Maintenance of the effective local concentration of antimicrobials on the tooth surface is critical for the management of cariogenic bacteria in the oral cavity. We report on the design of a simple tooth-binding micellar drug delivery platform that would effectively bind to tooth surfaces. To achieve tooth-binding ability, the chain termini of biocompatible Pluronic copolymers were modified with a biomineral-binding moiety (i.e., alendronate). The micelles formulated with this polymer were shown to be able to swiftly (<1 min) bind to hydroxyapatite (HA; a model tooth surface) and gradually release the encapsulated model antimicrobial (farnesol). These tooth-binding micelles were negatively charged and had an average effective hydrodynamic diameter of less than 100 nm. In vitro biofilm inhibition studies demonstrated that the farnesol-containing tooth-binding micelles were able to provide significantly stronger inhibition of Streptococcus mutans UA159 biofilm formation on HA discs than the untreated blank control micelles (P < 0.0001). Upon further optimization, this delivery platform could provide an effective tool for caries prevention and treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4898-4902
Number of pages5
JournalAntimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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