HIV infection affects streptococcus mutans levels, but not genotypes

G. Liu, D. Saxena, Z. Chen, R. G. Norman, J. A. Phelan, M. Laverty, G. S. Fisch, P. M. Corby, W. Abrams, D. Malamud, Y. Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We report a clinical study that examines whether HIV infection affects Streptococcus mutans colonization in the oral cavity. Whole stimulated saliva samples were collected from 46 HIV-seropositive individuals and 69 HIV-seronegative control individuals. The level of S. mutans colonization was determined by conventional culture methods. The genotype of S. mutans was compared between 10 HIV-positive individuals before and after highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) and 10 non-HIV-infected control individuals. The results were analyzed against viral load, CD4+ and CD8+ T-cell counts, salivary flow rate, and caries status. We observed that S. mutans levels were higher in HIV-infected individuals than in the non-HIV-infected control individuals (p = 0.013). No significant differences in S. mutans genotypes were found between the two groups over the six-month study period, even after HAART. There was a bivariate linear relationship between S. mutans levels and CD8+ counts (r = 0.412; p = 0.007), but not between S. mutans levels and either CD4+ counts or viral load. Furthermore, compared with non-HIV-infected control individuals, HIV-infected individuals experienced lower salivary secretion (p = 0.009) and a positive trend toward more decayed tooth surfaces (p = 0.027). These findings suggest that HIV infection can have a significant effect on the level of S. mutans, but not genotypes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)834-840
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of dental research
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2012


  • CD8+ T-lymphocytes
  • HIV infections
  • Streptococcus mutans
  • genotype
  • saliva

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Dentistry


Dive into the research topics of 'HIV infection affects streptococcus mutans levels, but not genotypes'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this