Professor Damien Walmsley PhD, MSc, BDS, FDSRCPS

Damien Walmsley

School of Dentistry
Professor of Restorative Dentistry

Contact details

The School of Dentistry
5 Mill Pool Way
B5 7EG
United Kingdom


  • Ph.D. Victoria University of Manchester 1985
  • M.Sc. Victoria University of Manchester 1983
  • B.D.S. Victoria University of Manchester 1981


  • Professor of Restorative Dentistry.  The University of Birmingham (2000 – present)
  • Director of Internationalisation (2016 – 2020)
  • Head of Teaching Unit (2004 – 2020)
  • Consultant in Restorative Dentistry, South Birmingham Community Health Foundation Trust (1993 – 2020)
  • Lecturer 1985, Senior Lecturer 1991, The University of Birmingham
  • MSc (1983) and PhD (1985) on "The uses and potential biological effects of ultrasound in dentistry". The University of Manchester.
  • Doctoral Research sponsored by MRC studentship. The University of Manchester (1982 – 1985)
  • House Officer at Guys hospital and St Barts Hospital (1981 to 1982)
  • Undergraduate studies at Manchester Dental School of Dentistry (1976 – 1981)


Prof Walmsley is a non-clinical Professor of Restorative Dentistry who is involved with the following interdisciplinary research projects that are supported by EPSRC. 


Ultrasurge is a project looking into utilising ultrasound in surgery. Supported by a programme grant from EPSRC for over £6m in funding, Ultrasurge will last 5 years and look into a series of interrelated themes around the effect of ultrasound on tissue, the miniaturisation of ultrasound transducers, and using external robots to direct ultrasound tipped robot tentacles to the surgery site within the body. (EP/R045291/1)

The programme is led by Prof Margaret Lucas at the University of Glasgow with teams based at the Universities of Birmingham, Edinburgh, Leeds and Southampton. Web link

The Investigator team:

  • Margaret Lucas, Professor of Ultrasonics, University of Glasgow
  • Sandy Cochran, Professor of Ultrasound Materials and Systems, University of Glasgow
  • Fabrice Pierron, Professor of Solid Mechanics, University of Southampton
  • Hamish Simpson, Professor of Orthopaedics and Trauma, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon, University of Edinburgh
  • Pietro Valdastri, Professor of Robotics and Autonomous Systems, University of Leeds
  • Damien Walmsley, Professor of Restorative Dentistry, University of Birmingham


PI Damien Walmsley

Dental implants are an exciting procedure which replaces a patient's lost teeth.  However, bacteria in the mouth will grow on the metal surface leading to gum disease.  If not removed it will lead to loss of this expensive treatment.  It is a huge worldwide problem and currently no methods exist that remove the bacteria effectively. Ultrasonic scalers are an everyday instrument used by dentists to clean teeth.  The vibrating metal probe generates bubble activity when used with water.  This bubble activity is termed cavitation and could be used to vigorously scrub the implant surface removing the bacteria. Our previous work shows that the bubble activity can work but it is too slow for clinical use. Clinicians like this idea but want it to work quickly and effectively. To solve current and major problem associated with cleaning of implant surfaces, we have brought together a unique team of dentists and mathematicians which we have called "DENTaMATHics". We have planned new designs or improvements to the current ultrasound scaler: to improve the tip shape and operation conditions, to implement cavitation prone liquids, and to implement a shield-cover design to a scaler tip. (EPSRC EP/P015743/1)


(UltraSOuNd-controlled release of Antimicrobial agents for localised Treatment of dentAl tissues)

Lead Prof Zoe Pikramenou (Chemistry). CoPIs Dr Sarah Kuehne, Prof Damien Walmsley 

Our goal and vision is to develop a novel platform for temporal and spatial control of drug release from silica particles (SP). This will be triggered by ultrasound, allowing the SP to reach and disrupt dental biofilms in inaccessible sites. We have assembled a multidisciplinary team with expertise in inorganic chemistry, dentistry and fluid mechanics. The team will determine the optimal conditions for ultrasound activation and delivery of novel SP in sophisticated endodontic model structures, biofilms and explanted teeth using advanced flow characterisation and imaging. We will validate this approach with clinically applied ultrasound probes in dentistry and will accelerate this development in dental practice with industry and dental partners. Our research aims to tackle problems in dental healthcare but a wider impact towards translation into other areas is envisioned, in alignment with UKRI Healthcare Technology Grand Challenge of Developing Future Therapies. EP/V028553/1

Other activities

  • Editorial board of the British Dental Journal, Dental Update, European Journal of Dental Education and European Journal of Restorative Dentistry
  • President of the British Society for the Study of Prosthetic Dentistry 2010-2011
  • Queen's Anniversary Prize Judge (2015 to present) 
  • Regularly speaks on research and innovation
  • Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Dentistry 2002 -2011
  • Emeritus Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Dentistry
  • Photography


Recent publications


Muguruza, AR, Odyniec, ML, Manhota, M, Habib, Z, Rurack, K, Blair, JMA, Kuehne, S, Walmsley, AD & Pikramenou, Z 2024, 'Antibiotic entrapment in antibacterial micelles as a novel strategy for the delivery of challenging antibiotics from silica nanoparticles', Microporous and Mesoporous Materials, vol. 363, 112841.

