Mineral trioxide aggregate (MTA) is considered a pulp-capping agent of choice, but has the drawback of a long setting time. This study aimed to assess two different types of calcium-silicate cements as pulp-capping agents, by investigating their in vitro cytotoxicity and angiogenic effects in human pulp cells. ProRoot MTA, Endocem Zr, and Retro MTA were prepared as set or freshly mixed pellets. Human pulp-derived cells were grown in direct contact with these three cements, Dycal, or no cement, for 7 days. Initial cell attachment, viability, calcium release, and the levels of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), angiogenin, and basic fibroblast growth factor (FGF-2) were evaluated statistically using a linear mixed model (P < 0.05). The biocompatibility of Retro MTA was similar to those of the control and ProRoot MTA. Endocem Zr groups showed fewer and more rounded cells after a 3-day culture; however, the initial cytotoxicity appeared transient. All test materials showed significant increases in calcium concentration compared with the control group (P < 0.05). VEGF and angiogenin levels in ProRoot MTA and Retro MTA groups were significantly higher than those in the Endocem Zr group (P < 0.05). FGF-2 levels were not significantly different between groups (P > 0.05). We demonstrate that Retro MTA, which has a short setting time, has similar biocompatibility and angiogenic effects on human pulp cells, and can therefore potentially be as effective in pulp capping as ProRoot MTA. Endocem Zr showed intermittent cytotoxicity and elicited lower levels of VEGF and angiogenin expression.
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