Contracting authority:




In modern dentistry, both the early prevention of tooth decay and the development of new and efficient restorative materials are generally targeted. Although tremendous efforts have been made in promoting oral hygiene and fluoridation, the prevention of early caries lesions are still challenges for dental research and public health. Recent studies have indicated that nanotechnology might provide novel strategies in dentistry. Graphene consists in a one-atom-thick planar sheet of sp2- bonded carbon atoms arranged in a hexagonal lattice.
Graphene is considered to be the “thinnest and strongest material in the universe” and therefore it has remarkable physical and chemical properties, including superior Young’s modulus (1 TPa) and tensile strength (130 GPa). Recent studies have shown that graphene can be used as nanofiller and can dramatically improve the properties of polymer-based composites at a very low loading (0.1-5 wt.%).
The results so far reported in the literature indicated that graphene/polymer composites are promising multifunctional materials with significantly improved tensile strength and elastic modulus, electrical and thermal conductivity. Despite some challenges and the fact that carbon nanotubes/polymer composites are sometimes better in some particular performance, graphene/polymer composites may have wide applications in dentistry due to their outstanding properties and the availability of graphene in a large quantity and at low cost.

Within the "BIOGRAF" project we plan to develop:

- a new nanocomposite material based on biocompatible polymers and graphene to be used in dental restorations
- new ex vivo tests to identify the host reaction to this material, in relationship with some biologic risk indicators.

The final aim of the project is to develop modern and standardized therapies of caries lesions through the development of the novel nanocomposite material based on biocompatible polymers and graphene. The present research project fits very well into the research domain 7 (Materials, processes and innovative products) since a new nanocomposite material with graphene will be manufactured which will fulfill the bio-safety criteria and have biocompatible properties with the local cellular environment.

By its specific objectives "BIOGRAF" corresponds to the research thematic 7.1.6. Advanced materials and biomaterials for improving the quality of life (health, sport, education) because:

- a new nanocomposite material with graphene will be developed, for better medical treatments
- complex inter-/multidisciplinary studies will be performed, in order to elaborate and validate new standardized therapies based on advanced materials
- the development of a new perspective in dentistry, based on advanced theoretical and practical knowledge
- a research network will be developed which can ensure human resources for the top scientific research
- articles will be published in highly-ranked journals (ISI)
- research papers will be presented at international conferences
- valuable information will be disseminated among PhD/PostDoc students and researchers in the field of nanocomposite materials-the equipments that will be purchased will develop the existing R&D infrastructure.

Our "BIOGRAF" project is aiming to deliver the following end-product(s)/ expected results:

- a new nanocomposite material with graphene, to be used in dental restoration therapy
- one laboratory technology for the synthesis of the nanocomposite material
- 3 ISI papers, in highly ranked journals
- a patent