Journal of Dental Research
Resin-modified glass ionomers (RMGI) set by at least 2 mechanisms dependent upon reactant diffusion prior to gelation. Each reaction’s kinetics and setting mechanism may rely on and/or compete with the other. In this study, we investigated RMGI setting reaction interactions using differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) by varying light-cure initiation times. A RMGI was analyzed with isothermal and dynamic temperature scan DSC with light-curing occurring immediately, or at 5 or 10 minutes after mixing as well as without light-activation. Results show that as time allowed for the acid-base reaction increased, the light-activation polymerization exotherm decreased. Conversely, analysis of DSC data suggests that earlier light-activation may limit the acid-base reaction and result in a different structured material. During early RMGI development, acid-base and light-polymerization reactions compete with and inhibit one another.