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J Dent Res. 2015 Feb;94(2):297-303. doi: 10.1177/0022034514559250. Epub 2014 Nov 24.

Bioactive and thermally compatible glass coating on zirconia dental implants.

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Dental Materials and Biomaterials Research, RWTH Aachen University Hospital, Aachen, Germany.
Institute of Dental Materials and Engineering, University Hospital of Dental Medicine, University of Basel, Basel, Switzerland.
Dental Materials and Biomaterials Research, RWTH Aachen University Hospital, Aachen, Germany


The healing time of zirconia implants may be reduced by the use of bioactive glass coatings. Unfortunately, existing glasses are either bioactive like Bioglass 45S5 but thermally incompatible with the zirconia substrate, or they are thermally compatible but exhibit only a very low level of bioactivity. In this study, we hypothesized that a tailored substitution of alkaline earth metals and alkaline metals in 45S5 can lead to a glass composition that is both bioactive and thermally compatible with zirconia implants. A novel glass composition was analyzed using x-ray fluorescence spectroscopy, dilatometry, differential scanning calorimetry, and heating microscopy to investigate its chemical, physical, and thermal properties. Bioactivity was tested in vitro using simulated body fluid (SBF). Smooth and microstructured glass coatings were applied using a tailored spray technique with subsequent thermal treatment. Coating adhesion was tested on implants that were inserted in bovine ribs. The cytocompatibility of the coating was analyzed using L929 mouse fibroblasts. The coefficient of thermal expansion of the novel glass was shown to be slightly lower (11.58 · 10(-6) K(-1)) than that of the zirconia (11.67 · 10(-6) K(-1)). After storage in SBF, the glass showed reaction layers almost identical to the bioactive glass gold standard, 45S5. A process window between 800 °C and 910 °C was found to result in densely sintered and amorphous coatings. Microstructured glass coatings on zirconia implants survived a minimum insertion torque of 60 Ncm in the in vitro experiment on bovine ribs. Proliferation and cytotoxicity of the glass coatings was comparable with the controls. The novel glass composition showed a strong adhesion to the zirconia substrate and a significant bioactive behavior in the SBF in vitro experiments. Therefore, it holds great potential to significantly reduce the healing time of zirconia dental implants.


biomaterial(s); cell culture techniques; ceramics; endosseous dental implantation; materials science(s); surface coated materials

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