Skip to content

Announcing the ADA Forsyth Institute: A World-Class Organization for Oral Health Research and Innovation

SOMERVILLE, Mass., Oct. 26, 2023 – The American Dental Association (ADA) and the Forsyth Institute today announced the formation of the ADA Forsyth Institute, which brings together unparalleled talent, visionary research opportunities and dynamic innovation prospects, dedicated to advancing oral health through scientific innovation and research.

“The new ADA Forsyth Institute will continue to advance oral and overall health through ground-breaking research and innovation,” said Massachusetts Governor Maura Healey. “The Forsyth Institute has been, and will continue to be, an integral part of the Massachusetts bio-innovation and research community. This new venture will build on more than a century of excellent work right here in Massachusetts, including the discovery of how fluoride prevents cavities.”

ADA Chief Executive Officer Dr. Raymond Cohlmia and Forsyth Institute Chair of the Board Elyse Cherry announced this exciting development today at Forsyth’s annual innovation conference, Forsyth dentech, in Somerville, Mass., which convenes thought leaders from government, research, industry, academia and venture capital to accelerate innovation and launch new ventures in the oral health space.

“The new Institute will be a world-class leader in dentistry, defining the future of oral health through biological research, local and global public health outreach, and technological innovation,” said Dr. Wenyuan Shi, President and CEO of the Forsyth Institute. “The positive impact will be felt globally.”

The work of the ADA Forsyth Institute begins immediately with Dr. Shi leading the efforts from Boston.

“This is a historic and exciting day for champions of oral health,” Cherry said. “We believe the ADA Forsyth Institute will accelerate the pace of scientific discovery and innovation for generations to come.”

“The ADA Forsyth Institute combines the ADA Science & Research Institute and the Forsyth Institute. It will immediately change the landscape for oral health research and innovation,” Dr. Cohlmia said. “Oral health is integral to overall health, and this combination of mindshare will bring technology and healthcare advances to patients at a global scale. Together, we will improve lives through transformative research that starts in the lab and ends with improving patient care in the dental chair.”

Founded in 1910, the Forsyth Institute began as a philanthropic effort to provide dental care to children in the Boston area and grew to become a leader in biomedical research. Among its many advancements, it developed the first local antibiotic to treat gum disease and discovered the bacteria that causes cavities. It also provides oral healthcare through mobile, private practice and global programs.

The ADA Forsyth Institute will be at the forefront of research while continuing the important work ADASRI led to date, such as the first complete map of every cell in the oral cavity, the development of Food and Drug Administration-recognized standards for nearly every tool of dentistry, the creation of evidence-based guidance to inform treatment of patients and the ADA Seal of Acceptance program, maintaining the rigorous product evaluation criteria trusted by dental professionals and consumers alike. More than 400 products have earned the Seal after being evaluated for safety and effectiveness.

“This is an incredible opportunity to advance the aligned missions of the ADA and Forsyth,” said Dr. Linda Edgar, President of the ADA. “The Forsyth Institute has a long and storied history of scientific leadership and a dedication to making people healthier. Looking toward the future, we’re excited to see the many ways the ADA Forsyth Institute will carry on that legacy.”


About the Forsyth Institute

The Forsyth Institute, founded in 1910, is the world’s leading independent research institution focused on oral health and its connection to overall wellness. Forsyth was founded as a pediatric dental hospital serving disadvantaged children in the Boston area. Today, the Institute is grounded in a three-pillared strategic plan focused on biological research, clinical service and public health outreach, and technological innovation. Forsyth carries out its original mission through a mobile public health dental program called ForsythKids.

About the American Dental Association

The not-for-profit ADA is the nation’s largest dental association, representing 159,000 dentist members. The premier source of oral health information, the ADA has advocated for the public’s health and promoted the art and science of dentistry since 1859. The ADA’s state-of-the-art research facilities develop and test dental products and materials that have advanced the practice of dentistry and made the patient experience more positive. The ADA Seal of Acceptance has long been a valuable and respected guide to consumer dental care products. The Journal of the American Dental Association (JADA), published monthly, is the ADA’s flagship publication and the best-read scientific journal in dentistry. For more information about the ADA, visit For more information on oral health, including prevention, care and treatment of dental disease, visit the ADA’s consumer website

© The Forsyth Institute, 2023. All Rights Reserved