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To get a feel for what’s at stake in the U.S. trade debate, run your tongue over your molars. Implants, crowns and bridges made in places like China and Mexico compose as much as 40 percent of the $8.5 billion U.S. market for dental restorations. They sell for a fraction of U.S. prices and boost profits for group practices and the private-equity backed networks that now employ about 18 percent of American dentists. The voracious market for discount choppers, along with industry consolidation and technology advancements, has contributed during the past decade to the closing of about half of U.S. dental labs. Finishing touches are put on a denture being made in Newport Beach, California. Full story

21 April