Amine fluorides, which are used in dental care and medicine, are cationic surfactants . They have a long, hydrophobic alkyl group and a polar, hydrophilic protonated amine with a fluoride as an anion .
Amine fluorides are mainly used as an active ingredient for plaque prophylaxis in toothpaste or mouthwash. The effect is based on its surfactant-like structure and its fluorine content. They only accumulate slightly on tooth surfaces, which is enough to reduce tooth decay. The exact mode of action is the subject of current research.
Amine fluorides inhibit bacterial growth. The amine is responsible for the inhibition. Since they penetrate the cell membrane very easily compared to inorganic fluorides , they also reach effective concentrations there much faster.
The first toothpaste with amine fluoride was developed and patented in Germany in 1951/52 and came onto the market under the trade name "Biox Fluor" ( Knoll AG , Ludwigshafen). It contained ethanolamine hydrofluoride as the active ingredient . The production of the active ingredient is based on a patent from Knoll AG, inventor was Kurt Kraft. Oskar Eichler , toxicologist at the University of Heidelberg , was co-owner of the corresponding toothpaste patent (1951) together with Kraft. GABA only launched similar products a few years later .
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