PMID: 12097235Jul 5, 2002Paper

Destructive periodontitis lesions are determined by the nature of the lymphocytic response

Critical Reviews in Oral Biology and Medicine : an Official Publication of the American Association of Oral Biologists
E GemmellG J Seymour


It is now 35 years since Brandtzaeg and Kraus (1965) published their seminal work entitled "Autoimmunity and periodontal disease". Initially, this work led to the concept that destructive periodontitis was a localized hypersensitivity reaction involving immune complex formation within the tissues. In 1970, Ivanyi and Lehner highlighted a possible role for cell-mediated immunity, which stimulated a flurry of activity centered on the role of lymphokines such as osteoclast-activating factor (OAF), macrophage-activating factor (MAF), macrophage migration inhibition factor (MIF), and myriad others. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, attention focused on the role of polymorphonuclear neutrophils, and it was thought that periodontal destruction occurred as a series of acute exacerbations. As well, at this stage doubt was being cast on the concept that there was a neutrophil chemotactic defect in periodontitis patients. Once it was realized that neutrophils were primarily protective and that severe periodontal destruction occurred in the absence of these cells, attention swung back to the role of lymphocytes and in particular the regulatory role of T-cells. By this time in the early 1990s, while the roles of interleukin (IL)-1, prostag...Continue Reading


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