Detection of specific periodontal microorganisms from bacteraemia samples after periodontal therapy using molecular-based diagnostics

J Clin Periodontol. 2011 May;38(5):418-27. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-051X.2011.01717.x. Epub 2011 Mar 11.


Aim: The aim of this study was to assess the presence of subgingival pathogens in peripheral blood samples from periodontitis patients before and after scaling and root planing (Sc/RP) using nested polymerase chain reaction (nested PCR).

Materials and methods: Peripheral blood samples were obtained from 42 patients with severe generalized chronic or aggressive periodontitis. In each patient, four samples of peripheral blood were drawn at different times: immediately before the Sc/RP procedure; immediately after Sc/RP; 15 and 30 min. post-Sc/RP. Blood samples were analysed for bacteraemia with anaerobic culturing and nested PCR, using universal bacterial primers that target the 16S-rRNA gene of most bacteria, subsequently re-amplified with specific primers to Porphyromonas gingivalis, Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans, Tannerella forsythia, Eikenella corrodens, Campylobacter rectus and Prevotella intermedia, using a modified phenol-chloroform method for DNA extraction.

Results: Presence of specific periodontal pathogens in peripheral blood after treatment was detected in 54.8% of the patients, in 47.6% with anaerobic culturing and in 19% with nested PCR. In 16.6%, the periodontal pathogens were detected before Sc/RP. P. gingivalis and A. actynomicetemcomitans were the pathogens most frequently detected in the bloodstream before and after Sc/RP.

Conclusions: Nested PCR demonstrated the presence of DNA from periodontal pathogens in blood samples in severe periodontitis patients before, during and after periodontal therapy. The use of these molecular-based techniques may improve the accuracy from the results obtained by haemoculture.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aggressive Periodontitis / blood*
  • Aggressive Periodontitis / complications
  • Aggressive Periodontitis / microbiology
  • Aggressive Periodontitis / therapy
  • Bacteremia / blood
  • Bacteremia / diagnosis*
  • Bacteremia / etiology
  • Bacteria, Anaerobic / classification
  • Bacteria, Anaerobic / genetics
  • Bacteria, Anaerobic / isolation & purification
  • Bacteriological Techniques / methods
  • Chronic Periodontitis / blood*
  • Chronic Periodontitis / complications
  • Chronic Periodontitis / microbiology
  • Chronic Periodontitis / therapy
  • DNA, Bacterial / blood*
  • Dental Plaque / microbiology
  • Dental Prophylaxis / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction / methods
  • Sensitivity and Specificity


  • DNA, Bacterial