BIS-GMA--based resins in dentistry: are they safe?

J Am Dent Assoc. 1999 Feb;130(2):201-9. doi: 10.14219/jada.archive.1999.0169.


Background: The authors critically surveyed research dealing with the release of resin components from dental composites and the potential of these agents to mimic or disrupt estrogenic cell responses.

Types of studies reviewed: The studies reviewed included those on synthetic methods used to make bisphenol A glycidyl methacrylate, or BIS-GMA, and the biological effects of this resin in cell culture and animals. The estrogenic effect of bisphenol A was targeted because bisphenol A is present as an impurity in some resins (BIS-GMA) and as a degradation product from other resins (bisphenol A dimethacrylate, or BIS-DMA).

Results: The outcomes of this review revealed that short-term administration of BIS-GMA and/or bisphenol A in animals or cell cultures can induce changes in estrogen-sensitive organs or cells. However, considering the dosages and routes of administration and the modest response of estrogen-sensitive target organs, the authors conclude that the short-term risk of estrogenic effects from treatments using bisphenol A-based resins is insignificant. Long-term effects need to be investigated further.

Clinical implications: Commonly used dental resins should not be of concern to the general public; however, pharmacological evaluation of dental materials is needed to ensure biologically safe and therapeutically effective substances.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Benzhydryl Compounds
  • Bisphenol A-Glycidyl Methacrylate / chemistry
  • Bisphenol A-Glycidyl Methacrylate / pharmacokinetics
  • Bisphenol A-Glycidyl Methacrylate / toxicity*
  • Breast Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Dental Restoration, Permanent / adverse effects
  • Estrogens, Non-Steroidal / pharmacokinetics
  • Estrogens, Non-Steroidal / toxicity*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Phenols / pharmacokinetics
  • Phenols / toxicity
  • Pit and Fissure Sealants / chemistry
  • Pit and Fissure Sealants / toxicity
  • Receptors, Estrogen / agonists
  • Resin Cements / toxicity
  • Structure-Activity Relationship
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured / drug effects
  • Uterus / drug effects
  • Xenobiotics / toxicity


  • Benzhydryl Compounds
  • Estrogens, Non-Steroidal
  • Phenols
  • Pit and Fissure Sealants
  • Receptors, Estrogen
  • Resin Cements
  • Xenobiotics
  • Bisphenol A-Glycidyl Methacrylate
  • bisphenol A