1887

Abstract

Salivary mucin, MUC5B, is an oligomeric glycoprotein, heterogeneous in size and with a diverse repertoire of oligosaccharides, which differ in composition and charge. Since complex salivary glycoproteins are considered to be the major source of nutrients for the oral supragingival microbiota, the major aim of the current study was to determine whether different preparations of non-denatured MUC5B could be isolated exhibiting different biological properties in relation to the microflora associated with the surfaces of the oral cavity. Two preparations, solMUC5B and gelMUC5B, were isolated by density-gradient centrifugation and were shown to have different buoyant densities, carbohydrate content and surface-adsorbing characteristics. To ascertain differences in biological activity, the two mucin preparations, both in solution and adsorbed to a model surface, were incubated with freshly isolated dental plaque and assayed for metabolic (dehydrogenase) activity with the fluoresecent substrate CTC (5-cyano-2,3-ditolyl tetrazolium chloride). The plaque bacteria exhibited higher metabolism with the solMUC5B preparation in solution, with 79.4 % active plaque cells compared to the controls without mucin (9.6 %), while gelMUC5B showed 48.2 % active cells with the same plaque population. In contrast, the same mucins adhered to a surface elicited a significantly lower metabolic response, with surface-associated plaque cells showing only 12.1 % active cells with solMUC5B and 29.2 % with gelMUC5B. These results suggested that the metabolism by the plaque cells adsorbed to surface-associated mucins was downregulated compared to the same cells suspended in mucin solution. This was confirmed in an experiment where active dispersed plaque/solMUC5B suspensions were shown to lose significant metabolic activity (e.g. 74.9 to 19.3 %) when allowed to interact with gelMUC5B adsorbed to a surface. Clearly, the solMUC5B and gelMUC5B preparations exhibited different biological activity when assayed with freshly plaque bacteria in suspension and in a biofilm.

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2009-01-01
2019-11-18
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