The role of probiotic bacteria in managing periodontal disease: a systematic review

Victor Haruo Matsubara, H M H N Bandara, Karin Hitomi Ishikawa, Marcia Pinto Alves Mayer, Lakshman Perera Samaranayake

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INTRODUCTION: The frequent recolonization of treated sites by periodontopathogens and the emergence of antibiotic resistance have led to a call for new therapeutic approaches for managing periodontal diseases. As probiotics are considered a new tool for combating infectious diseases, we systematically reviewed the evidences for their effectiveness in the management of periodontitis.

AREAS COVERED: An electronic search was performed in the MEDLINE, SCOPUS and Cochrane Library databases up to March 2016 using the terms 'periodontitis', 'chronic periodontitis', 'probiotic(s)', 'prebiotic(s)', 'symbiotic(s)', 'Bifidobacterium and 'Lactobacillus'. Only randomized controlled trials (RCTs) were included in the present study. Analysis of 12 RCTs revealed that in general, oral administration of probiotics improved the recognized clinical signs of chronic and aggressive periodontitis such as probing pocket depth, bleeding on probing, and attachment loss, with a concomitant reduction in the levels of major periodontal pathogens. Continuous probiotic administration, laced mainly with Lactobacillus species, was necessary to maintain these benefits. Expert commentary: Oral administration of probiotics is a safe and effective adjunct to conventional mechanical treatment (scaling) in the management of periodontitis, specially the chronic disease entity. Their adjunctive use is likely to improve disease indices and reduce the need for antibiotics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)643-55
Number of pages13
JournalExpert Review of Anti-Infective Therapy
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jun 2016


  • Journal Article

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