Dental Tribune USA

A Durian a day keeps caries away, research from Asia suggests

By Dental Tribune Asia Pacific
November 03, 2011

LAS VEGAS, Nev., USA: A sugary gel found on the thorn-covered husks of the Durian fruit is currently under observation by researchers for its potential to work as a mouth disinfectant. Students from the Faculty of Dentistry at the University of Chulalongkorn in Bangkok, Thailand, recently presented their intitial findings at the Annual Meeting of the American Dental Association in Las Vegas, the online portal drbiscus.com reports.

They found that the substance made of polysaccharides was able to reduce the number of Streptococcus mutans in lab rats hours after use which would make it as effective as 0.2% chlorhexidine, a common formula used in mouth rinses. Studies on human subjects also showed a reduction of hydrogen sulfide, methyl mercaptan, and dimethyl sulphide, compounds responsible for halitosis or bad breath. No evidence of treatment-related gross toxicity or deaths caused by exposure to mouth rinse with durian polysaccharide gel (DPG) was observed, the researchers stated.

Durian is popular in many Southeast Asian countries including Thailand and Malaysia which are the world's largest importers of the fruit. It's root and leaves are often used in traditional medicine.

Earlier research conducted with durian polysaccharide gel have confirmed the antibacterial properties of the gel.

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