Re-expansion of dried demineralized dentin is required to optimize resin adhesion. This study tested the hypothesis that bond strengths to dentin depend upon the ability of experimental HEMA(2-hydroxy-ethyl-methacrylate)/solvent primers to re-expand the matrix. Dentin surfaces were acid-etched with 37% phosphoric acid for 20 sec, air-dried for 30 sec, primed with either 35/65% (v/v) HEMA/water, HEMA/methanol, HEMA/ethanol, or HEMA/propanol for 60 sec, and bonded with 4-META-TBBO(4-methacryloyloxyethyl trimellitate anhydride-tri-n- butyl borane) adhesive. After storage in water for 1 day at 37°C, the samples were prepared for microtensile bond strength testing. We used transmission electron microscopy to measure the width of interfibrillar spaces in the hybrid layers. The HEMA/ethanol primer and the HEMA/propanol primer produced the highest and the lowest bond strengths, respectively (p < 0.05). Bond strengths were directly correlated with the width of the interfibrillar spaces (p < 0.05). Bond strengths are related to the ability of the primer to maintain the re-expansion of collapsed demineralized dentin matrix.
- Microtensile bond strength
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