Mouth Bacteria Cause Heart Attacks

When in contact with the blood, the bacteria Streptococcus Gordonii can cause clots and provoke the development of a serious heart disease, such as heart inflammation.

The bacterium is presumably responsible for tooth decay. It “lives” on the surface of the teeth, and its reproduction is, of course, contributed by the neglect of personal hygiene. If Streptococcus Gordonii happens to get into the bloodstream through damaged gums, it can cause irreparable damage to the heart, masquerading as natural proteins.

The authors of the study from the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland and the University of Bristol in the UK have found that S.Gordonii can produce molecules on their surface, which allows it to imitate the human protein fibrinogen. It is also responsible for the blood clotting. This, in turn, activates platelets (cells involved in clotting) and leads to their accumulation within the blood vessels. As a result, a blood clot formed in blood vessels prevents the penetration of beneficial bacteria that protect the body against “invaders” attacking the immune system, as well as antibiotics used to treat infections. Also, accumulation of platelets can lead to a build-up on the valves of the heart (endocarditis, an inflammation of the heart, namely the endocardium), or inflammation of blood vessels that can block blood flow to the heart or brain.

The conclusions, made as a result of this study, may be useful to create new treatments for infectious endocarditis. The researchers emphasize the particular importance of personal hygiene and timely oral care and teeth care, which, as it turns out, does not lead only to cavity problems, if the rules are violated.