By: Sarah Weiss
|Woman brushing her teeth|
A new chemical compound could be tested to protect teeth from getting a cavity forever and end the need for visits to dentists forever.
The molecule has been called “Keep 32” after the 32 teeth in a human mouth.
The chemical was designed by dentists in Chile that destroys the cavity-causing bacteria in just 60 seconds in the tests.
The chemical can be added to any dental care product today, making toothpaste, mouthwash and chewing gum that could get rid of the underlying cause of tooth decay.
The objective of the chemical is to destroy Streptococcus mutans, the bacteria that converts the sugar in the mouth into lactic acid that erodes tooth enamel.
By killing the bacteria, "Keep 32” stops tooth damage before it happens.
The use of a product containing the test chemical maintains the cavity fighter on teeth for several hours.
The product has been tested for seven years and is now entering human trials.
It could be on the market in 14 to 18 months, Jose Cordoba researcher at Yale University and Astudillo Erich of the University of Chile, said.
The chemical can even be added to food to prevent bacteria damage to the teeth when eating.
The researchers hope to license the patent of the chemical to drug giants such as Procter & Gamble.
"We are currently in talks with interested parties in investing in our project or buy our patent," the researchers say.