Endodontic Microbial Communities in Apical Periodontitis

Published:December 13, 2022DOI:



      Apical periodontitis (AP) represents an inflammatory condition of peri-radicular tissues due to invasion and colonization of bacteria in the root canals. Primary apical periodontitis (PAP) is associated with untreated necrotic root canal and can be efficiently treated with endodontic treatment to remove bacteria. Persistent/secondary apical periodontitis (SAP) is a perpetual periapical lesion due to unsuccessfully treated root canals after an initial apparent healing of the tooth. The aim of the study was evaluating the microbial communities associated with root canals using Nanopore sequencing.


      Seventeen samples from the root canals of 15 patients with AP were Polymerase Chain Reaction-amplified for 16s ribosomal DNA gene and sequenced. Information regarding the presence or absence of AP symptoms, PAP and SAP, and periapical index of patients were recorded.


      Firmicutes, Bacteroidetes, and Actinobacteria were the most abundant phyla detected and Phocaeicola, Pseudomonas, Rothia, and Prevotella were the most prominent genera. In samples of patients with AP symptoms, the most frequent detected genera were Cutibacterium, Lactobacillus, Pseudomonas, Dialister, Prevotella, and Staphylococcus. In PAP samples, the most represented genera were Cutibacterium, Lactobacillus, Pseudomonas, and Prevotella, whilst in SAP cases were Cutibacterium, Prevotella, Atopobium, Capnocytophaga, Fusobacterium, Pseudomonas, Solobacterium, and Streptococcus.


      The results provide additional information on the microbiota of root-canals. These data evidence the complexity of the microbiota and the relationship with many clinical and endodontic conditions. Future studies must evaluate these conditions and identify their role in inducing bone damage and local and systemic disease, aiming to better elucidate the relationship between microbes and endodontic pathologies.

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