Date on Master's Thesis/Doctoral Dissertation


Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name



Oral Biology

Degree Program

Oral Biology, MS

Committee Chair

Demuth, Donald

Committee Co-Chair (if applicable)

Steinbach-Rankins, Jill

Committee Member

Scott, David

Author's Keywords

Porphyromonas gingivalis; streptococci gordonii; peptide delivery; nanoparticles; delivery vehicle; surface-modified nanoparticles


Background: Porphyromonas gingivalis adherence to Streptococcus gordonii may be important for P. gingivalis colonization in the oral cavity. Nanoparticles encapsulating synthetic peptide BAR (BAR-NPs) inhibit P. gingivalis adherence more potently than free BAR. However, BAR-NPs would exhibit low retention in an open flow environment. Hypothesis: Targeting BAR-NPs to the streptococcal surface using CafA protein will enhance their efficacy. Methods: CafA-modified NPs encapsulating BAR were synthesized using double emulsion approach. Surface binding and retention, and release kinetics of BAR from CafA-modified NPs was assessed. Functional inhibition assays were performed using dual a species biofilm. Results: CafA-modified NPs demonstrated specificity of adhesion, remained bound to S. gordonii surfaces and released inhibitory concentrations of BAR for over 8hr. CafA-modified NPs inhibited P. gingivalis adherence to S. gordonii potently for over 8hr. Conclusions: CafA-modified NPs represent a delivery vehicle that targets BAR to preferred niches of P. gingivalis in the oral cavity.