When it comes to microbes in the mouth, John Hale has a lot to say.
The R & D manager from BLIS Technologies explained to a packed house at Global Engage 2016 conference how the dominant oral microbe Streptococcus salivarius is capable of driving big benefits for health.
In addition to dental caries, halitosis, and otis media, specific strains may find application in fighting respiratory viral infections as well as thrush. Hale and colleagues’ research has been reported in Future Microbiology.
BLIS was founded by John Tagg, a professor at the University of Otago in New Zealand. When he was a teenager, a strep infection led to rheumatic fever which was treated with daily penicillin for many years. This personal story moved Tagg to pursue better solutions for prevention.
As resistance to antibiotics increases, probiotics offer promise. Researchers write that the “time has come to shift the paradigm of treatment from specific bacteria elimination to altering bacterial ecology by probiotics.” This paper in Journal of Dental and Allied Sciences reviews evidence for the use of probiotics or prebiotics in periodontal disease prevention.