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MDPI, International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 9(22), p. 4647, 2021

DOI: 10.3390/ijms22094647



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Connection between Periodontitis-Induced Low-Grade Endotoxemia and Systemic Diseases: Neutrophils as Protagonists and Targets

This paper is made freely available by the publisher.
This paper is made freely available by the publisher.

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Periodontitis is considered a promoter of many systemic diseases, but the signaling pathways of this interconnection remain elusive. Recently, it became evident that certain microbial challenges promote a heightened response of myeloid cell populations to subsequent infections either with the same or other pathogens. This phenomenon involves changes in the cell epigenetic and transcription, and is referred to as ‘‘trained immunity’’. It acts via modulation of hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs). A main modulation driver is the sustained, persistent low-level transmission of lipopolysaccharide from the periodontal pocket into the peripheral blood. Subsequently, the neutrophil phenotype changes and neutrophils become hyper-responsive and prone to boosted formation of neutrophil extracellular traps (NET). Cytotoxic neutrophil proteases and histones are responsible for ulcer formations on the pocket epithelium, which foster bacteremia and endoxemia. The latter promote systemic low-grade inflammation (SLGI), a precondition for many systemic diseases and some of them, e.g., atherosclerosis, diabetes etc., can be triggered by SLGI alone. Either reverting the polarized neutrophils back to the homeostatic state or attenuation of neutrophil hyper-responsiveness in periodontitis might be an approach to diminish or even to prevent systemic diseases.