Targeting the oral plaque microbiome with immobilized anti-biofilm peptides at tooth-restoration interfaces

Dina G. Moussa, Conrado Aparicio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Recurrent caries, the development of carious lesions at the interface between the restorative material and the tooth structure, is highly prevalent and represents the primary cause for failure of dental restorations. Correspondingly, we exploited the self-assembly and strong antibiofilm activity of amphipathic antimicrobial peptides (AAMPs) to form novel coatings on dentin that aimed to prevent recurrent caries at susceptible cavosurface margins. AAMPs are alternative to traditional antimicrobial agents and antibiotics with the ability to target the complex and heterogeneous organization of microbial communities. Unlike approaches that have focused on using these AAMPs in aqueous solutions for a transient activity, here we assess the effects on microcosm biofilms of a long-acting AAMPs-based antibiofilm coating to protect the tooth-composite interface. Genomewise, we studied the impact of AAMPs coatings on the dental plaque microbial community. We found that nonnative all D-amino acids AAMPs coatings induced a marked shift in the plaque community and selectively targeted three primary acidogenic colonizers, including the most common taxa around Class II composite restorations. Accordingly, we investigated the translational potential of our antibiofilm dentin using multiphoton pulsed near infra-red laser for deep bioimaging to assess the impact of AAMPs-coated dentin on plaque biofilms along dentin-composite interfaces. Multiphoton enabled us to record the antibiofilm potency of AAMPs-coated dentin on plaque biofilms throughout exaggeratedly failed interfaces. In conclusion, AAMPs-coatings on dentin showed selective and long-acting antibiofilm activity against three dominant acidogenic colonizers and potential to resist recurrent caries to promote and sustain the interfacial integrity of adhesive-based interfaces.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere0235283
JournalPloS one
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research study was supported by the National Institute for Dental and Craniofacial Research of the National Institutes of Health ( through grant number R01-DE026117 to CA and R90-DE023058 to DGM. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright: © 2020 Moussa, Aparicio. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


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