Departmental Papers (Dental)

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Journal Article

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Journal of Periodontal Research





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To determine the order of bacterial species succession in re-developing supra and subgingival biofilms.


Supra and subgingival plaque samples were taken separately from 28 teeth in 38 healthy and 17 periodontitis subjects immediately after professional cleaning. Samples were taken again from 7 teeth in randomly selected quadrants after 1, 2, 4 and 7 days of no oral hygiene and analyzed using checkerboard DNA-DNA hybridization. % DNA probe counts were averaged within subjects at each time point. Ecological succession was determined using a modified moving window analysis.


Succession in supragingival biofilms from periodontitis and health was similar. At 1 day, Streptococcus mitis and Neisseria mucosa showed increased proportions, followed by Capnocytophaga gingivalis, Eikenella corrodens, Veillonella parvula and Streptococcus oralis at 1–4 days. At 4–7 days, Campylobacter rectus, Campylobacter showae, Prevotella melaninogenica and Prevotella nigrescens became elevated. Subgingival plaque redevelopment was slower and very different from supragingival. Increased proportions were first observed for S. mitis, followed by V. parvula and C. gingivalis and, at 7 days by Capnocytophaga sputigena and P. nigrescens. No significant increase in proportions of periodontal pathogens was observed in any of the clinical groups or locations.


There is a defined order in bacterial species succession in early supra and subgingival biofilm re-development after professional cleaning.

Copyright/Permission Statement

This is the pre-peer reviewed version of the following article: [Teles, F. R., Teles, R. P., Uzel, N. G., Song, X. Q., Torresyap, G., Socransky, S. S., & Haffajee, A. D. (2012). Early microbial succession in redeveloping dental biofilms in periodontal health and disease. Journal of Periodontal Research, 47(1), 95-104. doi:10.1111/j.1600-0765.2011.01409.x], which has been published in final form at []. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Use of Self-Archived Versions.


At the time of publication, author Flavia Teles was affiliated with the Harvard School of Dental Medicine. Currently, she is a faculty member at the School of Dental Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.


ecology, succession, oral bacteria, periodontal, periodontitis, biofilms, supragingival, subgingival

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Dentistry Commons



Date Posted: 25 February 2022

This document has been peer reviewed.