Toronto Workshop Banner

Ben Ganss pic Mike Hubbard pic Mike Hubbard pic
Ben Ganss Mike Casas Mike Hubbard
University of Toronto SickKids Toronto D3G@University of Melbourne
Symposium co-chair Clinical advisor Symposium co-chair

Welcome to D3G's evolving "Plan B" for what has become a series of international events addressing our translational goal of holistic attack on Molar Hypomineralisation (MH) and allied tooth decay – a global problem imposing substantial burdens at individual, social and economic levels (read more).

Chalky Teeth Centenary logo

Before the pandemic came along, we planned to hold a live symposium in Toronto during 2020, commemorating the centenary of "chalky teeth research" (see here & here). As things have turned out, our enforced switch to online events – first the D3 Workshop last October (available here) and now this year's innovative Research Incubator – has come with some unanticipated advantages including broader participation than might've been expected. Consequently, we anticipate that, once it eventually happens, our inaugural live Symposium will have evolved into a globally impactful vehicle for D3G's Chalky Teeth Campaign.


The D3 Group logo Chalky Teeth logo University of Toronto logo SickKids logo


Incubator Event Flow Chart


Toronto Timezones

Format: Webinar, comprising three 2-hour sessions over 3 days

Dates: October 7th/8th/9th or 8th/9th/10th depending on location
Times: 5–7pm in Toronto (US EST), 8–10am in Melbourne (AU EST)

Delivery: Invited presentations, panel discussion, audience Q&A
Research posters: Yes, details soon

Why have an International D3 Research Incubator?

D3G Incubator Banner

If the D3 research community is to perform strongly as a “global choir”, it follows we must all “sing from the same song sheet” and have a translational repertoire ranging from basic science through end-translation into better practice, policy and products.

Our ground-breaking “research incubator” event will leverage a powerful lineup of stakeholders – comprising clinical and public health practitioners, students, industry directors, scientists and publishers – to formulate a socially impactful repertoire and start a "collaborative songwriting" process.

This “second gig" builds on last year’s inaugural online Workshop (see below) which served as an introductory “cocktail party” showcasing the global strengths and diversity of our D3 family. And looking ahead to next year's live Symposium in Toronto (further below), we hope today’s innovative “incubator start-up” concept will be extended across D3G’s other endeavours (education, policy, products etc), leading to a symphonic “social-impact incubator” powerhouse.

Before the show starts in October, registrants will be invited to join our “D3 garage band” rehearsals by critiquing the discussion framework documents (Research Agenda & Guidelines) being drafted by last year’s Workshop participants.

As always, we welcome questions and tips for improvement.

Ben, Mike and Mike, on behalf of the organising team

Contact: toronto2020@thed3group.org

Something for everyone

Why Attend Toronto 21

This event is relevant to everyone from clinicians through to industry, research publishers and policymakers (so-called "end-translators").

  • Here for the first time is an opportunity for clinicians exposed to Molar Hypomin (e.g. therapists, hygienists & dentists, paediatric & orthodontic specialists, paediatricians) to voice their concerns about the day-to-day problems they face and ensuing needs for research.
  • The same goes for public health practitioners and others battling to increase awareness of the striking link between Molar Hypomin and childhood decay.
  • Scientists and other researchers will find this a great opportunity to learn about an under-recognised yet potentially preventable global health problem, and to share their ideas on how it might be attacked across the research spectrum.
  • Likewise, end-translators will have an unprecedented opportunity to share their perspectives on what's needed to collaboratively strengthen research and formulate better practice, products and policy.

What is our Research Incubator concept?

D3G Research Incubator Concept

Simply put, practitioners have great awareness of major problems that hinder the field whereas researchers (particularly career scientists) excel at finding useful answers. So, given D3G's translational aim to foster top-quality investigations into key knowledge gaps, we think it's important that practitioners and scientists understand each other's perspectives better, and also think ahead collectively towards eventual end-translation of research outcomes into "the 3 Ps" (practice, policy, products).

To facilitate such cross-learning, this first stage of our incubator concept involves: (1) practitioners illustrating current issues they face; (2) scientists outlining latest research capabilities and understanding; then (3) these and other relevant parties (particularly "end-translators" comprising industry, publishers & policymakers) collaboratively "filtering" this status quo (1+2) to arrive at key researchable questions and actionable plans. And to enable effective intercommunication among diverse stakeholders, we will again be using (and refining) D3G's translational "chalky teeth lingo" as pioneered at last year's Workshop. We anticipate this novel, cross-sector approach will provide a valuably holistic perspective on what research should be prioritised to benefit society, and how it might be tackled best at global scale.

