30 September 2015
Vol 7, Issue 307

About The Cover

Cover image expansion

ONLINE COVER A Healthy Smile (or Snarl). Periodontitis is chronic inflammation of the tissues surrounding teeth, and is not only the primary cause of tooth loss in adults, but also raises the likelihood of heart disease. Shin and colleagues discovered that an anti-inflammatory protein natural to the human body, called DEL-1, also works to prevent bone loss by acting directly on osteoclasts—the cells that resorb bone. Giving DEL-1 to mice and cynomolgus monkeys (on cover) with periodontitis stopped inflammation, restored healthy tissues, and prevented bone loss, suggesting that this endogenous protein holds therapeutic promise for gum disease and other inflammatory bone loss diseases. [CREDIT: A. SHAH/CORBIS]