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Ilie, Nicoleta; Moldovan, Marioara and Ionescu, Andrei C. (2022): Microstructure and Mechanical Behavior of Modern Universal-Chromatic and Bulk-Fill Resin-Based Composites Developed to Simplify Dental Restorative Procedures. In: Journal of Functional Biomaterials, Vol. 13, No. 4, 178

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One of the recent trends in the development of resin-based composites (RBCs) focuses on universal coloring to avoid time-consuming color matching and RBC layering for a clinically appropriate esthetic impact. We evaluated an experimental material for posterior restorations combining universal coloring with the possibility of bulk-fill placement. Clinically established materials were analyzed as a reference, including a bulk-fill and a universal chromatic RBC. Microstructural features were described using scanning electron microscopy and related to macroscopic and microscopic mechanical behavior. Standards to be met before market launch were supplemented by fractography, Weibull analysis, and aging behavior assessment. Quasi-static and viscoelastic behavior were evaluated on a microscopic scale, incorporating a large number of parameters and increasingly aggressive immersion media. All materials complied with the standard requirements even after aging. The latter had little impact on the measured parameters, except for strength. Strength, modulus of elasticity, and hardness parameters on the one hand and damping behavior on the other were mutually exclusive. Despite considerable differences in the microstructure and type of filler, an increased filler amount remained critical for better mechanical properties. The lower proportion of inorganic fillers was directly transferred to the elastic modulus values, which, in turn, restricts the experimental material in its clinical applications to smaller occlusal fillings.

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