Effects of systemic fluoride and in vitro fluoride treatment on enamel crystals

J Dent Res. 2006 Nov;85(11):1042-5. doi: 10.1177/154405910608501113.


Systemically administered fluoride at a concentration of 75 ppm increases the surface roughness of developing enamel crystals in rats, which may be significant in advancing our understanding of the biological mechanism of fluorosis. Thus, the aim of this study was to investigate whether the increased surface roughness may be a result of surface restructuring by the direct action of fluoride at the crystal surface. We examined the fluoride dose-dependent roughening of enamel crystal surfaces in vivo, in the rat, and whether this roughening could be mimicked by the in vitro treatment of rat enamel crystals with neutral pH fluoride solutions. Our results showed that enamel crystal surface roughness increased after treatment with increasing fluoride ion concentrations, whether applied in vitro or administered systemically. This suggests a mechanism, alongside others, for the increased surface roughness of crystals in fluorotic enamel.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Animals
  • Cariostatic Agents / administration & dosage
  • Cariostatic Agents / adverse effects*
  • Crystallization
  • Dental Enamel / drug effects*
  • Fluorides, Topical / adverse effects*
  • Fluorosis, Dental / etiology*
  • Microscopy, Atomic Force
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Sodium Fluoride / administration & dosage
  • Sodium Fluoride / adverse effects*
  • Surface Properties / drug effects


  • Cariostatic Agents
  • Fluorides, Topical
  • Sodium Fluoride