The research of the Section of Oral Microbiology and Immunology is positioned at the interface between basic and clinical sciences, investigating the etiology and pathogenesis of oral infectious diseases. Focus is placed on 3 main research themes:
1. Oral biofilms: architecture, structural and functional properties of in vitro multi-species biofilm models, under the effect of various environmental factors. With use of these biofilm models, the role of individual bacterial species and their virulence factors are also explored.
2. Host-microbe interactions: effects of multi-species biofilms or individual bacterial species on structural and immune cells or organotypic oral tissues. The main aim is to decipher the molecular mechanisms by which oral bacteria stimulate inflammation and subsequent tissue destruction in oral disease.
3. Novel microbial and inflammatory biomarkers for oral diseases: with the analysis of biological samples from patients with various forms of oral diseases, the aim is to identify and validate molecules that could serve as useful preventive, diagnostic and therapeutic tools. To fulfill this aim, both single candidate-molecule and high-throughput proteomics platforms are used. This theme expands further to investigate various biomarkers potentially linking oral to systemic diseases.