American Association of Endodontists Announces New Incoming 2019-2020 Board Members

Posted on April 24, 2019

The American Association of Endodontists is pleased to announce its incoming board of directors, who were officially selected during the Association’s annual meeting known as AAE19 in Montréal earlier this month.

Keith V. Krell, D.D.S., M.S., M.A., will serve as the AAE’s President. Dr. Krell has been an endodontist for 38 years. He was a full time educator for 8 years at the University of Iowa and was in private practice in West Des Moines, Iowa for 29 years until he retired December 31,2017. He is still an adjunct clinical Professor in the department of Endodontics at the University of Iowa College of Dentistry. He also works part-time at Broadlawns Hospital in the Dental Department treating Medicaid patients. In 1993, he retired from the United States Army National Guard as a lieutenant colonel after 22 years of service. He is a past president of both the ABE and AAEF (now the Foundation for Endodontics).

Alan S. Law, D.D.S., Ph.D., will serve as vice president. Dr. Law received his Doctor of Dental Surgery and Certificate in Endodontics from the University of Iowa College of Dentistry, Iowa City, Iowa. He completed his Ph.D. with the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Iowa. Dr. Law has published several articles in scientific and clinical journals. He is in full–time practice in the Twin Cities with The Dental Specialists, a multi-specialty dental practice, and is an adjunct associate professor in the Division of Endodontics at the University of Minnesota.

Craig S. Hirschberg, D.D.S., will serve as secretary. He is the chair of the Department of Endodontics at Rutgers School of Dental Medicine. He received his Bachelor of Science from the University of Cincinnati. Dr. Hirschberg pursued his dental education at New York University College of Dentistry, where he earned his D.D.S. in 1980.

Paul A. Falcon, D.M.D., M.S., will represent District II. Dr. Falcon holds an undergraduate and master’s degree in Chemical Engineering from NJ Institute of Technology. His dental training is from NJ Dental School (now Rutgers School of Dental Medicine) and he completed undergraduate studies in 1981 and Certificate in Endodontics in 1983. Dr Falcon was ABE certified in 1992. He still maintains private part-time practice limited to endodontics and is director of the Advanced Specialty Education Program in Endodontics at Rutgers School of Dental Medicine.

Michael J. Mintz, D.D.S., will represent District IV. Dr. Mintz is an active member in many dental groups and societies. He is also an assistant professor of endodontics at the University of Illinois, College of Dentistry. He currently practices in Illinois and Indiana. Dr. Mintz attended Indiana University School of Dentistry and received his D.D.S. in 1986.

Bradley H. Gettleman, D.D.S., M.S., will represent District V. Dr. Gettleman earned his dental degree from the University of Missouri, in Kansas City. He finished his master’s degree and endodontic residency at the University of Minnesota. He has published numerous articles on endodontic therapy, and has a private practice in Arizona.

Kirk A. Coury, D.D.S., M.S., will represent District V. He attended Texas Tech University and received his D.D.S. degree from Baylor College of Dentistry in 1987. He received his Certificate in endodontics, and a master's degree in dentistry in 1990 from the University of Texas Health Science Center - Houston. Later that year, he opened his practice in Amarillo, Texas, as the first endodontist of the Panhandle area. In 1996, Dr. Coury and his partner Dr. James Douthitt formed Amarillo Endodontics. Dr. Coury is active in all levels of organized dentistry and currently serves as treasurer of the Foundation for Endodontics.

Kenneth B. Wiltbank, D.M.D., will represent District VI. Dr. Wiltbank attended dental school at the Oregon Health and Sciences University and graduated in the class of 1998. After seven years working in Beaverton/Tigard as a general dentist, he returned to school at the University of Texas, Health Sciences Center at San Antonio, where he completed a residency in endodontics (Class of 2007). He is a Diplomate of the American Board of Endodontics. He is a member of and volunteers in the American Association of Endodontists in the capacity of a representative to the American Dental Association’s Codes Maintenance Committee and to the American Association of Dental Consultants.

About the American Association of Endodontists

The American Association of Endodontists, headquartered in Chicago, Ill., represents more than 8,000 members worldwide. Endodontics is one of nine dental specialties formally recognized by the American Dental Association. The AAE, founded in 1943, is dedicated to excellence in the art and science of endodontics and to the highest standard of patient care. The Association inspires its members to pursue professional advancement and personal fulfillment through education, research, advocacy, leadership, communication and service. For more information about the AAE, visit the Association’s website at

AAO to Host its 2019 Annual Session in Los Angeles

Posted on April 24, 2019

The American Association of Orthodontists’ (AAO) 2019 Annual Session will be held May 3-7 at the Los Angeles Convention Center in Los Angeles, California, with an expected attendance of 16,000, including more than 4,400 international attendees representing 96 countries. Orthodontists and their professional staff members will gather for five days of learning, discussion, study and collaboration. More than 240 lectures will be presented during the Annual Session by the world’s leading orthodontic clinicians, researchers and experts in practice management.

