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Oral Microbiol Immunol. 1992 Feb;7(1):28-31. doi: 10.1111/j.1399-302x.1992.tb00016.x.

The early colonization of gram-negative anaerobic bacteria in edentulous infants.

Oral microbiology and immunology

E Könönen, S Asikainen, H Jousimies-Somer


  1. Department of Periodontology, University of Helsinki.

PMID: 1528621 DOI: 10.1111/j.1399-302x.1992.tb00016.x


The occurrence of oral gram-negative anaerobes was examined in 30 edentulous infants (mean age 3 months, range 1-7 months). One pooled swab sample from mucosal surfaces (cheeks, palate, tongue) and one saliva sample was taken from each infant. The samples were cultured aerobically and anaerobically using non-selective and selective media. Prevotella (Bacteroides) melaninogenica was the most frequently isolated anaerobe, found in 70% of the infants. The other common anaerobes were Fusobacterium nucleatum, Veillonella spp. and nonpigmented Prevotella (Bacteroides) spp., found in 60%, 57% and 57% of the infants, respectively. Of corroding bacilli, Bacteroides gracilis was detected in 23% of the infants, Wolinella spp. and microaerophilic Eikenella corrodens in one infant (3% each). Leptotrichia spp., microaerophilic Capnocytophaga spp., Prevotella (Bacteroides) loescheii and Prevotella (Bacteroides) intermedia were found in 17%, 13%, 13% and 7% of the infants, respectively. In addition to these 30 infants, 21 edentulous infants were investigated for the presence of Actinobacillus actinomycetemcomitans only. A. actinomycetemcomitans was not detected in any of the 51 edentulous infants. The number of different anaerobic bacterial species in the same mouth varied from 0 to 7. No anaerobic bacteria were detected in 3 of 30 children (10%). These data suggest that various anaerobic bacterial species readily colonize the edentulous mouth in infants.

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