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Year : 2016  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 3-8

Matrix metalloproteinases: A double edge sword


1 Department of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, College of Dental Sciences, Davangere, Karnataka, India
2 Department of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, Karpaga Vinayaga Institute of Dental Science, Maduranthakam, Kancheepuram, India
3 Department of Periodontics, College of Dental Sciences, Davangere, Karnataka, India
4 Consultant Periodontist, ESI Hospital, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Correspondence Address:
Praveen Kumar Bali
Department of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, College of Dental Sciences, Davangere - 577 004, Karnataka
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/2348-1471.171916

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Dental caries is a dynamic process which results in demineralization of inorganic constituents and destruction of organic structure of the tooth. The basic mechanism of inorganic demineralization has been studied and documented well enough. However, the exact mechanisms and enzymes responsible for the organic matrix breakdown remain unknown. Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), a family of endopeptidases which are responsible for degrading all extracellular matrix components, which are expressed in normal dentin-pulp complex. MMP's are believed to act as double-edged sword since it causes progression of caries process and also helps in repair and defense mechanism initiated by caries in dentin-pulp complex. Several MMPs are also found in normal dentin-pulp complex cells and tissues, and they are considered to be involved in many physiological processes during the formation and maintenance of the dentin-pulp complex. This article gives a brief review of MMPs and its role in oral health.


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