Objective: To investigate the effect of silane contents on their chemical interaction with 10-methacryloyloxydecyl-dihydrogen phosphate (MDP), and affecting the bonding of MDP to zirconia by time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (TOF-SIMS) and solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (SSNMR) spectroscopy. Methods: Zirconia (Cercon ht, Dentsply) slabs were prepared and fully sintered. Experimental primers SE-5 and SE-10 were formulated by adding 5 wt% and 10 wt% γ-methacryloxypropyltrimethoxysilane to an MDP-based primer SE BOND (SE), respectively. SE, SE-5, and SE-10 were applied on the assigned zirconia slabs. The chemical compositions on the surface and adhesive interfaces were examined by TOF-SIMS in a depth-profiling mode. Hydrophilicity and resin affinity of treated zirconia were analyzed. The bond strengths to resin cylinder were examined either after 24-h storage or thermocycles. In addition, zirconia powders treated with three primers were assessed by SSNMR spectrometry for the adsorption of MDP. Results: TOF-SIMS analysis showed that SE treatment generated the greatest amount of P-O-Zr related ions, which reduced in SE-5 and SE-10 groups. The 3D ion-images illustrated the generation of ZrO2(OH)- ions with silane contents. The SSNMR analysis revealed that the chemical bonding was mainly P-O-Zr ionic bonds in SE but shifted to P-OH-Zr hydrogen bonds in SE-5 and SE-10. SE-5 and SE-10 treated zirconia presented higher hydrophilicity and affinity to resin compared to Zr did. SE showed the highest initial bond strength which significantly decreased after thermocycling. Significance: MDP adsorption onto zirconia via P-O-Zr ionic bond promotes bonding with resin. The silane enhances the hydroxylation of zirconia and impairs the adsorption of MDP, but does not adversely affect the bond durability.
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