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Scientists report the identification of two substances in licorice — used extensively in Chinese traditional medicine — that kill the major bacteria responsible for tooth decay and gum disease, the leading causes of tooth loss in children and adults. The study was published in the American Chemical Society's Journal of Natural Products.

Jan 1st, 2019

Scientists report the identification of two substances in licorice — used extensively in Chinese traditional medicine — that kill the major bacteria responsible for tooth decay and gum disease, the leading causes of tooth loss in children and adults. The study was published in the American Chemical Society's Journal of Natural Products.

They found that two of the licorice compounds, licoricidin and licorisoflavan A, were the most effective antibacterial substances, which killed two of the major bacteria responsible for dental cavities and two of the bacteria that promote gum disease. Licoricidin also killed a third periodontal disease bacterium. Researchers say these substances could treat or even prevent oral infections.

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