Characterization of the file-specific heat-treated ProTaper Ultimate rotary system

Jorge N. R. Martins, Emmanuel João Nogueira Leal Silva, Duarte Marques, Natasha Ajuz, Mário Rito Pereira, Rui Pereira da Costa, Francisco Manuel Braz Fernandes, Marco Aurélio Versiani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
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Aim: To compare design, metallurgy and mechanical performance of the ProTaper (PT) Ultimate system with instruments of similar dimensions from the ProGlider, PT Gold and PT Universal systems. Methodology: New PT Ultimate instruments (n = 248) were compared with instruments of similar dimensions from ProGlider (n = 31), PT Gold (n = 155) and PT Universal (n = 155) systems regarding their number of spirals, helical angle, blade symmetry, tip geometry, surface finishing, nickel/titanium ratio, phase transformation temperatures and mechanical performance. One-way anova and nonparametric Mood's median tests were used for statistical comparison (α = 5%). Results: All instruments had symmetrical blades without radial lands or flat sides, similar surface finishing and an almost equiatomic nickel/titanium ratio, whilst the number of spirals, helical angles and the tip geometry were different. PT Ultimate instruments showed 3 distinct heat treatments that matched with the colour of their metal wire. Slider and ProGlider instruments had similar R-phase start (Rs) and R-phase finish (Rf) temperatures. SX, F1, F2, F3 and Shaper instruments showed equivalent heat treatments (Rs ~45.6°C and Rf ~28.3°C) that were similar to their PT Gold counterparts (Rs ~47.9°C and Rf ~28.2°C), but completely distinct to the PT Universal ones (Rs ~16.2°C and Rf ~−18.2°C). Amongst the PT Ultimate instruments, the lowest maximum torques were observed in the SX (0.44 N cm), Slider (0.45 N cm) and Shaper (0.60 N cm) instruments, whilst the highest was noted in the FXL (4.90 N cm). PT Ultimate Slider and ProGlider had similar torsional (~0.40 N cm) and bending loads (~145.0 gf) (p = 1.000), whilst the other PT Ultimate instruments showed statistically significantly lower maximum torque, higher angle of rotation and lower bending load (higher flexibility) than their counterparts of the PT Universal and PT Gold systems. Conclusions: The PT Ultimate system comprises instruments with 3 distinct heat treatments that showed similar phase transformation temperatures to their heat-treated analogues. PT Ultimate instruments presented lower torsional strength and superior flexibility than their counterparts, whilst maximum torque, angle of rotation and bending loads progressively increased with their sizes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)530-542
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Endodontic Journal
Issue number4
Early online date12 Dec 2022
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2023


  • bending load
  • differential scanning calorimetry
  • endodontics
  • nickel-titanium alloy
  • scanning electron microscope
  • torsional strength


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