Get to know some more of the FDI World Dental Congress 2023 speakers

Wooden lectern with microphone on top
Australian Dental Association
30 June 2023
10 min read

This article was first published in the ADA's News Bulletin, July 2023

We previously introduced members to six of the world-class dental experts who will be presenting at this year’s FDI World Dental Congress to be held in Sydney from 24-27 September.

Here you will meet another four members of this select group, all of whom will lend their considerable expertise and experience to the high-quality main scientific programme.


The key attraction of this year’s FDI World Dental Congress is, as it is with all Congresses, the main scientific programme. In conjunction with a range of allied events, the programme offers in excess of 200+ hours of continuing professional development. The driver behind this year’s programme is the desire to shine a learned light on a broad range of issues affecting the practice of dentistry in Australia and around the world and to give members valuable insights on how to respond to them effectively.

The speakers who have been engaged to bring the expansive, varied programme to life over four information-rich days, will address topics both cutting-edge and what former ADA President and Chair of the Scientific Programme Division, Dr Hugo Sachs, refers to as “the bread-and-butter aspects of dentistry, with all of them committed to delivering a teaching programme of impressive scope and scale, sure to mark this year’s event as a must-attend item on the global dental calendar.

Professor Purnima Kumar (USA)

Professor of Periodontology at The Ohio State University, Dr Purnima Kumar is a Diplomate of the American Board of Periodontology. In addition to her clinical practice, Dr Kumar maintains an active research program in human microbial ecology that is funded through the NIH and oral healthcare corporate partners, and she has authored over 100 papers and book chapters. Dr Kumar presently serves as the Chair of the Continuing Education Oversight Committee for the American Academy of Periodontology, is a member of the Taskforce for Women in Periodontics, and of the Council of Scientific Affairs of the American Dental Association, where she is their official spokesperson on e-cigarettes and vaping.  Dr Kumar has also served on various committees for the International Association for Dental Research and is the incoming Vice-President of the Periodontal Research Group.

- Cloudy with a chance of disease: how smoking, vaping and waterpipes increase the risk for oral diseases

- The mouth is not Vegas; what happens here does not stay here

- Dental stewardship of medicines (part of the symposium panel)

- Vaping – universal panacea for ceasing tobacco use or disaster (part of the symposium panel)

- The year in review (part of the symposium panel)

Professor Frauke Müller (Switzerland)


Professor and Chair for gerodontology and removable prosthodontics at the University Clinics of Dental Medicine at the University of Geneva, Switzerland, Professor Frauke Müller received her dental degrees in Bonn, Germany and spent several years at the London Hospital Medical College, England. She has been President of various learned Societies, and from 2018 to 2022 she served as President of the University Clinics of Dental Medicine at the University of Geneva. Prof. Müller co-edited the ITI Treatment Guide no. 9 on ‘Implant therapy in the Geriatric Patient’ and the 1st Edition of the textbook Oral Healthcare and The Frail Elder. She is Associate Editor of the Journal of Oral Rehabilitation and Gerodontology and serves on the editorial review board of several other Journals. In 2013 she received the IADR Distinguished Scientist Award and in 2019 an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Thessaloniki in Greece.

- From geriodontics to prosthodontics – past and future

- Prosthodontic treatment concepts for elders

- Health through the ages (part of the symposium panel)

Dr María Marta Fernandez


 A graduate of the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina, Dr María Marta Fernandez is in private practice with a specialisation in periodontics and implantology. Associate Professor at the University of Buenos Aires. Dr Fernandez is a lecturer in periodontal surgery and implants at courses, congresses and ITI Study Clubs on an international level. She is the author and co-author of number of research papers in dentistry and an ITI Fellow and Member of the Women Implantology Network Core Group (WIN). In addition, she is a Member of the Sociedad Española de Periodoncia (SEPA) and the Sociedad Argentina de Periodoncia (SAP).
- Regeneration around teeth and dental implants: key elements to achieve it

- Smile design: how to achieve the optimal gingival margin

- Dental implants – risk management, maintenance and managing complications (part of the symposium panel)


Professor Zakaria Bethahar (Morocco)


Currently serving as Professor of Dentofacial Orthopaedics, Faculty of Dental Medicine, Hassan II University, Casablanca, Morocco, Dr Zakaria Bentahar is a member of the World Federation of Orthodontists, and Past Ambassador of the American Association of Orthodontists. Head of the Department of Dentofacial Orthopaedics, Hassan II University, Casablanca, Morocco from 2007-2013, Dr Bentahar also served as President of the Association of Intern and Resident Dentists of Ibn Rochd University Hospital, Casablanca (1999) and President of the College of Orthodontists Laureates of the Faculty of Dental Medicine of Casablanca (2014-2017). Dr Bentahar has presented courses and lectures at various international scientific events in Africa, Europe, the Middle East and North America.


- Multidisciplinary treatment of complex cases: the best option for the best result

- Extraction versus non extraction treatment: “is there any update?”

- Orthodontics – The good, bad and ugly of aligners (part of the symposium panel)