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Oral Microbiol Immunol. 2000 Dec;15(6):393-6.

Porphyromonas gingivalis platelet aggregation activity: outer membrane vesicles are potent activators of murine platelets.

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Department of Oral Biology, State University of New York at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY 14214-3092, USA.


Recent evidence has established an association between chronic periodontitis and cardiovascular disease. Periodontitis is a chronic inflammatory disease caused by a small group of gram-negative bacteria, of which Porphyromonas gingivalis is considered an important causative agent. It has been proposed that dental plaque bacteria and their products can disseminate into the bloodstream from the site of infection and promote thromboembolic events associated with atherosclerosis and myocardial infarction. In this regard, Streptococcus sanguis and P. gingivalis have been shown to induce platelet aggregation in vitro. Here we report that P. gingivalis was able to induce platelet aggregation, and that oral strains of Actinobaillus actinomycetemcomitans, Bacteroides forsythus, Campylobacter rectus, Fusobacterium nucleatum, Prevotella intermedia and Trepenoma denticola failed to aggregate platelets when tested for platelet aggregation activity under similar conditions. Additionally, we show that vesicles (outer membrane evaginations that are shed into the environment by the bacteria) of P. gingivalis are potent inducers of mouse platelet aggregation in vitro. In summary, our data show that i) initial adherence of the bacterium to platelet may be facilitated by P. gingivalis fimbriae and ii) P. gingivalis vesicles possess platelet aggregation-inducing activity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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