The Foundation for Endodontics has named Annie Shrestha, BDS, MSc, PhD, the recipient of its Research Fellowship Award. The first of its kind in endodontic research, the Foundation says, the award was made possible by Dentsply Sirona. Shrestha is an assistant professor with the University of Toronto Faculty of Dentistry.
The Research Fellowship Award was developed in early 2019 to recruit and cultivate the next generation of endodontic clinician-scientists who will contribute to scholarship in endodontics and harness extramural resources to advance the specialty. It emphasizes the value of formal and rigorous research training along with the importance of mentorship.
Dentsply Sirona agreed to partner with the Foundation and fund the first award, which will disburse $25,000 to the University of Toronto Faculty of Dentistry over a five-year period to support Shrestha’s research directly. In recognition of this partnership, Shrestha has been named the 2019 Dentsply Sirona Research Fellow.
Shrestha’s research project, “Immune Dysbiosis in Diabetes and Apical Periodontitis—Role of Cell Microenvironment,” explores the role of immune dysbiosis in adaptive immune cells in the development of apical periodontitis to increase understanding of how diabetes mellitus influences this process.
As part of the award, Shrestha will submit an application for extramural grant funding to continue to develop her findings and make progress toward developing immunotherapies in which specialized biomaterials may attract and activate adaptive immune cells to modulate the healing of apical periodontitis in immunocompromised patients.
“We’re proud to expand the funding opportunities available to endodontic researchers. Dentsply Sirona’s generous support of the Research Fellowship demonstrates their commitment to advancing science in endodontics,” said Dr. Mary Pettiette, president of the Foundation. “They share in our desire for more governmental funding to be allocated toward endodontic research that focuses on pulpal diseases.
The Foundation hopes the new Research Fellowship Award will be a pipeline for junior faculty in endodontics to become impactful, independent investigators whose research advances science in the field of endodontics, and it believes strongly that Shrestha will help achieve these goals.
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