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Projects / Programmes source: ARIS

Towards reliable implementation of monolithic zirconia dental restorations

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
2.04.00  Engineering sciences and technologies  Materials science and technology   

Code Science Field
T153  Technological sciences  Ceramic materials and powders 

Code Science Field
2.05  Engineering and Technology  Materials engineering 
Keywords
Dental ceramics, Zirconia, Phase transformation, Ageing
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Researchers (9)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  35460  PhD Anže Abram  Materials science and technology  Researcher  2018 - 2021  104 
2.  36159  Blaž Berce    Technical associate  2018  17 
3.  17286  Darko Eterović    Technical associate  2018 - 2021 
4.  28045  Sanja Fidler  Materials science and technology  Technical associate  2018 - 2021  19 
5.  51653  Nina Grguraš Lestan  Stomatology  Researcher  2018 - 2021  13 
6.  13229  PhD Peter Jevnikar  Stomatology  Researcher  2018 - 2021  175 
7.  26457  PhD Andraž Kocjan  Materials science and technology  Head  2018 - 2021  320 
8.  51654  Tine Malgaj  Stomatology  Researcher  2018 - 2021  28 
9.  04292  PhD Saša Novak Krmpotič  Materials science and technology  Researcher  2018 - 2021  669 
Organisations (2)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  0106  Jožef Stefan Institute  Ljubljana  5051606000  91,415 
2.  0381  University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Medicine  Ljubljana  1627066  48,563 
Abstract
Materials with extreme durability are critical to many fields, including engineering, aerospace, medicine, and dentistry. Tetragonal zirconia polycrystalline ceramic partially-stabilised with 3 mol.% yttria (3Y-TZP) is regarded as an outstanding advanced structural ceramic material, in which excellent mechanical properties are combined with superior biocompatibility and attractive natural appearance, especially when compared to metals. As such, 3Y-TZP ceramics are recognised as a potent option for all-ceramic dental restorations to comply with metal-free dentistry paradigm. Initially, 3Y-TZP dental ceramics were used as frameworks overlaid with veneering porcelain for fixed partial dentures. Severe problems of veneer chipping emerged but were recently pragmatically addressed by the development of monolithic, full-contour 3Y-TZP prosthetic solutions free of veneering porcelain. With the development of computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing (CAD/CAM) technology monolithic 3Y-TZP variants are quickly becoming a universal all-ceramic material of choice, as they can be used for single crowns, inlays/onlays (replacing composite dental fillings), single copings, multi-unit bridges, abutments and as dental implants. However, the introduction of full-contoured 3Y-TZP in prosthetic dentistry exposed several problems, which at the moment are limiting its widest and reliable, long-term implementation. Namely, the monolithic 3Y-TZP`s translucency needs to be improved to mimic and match the natural teeth. While 3Y-TZP ceramic’s phase metastability is crucial for its outstanding mechanical properties, it also has a disadvantageous aspect known as ageing, and in the 3Y-TZP`s monolithic counterpart free of veneer there will be potentially more surface, prone to ageing, exposed to the natural environment. In addition, 3Y-TZP ceramics cannot be adhesively luted, making it challenging to achieve robust and durable bonding in demanding clinical conditions, more so, since minimally invasive dentistry has become a norm in dental interventions. Finally, the 3Y-TZP ceramics are very susceptible to the complex evolution of the internal micro-residual stresses during the processing steps for preparing the 3Y-TZP, which are very complicated and difficult to control fully, but do influence ageing and mechanical properties. The aim of the proposed research project is in addressing the above mentioned problems, in a collaboration with Medical faculty of Ljubljana University, Stockholm University, Sweden, and a Slovenian start-up company, by combining innovative research approaches and principles of the translational medicine in a time- and cost-effective fabrication of the minimally invasive, monolithic 3Y-TZP with improved aesthetics and reliability. Rapid sintering protocols will be designed to prepare fine-grained and translucent monolithic 3Y-TZP ceramics. In addressing the ageing problem, we will make a breakthrough and go beyond the state-of-the-art in studying the in vivo ageing process of 3Y-TZP in relevant, aggressive environment of the oral cavity and for the first time propose the real-time in-vitro-to-in-vivo correlation. To comply with the minimally invasive concept, we will investigate and implement a novel, non-invasive, additive bonding concept by applying a nanostructured alumina coating 3Y-TZP surface using in vitro and in vivo studies. Lastly, the internal micro-residual stresses in the 3Y-TZP will be investigated to reveal their impact given the complex pre- and post-processing steps involved in dental laboratory and clinical practice. Besides translational medicine employed to yield the best possible results, where we will interconnect research activities, clinical practice and patients` needs, the proposed research is designed in such a way that projects` deliverables will not dramatically interfere with the established dental laboratory and everyday clinical practice and will be, as such, easily and quickly implemen
