Dentistry PhD/MSc by Research

Our research is broadly divided into two research themes, Clinical and Experimental Oral Sciences and Oral Regeneration and Rehabilitation Sciences. There are collaborations across research areas within these themes, with a strong translational focus.

Our multidisciplinary research is split across two overarching research themes:

Clinical and Experimental Oral Sciences: Major research areas in this theme include Clinical Epidemiology and Dental Public Health, Periodontal Research, Ultrasonics and Nontechnology and Oral Cancer Biology

Oral Regeneration and Rehabilitation Sciences: Major research areas in this theme include Dental, Implant and Bone Materials and Stem Cell, Pulp, Bone and Mucosal Tissue Regeneration.  

There is a strong translational focus in all of our research, driven by relevant clinical questions in a breadth of areas including primary care, endodontics, orthodontics, restorative and paediatric dentistry, periodontology and oral and maxillofacial surgery. We have developed collaborations across all research themes as well as integration with other life and physical science areas enabling a comprehensive understand of oral disease processes and oral health problems. In addition, we boast world-class basic science and clinical dental expertise, providing a focus for international collaborations with visiting professors and researchers from leading institutions worldwide.

We aim to use this knowledge to develop novel and innovative dental technologies, diagnostics and therapeutic solutions for common oral and general health problems to improve health and quality of life. The new School of Dentistry and Dental Hospital houses world class, state-of-the-art facilities, employing cutting-edge technologies to enhance collaboration, explore oral health and disease mechanisms and formulate new healthcare solutions, accelerating research innovation for patient care and well-being.

Fees and funding

Standard fees apply, although in some projects a bench fee is also payable 
Learn more about fees and funding

Scholarships and studentships 
Scholarships may be available. UK/EU students should contact the School directly for further information. International students can often gain funding through overseas research scholarships, Commonwealth scholarships or their home
government. For general scholarship enquiries email

Entry requirements

Learn more about entry requirements

International students
We accept a range of qualifications from different countries – learn more about international entry requirements

Standard English language requirements apply

How to apply

When clicking on the Apply Now button you will be directed to an application specifically designed for the programme you wish to apply for where you will create an account with the University application system and submit your application and supporting documents online. Further information regarding how to apply online can be found on the How to apply pages

Apply now

Before submitting an application to the University, you will need to identify potential supervisors in your desired field of research in order that you can indicate this in your application. There will be a delay in processing your application if this information is not provided. You can view the research interests of our staff, and search for an opportunity via our Doctoral Researchers search engine.

Research examples

Examples of our research include:

  • Demonstrating the importance of growth factors and other bioactive molecules sequestered within dental tissues in driving tissue responses to disease and clinical outcomes for the tooth.
  • The development of novel treatments for dental and oral tissue repair based on stem cell and biomaterial tissue regenerative technologies
  • Leading research into the redox biology of oral diseases and how micronutritional strategies can regulate oral inflammation.
  • Pioneering the development of assays for biomarkers of periodontitis, leading to the development of diagnostic technologies in routine clinical use.
  • Epidemiological research on the links between chronic periodontitis and systemic disease, in particular rheumatoid arthritis and chronic kidney disease.
  • Pioneering involvement in the National Dental Health Surveys (Office of National Statistics) for children and adults leading to the unravelling of major trends in oral disease patterns over 30 years. This is crucial to informing future oral health care policy and directing NHS resources to those in most need.
  • The development of novel digital image processing/analysis techniques in oral pathology to provide accurate, evidence-based diagnostic decisions and reliable prognostic tools for oral cancer.
  • The epigenetics of oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) and the role of chronic inflammation in the origins of OSCC.
  • Development of novel dental and orthopaedic materials to improve the longevity of dental restorations and the outcome of many orthopaedic procedures.
  • Investigations into the vibration characteristics of dental ultrasonic instruments and powered toothbrushes, which aim to influence the design and development of ultrasound dental instruments and improve patient care.
  • Prevalence studies in children and adolescents on dental erosion and tooth wear and their causes, underpinned by laboratory mechanistic studies on both erosion and toothpaste abrasivity.
  • Research on the nature and role of education in dentistry, particularly the role and impact of e-learning.

Find out about where our postgraduate students go