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    November 25, 2021
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LINK BETWEEN GUM DISEASE AND COGNITIVE DECLINE IN ALZHEIMER'S Periodontitis, or gum disease, is common in older people and may become more common in those with Alzheimer's disease because of a reduced ability to take care of oral hygiene as the disease progresses. Higher levels of antibodies to periodontal bacteria are associated with an increase in levels of inflammatory molecules elsewhere in the body, which in turn has been linked to greater rates of cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease in previous studies. The latest study, published in the journal PLOS ONE, set out to determine whether gum disease is associated with increased dementia severity and subsequent greater progression of cognitive decline in people with Alzheimer's disease. In the observational study, 59 participants with mild to moderate Alzheimer's Disease were cognitively assessed and a blood sample was taken to measure inflammatory markers in their blood. Participants' dental health was assessed by a dental hygienist who was blind to cognitive outcomes. The majority of participants (52) were followed-up at six months when all assessments were repeated. The presence of gum disease at baseline was associated with a six-fold increase in the rate of cognitive decline in participants over the six-month follow-up period of the study. Periodontitis at baseline was also associated with a relative increase in the proinflammatory state over the six-month follow-up period. The authors conclude that gum disease is associated with an increase in cognitive decline in Alzheimer's Disease, possibly via mechanisms linked to the body's inflammatory response. Presented as a service to the community by Dr. Barbara Webster 1121 Warren Ave., Suite 130, Downers Grove, IL 60515 630-663-0554 SM-CL1929312 LINK BETWEEN GUM DISEASE AND COGNITIVE DECLINE IN ALZHEIMER'S Periodontitis, or gum disease, is common in older people and may become more common in those with Alzheimer's disease because of a reduced ability to take care of oral hygiene as the disease progresses. Higher levels of antibodies to periodontal bacteria are associated with an increase in levels of inflammatory molecules elsewhere in the body, which in turn has been linked to greater rates of cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease in previous studies. The latest study, published in the journal PLOS ONE, set out to determine whether gum disease is associated with increased dementia severity and subsequent greater progression of cognitive decline in people with Alzheimer's disease. In the observational study, 59 participants with mild to moderate Alzheimer's Disease were cognitively assessed and a blood sample was taken to measure inflammatory markers in their blood. Participants' dental health was assessed by a dental hygienist who was blind to cognitive outcomes. The majority of participants (52) were followed-up at six months when all assessments were repeated. The presence of gum disease at baseline was associated with a six-fold increase in the rate of cognitive decline in participants over the six-month follow-up period of the study. Periodontitis at baseline was also associated with a relative increase in the proinflammatory state over the six-month follow-up period. The authors conclude that gum disease is associated with an increase in cognitive decline in Alzheimer's Disease, possibly via mechanisms linked to the body's inflammatory response. Presented as a service to the community by Dr. Barbara Webster 1121 Warren Ave., Suite 130, Downers Grove, IL 60515 630-663-0554 SM-CL1929312