Dental plaque development on defined streptococcal surfaces

R. J. Skopek, William F Liljemark, C. G. Bloomquist, Joel D Rudney

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27 Scopus citations


Coaggregations between bacterial species have been widely studied in vitro but not in the mouth. A new in vivo assay was used to measure the rate and composition of indigenous plaque formation onto bovine enamel chips covered with a continuous layer of bacteria. Chips were covered with Streptococcus oralis ATCC 10557, which coaggregated with many oral species, or Streptococcus gordonii S7, which did not coaggregate with these oral species, and placed in the mouth for 4 and 24 h. There were no differences in the number of most indigenous bacterial species isolated from the two streptococcal surfaces. However, the number of Actinomyces viscosus as a proportion of total Actinomyces spp. was significantly different on the two surfaces at 24 h. With the exception of Actinomyces naeslundii and A. viscosus removed from the S7 surface, all indigenous species increased significantly in number from 4 to 24 h, irrespective of the streptococcal surface. This study demonstrated that interbacterial coaggregation had only a limited effect on in vivo plaque development. Thus suggesting that environmental factors, growth or other adherence phenomena are dominant in in vivo plaque formation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)16-23
Number of pages8
JournalOral Microbiology and Immunology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1993


  • Actinomyces
  • adherence
  • coaggregation
  • dental plaque
  • streptococci


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