Scientists at the University of Louisville have discovered that the same bacteria that causes gum disease produces a unique enzyme which may increase a person's chance of developing rheumatoid arthritis.
The study, which was conducted on mice, shows the bacteria P. gingivalis causes the worsening of a type of arthritis that is equivalent to rheumatoid arthritis in humans.
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"This research does appear to have broken new ground in suggesting a plausible mechanism that links gum disease to arthritis, something that has been suggested for years but has never been proven," reports National Health Service, a branch of the U.K. government.
Previous studies suggest that gum disease is at least two times more common in rheumatoid arthritisRead More »from Can brushing your teeth help prevent arthritis?