As the oldest and largest dental specialty organization in the world, the AAO is dedicated to providing unparalleled continuing education opportunities to support excellence in patient care among its more than 19,000 members in the U.S., Canada and abroad. AAO orthodontists are dentistry’s specialists in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics.

“The 2019 AAO Annual Session is an incomparable opportunity to gain knowledge and insights into emerging treatment topics that will benefit orthodontists at all stages of their careers,” said AAO president Brent Larson, DDS, MS. “While we hope members can attend in person, we recognize that not everyone is able to be present. Those individuals can take advantage of livestreaming of four half-day lectures on Saturday and Sunday, May 4 and 5, and earn up to 12 hours of CE. Topics will include Sleep Apnea, Pre-adolescent Treatment, and Evidence/Advances.” Find details here.

The AAO Annual Session Exhibit Hall, the largest show of its kind in the world, will be open Saturday, May 4 through Tuesday, May 7. More than 350 exhibitors will fill nearly 125,000 sq. ft. of space in the Exhibit Hall to showcase the products and services that are essential to contemporary orthodontic practices.

Special events offered exclusively to 2019 AAO Annual Session attendees include a performance by the World Classic Rockers at the May 4 Opening Ceremonies; and two May 5 events, a keynote speech by renowned filmmaker Ron Howard at the Excellence in Orthodontics Luncheon and Awards Ceremony, and that evening’s AAO Celebration featuring Tom Thumb & the Hitchhikers, a rock band comprised of orthodontists.

AAO Named Lectures

Highly anticipated lectures that are named for pioneering orthodontists will be presented Saturday, May 4.

Jacob A. Salzmann Lecture – Hugo de Clerck, DDS, PhD, of Brussels, Belgium;

“Miniplate Skeletal Anchorage: An Update and New Perspectives.”

Edward H. Angle Lecture – Peter Buschang, PhD, of Dallas, Texas; “Thirty Years of Achievements: Our Proudest Moments.”

John Valentine Mershon Lecture – Greg Huang, DMD, MSD, MPH, of Seattle, Washington; “Results from the National Dental Practice Based Research Networks (PBRN) Adult Anterior Openbite Study.”

Awards Recipients and Ceremony

Outstanding individuals and their accomplishments will be celebrated at the Excellence in Orthodontics Awards Ceremony and Luncheon on Sunday, May 5.

Jaime de Jesús-Viñas, DMD, MS, of San Juan, Puerto Rico, is the recipient of the 2019 James E. Brophy AAO Distinguished Service Award. It is presented to those who have made contributions to orthodontics in addition to other valuable and devoted services to the AAO and to its membership.

Peter Buschang, PhD, of Dallas, Texas will be presented the Lifetime Achievement Award in Orthodontic Research, which recognizes significant contributions to the science related to the specialty of orthodontics over the course of the recipient’s lifetime.

J. Moody Alexander, DDS, MS, of Arlington, Texas will receive the AAO 2019 Humanitarian Award. The award recognizes significant contributions to improve the quality of human life that extends beyond the usual scope of private practice, academic functions or organized dentistry.

Mr. Paul Gange, Sr., president of Reliance Orthodontic Products, will be the first to be awarded the AAO Outstanding Contribution Award. This new award recognizes outstanding service to the specialty of orthodontics made by a non-orthodontist.

Anne Marie Kuijpers-Jagtman, DDS, PhD, of Nijmegen, The Netherlands, will be presented the 2019 Louise Ada Jarabak Memorial International Teachers and Research Award presented by the American Association of Orthodontists Foundation for her significant contributions to orthodontic teaching and research.

Michael Riolo, DDS, MS, of Seattle, Washington, will receive the 2019 Albert H. Ketcham Memorial Award, presented annually by the American Board of Orthodontics to an orthodontist who has made a notable contribution to the science and art of orthodontists.

“We hope the 2019 AAO Annual Session is a wonderful and memorable experience for all attendees,” Dr. Larson said.

Detailed information on speakers, lectures and workshops is offered at Registration is available at

About the American Association of Orthodontists

Members of the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) help children, teenagers and adults achieve healthy, beautiful smiles.

Orthodontists are uniquely qualified specialists who diagnose, prevent and treat dental and facial irregularities to correctly align teeth and jaws. Orthodontists receive an additional two to three academic years of specialized education beyond dental school at an accredited orthodontic residency program.

Founded in 1900, the AAO is the world’s oldest and largest dental specialty organization. It represents more than 19,000 orthodontist members throughout the United States, Canada and abroad. The AAO encourages and sponsors key research to enable its members to provide the highest quality of care to patients, and is committed to educating the public about the need for, and benefits of, orthodontic treatment. Comprehensive orthodontic treatment is a complex medical process, and the AAO has long held the position that it is in the best, and safest, interest of the public to have that treatment conducted under the direct and ongoing supervision of a licensed orthodontist.

