Microbial profile of dental plaque associated to white spot lesions in orthodontic patients immediately after the bracket removal

M.W. Beerens, J.M. ten Cate, M.H. van der Veen

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Objective: Denaturing Gradient Gel Electrophoresis (DGGE) is suggested to predict caries risk in young children. Such a tool would be valuable in orthodontic patients undergoing treatment with fixed appliances. In this cross-sectional study the applicability of DGGE and conventional microbiology for caries risk assessment in orthodontic patients were assessed.
Design: Dental plaque was obtained from orthodontic patients immediately prior to bracket removal. Presence of white spot lesions (WSL) was assessed immediately post debracketing. DGGE-patterns and band counts were assessed using varying automated band detection settings and compared to visually detected bands to determine optimum settings. Optimum settings were used to compare band patterns in subjects with or without WSL. Microbiological samples were assessed for total colony forming units (CFU's) and percentages of aciduric flora, Streptococcus mutans, Lactobacillus spp. and Candida albicans.
Results: Thirty-seven subjects were included with a mean age of 15.4 yr (SD 1.6 yr; 28 with WSL; 9 without WSL). Depending on settings, DGGE outcomes were different. Optimum minimum profiling absolute to the most intense band of 4% showed no significant difference in band numbers for subjects with or without WSL (p = 0.845). Optimum settings for minimum profiling relative to the most intense band of 15% showed significant lower band numbers for subjects with WSL than those without (p = 0.007). No differences between groups were observed for microbiological parameters.
Conclusion: The analysis of DGGE-patterns is ambiguous. Software settings significantly affected outcomes. DGGE-patterns and band numbers like CFU counts were not predictive with respect to WSL formation in these orthodontic patients.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)88-93
JournalArchives of Oral Biology
Publication statusPublished - 2017


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