These bacteria produce hydrogen sulphides such as methyl mercaptan, thioether, dimethyl sulphide and diethyl sulphide. These compounds have been known to be highly toxic for over 30 years.
Thioethers induce cytokine production by immune cells (IFN-gamma and IL-10). Measurement of these cytokines can be used to determine whether an immune process induced by mercaptans and thioethers is present.
The test can be used in combination with other tests (e.g. high-sensitivity imaging) to detect the local, oral cavity-derived cause of systemic inflammation. It can also be used to monitor the effectiveness of therapy and the rate of healing.
The test is performed on blood.