UWA Dental School

Research Day 2017


The UWA Dental School Research Day was held on Friday 30th June at the Harry Perkins Institute for Medical Research to showcase the exciting research being undertaken within the School.

We were lucky to have Prof Elizabeth Geelhoed as our guest speaker, who started the day off with her presentation ‘The relevance of economics in health research and translation’. Her talk explained why economic modelling is becoming an integral part of health research and covered some fascinating issues including the effects of technology on health costs, the importance of not only efficiency but equity, and why simply spending more money on health care without assessing the benefits is not the answer.

Prof Camile Farah, Prof Linda Slack-Smith and A/Prof Robert Anthonappa then presented an overview of the research occurring in their respective research programs. These included cutting-edge clinical trials guiding surgeons to more accurately excise oral cancers, innovative programs to address oral health issues faced by vulnerable populations and novel interventions to strengthen teeth in children.

The presentations from our Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD) and Doctor of Clinical Dentistry (DCD) students, was one of the highlights of the day. A total of 17 DMD groups and 12 DCD students presented their research in short five minute talks. These sessions emphasised the breadth of research occurring in the School, with representatives from all seven research programs: Biomechanics and Biomaterials (Prof Paul Ichim), Craniofacial Biology (Dr Mithran Goonewardene), Endodontics (W/Prof Paul Abbott), Oral Health Inequalities (Prof Linda Slack-Smith), Oral Implantology and Periodontics (A/Prof Alessandro Quaranta), Oral Oncology (Prof Camile Farah) and Paediatric Oral Health (A/Prof Robert Anthonappa). The student presentations were to a high standard and generated a wealth of interesting questions.

This year students were competing to represent the School at the International Association for Dental Research (IADR) ANZ Division conference in Adelaide in September. Our judges had the difficult task of selecting two DMD groups and two DCD students as our entrants into the Colgate Competition. As part of the School’s overall investment in research, an additional 8 travel awards were also funded to allow DMD and DCD students to present their work at the conference. A full list of the awardees can be found below and we wish to congratulate both the winners and all the students who presented on the day.

Colgate Competition Entrants

  • Sharon Babic & Luke Newman, supervised by Prof Farah
  • Claudia Marino, Dave Sadri and Rainer Anderson, supervised by Prof Ichim
  • Dr Lisa Bowdin, supervised by A/Prof Anthonappa
  • Dr Abdul Husain, supervised by Prof Farah

School Travel Awardees

  • Eleanor Kim & Yu-Meng Choong, supervised by A/Prof Anthonappa and Prof Ichim
  • Joon Soo Park, supervised by A/Prof Anthonappa and Prof King
  • Jason Cheong & Sara Chiam, supervised by A/Prof Anthonappa and Prof King
  • Dina Celebic, Zi Lin Sun, Anthony Giummarra & Keenan Inderjeeth, supervised by A/Prof Quaranta and Dr Rincon
  • Caitlyn Foote, Elissa Biniecki & Grace Gilbert, supervised by W/Prof Abbott
  • Samuel Loo, Alex Ong & Karen Kim, supervised by A/Prof Quaranta, Dr Rincon
  • Dr Chaturi Neboda, supervised by A/Prof Anthonappa
  • Dr Jilen Patel, supervised by A/Prof Anthonappa

The day would not have been possible without the support of our major sponsor Henry Schein Halas and we would like to sincerely thank them. We would also like to thank our additional sponsors Thermo-Fisher, Orascoptic, Amalgadent and Gunz Dental. As always the trade displays were extremely popular and provided a great opportunity for our sponsors to showcase their products.

The feedback from staff, students, guests and industry has been extremely positive and it is encouraging to see the expansion in research capabilities within the School since last year’s Research Day. We hope to see you for Research Day in 2018!