Interview: “There is something for all dental professionals at EuroPerio9”

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Interview: “There is something for all dental professionals at EuroPerio9”

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Dr Francis Hughes, Professor of Periodontology at King’s College London and former chair of the EuroPerio8 organising committee, returns to EuroPerio9 as a speaker. (Photograph: EFP)
Kasper Mussche, DTI

By Kasper Mussche, DTI

Tue. 19. June 2018

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Dr Francis Hughes, Professor of Periodontology at King’s College London in the UK, served as chair of the organising committee of EuroPerio8, held in London in 2015. Three years later, he is part of the EFP Congress Task Force, advising on all matters relating to EFP congresses, ranging from possible future venues to scientific meeting possibilities. Dental Tribune Online spoke with him about EuroPerio’s successful development, as well as his own expectations of this year’s edition.

You headed EuroPerio8’s organising committee three years ago. How would you say this year’s event ties in with the one in London?
EuroPerios have been a great success over the years, and the number of attendees has grown immensely. In London, we attracted almost 10,000 people from 106 countries, and registrations for EuroPerio9 have even surpassed that. As such, EuroPerio9 is building on the great success and popularity of previous meetings. The winning formula has evolved over the years, and this year we have some new innovations, such as live surgery sessions, nightmare case sessions and a general attempt to encourage discussion in all sessions. We have, over time, also got much better at planning and projecting our messages from the EFP. Finally, with our core professional conference organiser, Mondial, we have got pretty slick at running a smooth and enjoyable show where the logistics work and people can enjoy themselves and catch up with the latest techniques, research and methodologies.

You are participating in a session at EuroPerio9 on the role of genetics in periodontitis. What would you like listeners to take from this session?
I am chairing this session. I am not by any means a geneticist, but I am an enthusiastic amateur when it comes to periodontal genetics. Thus, I hope that having a clinician as chair will help to make the session as accessible and relevant as possible. Genetic factors are some of the most important factors that determine susceptibility to periodontitis, but the precise mechanisms are not well understood. The scientific potential of current studies to unravel these factors is enormous, but there are also some important pitfalls to avoid. I hope that listeners will be able to understand the state of the art in this research area, but also better understand the potential clinical relevance of these studies in the future.

How can dental professionals benefit from attending EuroPerio9?
There is something for all dental professionals at EuroPerio9. The size of the meeting and holding the meeting only once every three years means that we are able to put on a fresh and comprehensive scientific programme that brings together top expert speakers in all topics relating to periodontology and implant dentistry. So, there is much to go to if you are a specialist or generalist, practitioner or academic, dentist or hygienist. In truth, the biggest challenge for the attendee is deciding on what to go to and what not to.

What are some things at the event you are looking forward to yourself?
I am, of course, looking forward to the session I am chairing on genetics, where I have two great speakers on this topic. There are lots of both practical and academic sessions that I am really eager to see—for example, the debate on the use of antibiotics in periodontology. But one of the main things I’m looking forward to is catching up with many old friends, colleagues and old students of mine who are scattered all around the world.

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