Carbon dots combined with phytosphingosine inhibit acid-induced demineralization of hydroxyapatite in vitro

Cuicui Fu, Henk S. Brand, Kamran Nazmi, Arie Werner, Annina van Splunter, Floris J. Bikker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Objectives: To study the effects of carbon dots (CDs), in combination with phytosphingosine (PHS), against acid-induced demineralization of hydroxyapatite in vitro. Methods: CDs were generated from citric acid and urea by microwave heating. Transmission electron microscope (TEM), FT-IR, and fluorescence intensity were used to characterize the CDs. A hydroxyapatite (HAp) model was used to investigate the protective effects of CDs, PHS, and their combinations with and without a salivary pellicle against acid-induced demineralization in vitro. Ca2+ release as a parameter to evaluate the inhibition of demineralization was measured by capillary electrophoresis. The interactions between CDs, PHS, and HAp discs were investigated using a fluorescence detector. Results: Uniform-sized CDs were synthesized, showing typical optical characteristics. CDs exhibited no inhibition of acid-induced demineralization in vitro, in contrast to PHS. Notably, a pre-coating of CDs increased the protective effects of PHS against acid-induced demineralization, which was not disturbed by the presence of a salivary pellicle and Tween 20. Scanning electron microscope (SEM) confirmed the binding and layers formed of both CDs and PHS to the HAp surfaces. Based on fluorescence spectra CDs binding to HAp seemed to be dependent on Ca2+ and PO43- interactions. Conclusions: CDs combined with PHS showed protective effects against acid-induced demineralization of HAp discs in vitro.
Original languageEnglish
Article number105911
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalArchives of Oral Biology
Early online date5 Feb 2024
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2024


  • Acid-induced demineralization
  • Carbon dots
  • Dental erosion
  • Hydroxyapatite
  • Phytosphingosine

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