Only orthodontists qualify for AAO membership. For more information, and to find AAO orthodontists, visit

Calcium Deficiency in Cells Due to ORAI1 Gene Mutation Leads to Damaged Tooth Enamel

Posted on April 23, 2019

A mutation in the ORAI1 gene—studied in a human patient and mice—leads to a loss of calcium in enamel cells and results in defective dental enamel mineralization, finds a study led by researchers at NYU College of Dentistry.

The study, published April 23 in Science Signaling, identifies ORAI1 as the dominant protein for calcium influx and reveals the mechanisms by which calcium influx affects enamel cell function and the formation of tooth enamel.

Calcium is critical for many cellular functions, including mineralizing teeth and bones. Calcium enters cells via ORAI proteins, which form pores in a cell’s plasma membrane to enable calcium influx when activated. 

“Our previous research has shown that deficiencies in the modulation of calcium influx or calcium transport result in dental enamel malformation,” said Rodrigo Lacruz, PhD, associate professor of basic science and craniofacial biology at NYU College of Dentistry and the study’s senior author. “Despite this knowledge, the biology of enamel cells as it relates to the role of calcium signaling remains poorly understood.”

Studies show that several genes, including ORAI (which encode ORAI proteins), are involved in the formation of tooth enamel. Enamel—the hard, outer layer of teeth—first forms as a soft, gel-like matrix. ORAI proteins then help the enamel-forming cells to mineralize. 

Mutations in the human ORAI1 gene result in immune dysfunction and immune diseases, but people with ORAI1 mutations also have defects in their tooth enamel. In this study, the researchers investigated the case of a patient with a complex medical history, including combined immunodeficiency and a mutation in the ORAI1 gene. Throughout his childhood, the patient had defects on his tooth enamel, resulting in severe cavities and related dental abscesses. Based on his clinical presentation, the researchers concluded that the ORAI1 mutation likely accounted for the defective enamel mineralization. 

Given the lack of dental samples from patients with ORAI1 mutations, Lacruz and his colleagues then developed mouse models to study the role of ORAI proteins in enamel formation, both by observing tooth enamel and examining its influence on the environment inside enamel cells.

The researchers studied the ORAI family of proteins (ORAI1, ORAI2, and ORAI3) and genetic mutations in the corresponding genes to investigate the mechanism by which calcium is modulated by each of these proteins. When mice had a mutation in the ORAI1 gene and were therefore deficient in ORAI1 protein, calcium entry into enamel cells was significantly reduced (by roughly 50 percent), and tooth enamel was abnormal, including cracks in the outer enamel layer. By contrast, mice with ORAI2 mutations and ORAI2 deficiency showed an increase in calcium by approximately 30 percent in the enamel cells, which did not result in obvious enamel defects. This suggests that ORAI1 is the dominant channel for modulating the influx of calcium into enamel cells.


To better understand how calcium influx—and conversely, deficiency in calcium—changes the functioning of enamel cells, the researchers examined the activity of cells lacking ORAI1. They found that calcium dysregulation in ORAI1-deficient cells affects their function at multiple levels, including increased mitochondrial respiration and subsequent changes in redox balance. An elevation in reactive oxygen species can be detrimental to cells, and to protect proteins in an intracellular environment that is more oxidizing, a mechanism called S-glutathionylation is promoted.

The findings provide a foundational understanding of what happens in enamel cells, which could help create a pathway for researchers interested in regenerating tooth enamel or developing therapies to treat patients with enamel defects.

“We’ve long observed deficiencies in tooth enamel associated with abnormal calcium levels in the enamel cells, but can now detail a mechanism for how this occurs,” said Lacruz.

In addition to Lacruz, study authors include Miriam Eckstein, Francisco Aulestia, Veronica Costiniti, Serena Kassam, Timothy Bromage, and Amr Moursi of NYU College of Dentistry; Martin Vaeth and Stefan Feske of NYU School of Medicine; Pal Pedersen of Carl Zeiss Microscopy, LLC; Youssef Idaghdour of NYU Abu Dhabi; and Thomas Issekutz of Dalhousie University. This research was funded by the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (DE025639, DE027679) and National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (AI097302, AI130143, AI107448).

About NYU College of Dentistry

Founded in 1865, New York University College of Dentistry (NYU Dentistry) is the third oldest and the largest dental school in the US, educating 9 percent of the nation’s dentists. NYU Dentistry has a significant global reach with a highly diverse student body. Visit for more.

Nursing, Dental, and Medical Students Train Together to Improve Kids’ Oral Health

Posted on April 23, 2019

Nursing, medical, and dental students can work as a team to improve their knowledge of pediatric oral health—and how to work with their fellow health professionals, finds new research led by NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing. The study appears in the Journal of Dental Education.

