Development of a novel antimicrobial-releasing glass ionomer cement functionalized with chlorhexidine hexametaphosphate nanoparticles

Edward Hook, Olivia Owen, Candice A Bellis, James A Holder, Dominic J O'Sullivan, Michele E Barbour

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

48 Citations (Scopus)


Glass ionomer cements (GICs) are a class of dental biomaterials. They have a wide range of uses including permanent restorations (fillings), cavity linings, fissure sealants and adhesives. One of the most common reasons for replacing a dental restoration is recurrent bacterial tooth decay around the margins of the biomaterial. Therefore, a dental biomaterial which creates a sustained antimicrobial environment around the restoration would be of considerable clinical benefit. In this manuscript, the formulation of a GIC containing novel antimicrobial nanoparticles composed of chlorhexidine hexametaphosphate at 1, 2, 5, 10 and 20% powder substitution by mass is reported. The aim is to create GICs which contain chlorhexidine-hexametaphosphate nanoparticles and characterize the nanoparticle size, morphology and charge and the release of chlorhexidine and fluoride, tensile strength and morphology of the GICs.

The GICs released chlorhexidine, which is a broad spectrum antimicrobial agent effective against a wide range of oral bacteria, over the duration of the experiment in a dose-dependent manner. This was not at the expense of other properties; fluoride release was not significantly affected by the substitution of antimicrobial nanoparticles in most formulations and internal structure appeared unaffected up to and including 10% substitution. Diametral tensile strength decreased numerically with substitutions of 10 and 20% nanoparticles but this difference was not statistically significant.

A series of GICs functionalized with chlorhexidine-hexametaphosphate nanoparticles were created for the first time. These released chlorhexidine in a dose-dependent manner. These materials may find application in the development of a new generation of antimicrobial dental nanomaterials.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Nanobiotechnology
Issue number3
Early online date23 Jan 2014
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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