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  "I want to do research that will help people. I believe that, without the project and the ADA Foundation award, I might not have made the connections to achieve my goal.."

Jenny Johns
Graduate student, Ph.D. candidate
University of Florida

The ADA Foundation has been able to support the American Dental Association’s pledge to improve the oral health of the public and advance the science of dentistry through collaborations with government, industry and the dental profession itself.  Research developed via the ADA Foundation's Dr. Anthony Volpe Research Center (formerly the Paffenbarger Research Center) ensures that the ADA Foundation continues to be an ideal organization not just for new technologies and objective evaluation, but also for research internships, scientific training and continuing education for international visitors.

Each year, the ADA Foundation connects the best and brightest of dental research students with some of the world's most pre-eminent dental researchers through the Foundation's highly-respected fellowship programs. Student researchers who receive the coveted awards pursue their work at Dr. Anthony Volpe Research Center, a world-renowned hub of dental research located on the campus of the National Institute of Science and Technology (NIST). ADA fellowships change the lives of many bright young stars in research, who in turn change the future of oral health care.

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Young Scientists Sweeten the Future for Oral Health

IMAGE: Research and testing equipmentInvesting pre-college students with a passion for research is the goal of the ADA Foundation’s annual prize awarded at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. Christine and Justin Johns—a sister and brother from Cape Coral, Florida—received the prize for "Xylitol Xtreme Two," a study which resolved a question within the research community by demonstrating the time frame in which xylitol best inhibits the growth of mouth bacteria.

The research and Foundation award helped set the Johns siblings on a new path, when the Rudy Beverage Company asked them to conduct further research for a xylitol-sweetened sports beverage that shows promise in helping prevent tooth decay. Older sister Jenny Johns, a chemistry major, joined them on the project. Encouraged by their success, now Christine and Jenny are committed to pursue careers of helping people through scientific research, and Jenny is on track to a Ph.D. in dental research.