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Publication Detail
Light activated antimicrobial agents can inactivate oral malodour causing bacteria.
Oral malodour is a common condition which affects a large proportion of the population, resulting in social, emotional and psychological stress. Certain oral bacteria form a coating called a biofilm on the tongue dorsum and degrade organic compounds releasing volatile sulfur compounds that are malodourous. Current chemical treatments for oral malodour such as mouthwashes containing chlorhexidine or essential oils, are not sufficiently effective at reducing the bacterial load on the tongue. One potential alternative to current chemical treatments for oral malodour is the use of light activated antimicrobial agents (LAAAs), which display no toxicity or antimicrobial activity in the dark, but when exposed to light of a specific wavelength produce reactive oxygen species which induce damage to target cells in a process known as photodynamic inactivation. This study aimed to determine whether oral malodour causing bacteria were susceptible to lethal photosensitization. Five bacterial species that are causative agents of oral malodour were highly sensitive to lethal photosensitization and were efficiently killed by methylene blue in conjunction with 665 nm laser light. Between 4.5-5 log10 reductions in the number of viable bacteria were achieved with 20 µM methylene blue and 14.53 J cm(-2) laser light for Porphyromonas gingivalis, Prevotella intermedia, Peptostreptococcus anaerobius and Solobacterium moorei. The number of viable cells fell below the limit of detection in the case of Fusobacterium nucleatum. These findings demonstrate that methylene blue in combination with 665 nm laser light is effective at killing bacteria associated with oral malodour, suggesting photodynamic therapy could be a viable treatment option for oral malodour.
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