Hiroaki Miyaji and Kazuo Machida, both of Ohtawara, Japan, and Hajime Tamura, of Tokyo-to, Japan, have developed an orthodontic wire-ligating member that is engageable with an orthodontic bracket to retain an archwire inserted into a groove in the bracket.

According to the US Patent & Trademark Office, the invention is an elastically deformable member made of a synthetic resin. It has two space-engaging portions that are detachable from the bracket. The back portion is integral with the engaging portions and is flexible enough to engage the bracket to retain the archwire. The friction between the archwire and the bracket slot is minimized, and the archwire is retained in a friction-free or low-friction state.

The inventors were issued US Patent No. 7,134,873 on November 14.

[U.S. Newswire, November 22, 2006]