OBJECTIVES Resin-modified glass ionomers (RMGI) have demonstrated clinical success in their ability to minimize post-operative sensitivity of restorations. RMGIs have been recently introduced as paste-liquid systems for convenience of clinical usage. The objective of this study was to measure the ability of a new paste-liquid RMGI liner/base to reduce fluid flow through human dentin. METHODS Dentin permeability was measured on human crown sections on etched dentin, using etched dentin as a model for the exposed tubules typical of root sensitivity, and permitting measurement of the maximum permeability. In the one group, the etched dentin was coated with the RMGI, and pre- and post-treatment permeability was measured on the coated dentin. In the second group, a smear layer was created on the dentin with sandpaper, then the samples were coated with the RMGI; permeability was measured on the smeared and coated dentin. Samples from each group were sectioned and examined via scanning electron microscopy (SEM). RESULTS The new paste-liquid RMGI liner/base significantly reduced fluid flow through dentin, and exhibited excellent seal on dentin with either a smear layer or open tubules. SEM images show evidence that the RMGI infiltrated the smear layer with resin during placement, penetrated dentin tubules, and formed resin tags in acid-etched dentin. CONCLUSIONS Based on these results, combined with previous research on adhesion and microleakage, it is concluded that the new RMGI liner/base should minimize post-operative sensitivity in restorations.