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Research is one of the driving forces behind modern dentistry. The ADA helps advance dental research through its own initiatives and by supporting an active research community. Leading this effort, the Council on Scientific Affairs works to improve the oral health of all Americans by defining research gaps, providing dentists with the latest, most accurate scientific information, investigating treatment methods and technology and mentoring researchers.

Research Agenda

Each year, the Council develops a Research Agenda highlighting the topics of highest priority for practicing dentists. The Research Agenda focuses on three to five emerging research goals that will have the greatest short- and long-term impact on the dental profession and the health of our patients.

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Scientific Information Resources

The ADA created the Center for Evidence-Based Dentistry to provide dentists with a practical approach for integrating scientific evidence into patient care. Search or browse the database for systematic reviews, critical summaries and ADA clinical recommendations on dozens of oral health topics.

The ADA Library maintains an extensive collection of 600 dental journals and a reference staff that can answer questions by phone or provide articles by email. 

The Journal of the American Dental Association (JADA) is an excellent resource for research reports of immediate value to ADA members.

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ADAF Research Institute

From its labs at the ADA headquarters in Chicago, the ADA Foundation Research Institute conducts original scientific inquiry based on the goals set forth in the Research Agenda. The ADAF Research Institute not only pursues research projects on oral health issues, but also works to safeguard the occupational health of dental professionals.

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Paffenbarger Research Center

Also part of the ADA Foundation, the Paffenbarger Research Center is on the cutting edge of dental materials science. The center collaborates closely with industry leaders to develop innovative products to improve oral health.

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Research Fellowships

The ADA and partner organizations support a number of dental research fellowships for both students and practicing dentists:

  • American Association for Dental Research
  • Hillenbrand Fellowship
  • Great-West Research Training Fellowship
  • Dentsply International Research Fellowship

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