The University of Connecticut (UConn) and PREAT have signed an exclusive license agreement to commercialize a technology for improved dental implant bridges, especially for use in patients suffering from total tooth loss. The licensed technology resolves a problem commonly encountered with dental implants, as existing methods for fabricating dental implant prostheses can lead to imperfections that could be potentially harmful for patients.
For example, excess acrylic resin on the dental bridge can interfere with the fit of the dental bridge in the mouth when placed immediately after implant surgery. Dental bridges that aren’t completely free of excess acrylic resin could fail due to fracture of the prostheses, failure of the implants due to movement, or inflammation around the gums and bone.
Developed by UConn School of Dental Medicine associate professor Avinash Bidra, DDS, MS, the technology focuses on All-on-4 implant treatments for patients with total tooth loss. Such patients typically have a full-arch dental bridge installed immediately after implant surgery. Bidra’s technology significantly improves on currently available standard products, according to PREAT, by adding a component that creates a closer fit for the dental implant pieces.
With the technology, the acrylic resin added during the fabrication process doesn’t come in contact with other components that could be scratched or damaged or interfere with the fit of the bridge. Scratches or damage to the other dental implant components allow bacteria and plaque to proliferate, resulting in soft tissue damage and possible bone loss around the implants. Trimming and polishing the dental bridge component is also easier, simpler, and quicker with the technology than with standard methods, PREAT reports.
“This is a prime example of the unique ability of academic-industry partnerships to address unmet clinical needs,” said Radenka Maric, PhD, vice president for research at UConn/UConn Health. “The world-class researchers at UConn are making important discoveries every day, and we are grateful to our industry partners who help those discoveries reach the public.”