Significance for science
With the proposed research project, basic knowledge and clinical application of modern bioceramic materials will be developed and expanded. Zirconia ceramics are increasingly used in dental medicine, which became the largest consumer of its worldwide production, and any additional contribution to a more fundamental understanding of the material and its behaviour in vivo is expected to be well received in the scientific community. We hope to develop further our knowledge of the principles regulating fabrication of tetragonal zirconia (3Y-TZP) based all-ceramic fixed partial dentures (FPDs), their cementation as well as the performance of these FPD`s under clinical conditions.   The scientific community and clinical practice will benefit from the translational medicine concept present in the project. Clearly, the proposed project does not come down to only contribute to scientific aspects but potentially has immense clinical benefits. One of the most important advantages of the project is a collaboration of materials scientists with the clinical experts in the field of prosthetic dentistry. This way engineering improvements of the monolithic 3Y-TZP manufacturing will be evaluated in the real environment of the oral cavity. Namely, the clinical aspects of the project will apply the principles of the translational medicine in a time- and cost-effective fabrication of the minimally invasive, monolithic 3Y-TZP FDP`s with improved aesthetics. Besides, the enhanced adhesive bond ability, eliminating damaging of the ceramic surface induced by particle abrasion, will provide more reliable FDP`s with increased longevity for the patients.   The results of the proposed research will undoubtedly improve the quality of prosthetic rehabilitation of the patients in the Republic of Slovenia. Partial edentulism is in addition to medical an enormous economic problem since the cost of rehabilitation significantly charges the National health insurance. We believe that the results of the research will be immediately transferred to clinical practice. Thus, the routine use of the nanostructured alumina coatings will extend the lifetime of dental restorations, which will reduce the relatively long waiting periods for prosthetic rehabilitation and in addition, will also lower the costs of prosthetic care.
Significance for the country
With the proposed research project, basic knowledge and clinical application of modern bioceramic materials will be developed and expanded. Zirconia ceramics are increasingly used in dental medicine, which became the largest consumer of its worldwide production, and any additional contribution to a more fundamental understanding of the material and its behaviour in vivo is expected to be well received in the scientific community. We hope to develop further our knowledge of the principles regulating fabrication of tetragonal zirconia (3Y-TZP) based all-ceramic fixed partial dentures (FPDs), their cementation as well as the performance of these FPD`s under clinical conditions.   The scientific community and clinical practice will benefit from the translational medicine concept present in the project. Clearly, the proposed project does not come down to only contribute to scientific aspects but potentially has immense clinical benefits. One of the most important advantages of the project is a collaboration of materials scientists with the clinical experts in the field of prosthetic dentistry. This way engineering improvements of the monolithic 3Y-TZP manufacturing will be evaluated in the real environment of the oral cavity. Namely, the clinical aspects of the project will apply the principles of the translational medicine in a time- and cost-effective fabrication of the minimally invasive, monolithic 3Y-TZP FDP`s with improved aesthetics. Besides, the enhanced adhesive bond ability, eliminating damaging of the ceramic surface induced by particle abrasion, will provide more reliable FDP`s with increased longevity for the patients.   The results of the proposed research will undoubtedly improve the quality of prosthetic rehabilitation of the patients in the Republic of Slovenia. Partial edentulism is in addition to medical an enormous economic problem since the cost of rehabilitation significantly charges the National health insurance. We believe that the results of the research will be immediately transferred to clinical practice. Thus, the routine use of the nanostructured alumina coatings will extend the lifetime of dental restorations, which will reduce the relatively long waiting periods for prosthetic rehabilitation and in addition, will also lower the costs of prosthetic care.
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