Accepted paper:

Periodontal disease observed on wild chimpanzee skulls collected in the Kalinzu Forest, Uganda


Daisuke Shimizu (Kyoto University)

Paper short abstract:

The Aims of this paper were to investigate morbidity rate of periodontal disease using museum collection of wild chimpanzee skulls, and to evaluate life history of wild great ape populations through oral and dental disease. Long-term research information on wild chimpanzees would give us some hint.

Paper long abstract:

Two of four wild chimpanzee skulls with teeth loss caused by periodontal disease were collected in the Kalinzu Forest, Uganda. One individual was a relatively old female. She lost her lower left incisors. And most of her dentitions had dental caries. The other individual was a young male. He lost almost all molars except upper left third molar and two upper left premolars. The Kalinzu Forest is the place where long-term project of chimpanzee studies going on. Ecological information of chimpanzees in the Kalinzu Forest is available. According to museum collection of wild shoot chimpanzees, about 25% of them had teeth loss by periodontal disease whereas a morbidity rate of periodontal disease among gorilla was only 2%. Gorilla has very high frequency of dental trauma because their diet contains very tough food items like barks or bamboo shoots. Broken tooth with open pulp was main infection parts of dental caries. And it cause of tooth loss for gorilla. On the other hand chimpanzee has caries infection on interproximal surface, buccal surface of lower tooth, or lingual surface of upper tooth. Chimpanzee's caries pattern is very similar to prehistoric human populations. Diet of chimpanzee and prehistoric human populations contain many carbohydrates but diet of gorilla contains less carbohydrates. Sometimes chimpanzees lose many teeth and still they can survive after tooth loss.

panel LD35
Health, ageing and life: recent knowledge revealed in dental anthropology