Porphyromonas gingivalis: An overview of periodontopathic pathogen below the gum line

Kah Yan How, Keang Peng Song, Kok Gan Chan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleOtherpeer-review

373 Citations (Scopus)


Periodontal disease represents a group of oral inflammatory infections initiated by oral pathogens which exist as a complex biofilms on the tooth surface and cause destruction to tooth supporting tissues. The severity of this disease ranges from mild and reversible inflammation of the gingiva (gingivitis) to chronic destruction of connective tissues, the formation of periodontal pocket and ultimately result in loss of teeth. While human subgingival plaque harbors more than 500 bacterial species, considerable research has shown that Porphyromonas gingivalis, a Gram-negative anaerobic bacterium, is the major etiologic agent which contributes to chronic periodontitis. This black-pigmented bacterium produces a myriad of virulence factors that cause destruction to periodontal tissues either directly or indirectly by modulating the host inflammatory response. Here, this review provides an overview of P. gingivalis and how its virulence factors contribute to the pathogenesis with other microbiome consortium in oral cavity.

Original languageEnglish
Article number53
Number of pages14
JournalFrontiers in Microbiology
Publication statusPublished - 9 Feb 2016


  • Gingivitis
  • Inflammatory response
  • Oral pathogen
  • Periodontal disease
  • Porphyromonas gingivalis
  • Virulence factors

Cite this