Al-Maswary, A, Walmsley, D, Cooper, P & Scheven, B 2024, 'Low‐intensity pulsed ultrasound induces proliferation of human neural stem cells', Clinical and Translational Discovery, vol. 4, no. 2, e259.

Koulogiannis , A, Walmsley, AD, Angeli , P & Balabani , S 2024, 'Ultrasonic irrigation flows in root canals: effects of ultrasound power and file insertion depth', Scientific Reports, vol. 14, 5368.

Corbett, C, Wang, Q, Liu, W, Smith, W & Walmsley, D 2023, 'Cleaning effects due to shape oscillation of bubbles over a rigid boundary', Physics of Fluids, vol. 35, no. 12, 123335.

Yevlashevskaya, OS, Scheven, BA, Walmsley, AD, Shelton, RM & Yevlashevskaya, O 2023, 'Differing responses of osteogenic cell lines to β-glycerophosphate', Scientific Reports, vol. 13, no. 1, 14472.

Yu, Y, Smith, W, Wang, Q & Walmsley, AD 2023, 'Numerical investigation of cavitation in periodontal Pockets: Insights for enhancing cleaning efficiency', Ultrasonics Sonochemistry, vol. 100, 106625.

Virdee, S, Oglah Albaaj, FS, Camilleri, J, Grant, M, Walmsley, D, Cooper, P & Tomson, P 2022, 'Antimicrobial efficacy of different irrigant solutions using a novel biofilm model: an in vitro confocal laser scanning microscopy experiment', The European journal of prosthodontics and restorative dentistry.

Yu, Y, Mahmud, M, Vyas, N, Smith, WR, Wang, Q & Damien Walmsley, A 2022, 'Cavitation in a periodontal pocket by an ultrasonic dental scaler: A numerical investigation', Ultrasonics Sonochemistry, vol. 90, 106178.

Al-Maswary, AA, O'Reilly, M, Holmes, AP, Walmsley, AD, Cooper, PR & Scheven, BA 2022, 'Exploring the neurogenic differentiation of human dental pulp stem cells', PLoS ONE, vol. 17, no. 11, e0277134.

Dias da Silva, MA, Pereira, AC, Vital, S, Mariño, R, Ghanim, A, Skelton-Macedo, MC, Kavadella, A, Kakaboura, A, Uribe, SE, Johnson, I, Dalessandri, D & Walmsley, AD 2022, 'Online videos: The hidden curriculum', European Journal of Dental Education, vol. 26, no. 4, pp. 830-837.

Gupta, D, Savva, J, Chandler, JH, Shelton, R, Scheven, B, Mulvana, H, Valdastri, P, Lucas, M & Walmsley, D 2022, 'Traditional multiwell plates and petri dishes limit the evaluation of the effects of ultrasound on cells in vitro', Ultrasound in Medicine & Biology, vol. 48, no. 9, pp. 1745-1761.

Jayachandran, S, Hill, K & Walmsley, AD 2021, 'A critical review of qualitative research publications in dental implants from 2006 to 2020', Clinical Oral Implants Research, vol. 32, no. 6, pp. 659-671.

Mountcastle, S, Vyas, N, Villapun, VM, Cox, S, Jabbari, S, Sammons, R, Shelton, R, Walmsley, D & Kuehne, S 2021, 'Biofilm viability checker: an open-source tool for automated biofilm viability analysis from confocal microscopy images', npj Biofilms and Microbiomes, vol. 7, no. 1, 44.

Vyas, N, Wang, Q & Walmsley, D 2021, 'Improved biofilm removal using cavitation from a dental ultrasonic scaler vibrating in carbonated water', Ultrasonics Sonochemistry, vol. 70, 105338, pp. 105338.

Chapter (peer-reviewed)

Walmsley, D 2023, Chapter 24 - Ultrasonic dental instrumentation. in J Gallego-Juarez, K Graff & M Lucas (eds), Power Ultrasonics (2nd Edition): Applications of High-Intensity Ultrasound. 2 edn, Elsevier, Kidlington, Oxfordshire, pp. 557-575.

View all publications in research portal


As Scientific Advisor to the British Dental Association, I comment on many high profile scientific topis related to dentistry. These include Fluoridation, Oral Health, growing new teeth, use of mouth washes and new technologies in dentistry. I am happy to advise or discuss any research used in dentistry.

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