Our objective was to investigate immunological changes that occur in saliva of subjects with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) without signs of periodontal disease and to establish if salivary inflammatory cytokines are a possible link between diabetes mellitus and periodontal breakdown. Material and methods. Twenty T2DM subjects with no periodontal disease and twenty healthy controls were registered for the present study. TNF-α and IL-6 level from saliva and serum were measured. Periodontal tissue samples were histologically examined.
Results: TNF-α and IL-6 levels were higher in T2DM subjects compared to controls, with an extremely significant difference in saliva (p<0.001). Significant inflammation, affecting both epithelial and connective tissues was present in periodontal biopsies. Conclusions: The subjects showed an increased TNF-α and IL-6 levels, both in serum and -mostly in -saliva of diabetics without signs of periodontal disease, confirming the hypothesis of immunological implication, as a correlation between periodontal disease incidence and diabetes mellitus. Histologic alterations, suggesting a local inflammatory state, were present in periodontal tissue of diabetics, confirming the above hypothesis. The study reveals that saliva analysis is a quite efficient method in testing the periodontal breakdown progression in the subjects with T2DM.