Browse/search for groups

Applied Clinical and Materials Sciences

The following people are in this group:

More about this group

Applied Clinical and Materials Sciences (ACMS) encompasses a wide range of oral health and disease related research, from conceptual development through to clinical evaluation, and aims to directly impact healthcare delivery. The research is of high quality and internationally renowned, focusing on innovative approaches to translational research in oral health.

Research groups

Three groups make up ACMS:

The Clinical Trials Unit led by Professor Nicola West is the leading dedicated Trials Unit for dental research in the UK undertaking both laboratory and clinically based studies.

The Oral Nanoscience group, led by Dr  Michele Barbour, conducts research into nanotechnology and nanomaterials as applied to health, and has a particular interest in novel antimicrobial technologies. The group applies these antimicrobial technologies to materials and pharmaceuticals used in human and animal medicine and collaborates with researchers in chemistry, engineering, biosciences, physics as well as medical, dental and veterinary clinicians.

The Biomaterials Engineering group (bioMEG) is led by Dr Bo Su and mainly works in the area of synthesis and processing of materials for biomedical applications. Focus is on both basic research in scientific understanding of materials fabrication processing, and applied research in materials solutions for clinical needs. The broad and multidisciplinary research is aimed at developing novel materials and surfaces for dental and orthopaedic implants, tissue engineering scaffolds and medical devices.

Further information

  • ACMS collaborates with many researchers both within the University of Bristol and externally (list of collaborators [PDF, 32.9Kb]).
  • Participants are always welcome to take part in the clinical trials undertaken at the Bristol Dental School. Please contact Emma Macdonald in the Clinical Trials Unit.

Publication highlights

  • Curtis AR, West NX, Su B. 2010. Synthesis of nano-bioglass and formation of apatite-rods to occlude exposed dentine tubules and eliminate hypersensitivity. Acta Biomaterialia 6: 3740-3746.
  • Zhang YZ, Venugopal J, Wong SY, Li X, Su B, Ramakrishna S, Lim CT. 2010. Enhanced biomineralization of osteoblasts on a novel electrospun biocomposite nanofibrous substrate of hydroxyapatite/collagen/chitosan. Tissue Eng Part A 16: 1949-1960.
  • Barbour ME, Gandhi N, el-Turki A, O’Sullivan DJ, Jagger DC. 2009. Differential adhesion of Streptococcus gordonii to anatase and rutile titanium dioxide surfaces with and without functionalisation with chlorhexidine. J Biomed Mater Res A 90: 993-998.
  • Sjostrom T, Dalby MJ, Hart A, Tare R, Oreffo ROC, Su B. 2009. Fabrication of pillar-like titania nanostructures on titanium and their interactions with human skeletal stem cells. Acta Biomaterialia 5: 1433–1441.
  • Barbour ME, Shellis RP, Parker DM, Allen GC, Addy M. 2008. Inhibition of hydroxyapatite dissolution by whole casein: the effects of pH, protein concentration, calcium and ionic strength. Eur J Oral Sci 116: 473-478.
  • Zhang YZ, Venugopal JR, El-Turki, A Ramakrishna S, Su B, Lim CT. 2008. Electrospun biomimetic nanocomposite nanofibres of hydroxyapatite/chitosan for bone tissue engineering. Biomaterials 29: 4314-4322.
  • Moran J. 2008. Home-use oral hygiene products: Mouthrinses. In Home-use preventive and therapeutic oral products, eds West N and Moran JM. Periodontology 2000 48: 42-53. Wiley Blackwell.
  • West NX. 2008. Dentine hypersensitivity. In Home-use preventive and therapeutic oral products, eds West N and Moran JM. Periodontology 2000 48: 31-41. Wiley Blackwell.
  • Barbour ME, O’Sullivan DJ, Jagger DC. 2007. Chlorhexidine adsorption to anatase and rutile titanium dioxide. Colloid Surfaces A 307: 116-120.
  • Hooper S, West NX, Pickles MJ, Joiner A, Newcombe RG, Addy M. 2003. Investigation of erosion and abrasion of enamel and dentine: A model in situ using toothpastes of different abrasivity. J Clin Periodontol 30: 802-808.


Staff within ACMS provide a wide range of teaching, contributing to the BDS programme, courses within the DCP school, foundation courses in dental assisting, postgraduate programmes and supervising under- and post-graduate research project students from the School and other University departments.

Two Units of the BDS course are led by ACMS staff: Clinical Restorative Dentistry (the largest teaching unit in the Dental School) and Dental Biomaterials, with a further 5 elements including periodontology (years 1-3) and operative and endodontics (years 3-5).

Teaching is also provided for other Units within the BDS programme including Oral Biology and Oral Health Research, and clinical staff members are involved with 1:1 teaching on patient treatment sessions. Staff are innovative in their delivery of material to the students and three (Miss Susan Hooper, Dr Michele Barbour and Dr O’Sullivan) have recently won University of Bristol awards for teaching.

Staff of all grades either supervise or are involved in guiding research projects undertaken by undergraduate students who may come from the BDS programme, the Departments of Chemistry and Aerospace Engineering, or overseas. In the last few years three BDS students have won awards for their research projects, one attaining the National BDA/Student Clinician Prize, and two winning the British Endodontic Student Research Prize, one of whom also won the Adjudicators prize at the National BDA/Student Clinician competition.

For graduate students there is an MSc in Dental Implantology whose Programme Director is a member of the ACMS, as well as opportunities in all three groups that comprise ACMS to do an MSc or PhD by research under the supervision of programme staff.

For further details regarding postgraduate opportunities please refer to the postgraduate prospectus or contact the group leaders.

Many staff are also members of the mentoring scheme for undergraduates, mentoring 5-6 students in each academic year. In addition, the Dental School Admissions Tutor for the undergraduate intake of students and the Director of Postgraduate Studies are ACMS staff members.