Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Salivaomics and the Redefining of Dentistry

Dr. David Wong of UCLA

Some interesting research being conducted at the UCLA School of Dentistry.

Scientists from the UCLA School of Dentistry have been at the vanguard of research on human saliva in recent years, leading the way in the dynamic, emerging field of salivary diagnostics, which seeks to catalog the biological makeup of saliva to help screen for and detect both oral and systemic diseases.
Now, the Journal of the American Dental Association, a leading publication for dental professionals, has published a special supplement to its October issue in which Dr. David Wong, the school's associate dean of research, outlines the state of the science of salivary diagnostics, highlighting advances made by researchers at UCLA and other institutions and charting a path for future research and clinical applications.
In the article, Wong's research findings show that saliva is made up of complex sets of molecules — including genes, proteins, DNA and RNA — that help paint a picture of an individual's biology. The study of the biological molecules in saliva is known as "salivaomics." Findings show that by studying the "omics" in saliva — such as genomics, transcriptomics and proteomics — scientists can develop tests composed of many molecular measurements; the findings are then interpreted by a computational model to produce a clinically actionable result.
Through collaborative work with scientists at other institutions, UCLA researchers have developed several informatics and statistical tools to help interpret biomarkers in saliva; these biomarkers can then be used for early detection of disease, treatment monitoring, recurrence prediction and other translational assessments.
Research done at the UCLA School of Dentistry has shown that saliva, as a medium for health screening is just as useful as blood and other bodily fluids and has vast potential for the early detection of cancers, autoimmune diseases, diabetes and other disorders.

Soon will come the day, when your physician and dentist will collect a saliva sample along with blood and urine for your physical examination.

The more information and the better health prognosticators - the better American's health.

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