Cavities are the most common chronic childhood disease. Over the past two decades, reports and policies have called for pediatric primary care providers to incorporate oral health into their well visits, including screening and referring children to dentists.  Despite these efforts, many primary care providers are not integrating oral health into patient visits, and some report feeling unprepared or uncomfortable in this role.

To improve interprofessional skills and collaboration between primary care and dental providers, NYU Meyers’ Oral Health Nursing Education and Practice (OHNEP) program–which works to help nurses and other health professionals incorporate oral health into patient care—developed an innovative pediatric oral health clinical experience.

In the interprofessional experience, family nurse practitioner, medical, and dental students work as a team to assess patients. Together they review a patient’s chart, take a patient’s medical and dental history, perform an oral assessment, apply fluoride varnish, and educate children and parents. Students also learn to identify the connection between oral health and overall health—for instance, how certain diseases or medications can affect oral health. The goal is to increase the oral health knowledge and skills of non-dental primary care providers while boosting dental students’ knowledge about the link between oral and systemic health.

“Collaborative, workplace-ready students are valuable assets to any clinical team. Our goal is for team-based, whole person care to become the norm for promoting children’s oral health and preventing cavities,” said Erin Hartnett, DNP, PPCNP-BC, CPNP, director of OHNEP at NYU Meyers and the study’s lead author.

Over three semesters, a total of 162 family nurse practitioner, dental, and medical students participated in this interprofessional experience at a New York City hospital. Students completed surveys before and after their participation to evaluate whether their interprofessional competencies changed.

The researchers found that all students had significantly improved interprofessional competency scores after the team-based experience. This includes improvements in important factors for working with other professionals, such as communication, collaboration, conflict management, team functioning, and using a patient-centered approach.

“Our findings suggest that a team-based, clinical approach can be an effective strategy to help health professional students develop interprofessional competencies,” said Judith Haber, PhD, APRN-BC, FAAN, the Ursula Springer Leadership Professor in Nursing at NYU Meyers, executive director of OHNEP, and the study’s coauthor.

In addition to Hartnett and Haber, study authors include Peter Catapano of Bellevue Hospital Center, NYU School of Medicine, and NYU College of Dentistry; Nancy Dougherty, Amr Moursi, and Courtney Chinn of NYU College of Dentistry; Ramin Kashani of NYU College of Dentistry and Bellevue; Cindy Osman of NYU School of Medicine and Bellevue; and Abigail Bella of NYU Meyers.

The interprofessional experience is part of NYU Meyers’ Teaching Oral-Systemic Health program, funded by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) (grant #D09HP25019).

About NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing (@NYUNursing)

NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing is a global leader in nursing and health. Founded in 1932, the College offers BS, MS, DNP, and PhD degree programs providing the educational foundation to prepare the next generation of nursing leaders and researchers. NYU Meyers has three programs ranked in the top 10 by U.S. News & World Report and is among the top five nursing schools receiving NIH funding, thanks to its research mission and commitment to innovative approaches to healthcare worldwide.

National Dental Laboratory Associations Celebrate June as Dental Technician and CDT Appreciation Month

Posted on April 22, 2019

The National Association of Dental Laboratories (NADL) and the National Board for Certification in Dental Laboratory Technology (NBC) celebrate June as Dental Technician and Certified Dental Technician (CDT) Appreciation Month.

Dental technicians bring considerable experience and subject matter expertise in the areas of dental materials, technology utilization, shade verification, and restorative dentistry. Although generally operating behind the scenes of the oral health team, dental technicians are a crucial part of ensuring delivery of quality dental care.

 “Dental technicians perform an incredible service in our mission to assist our dentists and clients in effectively treating patients in need,” shared Travis Zick, 2019 NADL President. “Technicians who take the initiative to earn their CDT designation demonstrate a higher level of commitment and pride in our profession. Having the CDT designation also shows their peers and clients that they have a proven knowledge and understanding of dental laboratory fundamentals. We encourage all of our technicians to pursue their CDT if they intend to pursue a career in dental technology.”

NADL seeks to inform dentists and patients of the important role of the dental laboratory technician and dental laboratory through its What’s In Your Mouth campaign. In the US, most states set no minimum standards for persons to be employed as dental technicians. In fact, only four states in the US require either certification or continuing education for dental technicians.

“Being a Certified Dental Technician means that I challenged myself to achieve this recognition and I continue to maintain a high standard of excellence in my profession,” said 2019 NBC Chair Morris Fucarino, CDT. “I am proud to be a CDT and have a great admiration for those who have and continue to challenge themselves in pursuing and maintaining the CDT designation. It is important for our profession to have a standard of excellence and certification can serve as a demonstration of knowledge and skill in our field.”

The NBC is an independent certification organization dedicated to improving the quality of dental laboratory technology through voluntary testing and certification of dental laboratories and technicians. This is the only voluntary certification program for dental laboratory technicians recognized by the American Dental Association.

