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The mouth or oral cavity area is an excellent indicator of the whole body’s health, says a University of Maryland Dental School professor.
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Professor Li Mao insists surface tissues inside the cheek could be checked to detect tobacco-induced damage in the lungs.
This could prove to be an important advancement in designing future lung cancer prevention trials.
“We hypothesized that tobacco-induced molecular alterations in the oral epithelium are similar to those in the lungs,” said Mao.
The expert added: “This might have broader implications for using the mouth as a diagnostic indicator for general health.”
“I feel that dentists should play a major role in prevention of cancer and Dr. Mao is the leading oral cancer researcher in the country. He crosses the bridge between medicine and dentistry,” said University of Maryland Dental School Dean Christian S. Stohler, DMD, DrMedDent, a leader in the movement to retool dental education.
Source: The study is published in the journal Cancer Prevention Research.