The Interaction of Implant Luting Cements and Oral Bacteria Linked to Peri-Implant Disease: An In Vitro Analysis of Planktonic and Biofilm Growth – A Preliminary Study

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There is little consensus on the most appropriate cement to use when restoring a cement-retained, implant-supported restoration. One consideration should be the interaction of pathogenic oral bacteria with restorative cements.


To determine how oral bacteria associated with peri-implant disease grow in the presence of implant cements.

Materials and Methods:

Five test cements with varying composition (zinc oxide–eugenol [TBO], eugenol-free zinc oxide [TBNE], zinc orthophosphate [FL], and two resin cements [PIC and ML]) were used to fabricate specimen disks. The disks were submerged in bacterial suspensions of either Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans, Fusobacterium nucleatum, or Porphyromonas gingivalis. Planktonic bacterial growth within the test media was measured by determining the optical density of the cultures (OD600). Positive controls (media and bacteria without cement disks) and negative controls (media alone) were similarly evaluated. The mean and standard deviations (SD) were calculated for planktonic growth from three separate experiments. ANOVA statistical analysis with post hoc Tukey tests was performed where differences existed (p < .05). Selected cement disks (TBO and ML) were further examined for bacterial biofilm growth. Surface bacteria were removed and grown on agar media, and colony-forming units (CFUs) were quantified.


Planktonic growth for both A. actinomycetemcomitans and P. gingivalis was significantly inhibited (p < .05) when grown in the presence of cement disks consisting of TBNE, PIC, FL, and TBO. In contrast, neither of these bacteria displayed growth inhibition in the presence of ML cement disks. F. nucleatum growth was also significantly inhibited by PIC, FL. and TBO (p < .05), but not by ML and TBNE cement disks. CFU counts for the biofilm study for TBO gave minimal and, in some instances, no bacterial adherence and growth, in contrast to ML, which supported substantially greater bacterial biofilm growth.


Cements display differing abilities to inhibit both planktonic and biofilm bacterial growth. Cements with the ability to reduce planktonic or biofilm growth of the test bacteria may be advantageous in reducing peri-implant disease. Understanding the microbial growth–inhibiting characteristics of different cement types should be considered important in the selection criteria.

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