Home' News Bulletin : ADA News Bulletin May 2016 Contents ADRF
Continuing to ensure
our future is bright
Recently, the Research Advisory Committee (RAC) of the Australian
Dental Research Foundation (ADRF) saw significant changes with
several members reaching their maximum eight year term.
Among these was Professor Camile Farah, Chair of the RAC who has
been an exceptionally hard-working Chair making an outstanding
contribution coordinating this committee during his eight year term.
During his term, there was significant growth in both the number of
grant applications received as well as an increase in the dollar value
of requests. Unfortunately, the amount of funds available has not
grown at the same rate.
Therefore, these grants have become increasingly competitive.
The RAC, under Camile's chairmanship, has ensured the allocation
of the limited ADRF resources has been equitable through a
rigorous peer review system. There has also been a re-alignment
of the distribution of ADRF grants to support younger students
undertaking research in dentistry, as well as established academics.
Support for their research at this early stage in their career is critical
as a foundation for future dental academics and leaders.
It is anticipated that through this mechanism, and your support of
the ADRF, the future of our profession will be bright.
Professors Neil Hunter, Kaye Roberts-Thomson and Wayne Sampson
have also completed their involvement on the RAC. Collectively,
these three outstanding dental academics have provided a wealth of
experience in dental research with expertise in very diverse areas.
Each has given freely of their time in reviewing and shepherding
grant applications and many projects have benefited from their
wisdom through support and feedback. Without the contribution of
these extraordinarily hard working, erudite individuals it is unlikely
that the RAC would have been anywhere near as successful. Their
judicious advice, remarkable acumen and expert knowledge will be
sorely missed. They leave behind a legacy of fairness and equity that
the ongoing committee will endeavour to uphold.
The work undertaken by the RAC has made possible a diverse array
of research activity. A previous criticism directed towards the ADRF
has been that the funded projects have no direct clinical outcome.
This is far from the truth as a simple review of the projects funded
over the past several years, available in the Australian Dental Journal
(ADJ) annual ADRF Special Research Supplement shows many varied
studies that translate directly into clinical practice.
The clinical utility of dental materials has been supported by the
ADRF for studies of: how particle size influences the properties
of mineral trioxide aggregate (WN Ha, et al. ADJ Volume 60 No 4
December 2015; S11); how Class II posterior composite resins placed
using different interproximal matrix systems are effective in a clinical
study (E Fisher, I Meyers. ADJ Volume 60 No 4 December 2015; S8);
the potential usefulness of all-ceramic, inlay supported fixed partial
denture (MC Thompson, et al, ADJ Volume 58 No 4 December 2013;
p 434); and, the complications of single and short span implant
supported fixed prostheses occurring in private clinical practice (HJ
Wang, et al. ADJ Volume 60 No 4 December 2015; S18).
Research regarding dental hard tissues has always been at the
forefront of Australian research, and ADRF funded studies over
recent years has allowed for this to be continued to international
leadership. ADRF has supported: studies assessing enamel
related to orthodontic brackets (NJ Cochrane, et al. ADJ Volume
58 No 4 December 2013; S11); methods for the prevention of
white spot lesions around orthodontic brackets (J Yap, et al. ADJ
Volume 59 No 4 December 2014; S28); the assessment of chemical
compositional changes of enamel during early erosion and
remineralization (ED Ports, et al. ADJ Volume 57 No 4 December
2012; S29); as well as enamel softening during early stages of wine
erosion (S Kwek, et al. ADJ Volume 59 No 4 December 2014; S32)
all of which have had direct clinical relevance.
Further, ADRF funded studies on methods for the management of
dental caries, from a prospective randomized controlled study of
the management of deep caries in primary molars (S Mistry, et al.
ADJ Volume 59 No 4 December 2014; S18); to the management of
dentine hypersensitivity (A Bradshaw, I Meyers. ADJ Volume 60 No 4
December 2015; S5); and a comparison of a remineralizing paste and
antibacterial gel to prevent early childhood caries (R Koh, et al. ADJ
Volume 59 No 4 December 2014; S17).
Periodontal disease is a major cause of tooth loss, particularly in the
expanding adult population as the baby boomers are in their 7th
and 8th decade. ADRF supported research is at the cutting edge
of novel treatment of periodontal disease with funding for such
studies assessing mesenchymal stem cells for their ability to inhibit
bone loss in periodontal disease (K Hynes, et al. ADJ Volume 58 No 4
December 2013; S18) as well as using modified hydrogel biomatrices
periodontal regeneration (SM Hamlet, et al. ADJ Volume 58 No 4
December 2013; S16).
Patients presenting in pain to dental practices is a common daily
occurrence and our ability to diagnose and manage our patient's
pain, as well as our patients' associated anxiety, is critical for
successful dental treatment. ADRF funded research over the past
several years has been undertaken to assess the prevalence of
chronic pain following successful endodontic treatment (Y Cui,
et al. ADJ Volume 59 No 4 December 2014; S10); the changes that
occur in jaw muscle pain, activity and jaw movement after stressful
34 | ADA NEWS BULLETIN | MAY 2016
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