The CDT designation demonstrates a mastery of the knowledge and applied skills needed in dental technology. It illustrates a technician's commitment to the field of dental technology and demonstrates their knowledge in six specialty areas: ceramics, complete dentures, crown and bridge, orthodontics, partial dentures, and implants.

NADL is the unified voice of the dental laboratory industry, supporting dentistry and serving the public interest by promoting high standards. NADL accomplishes this by providing programs, services, and networking opportunities to meet the evolving technical, educational, professional, and business needs of dental laboratories.

The month of June is dedicated to dental technicians and Certified Dental Technicians. Help spread the word on Dental Technician and CDT Appreciation Month by liking and following the NADL and NBC Facebook pages and by sharing our posts. Feel free to post on your own social media pages and be sure to tag NADL or NBC. 

Dentsply Sirona sells Futuredontics to Congdon Street LLC

Posted on April 19, 2019

The divestment of Futuredontics is part of Dentsply Sirona’s plan to focus on the core business and deliver innovation.

“We are very happy that Congdon Street LLC will take over the ownership of Futuredontics. Fred Joyal is well-known and appreciated within the company and the industry and has strongly contributed to the success of the company in the past,” comments Walter Petersohn, Chief Commercial Officer at Dentsply Sirona. “We are convinced that with Congdon Street LLC as new owner of the company, Futuredontics will continue its success story. We look forward to continue working with Fred Joyal and the Futuredontics team.”

“We are extremely pleased that this transaction creates an opportunity from which both sides will benefit,” says Fred Joyal, of Congdon Street LLC and former CEO and Co-Founder of Futuredontics. “Futuredontics will remain an important partner of Dentsply Sirona while, at the same time, we will be able to focus even stronger on our own specific customer base and further develop our company as an independent business. The Futuredontics team and I are eager to serve our customers in new and exciting ways.”

The parties have agreed not to disclose financial terms of the transaction.

Founded in 1986 in the U.S., Futuredontics is the parent company of 1-800-DENTIST, the premier consumer brand in dental marketing, as well as a new online consumer destination for dentistry (, and a sophisticated patient communications software product (PatientActivator). Futuredontics optimizes the dental patient lifecycle by coupling world-class marketing and office support services with unparalleled service. The company is based in Los Angeles and has 150 employees. Fred Joyal co-founded 1-800-DENTIST in 1986 and is a renowned industry expert and veteran.

Congdon Street LLC is an investment company focused on the health care industry.


Dentsply Sirona is the world’s largest manufacturer of professional dental products and technologies, with over a century of innovation and service to the dental industry and patients worldwide. Dentsply Sirona develops, manufactures, and markets a comprehensive solutions offering including dental and oral health products as well as other consumable medical devices under a strong portfolio of world class brands. As The Dental Solutions Company™, Dentsply Sirona’s products provide innovative, high-quality and effective solutions to advance patient care and deliver better, safer and faster dental care. Dentsply Sirona’s global headquarters is located in York, Pennsylvania, and the international headquarters is based in Salzburg, Austria. The company’s shares are listed in the United States on NASDAQ under the symbol XRAY

Visit for more information about Dentsply Sirona and its products. 


This information and any attachment thereto contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements are not guarantees of future performance. These forward-looking statements reflect views and assumptions regarding expectations and projections about future events and are based on currently available information or information available on the date of any document incorporated by reference. You can generally identify these forward-looking statements by the use of words such as "may," "could," "estimate," "will," "believe," "anticipate," "think," "intend," "expect," "project," "plan," "target," "forecast", and similar words and expressions. However, these words are not the exclusive means of identifying such statements. In addition, any statements that refer to expectations, projections or other characterizations of future events or circumstances are forward-looking statements and may include statements relating to future revenues, expenses, margins, profitability, net income/(loss), earnings per share and other measures of results of operations and the prospects of future growth of our business. These forward-looking statements are inherently subject to uncertainties, risks and changes in circumstances that are difficult to predict. For a discussion of such risks, uncertainties and other matters that could cause actual results to differ materially, including risks relating to, among other factors, the market for dental products and services, pricing, future sales volume of the Company's products, the possibility of changing economic, market and competitive conditions, dependence on products, dependence on key personnel, technological developments, intense competition, market uncertainties, dependence on distributors, ability to manage growth, dependence on key suppliers, dependence on key members of management, government regulation, our ability to integrate the businesses of Dentsply Sirona, acquisitions and affiliations, readers are urged to carefully review and consider various disclosures made by the Company and Dentsply Sirona in their public filings, including in their Annual Reports on Form 10-K and in their reports on Forms 10-Q and 8-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on such statements, which speak only as of the date hereof. Except as required by law, the Company does not assume any obligation to update any forward-looking statements contained in this document or the attachments to reflect new information or future events or developments after the date any such statement is made. 

