In this systematic review, we explore and summarize the peer-reviewed literature on putative genetic risk factors for susceptibility
to aggressive and chronic periodontitis. A comprehensive literature search on the PubMed database was performed using the
keywords ‘periodontitis’ or ‘periodontal disease’ in combination with the words ‘genes’, ‘mutation’, ‘SNP’ or ‘polymorphism’.
The studies selected were written in English, had a case-control design, and reported genotype distribution. Only studies
with at least 100 individuals in either the case or control group were included. Research on genetic polymorphisms has only
had limited success in identifying significant and reproducible genetic factors for susceptibility to aggressive periodontitis
and chronic periodontitis. Taking together the data published on gene polymorphisms in aggressive and chronic periodontitis,
we conclude that there are differences among the various studies for the rare allele carriage rates. Nevertheless, there is
some evidence that polymorphisms in the IL1B, IL1RN, FcγRIIIb, VDR and TLR4 genes may be associated with aggressive periodontitis
susceptibility, and polymorphisms in the IL1B, IL1RN, IL6, IL10, VDR, CD14, TLR4 and MMP1 genes may be associated with chronic
periodontitis susceptibility as a single genetic factor in certain populations. Future studies should apply stricter disease
classifications, use larger study cohorts, adjust for relevant risk factors in aggressive and chronic periodontiti,s and include
analysis of multiple genes and polymorphisms. Establishing consortia and performing collaborative studies may help to conquer
the limitations of small sample size and limited statistical power.