Elemental composition of teeth with and without odontoclastic resorption lesions in cats

Patricia A. Colley, Frank J Verstraete, Philip H Kass, Peter Schiffman

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6 Scopus citations


Objective - To determine elemental composition of teeth with and without odontoclastic resorption lesions (ORL) in cats. Sample Population - Normal teeth from 22 cadaver cats and ORL-affected teeth from 21 cats admitted to the veterinary hospital for dental treatment. Procedure - An electron microprobe was used to analyze weight percentages of calcium, phosphorus, fluorine, sodium, magnesium, sulfur, potassium, and iron in enamel, dentin, and cementum. Results - Calcium and phosphorus were the most abundant elements. Fluorine, sodium, and magnesium combined were < 5% and sulfur, potassium, and iron combined were < 0.1% of total elemental composition. In enamel of normal teeth, a significant sex-by-jaw location interaction was seen in mean (± SD) phosphorus content, which was higher in mandibular teeth of females (17.64 ± 0.41%) but lower in mandibular teeth of males (16.71 ± 0.83%). Mean iron content in dentin of normal teeth was significantly lower in mandibular teeth than maxillary teeth (0.014 ± 0.005% vs 0.023 ± 0.019%). Mean enamel sodium content was significantly higher (0.77 ± 0.046% vs 0.74 ± 0.025) and mean enamel iron content was significantly lower (0.017 ± 0.008% vs 0.021 ± 0.005%) in ORL-affected teeth, compared with normal teeth. In cementum, mean fluorine content was significantly lower (2.98% ± 0.27 vs 2.99 ± 0.20%) and mean magnesium content was significantly lower (0.54 ± 0.13% vs 0.60 ± 0.13%) in ORL-affected teeth, compared with normal teeth. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance - Results of our study establish baseline mineral content of enamel, dentin, and cementum for normal teeth in cats. Minimal differences in mineral content of enamel and cementum of normal and ORL-affected teeth were detected.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)546-550
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Veterinary Research
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2002


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)

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