Do Differences in Cultivable Subgingival Species Exist between Different Periodontitis Stages and Grades?

Oral Health Prev Dent. 2021;19(1):15-24. doi: 10.3290/j.ohpd.b875525.


To investigate the subgingival microbiological profiles of patients with periodontitis, to determine their stage and grade scores and to evaluate the differences in the microbiota among different stages and grades. Materials and Methods: Sixty-seven (n = 67) periodontitis patients were selected. Periodontitis staging and grading, following the 2018 classification system, were defined. Following a clinical examination, subgingival samples were taken from the deepest periodontal pocket of each quadrant for cultivation, identification and quantification. The prevalence, proportion and counts of nine selected periodontal pathogens were determined, and differences between periodontitis stages III and IV and grades B and C were assessed. Results: All nine cultivable periodontal bacteria were detected, of which the most prevalent was P. intermedia (91.0%) and the least prevalent were E. corrodens (9.0%) and C. ochracea (9.0%). The frequency of detection of the two main target pathogens, A. actinomycetemcomitans and P. gingivalis, was 41.8% and 76.1%, respectively. The prevalence (grade B: 80.6%, grade C: 55.6%, p = 0.035) and total counts (grade B: 19.8 colony forming units - CFU/ml-4 (1.9-52.8); grade C: 4.0 CFU/ml-4 (0.0-26.4); p = 0.022) of F. nucleatum were statistically significantly higher in grade B than in grade C periodontitis patients, whereas the counts of P. gingivalis and A. actinomycetemcomitans were similar between grades and stages. Conclusion: Our study suggests that relevant differences between the various grades of periodontitis exist only in the numbers of F. nucleatum. Prevalence and quantities of other cultivable species between different stages and grades of periodontitis seem to be similar.

Keywords: Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans; Fusobacterium nucleatum; Porphyromonas gingivalis; grade; periodontitis; stage.

MeSH terms

  • Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans*
  • Colony Count, Microbial
  • Fusobacterium nucleatum
  • Humans
  • Periodontitis*
  • Porphyromonas gingivalis
  • Prevotella intermedia