Discussion framework and outputs

Given the translational nature of this event (diverse viewpoints & content, lofty goals & limited time), it's important to have a customised framework available to guide discussion – before, during and after the event. Better still, wouldn't it be great to use the development phase of this framework to grow community and narrow consensus before the official kickoff?

Consequently, building from the discussion framework document for last year's Workshop (available here), participants from that event are currently drafting: (1) a Research Agenda that will list what our community sees as the top clinico-scientific questions for a raft of topics spanning clinical practice, homecare, public health & medical prevention; and (2) Research Standards & Guidelines, embracing terminology & definitions, classification & grading of MH. A primary goal here is to marry scientific and clinical perspectives, leading to (dynamically) publishable outputs that can help advance the field.

Poster presentations of original research

To complement the main program – which involves brief talks on a strategic range of research-related topics – we extend an open invitation for students and other researchers to share their project work, even if it's not fully baked yet (this is an incubator aimed at hatching great ideas after all).

Information about presentation formats will follow shortly.

While the incubator is primarily focussed on Molar Hypomineralisation, comparative consideration of other D3s, and research into underpinning fundamentals (e.g. enamel science, preventive dentistry), will be welcomed.

Event flyer and advertising

D3G Research Incubator Concept

Download the Research Incubator flyer here – please share it among colleagues and stakeholders across the sector.

We also have advertising content available for websites/newsletters etc – please contact us if you're in a position to help promote this trailblazing event.


Our ground-breaking Translational Workshop on Molar Hypomineralisation and Chalky Teeth is over – hats off and thanks to everyone for making it such a wonderful experience! Who would believe such a breakthrough cross-sector gathering, involving 35 presenters from 16 countries, could succeed in the midst of a pandemic?

For those who missed it, this unique event remains available as a comprehensive Continuing Education (CE) pack, offering up to 7 CE hours of study with prices starting at only AU$50. Watch our 3-minute video trailer here, learn more about the D3 Workshop here, and register for the CE pack here.



"Plan A", from 2020

We proudly announce D3G's inaugural International Symposium on Molar Hypomineralisation and Chalky Teeth. This breakthrough event is an exciting step in our "Chalky Teeth Campaign" – a pioneering public-awareness initiative highlighting that, if appropriate research is done, much tooth decay should become preventable through medical intervention ("Healthier Babies = Stronger Teeth"). Such an advance would have massive social impact given that 1-in-5 children worldwide have "chalky molars".

D3G International Symposium

This symposium prompts a "cross-sector call to action" and will use a translational approach to formulate key questions aimed at improving management of, and ultimately preventing, Molar Hypomineralisation and other types of chalky teeth. Aspects covered will include population health, clinical management, research, education, and science translation through to improved policy and products.

As elaborated below, we invite interested parties from academia, health professions, government and industry to help develop a collaborative event that is not only memorable but also transformative for social good.

Happily, we note that definitions of "symposium" convey not only lots of hard work (i.e. erudite discussion about a specific topic) but also the idea of fun (i.e. a convivial party, as after a banquet in ancient Greece). So, should others happen to agree, we propose that plenty of time be allowed for networking across the ever-expanding "D3 family".

Please feel encouraged to share the Symposium flyer (see below) and to contact us at toronto2020@thed3group.org


Jane Atkinson pic

Jane Atkinson (NIH, USA): What is science translation and why plan for it early?

We feel privileged and are thrilled that the world authority on translational science, USA's National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS), has provided a keynote speaker/facilitator to guide our collective thinking throughout this event.

Jane Atkinson directs the clinical Trial Innovation Network at NCATS and as such holds a wonderful perspective on how D3G might develop a global research network to attack the chalky teeth problem. And if that wasn't great enough, Jane is a highly experienced dentist and researcher who spent many years working at NIH's National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR). Read more about Jane here.

A big thanks to Christopher Austin (Director, NCATS) for making this possible, and to Jason Wan (NIDCR) and Eric Sid (NCATS) for facilitation.

