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Caries Res. 2005 Mar-Apr;39(2):123-9.

Effect of sucrose containing iron (II) on dental biofilm and enamel demineralization in situ.

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Faculty of Dentistry of Piracicaba, UNICAMP, Piracicaba, Brazil.


Since the effect of iron (Fe) on the cariogenicity of sucrose in humans is unexplored, this study assessed in situ the effect of Fe co-crystallized with sucrose (Fe-sucrose) topically applied in vitro on the acidogenicity, biochemical and microbiological composition of the dental biofilm formed in vivo and on the demineralization of the enamel. During two phases of 14 days each, 16 volunteers wore palatal appliances containing blocks of human enamel, which were submitted to four groups of separate treatments: (1) water; (2) 20% sucrose; (3) 20% (w/v) sucrose plus 18 microg Fe/ml, and (4) 20% (w/v) sucrose plus 70 microg Fe/ml. The solutions were dripped onto the blocks 8 times per day. The biofilms formed on the blocks were analyzed with respect to acidogenicity, biochemical and microbiological composition. Mineral loss was determined on enamel by surface and cross-sectional microhardness. Lower demineralization was found in the blocks subjected to Fe-sucrose (70 microg Fe/ml) than in those treated with sucrose (p < 0.05). This concentration of Fe also reduced significantly the populations of mutans streptococci in the biofilm formed on the blocks. In conclusion, our data suggest that Fe may reduce in situ the cariogenic potential of sucrose and the effect seems to be related to the reduction in the populations of mutans streptococci in the dental biofilm formed.

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