Melatonin: Implications at the oral level

A Cutando, F.J Silvestre

Abstract


The strong relationship between the pineal gland and the immune system continues to establish itself more and more. In situations of a pinealectomy or in those of inhibition of the production of melatonin, a state of immunosuppression is produced which disappears when the patient receives this hormone. Likewise, melatonin counteracts the negative effects that immunosuppressive drug treatments produce over the immunity. It is due to these facts that one postulates the possibility of utilizing melatonin in primary and secondary immunodeficiency states as well as in cancerous immunotherapy. The action of this hormone over the immune system is carried out through the T-helper lymphocytes, lymphokines and also it seems through certain pituitary hormones. On the other hand, lymphokines such as Gamma-Interferon and Interleukin-2, as well as the thymus, can modulate the synthesis of melatonin at the level of the pineal gland. Without doubt, all these actions have important consequences at the time of treatment of our high-risk dental patients who have, in one way or another, an altered immunologic system. The altered immune system has direct implications in primary oral pathologies, or in others derived directly from our dental treatment.


Keywords


melatonin; oral implications

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