A binding agent used by meat and poultry packers may be contributing to gingivitis, a gum disease.
Scientists at Forsyth, an independent, not-for-profit research institute specializing in oral health and related-conditions, along with a colleague from Northwestern University, say that Transgultaminase 2 (TG2), is a key component in the process of gum disease.
Meat and poultry processors have been using it for more than 10 years as a binder to stick small pieces together.
The research found that TG2 helps Porphyromonas gingivalis stick to cells, but when they “silenced” TG2, Porphyromonas gingivalis was diminished.
“Once established, Porphyromonas gingivalis is very hard to get rid of,” Dr. Heike Boisvert, assistant member of the staff in the Department of Microbiology at Forsyth, said in a news release.
“The bacterium changes conditions in the surrounding environment to ensure perfect growth; unfortunately, those changes, if untreated, can result in a loss of supportive tissue for our teeth.”