Quantitative Analysis of Periodontal Pathogens by ELISA and Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction
The development of analytical methods enabling the accurate identification and enumeration of bacterial species colonizing the oral cavity has led to the identification of a small number of bacterial pathogens that are major factors in the etiology of periodontal disease. Further, these methods also underpin more recent epidemiological analyses of the impact of periodontal disease on general health. Given the complex milieu of over 700 species of microorganisms known to exist within the complex biofilms found in the oral cavity, the identification and enumeration of oral periodontopathogens has not been an easy task. In recent years however, some of the intrinsic limitations of the more traditional microbiological analyses previously used have been overcome with the advent of immunological and molecular analytical methods. Of the plethora of methodologies reported in the literature, the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), which combines the specificity of antibody with the sensitivity of simple enzyme assays and the polymerase chain reaction (PCR), has been widely utilized in both laboratory and clinical applications. Although conventional PCR does not allow quantitation of the target organism, real-time PCR (rtPCR) has the ability to detect amplicons as they accumulate in "real time" allowing subsequent quantitation. These methods enable the accurate quantitation of as few as 102 (using rtPCR) to 104 (using ELISA) periodontopathogens in dental plaque samples.
Oral Biology: Molecular Techniques and Applications
Dentistry not elsewhere classified