Current Oral Health Reports

, Volume 5, Issue 3, pp 169–177 | Cite as

Smear Layer-Deproteinization: Improving the Adhesion of Self-Etch Adhesive Systems to Caries-Affected Dentin

  • Keiichi Hosaka
  • Taweesak Prasansuttiporn
  • Ornnicha Thanatvarakorn
  • Sitthikorn Kunawarote
  • Masahiro Takahashi
  • Richard M. Foxton
  • Junji Tagami
  • Masatoshi NakajimaEmail author
Dental Restorative Materials (M Özcan, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Dental Restorative Materials


Purpose of review

This paper reviews a new method of dentin surface modification, smear layer-deproteinization for self-etch adhesive systems, particularly in relation to improving the adhesion to caries-affected dentin.

Recent Findings

Remnants of smear debris, which forms hybridized smear layer with self-etch adhesives, can prevent monomer infiltration and interfere with the chemical interaction of adhesive monomers and the underlying dentin. The hybridized smear layer weakens the physical and chemical properties of the resin-dentin hybridized complex both immediately and over time. Smear layer-deproteinization with NaOCl and HOCl solutions can improve the quality of resin-dentin interface of self-etch adhesives through elimination of the hybridized smear layer, development of monomer infiltration, and enhancement of the chemical interaction of adhesive monomers with hydroxyapatite due to an increase in the mineral/organic ratio on the dentin surface. These positive effects are influenced by the types of oxidizing solution and their application time and also depend upon the adhesive materials used because compromising effects of residual oxidized-byproducts at the dentin surface on the polymerization behavior of the adhesives are different between the materials. However, applying antioxidant/reducing agents can eliminate this problem.


Smear layer-deproteinization is more effective for improving the bonding efficacy of self-etch adhesives to caries-affected dentin than normal dentin because caries-affected dentin produces a thicker organic-rich smear layer. Smear layer-deproteinization with HOCl solution, which has a rapid and broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity with less irritating and sensitizing properties, along with the subsequent application of antioxidant/reducing agents could enhance the longevity of composite restoration with self-etch adhesives.


Self-etch adhesive Smear layer Smear layer-deproteinization Oxidizing solution Antioxidant/reducing agent Caries-affected dentin 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Keiichi Hosaka
    • 1
  • Taweesak Prasansuttiporn
    • 2
  • Ornnicha Thanatvarakorn
    • 3
  • Sitthikorn Kunawarote
    • 2
  • Masahiro Takahashi
    • 1
  • Richard M. Foxton
    • 4
  • Junji Tagami
    • 1
  • Masatoshi Nakajima
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Cariology and Operative Dentistry, Graduate School of Medical and Dental SciencesTokyo Medical and Dental UniversityTokyoJapan
  2. 2.Department of Restorative Dentistry and Periodontology, Faculty of DentistryChiangmai UniversityChiang MaiThailand
  3. 3.Faculty of DentistryBangkokthonburi UniversityBangkokThailand
  4. 4.Restorative Dentistry, King’s College London Dental Institute at Guy’s, King’s and St Thomas’ Hospitals, King’s College LondonLondonUK

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