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Epigenetics and Periodontal Disease: Hope to Tame the Untameable

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Epigenetics means gene expression alterations which occur due to the biochemical changes of the nucleotides modifying structure of DNA rather than the changes in the genetic code itself as in case of mutations. The epigenome, consisting of chromatin and its modifications, acts as a link between the inherited genome and the changes imposed by the environment. Over the past decade, there has been mounting evidence suggestive of associations between epigenetic modifications and various human conditions such as aging, and most common human diseases viz. cancer, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, HIV etc and the clearest evidence as the central mechanism for common multifactorial diseases, has been identified with the factors involved in the inflammatory response. Periodontal disease, basically an immune-inflammatory affliction, being a multifactorial complex disease, owing to its high prevalence, chronicity and wide ranging systemic effects, essentially calls for a better comprehension of the underlying disease mechanisms, so as to develop and decipher the novel methodologies to combat this disease. The current paper aims to visualize periodontal disease from an epigenetic perspective, featuring the contemporary evidence supported literature and tends to explore the possibilities to find some explanations for perio-systemic health links, individualized and improvised diagnostic tools for earlier detection and ways to halt the disease and help regeneration and reconstruction of the lost periodontal attachment apparatus with the biology based approaches.
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Keywords: Chronic inflammation; epigenetics; immune cells; individual treatment; microbial infection; periodontal disease

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2014

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