Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) of Porphyromonas gingivalis exists in at least two known forms, O-LPS and A-LPS. A-LPS shows heterogeneity in which two isoforms designated LPS1,435/1,449 and LPS1,690 appear responsible for tissue-specific immune signalling pathways activation and increased virulence. The modification of lipid A to tetra-acylated1,435/1,449 and/or penta-acylated1,690 fatty acids indicates poor growth conditions and bioavailability of hemin. Hemin protects P. gingivalis from serum resistance and the lipid A serves as a site for its binding. The LPS1,435/1,449 and LPS1,690 isoforms can produce opposite effects on the human Toll-like receptors (TLR) TLR2 and TLR4 activation. This enables P. gingivalis to select the conditions for its entry, survival, and that of its co-habiting species in the host, orchestrating its virulence to control innate immune pathway activation and biofilm dysbiosis. This review describes a number of effects that LPS1,435/1,449 and LPS1,690 can exert on the host tissues such as deregulation of the innate immune system, subversion of host cell autophagy, regulation of outer membrane vesicle production, and adverse effects on pregnancy outcome. The ability to change its LPS1,435/1,449 and/or LPS1,690 composition may enable P. gingivalis to paralyze local pro-inflammatory cytokine production, thereby gaining access to its primary location in periodontal tissue.
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