Haijing Gu, Junqi Ling, Xiaoyan Zhou, Limin Liu, Ziming Zhao and Jin-Long Gao
Aging population will lead to the increase of incidence of root caries globally. The clinical management of root caries is challenging due to the difficulty in moisture isolation. The root caries is caused by the release of organic acids from cariogenic bacteria which results in the dissolution of cementum and dentin of the root. The purpose of this study is to study the efficacy of modified saturated calcium phosphate solution (CaP) supplement with zinc (Zn2+) and/or fluoride (F-) in providing root cementum surfaces less susceptible to acid dissolution and bacterial colonization.
Human root cementum sections from extracted premolars were treated with three modified calcium phosphate solutions (M/A-CaPs) respectively: (A) CaP-F/Zn, supplemented with F- and Zn2+; (B) CaP-F, supplemented with F- only; (C) CaP-Zn, supplemented with Zn2+ only. The surface characteristics of treated cementum sections were investigated using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR). Following the acid attack and Streptococcus mutans challenge, M/A-CaPs treated cementum surfaces were analysed using inductive coupled plasma (ICP) and SEM respectively.
Compared with the control group, M/A-CaPs treated cementum presented significant improvements in resistance to acid dissolution and bacterial colonization. Among M/A-CaPs, the CaP-F/Zn treated cementum surfaces released the lowest amount of Ca2+ ions (2.11 ± 0.51 ppm) upon acid challenge (n = 3, p < 0.01) and also presented the most significant inhibiting effect against the colonization of S. mutans (n = 180, p < 0.05).
Saturated calcium phosphate solution CaP supplemented with both F- and Zn2+ could be applied as an effective coating material providing acid resistance and antibacterial property on cementum surfaces. The modified calcium phosphate-based solution could be a new treatment strategy to prevent the development of root caries and arrest the further progression of root caries.