Apollonia – the next level of dental care


"Lifestyle dependent acid-induced erosion of dental enamel is common in the world's population (76% in the UK in 2009) leading to Tooth Surface Loss (TSL). TSL is also caused by acid reflux, common in diabetes, and from regurgitation e.g. anorexia. Chronic cases severely compromise lifestyle. In extreme cases, the tooth requires extraction, to be replaced with a transplant/ implant. Restorative intervention for children (<12 years) is especially difficult, as tissue is softer with more protein content. At present there is no permanent solution for the management of TSL.

The objective of this project is to deliver a prototype device integrated with diagnostic imaging and materials delivery system for restoring acid-eroded enamel.

Previous ex vivo work has demonstrated during pulsed-laser-sintering of damaged enamel with bio-minerals generates minimum heat. For clinical commercialisation, this technology requires a commercially available ultrafast (femtosecond (fs)) high-repetition rate laser, materials delivery system, diagnostic imaging techniques (e.g. optical coherence tomography - OCT) and an accurate method of monitoring the temperature, all integrated into a device that fits comfortably inside mouth.

The consortium of two universities (Leeds -- UoL and St. Andrew's -- USTAN), a dental company (Attenborough Dental -- AD), a laser company (M Squared Lasers -- MSL), a mechanical engineering and fluid handling specialist (ICMEA (UK) -- ICMEA), an electronics specialist (C21 IoT -- C21) and a materials/physics innovation company (Vale Innovation -- VI) are uniquely positioned to take this development forwards.

By developing a simple system for treating TSL the consortium believe they can eliminate dental pain for millions in the UK alone and restore dietary and other lifestyle choices for thousands that are more severely affected."

Lead Participant

Project Cost

Grant Offer

Attenborough Dental Laboratories Ltd, Nottingham £145,451 £ 101,816


University of Leeds, United Kingdom £221,717 £ 221,717
Icmea-UK Ltd, Sheffield £199,161 £ 139,413
University of St Andrews, United Kingdom £172,830 £ 172,830
Vale Innovation Limited, Sheffield £72,874 £ 51,012
C21 Iot Limited, Chesterfield £97,076 £ 67,953


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