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 Table of Contents  
Year : 2019  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 177-178

Polymer-based composites for dental three-dimensional printing applied to drug release: A proposal of an antimicrobial biomaterial

Graduate Program in Dentistry, Departments of Restorative Dentistry, School of Dentistry, Federal University of Pelotas, Pelotas, RS, Brazil

Date of Web Publication6-Sep-2019

Correspondence Address:
Rafael Guerra Lund
457 Gonçalves Chaves Street, Room 503, Downtown, Pelotas, RS 96015-560
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2321-8568.266229

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How to cite this article:
Lund RG, Ferreira ML. Polymer-based composites for dental three-dimensional printing applied to drug release: A proposal of an antimicrobial biomaterial. Adv Hum Biol 2019;9:177-8

How to cite this URL:
Lund RG, Ferreira ML. Polymer-based composites for dental three-dimensional printing applied to drug release: A proposal of an antimicrobial biomaterial. Adv Hum Biol [serial online] 2019 [cited 2022 Sep 26];9:177-8. Available from: https://www.aihbonline.com/text.asp?2019/9/3/177/266229

The use of digital technologies in dentistry is already part of the routine of many offices and laboratories, with the development and improvement of CAD/CAM technology and three-dimensional (3D) printing. With the success and growth of the use of 3D technology, topics related to digital dentistry are now everywhere. Just swipe through our social networking pages, scientific articles and case reports to find them. Advances in this technology already show a great impact on dentistry. In addition to the widely used and well-studied computer-aided design/CAD/CAM, reports have shown the use of 3D printing for different protocols.

Among the 3D printing techniques, the most used in the field of dentistry is called stereolithography. This methodology makes use of photopolymers, which are kept in a container controlled by Z-axis, and the final 3D structure results from direct exposure of the polymer to light as the sample holder moves up or down. Dentistry is widely recognised as one of the fields that can greatly benefit from these 3D printing technologies. However, despite the relatively large number of recent review articles discussing the use of 3D printing in dentistry, examples in the literature addressing the parameters that define the characteristics and properties of dental restorative materials for 3D printing are surprisingly low. Manufacturing surgical guides, diagnostic models, occlusal plaques, and a myriad of other applications that are not intended for printing direct or indirect intraoral restorative materials are already a clinical reality. These examples, however, generally use polymers that have little potential for intraoral clinical application due to lack of regulatory approval and incompatibility of their properties with medium- and long-term dental applications. Based on this principle, a recent study by Tahayeri et al.[1] determined the printability andin vitro performance of a commercially available 3D printing material, for making temporary crown and bridge restorations using a low-cost stereolithography 3D printer. They found that the modulus of elasticity and peak stress of the 3D-printed samples were comparable or higher than that of the Jet® Trademark (Lang Dental Inc., IL, USA). In addition, 3D-printed temporary crowns showed mechanical properties suitable for intraoral use.

From the advent of CAD/CAM imaging and milling systems, which literally created a new modality of clinical dentistry,[2] to the development of 3D printers, great strides have been made to improve the different components of this model, to facilitate their access, use and availability for clinical, preclinical and research purposes. More affordable 3D printers, along with user-friendly open-source 3D software, offer opportunities for the use of polymer-based 3D-printed materials in all areas of dentistry, allowing them to be used within the office as well.

Recent studies have shown a number of results obtained with the 3D printing technique, such as (1) comparing the marginal and internal adaptation of resin restorations, showing significantly lower results of marginal and internal resin restoration gaps when compared to CAD/CAM-milled restorations – explanation attributed to limitations resulting from tolerance of milling drills;[3] (2) conducting a clinical workflow for fully digital rehabilitation, from the acquisition of work models to the realisation of cemented prosthetic parts in the patient's mouth, presenting clear advantages over the conventional modelling technique such as faster working time and prevention of problems such as model distortion;[4] (3) fabrication of a die model to replicate gingival tissue and implant analogues;[5] (4) impression of precise artificial teeth for preclinical use by scanning natural teeth;[6] (5) evaluation of the accuracy of dental models manufactured by the CAD/CAM milling method and the 3D printing method;[7] (6) performing a digitally guided technique to provide references for gingival and bone manipulation during clinical crown augmentation surgery, which facilitates the surgical procedure and increases treatment predictability;[8] (7)in vitro 3D printing of unit crowns, with results suggesting that commercially available restorative dental material for 3D printing allows sufficient mechanical properties for intraoral use of temporary restorations;[1] (8) 3D printing of zirconia crowns, within vitro results that meet the accuracy requirements, proving to be suitable for the manufacture of zirconia crowns when compared to CAD/CAM-milled crowns[9] (9) and performing surgical guides for implants;[10] among others.

