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  • Author or Editor: Marie-Laure Loubiàre x
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Effect of fluoride was assessed on molars during and after mineralization. Two groups of 7 sheep each were dosed orally with 3.5 mg of fluoride/kg of body weight daily for 4 months (from 5 to 9 months after birth). Sheep of the first group were slaughtered immediately after fluoride administration; those of the second group were slaughtered 4 months later at the age of 13 months. Three control groups of 7 sheep each were slaughtered at 5 months (to determine the state of the teeth at the beginning of fluoride administration), and at 9 and 13 months.

During fluoride administration, plasma fluoride concentration rapidly increased to about 0.50 μg/ml; after fluoride administration, it stabilized at 0.20 μg/ml in treated sheep, whereas controls had concentration of 0.10 μg/ml (P < 0.01).

Parts of the molars that were in the process of mineralization during fluoride administration (mainly second molars) had thinning enamel, with pits, mainly close to the apex, marked decrease in hardness throughout the layer (< 100 Vickers U, compared with 240 Vickers U), and fluoride accumulation twice as high as that in controls (1,000 to 2,500 mg/kg [dry weight]). Fluoride accumulation was higher in dentine (2,700 to 4,200 mg/kg), but hardness was less affected.

On parts of the molars that were already mineralized (mostly, the first molar), changes in the appearance of enamel and cementum, decreased hardness (less important than in teeth during mineralization) affecting outer enamel more than inner enamel, high fluoride concentration (4,000 to 5,500 mg/kg [dry weight]) in outer enamel extending over 200 (μm were observed. Thus, in sheep, fluoride has a substantial postsecretory effect that may be explained by a slower maturation phase of enamel in this species.

Because molar wear is correlated to enamel hardness (dentine at the occlusal surface has low resistance—30 Vickers U), abnormal abrasion of molar teeth that have mineralized before and during fluoride intakes can be observed.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research