Insulin resistance and periodontal disease: an epidemiologic overview of research needs and future directions

Ann Periodontol. 2001 Dec;6(1):119-24. doi: 10.1902/annals.2001.6.1.119.


Poor periodontal health is known to be associated with Type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM). This relationship and underlying mechanisms are discussed elsewhere in this issue. Less is known concerning the link between the metabolic precursors to DM, including insulin resistance (IR), and its possible association with periodontitis. Indeed, there has been relatively little research to date in human populations concerning periodontal disease, IR, and the subsequent risk of chronic diseases, including DM. This paper will present an epidemiologist's view of how IR may link periodontal disease with DM and suggest several avenues of investigation to help clarify some of the outstanding issues.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adipocytes / physiology
  • Animals
  • Chronic Disease
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / metabolism
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / physiopathology
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Epidemiologic Methods
  • Forecasting
  • Glucose Clamp Technique
  • Glucose Tolerance Test
  • Homeostasis / physiology
  • Humans
  • Insulin / blood
  • Insulin Resistance / physiology*
  • Leptin / physiology
  • Models, Biological
  • Periodontal Diseases / metabolism
  • Periodontal Diseases / physiopathology*
  • Periodontitis / metabolism
  • Periodontitis / physiopathology
  • Research Design
  • Risk Factors
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / physiology


  • Insulin
  • Leptin
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha