An in vitro method for the time-resolved quantification of acid-mediated tooth demineralisation has been developed and evaluated against putative non-permanent protective formulations based on a series of poly(alkyl methacrylate)s. Using a thermostatted carousel, dentally relevant substrates consisting of hydroxyapatite discs or sections of bovine teeth have been exposed to aqueous citric acid under controlled conditions, before and after being treated with the polymeric coatings. The dissolution of phosphate was monitored by the determination of 31P by Inductively Coupled Plasma—Mass Spectrometry and by the spectrophotometric phosphovanadomolybdate method. Dose-response plots constructed for both groups of treated substrates have revealed that the coatings significantly reduce erosion rates but are less effective at inhibiting tooth demineralisation than the standard fluoride treatment. The approach has enabled an evaluation of the erosion-protection efficiency of each coating.
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James Smith (Manager)School of Pharmacy & Biomedical Sciences