Vaccine Proves Effective Against P Gingivalis

Dentistry Today


SutroVax has developed a multivalent vaccine that has demonstrated protective immunity against Porphyromonas gingivalis (Pg), a common bacteria believed to be responsible for periodontal disease, according to the company. 

The vaccine uses three recombinant Pg proteins: minor fimbriae protein (Mfa1), RgpA gingipain hemagglutinin domain 1 (HA1), and RgpA gingipain hemagglutinin domain 2 (HA2). This combination was designed to interrupt biofilm formation between Pg and other oral bacteria that stimulates virulence factors that result in disease progression and circumvent the host immune response.

According to the company’s research, immunization with the combination vaccine induces high levels of Pg protein-specific Immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies that result in significant protection against bone loss elicited from Pg infection in a murine challenge model.

“The treatment and prevention of disease progression caused by P gingivalis has the potential to significantly impact dental health. P gingivalis has also been shown to be associated with increased risk of heart attack, stroke, and, most recently, Alzheimer’s disease,” said Jeffery Fairman, PhD, SutroVax’s cofounder, vice president of research, and study author. 

“These findings provide compelling preclinical evidence that a vaccine targeting the biofilm cascade may be an efficacious approach for the treatment and/or prevention of periodontal disease,” Fairman said.

The study describes the application of SutroVax’s proprietary Xpress CF cell-free protein synthesis technology as a platform to produce vaccines targeting Pg infection.

“Periodontal disease affects over 500 million people worldwide, and over half of American adults over 40 years of age are suffering from measurable oral bone loss from the disease,” said Grant Pickering, CEO and cofounder of SutroVax. “The application of our cell-free technology offers a promising avenue to intercept periodontal disease and its resultant morbidity.” 

“These results support that a vaccination approach may provide an opportunity to change the trajectory of periodontal disease,” said Frank C. Gibson III, PhD, a University of Florida College of Dentistry researcher and author of the study.

“The findings from our initial preclinical studies are promising and suggest that we are onto something important. However, we are at a very early phase with this work, and there is more work to be done before moving forward to clinical testing in humans. I look forward to continuing our collaboration with SutroVax,” Gibson said. 

The study, “Immunization with Cell-Free Generated Vaccine Protects from Porphyromonas Gingivalis-Induced Alveolar Bone Loss,” was published by the Journal of Clinical Periodontology.

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