Possible Association of Amelogenin to High Caries Experience in a Guatemalan-Mayan PopulationDeeley K.a · Letra A.a · Rose E.K.a · Brandon C.A.a · Resick J.M.a · Marazita M.L.a, c-e · Vieira A.R.a-d
Departments of aOral Biology and bPediatric Dentistry, and cCenter for Craniofacial and Dental Genetics, School of Dental Medicine, dDepartment of Human Genetics, Graduate School of Public Health, and eDepartment of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pa., USA
Alexandre R. Vieira
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There is evidence for a genetic component in caries susceptibility, but the disease is greatly influenced by environmental factors, which are extremely difficult to control in humans. For the present study, we used DNA samples collected from 110 unrelated, non-cleft individuals older than 12 years of age from Tiquisate, Guatemala: a population with similar cultural, dietary and hygiene habits, similar access to the dentist and fluoride exposure. Forty-four individuals were designated ‘very low caries experience’ (DMFT ≤2), and 66 were designated ‘higher caries experience’ (DMFT ≧3). Single-nucleotide polymorphism markers were genotyped in selected candidate genes (ameloblastin, amelogenin, enamelin, tuftelin-1, and tuftelin interacting protein 11) that influence enamel formation. Having at least one copy of the rare amelogenin marker allele was associated with increased age-adjusted caries experience. This association was stronger in individuals with higher DMFT (DMFT ≧20; p = 0.0000001). Our results suggest that variation in amelogenin may contribute to caries susceptibility in the population studied. The approach of comparing individuals with extremely distinct caries experiences could be valuable for decreasing the potential influence of environmental factors on genetic studies of caries.
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