Academy of Laser Dentistry Installs New President & Officers During Annual Meeting in Dallas

Posted on April 19, 2019

The Academy of Laser Dentistry (ALD) the only independent and unbiased non-profit association dedicated to improving patient care with the proper use of laser technology, recently installed its new president and officers for 2019-2020. The announcement was made during the ALD’s recent 26th annual meeting in Dallas.

 Mel Burchman, DDS, President: Dr. Burchman has maintained a private dental practice in Langhorne, Pennsylvania, for 38 years. He has been using lasers for more than 18 years and has 8 lasers in his office. He has served on the Board of Directors for one 3-year term, and in numerous chairmanship positions including 2019 Conference Chair for the Annual Meeting, and as Certification Committee Chair, Secretary and Treasurer. Dr. Burchman has volunteered as a mentor and examiner for more than 15 years. In 2012, he was the honored recipient of the ALD Leon Goldman Award for Clinical Excellence. Dr. Burchman also holds ALD Mastership status.

Ed Kusek, DDS, President-Elect: Dr. Kusek graduated from the University of Nebraska College of Dentistry in 1984. He has served as ALD Communications Chair and Testing subcommittee Chair. He holds the titles of Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology/Implant Dentistry, Fellow of the American Academy of Implant Dentistry, Mastership in Academy of General Dentistry and Academy of Laser Dentistry, and Diplomate of the International Congress of Oral Implantologists. Dr. Kusek is in private general practice in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

Arun Darbar, BDS, DGDP (UK), Treasurer: Dr. Darbar is at the forefront of laser dentistry in the United Kingdom and lectures on the subject worldwide. He has been a clinical laser user for nearly 25 years and provides cutting-edge dentistry to his patients. Dr. Darbar is an accredited member of the British Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry Credentialing Committee. He holds ALD Mastership and Educator status and has served as co-chair of Education and Certification, and International Relations Committees. He is a published author, and some of his concepts in low-level laser therapy (LLLT) data have been published as proceedings of SPIE in 2006, 2007, and 2009/10; WALT 2008 South Africa and 2012 Australia; and in UK dental publications. Dr. Darbar is the first and only laser dentist in the UK to be invited to the House of Lords for a charity fundraiser organized by Lasers for Life. Dr. Darbar maintains a private dental practice in Leighton Buzzard, UK.

Samuel B. Low, DDS, MS, M.Ed., Secretary: Dr. Low is Professor Emeritus, University of Florida College of Dentistry, and Associate faculty member of the Pankey Institute with 30 years of private practice experience in periodontics and implant placement and 12 years with laser management of the periodontal patient. He is also a Diplomate of the American Board of Periodontology and past President of the American Academy of Periodontology. Dr. Low provides dentists and dental hygienists with the tools for successfully managing the periodontal patient in general and periodontal practices and is affiliated with the Florida Probe Corporation. He was selected “Dentist of the Year” by the Florida Dental Association, Distinguished Alumnus by the University of Texas Dental School, and recipient of the Gordon Christensen Lecturer Recognition Award. He is a Past President of the Florida Dental Association and past Trustee of the American Dental Association.

Raminta Mastis, DDS, Immediate Past President: Dr. Mastis graduated from the University of Illinois College of Dentistry in 1987. She maintains a private dental practice, Michigan Cosmetic and Laser Dentistry, in St. Clair Shores, Michigan. Raminta previously served in each Officer role as ALD President 2018, President-Elect 2017, Vice President 2016, Treasurer 2015 and Secretary in 2014. Prior to her service as an Officer, Dr. Mastis served as Co-Chair of Certification and Education Committees, Chair of Laser Safety and Communications Committees, and was the 2014 General & Scientific Sessions Chair of the Annual Meeting. Dr. Mastis has been using lasers since 2000 and has 18 lasers of various wavelengths in her practice. She holds ALD Standard Proficiency certifications in Er:YAG, diode, Er,Cr:YSGG, and CO2 laser wavelengths, and has achieved ALD Advanced Proficiency in the Er:YAG wavelength. In addition to laser dentistry, her practice is focused on implant surgery and restoration, laser dentistry, esthetic and cosmetic dentistry, and integration of advanced technologies into practice. Dr. Mastis also holds ALD Mastership status.

Gail S. Siminovsky, CAE, Executive Director: Ms. Siminovsky is a leadership professional and has served as executive director of the Academy of Laser Dentistry since 1999. She raises awareness of the role of lasers as beneficial tools that dentists and hygienists have for treating dental disease. Gail serves the ALD Board as an advisor and is a member of ALD’s 22 committees. She earned and maintains the credential Certified Association Executive (CAE) from the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) and served on ASAE’s Small Staff Advisory Committee. Gail graduated from the State University of New York in Binghamton, serves on the Board of Directors for the Florida Society of Association Executives (FSAE), and is a member of the American Dental Association’s Committee on Dental Meetings and National Coalition of General Dental Organizations (NCGDO). Gail has a passion for helping dentists revitalize the way they interact with patients by providing new and improved solutions for dental care. She speaks on governance and board leadership, building strategic alliances, and the importance of associations being knowledge brokers.

