This study investigated the effect of phosphoric acid etching on the dentin bond strength of five single-step self-etch adhesive systems; Absolute, Clearfil tri-S Bond, Fluoro Bond Shake One, G- Bond and One-Up Bond F Plus. Bovine mandibu-lar incisors were mounted in self-curing resin and the facial surfaces were wet ground with #600 SiC paper. Adhesives were applied on the prepared dentin surfaces with and without prior phosphoric acid etching and light irradiated. Resin composite was condensed into a mold (ø4x2 mm), light irradiated and stored in water at 37°C. Four groups (n=10) were made per adhesive system: with and without prior acid etching and with and without thermal cycling between 5°C and 55°C for 10,000 cycles. The specimens were tested in a shear mode at a crosshead speed of 1.0 mm/minute. Two-way ANOVA, Student t-test and Tukey HSD test at a level of 0.05 were done. For specimens without prior acid etching, the mean bond strengths to bovine dentin ranged from 12.8 to 17.1 MPa and ranged from 6.7 to 13.3 MPa for specimens with prior acid etching after 24 hours storage in water. When the specimens were subjected to thermal cycling, the mean bond strengths ranged from 10.7 to 24.8 MPa for the specimens without prior acid etching and 4.6 to 13.9 MPa for the specimens with prior acid etching. The changes in dentin bond strength were different among the adhesive systems tested. Failure modes were commonly adhesive failure associated with mixed failure for specimens with prior acid etching. For specimens without prior acid etching, failures in composite and dentin were increased. From the results of this in vitro study, prior acid etching might be not acceptable for increasing the dentin bond strengths of single-step self-etch adhesive systems.
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