Mouth Holds Evidence for Fighting Infection

APRIL 01, 2004

Individuals have natural antibiotics?beta-defensins?in their mouth that may help develop new oral treatments and improve the infection-battling abilities of mouthwashes, denture coatings, and wound dressings. These findings were presented at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (February 16, 2004).

These beta-defensins are important components of the human innate immune system, which has some noteworthy capabilities. For example, it can differentiate between harmful and harmless bacteria. "Innate immunity describes the defenses that we are born with; they're coded in our genes. In contrast, we develop the antibodies of our acquired immune system over time as we're exposed to bacteria and viruses. It's when our innate defenses fail that the acquired immune system picks up the slack," said Beverly Dale, PhD, scientific director of the University of Washington's Comprehensive Center for Oral Health Research.

Dr. Dale believes that, even though individuals brush their teeth, the mouth is full of moist surfaces and contains millions of bacteria. Therefore, a better understanding of the innate immune system may lead researchers to find ways to improve it.



SHARE THIS SHARE THIS
0

Become a Respimat Top Performer 

Get to know RESPIMAT, the slow-moving mist inhaler from Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. 

Watch the RESPIMAT video and test your knowledge with a short multiple-choice quiz. When you get all the answers right, you’ll receive a certificate naming you a RESPIMAT T.O.P. Performer. Why not check it out today? 

 

Pharmacy Times Strategic Alliance
 

Pharmacist Education
Clinical features with downloadable PDFs


Next-Generation Pharmacist® Awards


3rd Annual Convenient Healthcare and Pharmacy Collaborative Conference


SIGN UP FOR THE PHARMACY TIMES NEWSLETTER
Personalize the information you receive by selecting targeted content and special offers.