In 1997 after a successful PREP Panel handling evaluation prior to the UK launch of a new compomer material, the manufacturers asked the PREP Panel to conduct a one-year clinical trial of this material.

Following ethical approval, this new undertaking went extremely well, was reported in a peer-reviewed journal and lead to a further one-year trial of a composite material.

Over 50 products have now been evaluated by the PREP Panel and to date eight clinical trial (of duration varying between one and five years)  have been undertaken.

Clinical trials in general dental practice has been the subject of controversy but all involved with the PREP Panel are convinced of the necessity for GDPs to have access to ‘real world’ data, relevant to their work.

The conduct of these clinical trials has built up an experienced team of GDPs, trained evaluators, with the provision of any required back-up, and this part of PREP Panel activity seems sure to expand.

1997/8          3M F2000 One-year trial

1999/00       ESPE Pertac II One-year trial

2001/3          Heraeus Kulzer Solitaire 2 Two-year trial

2004/10        3M ESPE Lava Five-year trial

2006/8          3M ESPE Filtek Supreme XT One-year trial (3 EU centres)

2008/9          3M ESPE Ketac N100 One-year trial

2008/14        3M ESPE Filtek Silorane Five-year trial

2010/14        3M ESPE Filtek Supreme XTE/ Easybond Three-year trial

2012/16        3M ESPE Filtek Supreme XTE/Scotchbond Universal Three-year trial