Porphyromonas gingivalis as putative pathogen in ovine periodontitis.
Ovine periodontitis has clinical features similar to early onset periodontitis in man. Porphyromonas gingivalis has been implicated as a putative pathogen in this disease and its role in periodontitis in 107 sheep was investigated. The organism was recovered from most diseased sites at a significant percentage level of the total bacterial count. Antibody assays of 107 animals using an ELISA did not distinguish between diseased (46) and control adult (33) sheep for either P. gingivalis or any of the other putative periodontopathogens tested, but did differentiate adult sheep from healthy lambs (28) for all bacteria except one. It is suggested that sheep rather than human bacterial strains should be used in antibody studies of ovine periodontitis.