Note: These newly-installed ALD officers will serve a term that concludes with the installation of a new slate of officers during ALD 2020 in San Diego, that will take place from April 4-6th, 2020. For more information about ALD leadership, click here.

About the Academy of Laser Dentistry: The Academy of Laser Dentistry (ALD) is the only independent and unbiased non-profit association devoted to laser dentistry and includes clinicians, academicians and researchers in all laser wavelengths. The Academy is devoted to clinical education, research, and the development of standards and guidelines for the safe and effective use of dental laser technology. ALD was founded in 1993, with the merging of the International Academy of Laser Dentistry, the North American Academy of Laser Dentistry and the American Academy of Laser Dentistry. For more information, visit


Culp Among Four Resident Experts at Dawson

Posted on April 17, 2019

Lee Culp, CDT, has been appointed Resident Expert of Digital Protocols for The Dawson Academy. Culp, CEO of Sculpture Studios in Cary, North Carolina, serves on the Editorial Advisory Boards of Inside Dental Technology, Inside Dentistry, and Compendium of Continuing Education in Dentistry. He joined The Dawson Academy faculty in 2018.

Culp was one of four resident experts named to guide The Academy’s growth in four disciplines of dentistry, leading some of the current curriculum and developing courses that expand on the principles of occlusion. Kim Daxon, DDS, was named resident of removable prosthodontics; Scott Finlay, DDS, FAGD, FAACD, was named resident expert of esthetics and DeWitt Wilkerson, DMD, was named resident expert of airway and integrative dental medicine.

“Our resident experts are industry leaders who are well-respected for their work and teachings in their area of clinical expertise,” says John Cranham, DDS, Clinical Director of The Dawson Academy. “They will play a key role in helping The Academy provide more highly acclaimed courses for today’s dentists, which build upon our core philosophies."

Zimmer Biomet and RTI Surgical® Partner with AAID Foundation to Expand Access to Dental Care for Veterans

Posted on April 17, 2019

Zimmer Biomet and RTI Surgical Holdings, Inc. today announced they are donating a supply of dental implants and wound care products to the American Academy of Implant Dentistry Foundation (AAIDF) for an initiative benefitting veterans of the United States Armed Forces. The AAIDF is the charitable arm of the American Academy of Implant Dentistry, a Chicago-based professional organization that advances the science and practice of implant dentistry through education and research support and serves as the credentialing standard for implant dentistry. Under the new partnership, Zimmer Biomet, through its Dental division, donated thousands of collagen wound care products that will be used in socket preservation procedures preparing veterans to receive dental implant therapy. RTI’s donation includes allograft implants that provide options for veterans undergoing dental implant surgery.

“While we are proud to serve patients around the globe, as a U.S.-based company, we are honored to help restore quality of life to the men and women who have bravely protected us,” said Mike Ursu, MD, Global Associate Director, Professional Relations, Zimmer Biomet Dental.

The AAIDF and company partners will announce the partnership at an event hosted at Zimmer Biomet Dental’s Palm Beach Gardens headquarters on Tuesday, April 16. Attendees will include Congressman Brian Mast (R-FL 18th District), leaders of global medical technology companies and the AAIDF, and guest veterans.

“A person’s dental health has a significant impact on their overall health and quality of life,” said Olivier Visa, Vice President, OEM, Sports and Donor Services, RTI Surgical. “We are privileged to join Zimmer Biomet to give back to our nation’s veterans by helping improve their access to quality dental care.”

For some patient populations, including U.S. veterans, with higher rates of pre-existing conditions such as diabetes, arthritis and certain cancers, the material used for implants plays a significant role in promoting enhanced bone healing.1,2,3 With the support and resources provided through the AAIDF initiative, dental procedures will be available to even more veterans.

“Giving something as simple as a smile to those who have given and sacrificed so much for this country is an honor. Humanitarian efforts are important to the AAID Foundation Board, and we look forward to expanding programs to support our country’s heroes,” says Larry Bush, DDS, FAAID, DABIO/ID, Foundation Chairman.

Natalie Wong, DDS, FAAID, DABOI/ID, AAID President, agrees: “The AAID is proud to ask our approximately 800 credentialed members to help implement this new initiative from our Foundation, to help veterans feel more confident about their smiles.”

Wound care products donated by Zimmer Biomet include RegenePro® Plug and RegenePro® Sponge, which are made of 100 percent purified Type I Bovine Collagen. Through a proprietary manufacturing technology, these products take the shape of the wound, absorb the fluids to stabilize it, and help to accelerate healing.

Items donated by RTI will include several implants manufactured by RTI and distributed by Zimmer Biomet as part of an OEM partnership between the two companies. RTI’s donation includes Puros Demineralized Bone Matrix Putty, Puros Cortical Particulate Allograft and Puros Cancellous Particulate Allograft, among others. RTI offers comprehensive services to its OEM partners, from concept initiation and development through processing and manufacturing.

