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Dent Mater. 2007 Mar;23(3):343-62. Epub 2006 Apr 17.

Review on fluoride-releasing restorative materials--fluoride release and uptake characteristics, antibacterial activity and influence on caries formation.

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Department of Operative Dentistry, Preventive Dentistry and Periodontology, University of Göttingen, Robert-Koch-Str. 40, 37075 Göttingen, Germany.



The purpose of this article was to review the fluoride release and recharge capabilities, and antibacterial properties, of fluoride-releasing dental restoratives, and discuss the current status concerning the prevention or inhibition of caries development and progression.


Information from original scientific full papers or reviews listed in PubMed (search term: fluoride release AND (restorative OR glass-ionomer OR compomer OR polyacid-modified composite resin OR composite OR amalgam)), published from 1980 to 2004, was included in the review. Papers dealing with endodontic or orthodontic topics were not taken into consideration. Clinical studies concerning secondary caries development were only included when performed in split-mouth design with an observation period of at least three years.


Fluoride-containing dental materials show clear differences in the fluoride release and uptake characteristics. Short- and long-term fluoride releases from restoratives are related to their matrices, setting mechanisms and fluoride content and depend on several environmental conditions. Fluoride-releasing materials may act as a fluoride reservoir and may increase the fluoride level in saliva, plaque and dental hard tissues. However, clinical studies exhibited conflicting data as to whether or not these materials significantly prevent or inhibit secondary caries and affect the growth of caries-associated bacteria compared to non-fluoridated restoratives.


Fluoride release and uptake characteristics depend on the matrices, fillers and fluoride content as well as on the setting mechanisms and environmental conditions of the restoratives. Fluoride-releasing materials, predominantly glass-ionomers and compomers, did show cariostatic properties and may affect bacterial metabolism under simulated cariogenic conditions in vitro. However, it is not proven by prospective clinical studies whether the incidence of secondary caries can be significantly reduced by the fluoride release of restorative materials.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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