No Obvious Role for Suspicious Oral Pathogens in Arthritis Development

Poerwati S Rahajoe, Menke J de Smit*, Elisabeth Raveling-Eelsing, Marines du Teil Espina, Tim Stobernack, Paola Lisotto, Hermie J M Harmsen, Jan Maarten van Dijl, Nyoman Kertia, Arjan Vissink, Johanna Westra

*Corresponding author for this work

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A particular role for Porphyromonas gingivalis (Pg) and Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans (Aa) has been suggested in periodontitis and rheumatoid arthritis (RA), as these bacteria could initiate the formation of rheumatoid factor (RF) and anticitrullinated protein autoantibodies (ACPA). We assessed whether serum antibodies against Pg and Aa in RA patients and non-RA controls reflect the subgingival presence of Pg and Aa, and evaluated the relationship of these antibodies to the severity of periodontal inflammation and RA-specific serum autoantibodies. In 70 Indonesian RA patients and 70 non-RA controls, the subgingival presence of Pg and Aa was assessed by bacterial 16S rRNA gene sequencing, and serum IgG levels specific for Pg and Aa were determined. In parallel, serum levels of ACPA (ACPA:IgG,IgA) and RF (RF:IgM,IgA) were measured. The extent of periodontal inflammation was assessed by the periodontal inflamed surface area. In both RA patients and the controls, the presence of subgingival Pg and Aa was comparable, anti-Pg and anti-Aa antibody levels were associated with the subgingival presence of Pg and Aa, and anti-Pg did not correlate with ACPA or RF levels. The subgingival Pg and Aa were not related to RA. No noteworthy correlation was detected between the antibodies against Pg and Aa, and RA-specific autoantibodies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9560
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number18
Publication statusPublished - 10-Sep-2021


  • rheumatoid arthritis
  • periodontitis
  • Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans
  • Porphyromonas gingivalis
  • rheumatoid factor
  • anticitrullinated protein antibodies
  • risk factors
  • GENE

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