The role of sucrose in cariogenic dental biofilm formation--new insight.

Faculty of Dentistry of Piracicaba, UNICAMP, Av. Limeira 901, CEP 13414-903 Piracicaba, São Paulo, Brazil.
Journal of Dental Research (Impact Factor: 4.14). 11/2006; 85(10):878-87. DOI: 10.1177/154405910608501002
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Dental caries is a biofilm-dependent oral disease, and fermentable dietary carbohydrates are the key environmental factors involved in its initiation and development. However, among the carbohydrates, sucrose is considered the most cariogenic, because, in addition to being fermented by oral bacteria, it is a substrate for the synthesis of extracellular (EPS) and intracellular (IPS) polysaccharides. Therefore, while the low pH environment triggers the shift of the resident plaque microflora to a more cariogenic one, EPS promote changes in the composition of the biofilms' matrix. Furthermore, it has recently been shown that the biofilm formed in the presence of sucrose presents low concentrations of Ca, P(i), and F, which are critical ions involved in de- and remineralization of enamel and dentin in the oral environment. Thus, the aim of this review is to explore the broad role of sucrose in the cariogenicity of biofilms, and to present a new insight into its influence on the pathogenesis of dental caries.

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