Surface analysis of hydrated gray mineral trioxide aggregate set in the presence of human serum
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The bioactivity and clinical success of Mineral Trioxide Aggregate (MTA) is attributed to various mechanisms. Knowledge of a material's chemical content, physical structure and surface characteristics provide insight into the material's clinical properties and utilities. The purpose of this study was to describe the structural integrity, surface morphology and chemical distribution of gray MTA set in the presence of human serum (HS), and to evaluate the influence of calcium chloride accelerant (CaCl 2 ) on hydrated gray MTA surface. Ten 6 mm 3 wells were prepared in polyvinyl siloxane (PVS) molds, gray MTA mixed according to the manufacturer's instructions with several solutions. The mixture was incrementally placed into the walls to a depth of 3 mm; sterile syringes were used to fill the remaining 3 mm of depth with various solutions. A total of five groups each containing two samples were distributed as the following; Group 1: GMTA mix with water and set in water (control), Group 2: GMTA mix with water and set in human serum, Group 3: GMTA mix with human serum and set in human serum. Group 4: GMTA mix with CaCl 2 and set in water, Group 5: GMTA mix with CaCl 2 and set in human serum. The MTA was allowed to set in 95% humidity and 5% CO 2 at 37°C for 24 hours. A morphological comparison was accomplished using scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The chemical composition and distribution of the surface cement was investigated by energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy (EDS) and x-ray fluorescence (XRF). The micron-scale surface of MTA set in the presence of human serum presented differing morphological, topographical and chemical characteristics than MTA set in the presence of water. When set in (HS), GMTA's surface was chemically homogenous and relatively smooth. However when set in water, MTA's surface was relatively rough, with angular crystals; human serum's properties and components affect the crystalline structure of MTA. Additionally, CaCl 2 solution did not alter the surface microstructure or chemical compound of set MTA cement.