About the AAID Foundation

The AAID Foundation was started in 1982 with a mission to further the science of oral implantology through research and education and to support the delivery of implant care through humanitarian efforts. The AAID Foundation is a 501(c)(3) public charity that awards grands each year to the dental students and those in post-graduate and residency programs. The Foundation is supported by generous donations from AAID members and corporate sponsors. For more information contact the Foundation at or by calling 312.925.1388. Our website is

About Zimmer Biomet

Founded in 1927 and headquartered in Warsaw, Indiana, Zimmer Biomet is a global leader in musculoskeletal healthcare. We design, manufacture and market orthopaedic reconstructive products; sports medicine, biologics, extremities and trauma products; office-based technologies; spine, craniomaxillofacial and thoracic products; dental implants; and related surgical products.

We collaborate with healthcare professionals around the globe to advance the pace of innovation. Our products and solutions help treat patients suffering from disorders of, or injuries to, bones, joints or supporting soft tissues. Together with healthcare professionals, we help millions of people live better lives.

We have operations in more than 25 countries around the world and sell products in more than 100 countries. For more information, visit or follow Zimmer Biomet on Twitter at

About RTI Surgical Holdings, Inc.

RTI Surgical is a leading global surgical implant company providing surgeons with safe biologic, metal and synthetic implants. Committed to delivering a higher standard, RTI’s implants are used in sports medicine, general surgery, spine, orthopedic and trauma procedures and are distributed in nearly 50 countries. RTI has four manufacturing facilities throughout the U.S. and Europe. RTI is accredited in the U.S. by the American Association of Tissue Banks and is a member of AdvaMed. For more information, please visit Connect with us on LinkedIn and Twitter.


1. Liu Y, Sayam S, Shao X, et al. Prevalence of and Trends in Diabetes Among Veterans, United States, 2005-2014. Prev Chronic Dis. 2017;14:E135.

2. Office of Research & Development. (n.d.). Retrieved April 4, 2019, from

3. Zhu K, Devesa SS, Wu H, et al. Cancer incidence in the U.S. military population: comparison with rates from the SEER program. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2009;18(6):1740-5.

Goccles® Early Oral Cancer Screening Device Announced as Winner of 2019 Edison Best New Product Silver Award

Posted on April 17, 2019

Pierrel Pharma S.r.l. received recognition from the Edison Awards™, a prestigious organization known for acknowledging innovation, creativity, and ingenuity in the global economy, for its advanced, early oral cancer screening device: Goccles®. The FDA-approved medical device is used in combination with traditional examination to help identify early signs of oral cancer. The eyewear utilizes a patented optical filter with a standard curing light, exposing the fluorescence of healthy mucosa and potentially suspicious pre-cancerous and cancerous lesions. With Goccles, there is no need to purchase additional consumables for use and its price point is relatively low in comparison to similar devices. Goccles is supported by clinical studies and has received an excellent clinical evaluation from Dental Advisor.

Pierrel Pharma’s chief executive officer, Fabio Velotti (Capua, Italy) attributes the Best New Product Silver Award™ win to the company’s dedication to research and development, as well as its overall mission to create better dental healthcare experiences for professionals and patients. He said, “I am so proud of Goccles and how it is transforming the oral cancer screening process on the dental side. As time passes, I believe we will see a major shift in dental professionals’ attitudes towards their role in early detection of oral cancer.” He continued, “Pierrel Pharma is known for developing Orabloc®, a leading anesthetic product for dental procedures, which since marketed is now used by 1 out of every 4 US dentists. I look forward to the day Goccles becomes a ‘household name’ in its own right among dental professionals.” Goccles was launched in the US in 2018, and is available through all major distributors, including Patterson Dental, Henry Schein, Benco Dental, and Darby Dental.

About the Edison Awards™

The Edison Awards honor global leaders in innovation across different disciplines, presenting awards in different categories. Winners of Edison Awards represent the best of the best technologies that have the power to impact the world and change lives. In a press announcement, Edison Awards’ executive director, Frank Bonafilia, said in a statement, “After 32 years, it never ceases to amaze us how innovations that we could only dream about become our reality. Once again, the winners created innovations that are revolutionizing industries and becoming indispensable.” The Edison Awards was originally established in 1987 by the American Marketing Association, and since 2008 has been an independent organization.

About Pierrel Pharma S.r.l.

Pierrel Pharma is the parent company of Pierrel Group which manages new drug product development, registration, marketing, and commercialization of Pierrel branded dental anesthetics. Pierrel has more than 30 years’ experience in the development and manufacturing of dental anesthetics for the international market. Following a 2008 reorganization of Pierrel Group business development and marketing strategies, Pierrel has introduced a full range of state-of-the-art dental anesthetics in Italy. Today, Pierrel is in rapid expansion throughout the world. For more information about Goccles by Pierrel Pharma, please visit

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