However, the intended innovation for the business sector lies in the fact that this technology for developing 3D printing materials lacks the addition of antimicrobial or any other pharmacological functionality in these products already on the market. The fact that the development of these composites for 3D printing is for human use, associated with the inclusion of pharmaceutical agents, would make this technology innovative and with a great differential.

Advances in the development of antimicrobials increasingly enable their application in various types of 3D printing materials and can be applied from surface coating to direct incorporation, thus adding antimicrobial property to the final product. In addition to concern for human health, antimicrobial activity in the material may also contribute to its increased shelf life. Some advantages of antimicrobial property in products for industry: (1) resistance to decomposition caused by microorganisms, thus increasing stocking time; (2) differentiation in the market, making room for marketing campaigns with appeals to the added value of products with antimicrobial properties (more hygienic products, safer for human contact, health, quality of life, etc.); (3) gateway to other markets that require materials that have protection against infections, such as in the medical-hospital segment and (4) high efficacy with low antimicrobial additive concentrations.

This Editorial aims to instigate the investigators to seek market needs through the development of products with national technology, meeting the governmental interests of self-sufficiency, intellectual protection and production of materials for health with high added value. Allied to this, the criteria of technological productivity, human resources training and technology transfer to companies that we are already related to are proposed goals to recommend the granting of scholarship in productivity and innovative extension.

In addition, the development of these materials will be driving national development goals, bringing the dental industry researcher closer and promoting a synergy of potentials (industry-university) which will result in economic development, intellectual scientific development and significant improvements in national health.

  References Top

Tahayeri A, Morgan M, Fugolin AP, Bompolaki D, Athirasala A, Pfeifer CS, et al. 3D printed versus conventionally cured provisional crown and bridge dental materials. Dent Mater 2018;34:192-200.  Back to cited text no. 1
Mainjot AK, Dupont NM, Oudkerk JC, Dewael TY, Sadoun MJ. From artisanal to CAD-CAM blocks: State of the art of indirect composites. J Dent Res 2016;95:487-95.  Back to cited text no. 2
Alharbi N, Alharbi S, Cuijpers VM, Osman RB, Wismeijer D. Three-dimensional evaluation of marginal and internal fit of 3D-printed interim restorations fabricated on different finish line designs. J Prosthodont Res 2018;62:218-26.  Back to cited text no. 3
Atria PJ, Sampaio CS, Hirata R, Jorquera G. Preliminary evidence for the complete digital esthetic rehabilitation treatment: Case report and 1-year follow-up. J Evid Based Dent Pract 2017;17:76-82.  Back to cited text no. 4
Bukhari S, Goodacre BJ, AlHelal A, Kattadiyil MT, Richardson PM. Three-dimensional printing in contemporary fixed prosthodontics: A technique article. J Prosthet Dent 2018;119:530-4.  Back to cited text no. 5
Cresswell-Boyes AJ, Barber AH, Mills D, Tatla A, Davis GR. Approaches to 3D printing teeth from X-ray microtomography. J Microsc 2018;272:207-12.  Back to cited text no. 6
Jeong YG, Lee WS, Lee KB. Accuracy evaluation of dental models manufactured by CAD/CAM milling method and 3D printing method. J Adv Prosthodont 2018;10:245-51.  Back to cited text no. 7
Liu X, Yu J, Zhou J, Tan J. A digitally guided dual technique for both gingival and bone resection during crown lengthening surgery. J Prosthet Dent 2018;119:345-9.  Back to cited text no. 8
Wang W, Yu H, Liu Y, Jiang X, Gao B. Trueness analysis of zirconia crowns fabricated with 3-dimensional printing. J Prosthet Dent 2019;121:285-91.  Back to cited text no. 9
Di Giacomo GA, Cury PR, da Silva AM, da Silva JV, Ajzen SA. A selective laser sintering prototype guide used to fabricate immediate interim fixed complete arch prostheses in flapless dental implant surgery: Technique description and clinical results. J Prosthet Dent 2016;116:874-9.  Back to cited text no. 10


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