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News Releases 2008

Reference: An Overview of the CLEARFIL Dental Material Business

October 15, 2008
Kuraray Medical Inc.

CLEARFIL:

* Aesthetic Restoration: a treatment that restores
the appearance of beautiful, natural teeth

Kuraray Medical Inc. released CLEARFIL BOND SYSTEM F (an adhesive/filler set used for treating cavities) as its very first dentistry-related product in January 1978. Since then, Kuraray Medical has been focusing its energies on developing the CLEARFIL Series as its main line of dental products in three main areas—composite resin (fillers), bond (adhesives) and cement (luting agents)—all of which are used for repairing cavities, aesthetic restoration and other treatments. Being rated highly by dentists and academics in terms of quality, the CLEARFIL Series boasts the top share in the domestic adhesive and filler markets.

Emergence of New Trends in Dental Treatments

In recent years, the prevalent philosophy behind dental treatments has centered on "doing everything possible to retain natural teeth" and "maximizing the use of aesthetic restoration to duplicate the qualities of natural teeth."

The CLEARFIL Series of adhesive and filler materials are used to fill in only the areas of teeth that are affected by cavities and, owing to their color tones, are able to restore the appearance of natural teeth. With the release of CLEARFIL, amalgam, the previously used alloy packing material, is rapidly being replaced with plastic-based composite resins in restoration technology.

Furthermore, by prioritizing high-performance that can be maintained over the long-term, Kuraray's product development contributes to advances in dental treatment that directly translate into increases in patient quality of life.

Applying Unique Technology:

Monomer compound and polymer chemistry technologies, which have been cultivated over many years by the Kuraray Group, are being applied to the development of CLEARFIL products.

Composite resin
Special glass pulverized to a fine powder is thoroughly blended with resin, making natural aesthetic restoration possible.
Bond (adhesive)
A unique development of Kuraray, blending adhesive monomer, in tandem with the body's natural fluids, achieves superior adhesive durability.
Cement
Like bond, this blended adhesive monomer, a unique development of Kuraray, allows major restoration work to be firmly affixed to existing teeth.

Treatment Method Using CLEARFILTreatment Method Using CLEARFIL

A Globally Developing Business

Originating in Japan, CLEARFIL has developed into a leading brand. In recent years, this product series has also received high rating overseas, and has been enjoying rapid growth. Reflecting growth in overseas sales in excess of 3.8 times over the past seven years, the ratio of this series' sales accounted for from overseas now exceeds 60%. Although the maturation of the domestic market has proceeded in tandem with declining birth rates, there remains plenty of opportunity for growth overseas. Further expansion is expected based on market growth in developing regions.

Graph: Sales Transition by Region (total fiscal 2005 figures are given as 100) Total fiscal 2005=100

Regional Market Scale and Company Share (Kuraray Medical Estimates)
  Japan United States Europe
Composite resin 30% Under 5% 10%
Bond 40% 20% 10%
Cement 20% Under 5% Under 5%
Market scale of these three areas ¥10 billion ¥40 billion ¥25 billion

CLEARFIL Protect Bond is a product being launched in Europe A new brand of dental materials