With the emergence of antibiotic-resistant “superbugs” threatening public health, researchers are now returning to the method of “phages,” or viruses engineered to infect bacteria.
One documented infection risk following root canal surgery stems from E. faecalis, a bacterium found in the human gastrointestinal tract. This bacteria has dangerous side effects, and it forms a biofilm with a slimy, glue-like substance around the gumline that makes it difficult to treat.
In a recent study, a team tested how well bacteriophage EFDG1 killed E. faecalis cells in a liquid culture and in biofilm form. The tests showed EFDG1 almost entirely eradicated E. faecalis in both forms. Perhaps most importantly, EFDG1 was highly effective at eliminating E. faecalis in tissue examples of root canal infection, suggesting that phage therapy using EFDG1 might be an effective way to prevent E. faecalis infection following root canal procedures.
If you have questions regarding an upcoming root canal and ways to prevent infection, please give us a call!
Paddock, C. (2015, February 19). “Virus found in sewage shows promise in treating dental procedure infections.” Medical News Today. Retrieved from