A new line of antibiotics may be on the way for treating gum disease. Researchers from the University of Central Florida (UCF) have discovered that selenium could be the key ingredient used to develop antibiotics to treat diarrhea and gum disease.
Selenium is a trace mineral and antioxidant. It is found in many proteins, both bacterial and human cells, known as selenoproteins. Interrupting the way these proteins are made may halt the growth of two super bugs Clostridium difficile (C-diff) and Treponema denticola, both known to contribute to gum disease. According to a press release from UCF, Treponema denticola is one of the leading causes of gum disease and costs individuals thousands of dollars in dental care each year. William Self, Associate Professor at UCF and lead author of the study, is quoted as saying "No one has ever tried this approach, and it could potentially be a source for new narrow spectrum antibiotics that block bacteria that require selenium to grow."
Treating gum disease is paramount. Aside from tooth loss, coronary heart disease , the leading cause of death of men and women in the United States, has been genetically linked to gum disease, along with rheumatoid arthritis and many other serious diseases and conditions. Discoveries such as this are truly welcomed as a possible way to treat gum disease.