International Research Journal of Microbiology

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The possible role of Candida albicans in the progression of dental caries


Guangyun Lai and Mingyu Li

An association between dental caries and Candida albicans, the most common fungus in human body, has been shown. However, the question that whether C. albicans acts as a caries pathogen or rather plays a role as a commensal microbe still exists. It is well known that dental caries is mainly caused by acids from bacterial fermentation. Acidogenic bacteria, such as Mutans streptococcus and Lactobacilli, have been considered as major pathogenic factors of dental caries for a long time, whereas various studies have shown that Candida albicans can adhere to dental hard tissues and dentinal collagen, and can produce organic acids and secrete collagenolytic enzyme, which may implicate the cariogenic capability of Candida albicans that cannot only demineralize the dental tissue, but also they can destroy organic structure of dentine. Paying attention to the role of Candida albicans in the progression of dental caries may advance knowledge of pathology and etiology of caries and offer additional approaches for the prevention and therapy of dental caries.

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