Aim The aim of this study is to identify the presence of main periodontal pathogens in the oral cavity of 12-month-old infants and compared the occurrence of these microbes between a cohort of very low birth weight infants and a control cohort.
Methods The research cohort was composed of 69 one-year-old infants, 24 of whom were born prematurely with very low birth weight and 45 of whom were born at term. At 12 months of age, both groups of infants were examined, and unstimulated saliva samples from the dorsum of the tongue and dental plaque samples were collected. The periodontal pathogens Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans, Porphyromonas gingivalis, Tannerella Forsythensis, Treponema denticola, Peptostreptococcus micros, Prevotella intermedia and Fusobacterium nucleatum were identified using a PCR-based method. Chi-square and Fisher´s factorial tests were used for the statistical evaluation.
Results Periodontal pathogens were present in 83% of the pre-term infants and 96% of full-term infants. Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans was the most common periodontal pathogen found in the oral cavities of the infants enrolled in our study. No statistically significant differences between the pre-term infants and the full-term infants were found regarding the presence of periodontal pathogens.
Conclusions The study confirmed the early transmission of periodontal pathogens to the oral cavity of one-year-old infants. Future research should focus on establishing the clinical importance of periodontal pathogens in the saliva of infants and their role in the aetiology of early onset periodontal disease.
The study was supported by grant IGA of Ministry of Health Czech Republic, NT 14336–3.