treating gum disease (Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 2015; 63 (31)). Gum disease occurs when bacteria form biofilms or plaques on teeth and the gums become inflamed. In ore severe cases this condition is called periodontitis and requires antibiotic use. By potentially using blueberry extract instead of antibiotics periodontitis could be treated.
When gum disease occurs the gums get red and swollen an can bleed easily. If the condition is not treated periodontitis can occur. In order to treat periodontitis dentists scrape off tartar and use antiobitics. Researchers have been exploring other natural ways to treat gum disease. As such, researchers have found that blueberry polyphenols which work against foodborne pathogens, can aiding in fighting Fusobacterium nucleatum, which is a main species of bacteria associated with periodontitis.
In their lab work, the researchers tested extracts from the wild lowbush blueberry,Vaccinium angustifolium Ait., against Fusobacterium nucleatum. It was determined that the polyphenol-rich extracts successfully inhibited the growth of Fusobacterium nucleatum. It also lead to the formation of biofilms and blocked a molecular pathway involved in inflammation. Currently, the researchers are working on a device for patients that will allow for blueberry extract to be released to treat periodontitis more directly.
I have discussed periodontitis before on this blog. See for example the post discussing potentially using ozone nano bubble water to treat gum infection http://blog.teethremoval.com/using-ozone-nano-bubble-water-to-treat-gum-infections/ and omega 3 fatty acids are inversely associated with periodontitis http://blog.teethremoval.com/omega-3-fatty-acids-inversely-proportional-to-periodontitis/.