Oral Microbiology Laboratory
The Oral Microbiology Laboratory (OML) located at the UNC Adams School of Dentistry provides diagnostic clinical microbiology, microbiological research, microbiology training and sterilization monitoring services to both the school and the community of dental practitioners in North Carolina and the surrounding geographic area.
These services are specifically related to oral microbiology and its application to the following: recognition and assessment of oral bacterial populations in oral flora studies, post treatment of oral infection, bacterial test for caries risk, and the monitoring of sterilization equipment unique to the dental practice.
Sterilization monitoring services are also provided for a number of non-dental clients. In addition to these services this unit has been responsible for monitoring the water quality in the Adams School of Dentistry’s dental unit water lines for bacterial contamination.
The OML accepts oral bacteriological specimens (plaque, surgical, aspirates and saliva) from the school, as well as, from private practitioners in the community for the culture, identification and quantitation of oral pathogens.
Aerobic and anaerobic cultures are prepared using selective media to facilitate the isolation of potential pathogens from normal flora. Specific pathogens associated with various forms of periodontal disease are identified and antibiotic sensitivities and b-lactamase production are determined to assist the clinician in appropriate interventive strategies.
All isolates from surgical, wound and lesion cultures are treated as potential pathogens and identified to the species level.