Journal of biomedical materials research vol:47 issue:1 pages:85-90
A novel approach is proposed for studying tooth-biomaterial interactions with high resolution. Thus far,: polished interfaces examined by AFM have not disclosed much detail, mainly due to the destruction of soft surface texture and the smearing of polishing debris across the interface that obscures the actual ultra-structure. Therefore the practical utility of diamond-knife microtomy as a sample preparation technique for imaging tooth-biomaterial interfaces by AFM with high resolution was tested in this study and compared to that of ultra-fine mechanical polishing-techniques. The AFM images clearly demonstrated the enhanced potential of diamond-knife microtomy for nondestructively producing clean cross-sections through interfaces that allow the interfacial ultra-structure to be imaged by AFM:with a resolution equaling that of TEM. This novel approach opens the field to the full range of scanning probe microscopy, including physical and chemical surface characterization of interfaces with a mix of soft and hard substrates. (C) 1999 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.