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Large Scale Study Links Tooth Decay and Gum Disease to Genetics

Thursday, August 1st 2019 | by Billy Rooney | Health News

A new research study suggests that the genetic makeup of someone, as well as other factors including obesity, education and personality, contribute to the issues of tooth decay and gum disease. The news comes as little surprise to our Banbury dentists, however, it is always a groundbreaking moment to have it affirmed by a comprehensive study. 

If you have any suspicions of emerging, existing or developing tooth decay and gum disease issues, we have a dedicated general dentistry treatments page, where you can book an appointment to see Dr Tom Donnelly –  the leading dentist in Banbury. 

In The Know With Your Banbury Dental Surgery

Previous research has found that two people with extremely similar oral hygiene and eating habits can have a varying number of cavities, yet plausible explanations have been hard to come by. Until now, that is, as the release of figures and data from this report has provided reasoning. 

While there has been a general idea that tooth decay and gum disease is linked to the genetic constitution of an individual, there has previously not been any conclusive data or presentable facts. As two of the most commonplace diseases around the globe, there are many habits and substances that lead to their emergence and development of tooth decay and periodontitis (gum disease).

The Biggest Study of its Kind


gums teeth oral health

The study has been carried out by an international team, including participants from the University of Bristol. Led by Ingegerd Johansson, a senior professor at Umeå University in Sweden, the study combines data from nine international clinical studies – of which 62,000 participants were involved. Also included in the findings is data from a further 461,000 participants, who were involved in a self-reported dental health programme, run by UK Biobank

What was Analysed and What Exactly Are the Results?

The analysis entailed the scanning of millions of strategic points in the genome, in order to discover genes with connections to dental diseases. In total, the researchers were able to discern 47 new genes with links to tooth decay. In addition to this drastic discovery, the study also reaffirmed that a formerly known immune-related gene has intrinsic ties to gum disease. 

Some of the genes that were found to be linked to tooth decay are those that contribute to the formation of teeth and the jawbone, those with protective functions in saliva and those which have an effect on bacteria discovered on our teeth. Researchers also went as far as to assess genetic links to the cardiovascular system and factors such as obesity, education and personality, with the view of providing further comments on dental health. 

Future studies such as this recent one will not only help us identify those who are most at risk of tooth decay and gum disease as a result of hereditary traits but will enable us to identify links between oral wellbeing and cardiovascular-metabolic factors. 

Address Gum Disease & Tooth Loss with Your Dentist in Banbury

Come in and see a professional, highly experienced dentist in Banbury and address your tooth loss or gum disease issues today. Contact us to book an appointment or to discuss any potential treatments that you may require. We look forward to bringing you more of the latest updates in our industry and welcoming you to our Banbury dental surgery soon. 




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