Assessment of the interaction of Portland cement-based materials with blood and tissue fluids using an animal model

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Colleges, School and Institutes

External organisations

  • Department of Anatomy, Faculty of Medicine and Surgery, University of Malta, Malta.
  • Dental Materials Science, Faculty of Dentistry, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong.
  • Department of Experimental Biomedicine and Clinical Neurosciences, University of Palermo, Palermo, Italy.


Portland cement used in the construction industry improves its properties when wet. Since most dental materials are used in a moist environment, Portland cement has been developed for use in dentistry. The first generation material is mineral trioxide aggregate (MTA), used in surgical procedures, thus in contact with blood. The aim of this study was to compare the setting of MTA in vitro and in vivo in contact with blood by subcutaneous implantation in rats. The tissue reaction to the material was also investigated. ProRoot MTA (Dentsply) was implanted in the subcutaneous tissues of Sprague-Dawley rats in opposite flanks and left in situ for 3 months. Furthermore the material was also stored in physiological solution in vitro. At the end of the incubation time, tissue histology and material characterization were performed. Surface assessment showed the formation of calcium carbonate for both environments. The bismuth was evident in the tissues thus showing heavy element contamination of the animal specimen. The tissue histology showed a chronic inflammatory cell infiltrate associated with the MTA. MTA interacts with the host tissues and causes a chronic inflammatory reaction when implanted subcutaneously. Hydration in vivo proceeds similarly to the in vitro model with some differences particularly in the bismuth oxide leaching patterns.


Original languageEnglish
Article number34547
JournalScientific Reports
Publication statusPublished - 29 Sep 2016


  • Biomineralization, Translational research, Animal disease models