A dental vaccine? Hmm?

The University of Melbourne has been working on a vaccine for chronic periodontitis for many years. It looks like they will begin clinical trials in 2018. The vaccine will target enzymes created by the bacteria p.gingivalis and will hopefully reduce the need for surgery or antibiotics to treat severe gum disease. This is especially exciting for patients who are more at risk, such as patients with certain cancers, diabetes, heart disease, dementia, and rheumatoid arthritis. At this point it is unknown what the recommended age of vaccination will be. As with many treatments, this is not considered a “magic wand”. I will always suggest my patients implement a good home care routine and see me regularly.