Cold Atmospheric Plasma: methods of production and application in dentistry and oncology

Plasma treatment in dentistry

Apr-1-Expert_News_Plasma_Treatment_in_Dentistry

Did you know that Plasmas are increasingly finding application in medical research? Here’s an example of their use in dentistry…

Cold Atmospheric Plasma: methods of production and application in dentistry and oncology

Abstract

Cold Atmospheric Plasma is an ionized gas that has recently been extensively studied by researchers as a possible therapy in dentistry and oncology. Several different gases can be used to produce Cold Atmospheric Plasma such as Helium, Argon, Nitrogen, Heliox, and air. There are many methods of production by which cold atmospheric plasma is created. Each unique method can be used in different biomedical areas.

In dentistry, researchers have mostly investigated the antimicrobial effects produced by plasma as a means to remove dental biofilms and eradicate oral pathogens. It has been shown that reactive oxidative species, charged particles, and UV photons play the main role. Cold Atmospheric Plasma has also found a minor, but important role in tooth whitening and composite restoration. Furthermore, it has been demonstrated that Cold Atmospheric Plasma induces apoptosis, necrosis, cell detachment, and senescence by disrupting the S phase of cell replication in tumor cells. This unique finding opens up its potential therapy in oncology.

Keywords

  • Cold Atmospheric Plasma
  • Dentistry
  • Oncology
  • Reactive Oxidative Species
  • Apoptosis
  • Senescence
  • Necrosis

Introduction

William Crookes identified plasma in 1879. 99% of the visible universe is made up of plasma, referred to as the fourth state of matter. The other states of matter are liquid, gas, and solid (Figure 1). Plasma is a partially ionized gas with ions, electrons, and uncharged particles such as atoms, molecules, and radicals. There are two types of plasma: thermal and non-thermal or cold atmospheric plasma. Thermal plasma has electrons and heavy particles (neutrals and ions) at the same temperature. Cold Atmospheric Plasma (CAP) is said to be non-thermal because it has electrons at a hotter temperature than the heavy particles that are at room temperature. CAP is a specific type of plasma that is less than 104°F at the point of application.

There are several methods to produce CAP such as Dielectric Barrier Discharge (DBD), Atmospheric Pressure Plasma Jet (APPJ), plasma needle, and plasma pencil. Several different gases can be used to produce CAP such as Helium, Argon, Nitrogen, Heliox (a mix of helium and oxygen), and air. Due to the ability of CAP to deactivate microorganisms, cause cell detachment, and cause death in cancer cells, researchers have been interested in finding uses for CAP in dentistry and oncology.

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Cold Atmospheric Plasma: methods of production and application in dentistry and oncology

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