Journal of Conservative Dentistry
Home About us Editorial Board Instructions Submission Subscribe Advertise Contact e-Alerts Login 
Users Online: 1071
Print this page  Email this page Bookmark this page Small font sizeDefault font sizeIncrease font size

ORIGINAL ARTICLE Table of Contents   
Year : 2006  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 32-35
Comparative anti-microbial activity of 15% EDTA and 15% dimercaptosuccinic acid (DMSA)

1 Governmental Dental College, Pt. Bhagwat Dayal Sharma, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Rohtak, Haryana, India
2 Pt. Bhagwat Dayal Sharma, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Rohtak, Haryana, India
3 Dental Wing, MAMC, New Delhi, India

Click here for correspondence address and email


Dimercaptosuccinic acid (DMSA) chelating agent is used to remove the smear layer more effectively than EDTA. This study was conducted to determine the antimicrobial activity of DMSA and was compared with EDTA. DMSA did not show any antimicrobial activity.

Keywords: Anti microbial, EDTA, DMSA, Blood Agar, Culture Media.

How to cite this article:
Rai B, Jain R, Kharb S, Miglani S, Anand S C. Comparative anti-microbial activity of 15% EDTA and 15% dimercaptosuccinic acid (DMSA). J Conserv Dent 2006;9:32-5

How to cite this URL:
Rai B, Jain R, Kharb S, Miglani S, Anand S C. Comparative anti-microbial activity of 15% EDTA and 15% dimercaptosuccinic acid (DMSA). J Conserv Dent [serial online] 2006 [cited 2023 Sep 22];9:32-5. Available from:

   Introduction Top

The inflammatory and immunlogical reactions in the periapical area are caused by bacteria and their toxins, immunologic agents, tissue debris and products of tissue necrosis from the pulp. Pulpal disease is the most common cause for desease of the periapical tissues. Endodontic treatment can be divided into three main phases 1) Biomechanical preparation of root canal (cleaning, and shaping), 2) disinfection and 3) obturation. Biomechanical preparation leads to formation of a smear layer consisting of organic and inorganic debris on the walls of the canal. Smear layer formed may harbour micro-organisms that may cause re-infection and, further interfere in the sealing of root canal during obturation. It is desirable to have a chemical adjunct, which removes the smear layer and possesses antimicrobial activity. Chelating agents like EDTA when used during chemico-mechanical preparation I remove the smear layer [1] and posses anti­microbial activity, as reported by Palterson [2] . Several investigators have shown that unless adequate irrigation is used to clean the canal, debris will be left behind regardless of the irrigant used [3] . Ginichirohata et al. investigated oxidative potential water for its ability to remove smear layer in the root canal using Scanning Electron Microscopy. It was effective as five percent NaOCI or 17% EDTA for opening and keeping the dentinal tubules patent. There is no toxicity in its use, and is enough for patients to be held in the oral cavity [4] . Karabucak et al. compared the use of EDTA and NaOC1 on the dentinal surface of root canal system after thorough cleaning and shaping with Ni-Ti instrumentation. They observed that irrigating with 15% EDTA followed by a flush of NaOC 1 is most effective [5] . Goel et al. showed that five percent NaOC 1 solution was 80% effective in eliminating the bacterial colonies from root canal after 5th appointment whereas 15% EDTA alone was 50% effective [6] . Hottel et al. (1999) [7] reported that meso-2,3 dimer captosuccinic acid is a chelating agent which removes the smear layer when used in root canals but its anti­microbial properties have not been reported. This study was conducted in vitro to determine the anti­microbial a4ivity of 15% DMSA as compared with 15%EDTA.

   Materials and Methods Top

Evaluation of the antimicrobial effect of the DMSA and EDTA on alpha hemolytic - streptococci (MTCC497) and staphylococcus aureus Scientific Name Search  coagulase. This was done by the antibiotics sensitivity tests using.

  1. Disk diffusion method [8],[9]
  2. Serial tube dilution method [10],[11]

The procedures were carried out in the Department of Microbilogy, Govt. Dental College, Pt. B.D. Sharma, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Science, Rohtak (Haryana). Alpha-hemolytic streptococci (MTCC 467) and staphylococcus aureus coagulase stains were sub cultured on blood agar and mannitol salt broth respectively.

The 15% solution of meso 2,3 dimercaptosuccinic acid and ethylene diamine tetra acetic acid were prepared, DMSA and EDTA [12] are insoluble in water. In order to make them soluble I ON NaOH was used.

To prepare 15% solution, 150 mg of crystals of EDTA/DMSA were added to 500 microlitres of distilled water. The 140 microlitre solution [4] of 10 N NaOH was then added. Distilled water was added to make 1 millilitre solution. The solution were filter sterilized using 0.65 micrometer millipore filters.

