Bacteriophage or phage therapy involves using phages or their products as bio-agents for the treatment or prophylaxis of bacterial infections or diseases. Bacteriophages have the ability to regulate the oral microflora by lysing sensitive bacterial cells and releasing bacterial components with pro-inflammatory activity. Bacteriophages carry specific polysaccharide depolymerases that aid viral penetration and can disrupt the pathogenic process associated with biofilm and exopolysaccharide in the oral cavity. Oral diseases are mainly caused by biofilm forming microorganisms and phages are now being used for biocontrol of oral biofilms. Phages for Actinomyces species, Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans, Enterococcus faecalis, Fusobacterium nucleatum, Lactobacillus species, Neisseria species, Streptococcus species, and Veillonella species have been isolated and characterized. Bacteriophages could be considered as potential therapeutic tools for the elimination of caries, periodontitis, and other diseases of the oral cavity.
Part of the book: Bacteriophages in Therapeutics