Biomed Mater 2015 Jan 29;10(1):015017. Epub 2015 Jan 29.
Politecnico di Torino, Department of Applied Science and Technology - Materials and Microsystems Laboratory (ChiLab), corso Duca degli Abruzzi 24, I-10129, Torino, Italy.
Adhesion of bacteria on dental materials can be reduced by modifying the physical and chemical characteristics of their surfaces, either through the application of specific surface treatments or by the deposition of thin film coatings. Since this approach does not rely on the use of drugs or antimicrobial agents embedded in the materials, its duration is not limited by their possible depletion. Moreover it avoids the risks related to possible cytotoxic effects elicited by antibacterial substances released from the surface and diffused in the surrounding tissues. In this work, the adhesion of Streptococcus mutans and Streptococcus mitis was studied on four composite resins, commonly used for manufacturing dental prostheses. The surfaces of dental materials were modified through the deposition of a-SiO(x) thin films by plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition. The chemical bonding structure of the coatings was analyzed by Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy. The morphology of the dental materials before and after the coating deposition was assessed by means of optical microscopy and high-resolution mechanical profilometry, while their wettability was investigated by contact angle measurements. The sample roughness was not altered after coating deposition, while a noticeable increase of wettability was detected for all the samples. Also, the adhesion of S. mitis decreased in a statistically significant way on the coated samples, when compared to the uncoated ones, which did not occur for S. mutans. Within the limitations of this study, a-SiO(x) coatings may affect the adhesion of bacteria such as S. mitis, possibly by changing the wettability of the composite resins investigated.