School of Dentistry Turns 125

Symposium, Dinner Highlight Anniversary Celebration

The Harvard School of Dental Medicine will celebrate its 125th anniversary today with a symposium and awards dinner.

"We're taking the opportunity of a landmark birthday to recognize that ours was the first university-based dental school, and to have an opportunity for everyone to appreciate the faculty and students that make up this school," said Dental School Dean R. Bruce Donoff.

The symposium, entitled "Harvard Dentistry--Preparing for the 21st Century," will focus on new technologies in the prevention and treatment of oral disease, as well as financing health care.

"The school has always represented a wonderful blend of innovative developments and practical teaching," said Donoff. "The program's combination of new progressive treatments and delivery of health care is a perfect example of this integration of practice and research."

The symposium runs today from 8:45 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. All graduates and members of the Massachusetts Dentist Society were invited to attend, and approximately 200 are expected, said Mary Cassesso, director of admissions for the Dental School.


Topics of the morning session include computer-assisted surgery, vaccines to combat dental cavities and AIDS, new agents to halt tissue destruction and techniques to assess dental implants.

The afternoon's speakers will address the "impending crisis in health care,' focusing on the power structure of health care and insurance.

At the awards dinner, to be held tonight at the Harvard Club, four of the speakers will be honored for their achievements in the field of dentistry.

The recipients are Dr. Paul Goldhaber, professor of periodontology and former Dental School dean; Dr. Harold Loe, Director of the National Institute of Dental Research in Bethesda, Maryland; Professor Per Ingvar Branemark, the Institute for Applied Biotechnology in Goteberg, Sweden; and Dr. Robert D. Sparks, president emeritus, W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Battle Creek, Michigan.

Donoff said the school's focus will remain constant in the future.

"We will continue to strive to produce leaders in the field of dental research, teaching and practice," said Donoff.