Background: Periodontitis is a multifactorial infectious disease that affects a large population
worldwide. Oral microorganisms and susceptible host have been proposed to be the prerequisite
for the development of periodontitis. Recently, the involvement of epigenetic modifications in the development
of periodontitis has been suggested.
Objectives: This review aims to detail recent discoveries involving the epigenetic alterations in periodontitis,
and discuss the possible epigenetic mechanisms contributing to the expression of periodontitis-
Conclusions: The expression of inflammatory cytokines during periodontitis is regulated at epigenetic
level by mechanisms such as DNA methylation, histone modification and miRNAs. In addition, periodontal
pathogens and their virulence factors could induce epigenetic alterations of periodontal tissues,
and thus affect the progression and prognosis of periodontitis. The involvement of epigenetic modifications
during periodontitis not only advances our knowledge on the pathogenesis of periodontitis, but
may also lead to the identification of potential therapeutic targets of this oral disease.