Refractive index mismatch and monomer reactivity influence composite curing depth

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Colleges, School and Institutes


Limited cure depth is a drawback of light-activated composites. We hypothesize that curing light transmission and cure depth are influenced by monomer reactivity and filler/resin refractive index mismatch. Light transmission throughout cure was recorded for composites based on strontium (refractive index 1.51) or barium (refractive index 1.53) glass fillers. Fillers were mixed (70 wt%) with 4 bisphenol-A diglycidyl-ether-dimethacrylate (bis-GMA):triethylene glycol dimethacrylate (TEGDMA) formulations with refractive indices ranging from 1.4703 to 1.5370. Following polymerization, cure depth and pre- and post-cure translucency parameters were determined. Transmission changes and cure depths related to monomer reactivity and filler/resin refractive index mismatch with significant interaction. Composites became more opaque or translucent on curing. Optimizing filler/resin refractive index mismatch provides increased curing depth and assists shade-matching.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)84-8
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Dental Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2008


  • resin composite, refractive index, monomer reactivity, depth of cure