Stanley Zlotkin pic

Stanley Zlotkin (SickKids, Canada): My translational journey from lab to social good

It's hard to imagine a better inspiration for our D3 movement than Stanley Zlotkin and his Sprinkles Global Health initiative. Challenged by UNICEF to do something about childhood malnutrition 20 years ago, Stanley has since used science, wisdom and social entrepreneurship to deliver a culturally-refined product to help 15 million children in 60 developing countries annually. This herculean showcase for end-to-end translation has earned widespread recognition including Canada's top civilian honour and professional awards for knowledge translation and humanitarianism. This remarkable story also has a dental twist.

Trained as a paediatrician and researcher with a PhD in nutritional sciences, Stanley is founding director of the Centre for Global Child Health at Toronto's SickKids hospital, and professor of paediatrics, public health sciences, and nutritional sciences at the University of Toronto.

Read more about Stanley and Sprinkles here, here and here.


Toronto D3G Roadmap

Now that the D3 field is developing into an international movement that's both cross-sector and translational, a wonderful opportunity exists to improve global health through a networked approach. This advance in turn begs for a "translational roadmap" that takes us from today's beginnings through to a holistic effort directed at improving management of, and ultimately preventing, major D3s (download draft concept chart here). Fundamental to such a framework will be a staged set of questions that are pivotal regards where we're headed and approachable by today's capabilities. In turn, such key questions will underpin the conceptualisation of worthy global projects that can be approached translationally. (read more)

Please help us design this collaborative event

D3G International Symposium Design

We think the following possibilities stem logically from what D3G has accomplished to date and aspires to achieve in the future, but they remain far from concrete – so please put your thinking caps on and send us any thoughts regards improvement and/or endorsement.

A. Addressing goals for the Symposium and thinking translationally, a first step is to ask "what needs to be discussed, and by whom?". The latter seems obvious given D3G's unique cross-sector foundations (see D below). And while the former might sensibly focus on highly prevalent Molar Hypomineralisation and its links to childhood tooth decay, the contextual importance of other D3s (including AI, fluorosis and enamel hypoplasia) should also be recognised. (read more)


Lab meets clinic cartoon

Please keep a regular eye on this "Frequently Asked Questions" section, respecting that answers may change as the event takes shape.

  • Who can attend?

Anybody with a constructive interest in D3s and social good, per the membership criteria for D3G.

  • Can I present at the symposium?

Yes, there'll be multiple opportunities to share your knowledge and interests – not only the results of formal research, but also anecdotal ideas and evidence that could inspire new research:

  1. poster sessions for those wanting to present research findings in the classical way;
  2. various discussion sessions (think-tank, breakout, networking), either directly yourself (audience participation) and/or via session moderators and panellists;
  3. some participants will be invited to do scene-setter talks and/or join panels based on their experience (published & unpublished)
  • I've heard many scientists will be attending – will discussions be too complicated for me as a practitioner?

  1. No, the group discussions will avoid complicated language as this is a translational event involving not only practitioners and scientists but also other stakeholders including the general public. Hence, just as the onus will be on scientists to tone down their "technobabble", so too will clinicians be required to talk in accessible language (see D3G's translational vernacular).
  2. And yes, we think this event will attract many scientists interested in working on an exciting new area of healthcare – which of course is a great thing for the field moving forward. Moreover, ability to speak in "D3 plain language" will undoubtedly benefit everyone's applications for research funding.

Symposium flyer & Advertising

D3G International Symposium

The D3 Symposium flyer is available to download here – please share it amongst colleagues and stakeholders across the sector.

We also have other advertising content available for websites/newsletters etc – please contact us if you're in a position to help promote this event.



Toronto in autumn

Given intense interest and the desirability to cap numbers (for quality reasons), we'll be making pre-registration available to D3G subscribers (existing and new) shortly – members will be alerted by email when this option becomes available.

Venue and accommodation

The symposium will be held at University of Toronto's Chestnut Conference Centre in the heart of downtown Toronto (map).

We ask that participants be responsible for their own accommodation bookings. Watch this space for recommendations and discount offers.

Visiting beautiful Toronto in the fall

Toronto in autumn

While attractive throughout the year, Toronto garners worldwide acclaim for exceptional beauty during autumn – i.e. "in the fall" – when its numerous trees put on a wonderfully colourful display before donating their leaves to winter.

Here are some helpful websites for planning what to do before and after the symposium: