Does Periodontopathic Bacterial Infection Contribute to the Etiopathogenesis of the Autoimmune Disease Rheumatoid Arthritis?
Abstract: There is a significant association between rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and periodontal disease (PD). Patients with longstanding active RA have been found to have a substantially increased frequency of PD compared with healthy subjects. Further, patients with PD have been shown to have a higher prevalence of RA than patients without periodontitis. Antibodies to Gram-negative, anaerobic periodontal pathogens such as Porphyromonas gingivalis, Prevotella intermedia, Prevotella melaninogenica, and Tannerella forsythia have been detected in the serum and synovial fluid of RA patients. These pathogens have also been identified in the synovial fluid of RA patients, with higher levels of bacterial DNA in RA patients than in controls. This review examines the association between periodontopathic bacteria and the etiology of RA. ... Read more