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Scientists create candy that prevents tooth decay

Zee Media Bureau

Yes you heard it right! For all the people who love to indulge in sweet treat, here’s a good news. Now you don’t have to get worried about tooth decay because of eating candies because scientists have developed a new 'sugar-free' candy that reduces the amount of cavity-causing bacteria on the teeth.

This candy which has been developed by Christine Lang of the Berlin biotech firm contains dead bacteria that bind to the bacteria most likely to cause cavities.

According to results, subjects who ate the candy had reduced levels of "bad" bacteria in their mouths. After eating, bacteria attached to the surface of the teeth release an acid that dissolves the tooth enamel, leading to cavities.

The strain of bacteria most likely to cause cavities is mutans streptococci. Another type of bacteria Lactobacillus paracasei, found in kefir, reduces levels of mutans streptococci and decreases the number of cavities .A sugar on the surface of L. paracasei binds with mutans streptococci. Lang and her team think that by binding with mutans streptococci, L. paracasei prevents mutans streptococci from reattaching to teeth.

Lang and her team then developed a sugar-free candy containing heat-killed samples of the bacteria to test whether Lactobacillus paracasei could reduce cavities.

Out of 60 volunteers, one third ate candies with one milligram of L. paracasei, one third ate candies with two milligrams and one third ate candies that tasted the same, but contained no bacteria.

Each of the subjects ate five candies over a one and half day period. At the end of the experiment, about three fourths of the volunteers who'd eaten candies with bacteria had significantly lower levels of mutans streptococci in their saliva than they'd had the day before. Subjects who consumed candies with two milligrams of bacteria experienced a reduction in mutans streptococci levels after eating the first candy.

From Zee News

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