Staphylococci and streptococci were grown on mannital salt broth and blood broth for 18 hours at 37° C. One hundred microlitre at this culture was broth on respective agar plates. One hundred microlitre solution 15% DMSA and 15% EDTA was added in five wells (8mm diameter).

Normal saline well act as control. In each of four test tubes five ml of mannitol salt broth was taken. Each tube was broth with one hundred microlitre of 18 hour grown culture of staphylococcus aureus. Out of four tubes, in one tube crystals of DMSA and in second tube crystals of EDTA were added at a concentration of 1 wt/value and other two tubes were kept as control tubes. The plates and tubes were incubated at 37° C for 48 hours. Antimicrobial activity was indicated by the presence of zone of inhibition of bacterial growth around the wells containing the chemicals in agar plates. Bacterial growth was indicated in the form of turbidity in broth tubes.[Table 1],[Table 2],[Table 3]

   Discussion Top

Bio-mechanical preparation of root canal, along with irrigation, grossly--educes the bacterial population of canal [11] . An irrigant with antimicrobial activity and which removes smear layer along with necrotic and organic debris is desirable. EDTA is a good chelating agentl but meso-2,3 dimer captosuccinic acid (DMSA) has better chelating property than EDTA [7] .

In the study, antimicrobial activity of two chelating agents such as 15% DMSA and 15% EDTA were studied. EDTA showed an anti-microbial acitivity in concentration 15%, broth in concentration of 1 % wt/vol as previous study'` while DMSA did not show any anti-microbial activity.

   Conclusion Top

EDTA showed an anti-microbial activity but DMSA did not show any anti-microbial activity.[13]

   References Top

1.Heling B, Shapiro S, Sciaky 1. An in vitro comparison of amount of calcium removed by sodium salt EDTA and hydrochloric acid during endodontic procedures. Oral Surg 1965; 19:531-533.  Back to cited text no. 1    
2.Patterson S.S. In vivo and in vitro studies of the effect of the disodium salt of ethylenediamine tetra acetate on human dentine and its endodontic implications. Oral Surg 1963; 16:83-103.  Back to cited text no. 2    
3.Louis I, Grossman, Oliet S, Carlos E. Delrio. Endodontic practice : in preparation of root canal equipment and technique for cleaning, shaping and irrigation. Var ghese Publishing House : Bombay (11 ed.) Indian Edition 1988; plp.179-188.  Back to cited text no. 3    
4.Ginichirohata, manbu, Franklin SW et al. Removal of smear layer in the root canal using oxidative potential water : Journal of Endodontic 1996; 22(12):212-216.  Back to cited text no. 4    
5.Karabucak B, Wong R Pypen C. SEM study of different irrigation solution's on dentinal walls after Nickel - titanium rotary instrumentation Journal of Endodontics 1997; 23(4): 251.  Back to cited text no. 5    
6.Goel M, Loomba K et al. An in vivo evaluation of anti-bacterial effect of irrigating solution in endodontics : Journal of Indian Endodontic Society 1989; 2: 12-14.  Back to cited text no. 6    
7.Hottel TL, EI-Refai NV, Jones JJ. A comparison of the effect of three chelating agents on the root canals extracted human teeth : Journal of Endodontic 1999; 25: 716-717.  Back to cited text no. 7    
8.Gradwahl's. Clinical Laboratory methods and diagnosis. 8th India Edition. BI Publications Ltd. 1990; 2: pp. 1941-46.  Back to cited text no. 8    
9.Howard BJ. Clinical and pathologic microbiology : st. Louis. Mosby (2nd Edi.); pp.161-66  Back to cited text no. 9    
10.Mackie and McCartney. Practical medical microbiology. Churchill Livingstone (13th Edi.) 1989;pp.173-174.  Back to cited text no. 10    
11.Myers RM, Koshi G. Diagnostic procedures in medical and immunology / serology, microbiology laboratories. Christian Medical College and Hospital, Vellore, India - Revised 1982; pp. 86-88.  Back to cited text no. 11    
12.Seidhorg BH, SchilolerH. An evalution of EDTA in endodontic. Oral Surg 1974; 37:609-620  Back to cited text no. 12    
13.Strindberg L. Intracanal medication endodontics. In Ingle: Phiadelphia (4th Edi.) 1994; p.427.  Back to cited text no. 13    

Correspondence Address:
Balwant Rai
Governmental Dental College, Pt. Bhagwat Dayal Sharma, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Rohtak, Haryana
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0972-0707.41306

Rights and Permissions


  [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3]


    Similar in PUBMED
   Search Pubmed for
   Search in Google Scholar for
 Related articles
    Email Alert *
    Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)  

    Materials and Me...
    Article Tables

 Article Access Statistics
    PDF Downloaded4    
    Comments [Add]    

Recommend this journal