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Angle Orthod. 2014 Mar;84(2):297-303. doi: 10.2319/032213-234.1. Epub 2013 Aug 12.

Effect of cyclical forces on the periodontal ligament and alveolar bone remodeling during orthodontic tooth movement.

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a  Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Craniofacial Sciences, University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, Conn.



To investigate the effect of externally applied cyclical (vibratory) forces on the rate of tooth movement, the structural integrity of the periodontal ligament, and alveolar bone remodeling.


Twenty-six female Sprague-Dawley rats (7 weeks old) were divided into four groups: CTRL (unloaded), VBO (molars receiving a vibratory stimulus only), TMO (molars receiving an orthodontic spring only), and TMO+VB (molars receiving an orthodontic spring and the additional vibratory stimulus). In TMO and TMO+VB groups, the rat first molars were moved mesially for 2 weeks using Nickel-Titanium coil spring delivering 25 g of force. In VBO and TMO+VB groups, cyclical forces at 0.4 N and 30 Hz were applied occlusally twice a week for 10 minutes. Microfocus X-ray computed tomography analysis and tooth movement measurements were performed on the dissected rat maxillae. Tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase staining and collagen fiber assessment were performed on histological sections.


Cyclical forces significantly inhibited the amount of tooth movement. Histological analysis showed marked disorganization of the collagen fibril structure of the periodontal ligament during tooth movement. Tooth movement caused a significant increase in osteoclast parameters on the compression side of alveolar bone and a significant decrease in bone volume fraction in the molar region compared to controls.


Tooth movement was significantly inhibited by application of cyclical forces.

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