Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans in African americans with localized aggressive periodontitis

D. Burgess, H. Huang, P. Harrison, I. Aukhil, L. Shaddox

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


This study aims to investigate the prevalence of the highly leukotoxic JP2 sequence versus the minimally leukotoxic non-JP2 sequence of Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans within a cohort of 180 young African Americans, with and without localized aggressive periodontitis (LAP), in north Florida. The study included patients aged 5 to 25 y: 60 LAP patients, 60 healthy siblings (HS), and 60 unrelated healthy controls (HC). Subgingival plaque was collected from LAP sites—diseased (PD ≥5 mm with bleeding on probing) and healthy (PD ≤3 mm with no bleeding on probing)—and from healthy sites of HS and HC. Plaque DNA was extracted and analyzed by polymerase chain reaction for the detection of the JP2 and non-JP2 sequences of A. actinomycetemcomitans. Overall, 90 (50%) subjects tested positive for the JP2 sequence. Fifty (83.33%) LAP subjects were carriers of the highly leukotoxic JP2 sequence, detected in 45 (75%) diseased sites and 34 (56.67%) healthy sites. Additionally, JP2 carriage was found in 16 HS (26.67%) and m24 HC (40%; P < 0.0001, among groups). The non-JP2 sequence was detected in 26 (14.44%) total subjects: 17 (28.33%) LAP patients detected in equal amounts of diseased and healthy sites (n = 11, 18.33%), 6 (10%) HS sites, and 3 (5%) HC sites (P < 0.05, among groups). The JP2 sequence was strongly associated with LAP-diseased sites in young African Americans, significantly more so than the non-JP2 ( NCT01330719). Knowledge Transfer Statement: Clinicians may use the results of this study to identify susceptible individuals to aggressive periodontitis, potentially leading to more appropriate selection of therapeutic choices.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)249-257
Number of pages9
JournalJDR Clinical and Translational Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1 2017

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank the National Institutes of Health / National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (R01DE019456) for the financial support provided for this research, as well as the doctors and staff at the Leon, Duval, and Jackson county health department dental centers for their assistance with coordination of our visits to their clinics, patient referrals, and dental care. The authors declare no potential conflicts of interest with respect to the authorship and/or publication of this article.

Publisher Copyright:
© International & American Associations for Dental Research 2017.


  • Bacteria
  • Bacterial virulence
  • Children
  • Inflammation
  • Juvenile periodontitis
  • Microbiology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dentistry (all)


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