Biofilms are the reservoirs for pathogens and colonize almost all surfaces, including those in the oral cavity;dental plaque is a complex biofilm. Oral biofilms cause periodontal problems commonly induced by acidogenesis and tooth demineralization by biofilm forming bacteria;dental plaque has been associated to and may lead to many serious systemic problems if are it not treated and controlled. In particular, they pose serious health evils to immuno- compromised patients. Biofilm formation and colonization on a surface starts with is the adhesion of biofilm forming bacteria;initial bacterial attachment o the support surface is vital for their viability and successful colonization and the resultant infection. A logical way to control plaque formation on dental and related surfaces is to regularly condition them with something that would resist the attachment of biofilm forming bacteria. This Phase-I SBIR proposes to develop a conditioning agent for dental and related surfaces and the optimization of its chemical structure relative to its ability to inhibit attachment of biofilm foring bacteria. The optimized conditioning agent is proposed to be used in dental cleaning formulations (for example, tooth paste, mouth rinse or varnish) or in a post-cleaning rinse formulation. During the rinses (as frequent as daily dental cleaning), the product will perform surface modification of oral surfaces such that the modified dental and related surfaces would control the attachment of biofilm forming bacteria. To prove the feasibility of inhibition of bacterial adhesion on biomaterials used as the model for dental and related surfaces, it is intended to prepare the proposed conditioning biomolecules with varying degree of hydrophobicity/hydrophilicity and coat them on model dental related biomaterials to quantify the bacterial adherence and acidogenesis on coated surfaces and also to grow biofilm in a continuous flow culture biofilm model and compare to that on the related uncoated control surfaces. It is also proposed to optimize the molecular structure of coating material for the best inhibition of bacterial adherence, control of lactic acid formation and their viability. After the completion of this phase-I study, many surface conditioning formulations using the optimized biomolecules identified in this proposal may be further developed later in the phase-II part of the project. A huge burden of research has been carried out so far on infection control after the infection is established in host, but the results are quite ineffective as almost all disease causig bacteria remain protected in biofilms and show resistance to therapeutic agents. Therefore, a significant scientific attention is needed to control the process of formation of biofilm itself, before the infection could set firm footing.

Public Health Relevance

A huge burden of research has been carried out so far on bacterial control after the infectious colonization sets in, but the resultant therapies are still imperfect as almost all infectious bacteria remain protected in biofilms and develop resistance to the antibacterial agent. Therefore, a significant scientific attention is needed to control the initiation of the process of formation of biofilm itself. The goal of this research is to evolve an optimize the chemical structure of a natural non-toxic biomolecule that may be used to condition the dental and related surfaces while cleaning or rinsing, so that the conditioned surface may inhibit or retard the process of initial adhesion of biofilm forming bacteria and thus, inhibit bioilm formation.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Dental & Craniofacial Research (NIDCR)
Small Business Innovation Research Grants (SBIR) - Phase I (R43)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1-MOSS-K (11))
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Drummond, James
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Innovative Research Solutions, Inc.
San Antonio
United States
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