Centre for Oral Health Research

Orofacial Pain

Orofacial Pain

Research in this theme aims to translate ideas from basic and clinical research into the development of new approaches to treatment of temporomandibular disorders (TMDs).

Our research bridges the basic research of Translational Oral Biosciences with the clinical research and intervention methodologies of Oral Care Pathways and Epidemiology.

Studies of the neurophysiology of dental pain aim to establish new in vitro models to delineate the role of ion channels.

They also investigate the relationship of neuronal hyperexcitability with pain symptoms.

Acute inflammatory dental pain

The investigation of acute inflammatory dental pain aims to enable care and reduce the risk of transition to neuropathic pain.

We aim to identify druggable targets associated with the transition from acute to chronic ‘phantom’ pain.

In parallel, we are trying to establish the factors influencing patient engagement with pain management in order to reduce pain progression.

Care pathways and management

Our clinical studies of persistent oral pain care pathways and management are encapsulated in our NIHR-funded DEEP (Developing Effective and Efficient care pathways for patients with chronic Pain) study.

This research aims to investigate the:

  • diagnosis of TMD disorders
  • stratification of care persistent oral pain
  • role of self management (including diet and nutrition) in TMD disorders
  • topical neuromodulation of persistent neuropathic orofacial pain

The ultimate aim is improving patient care outcomes. 

Principal investigators

Professor Justin Durham (justin.durham@ncl.ac.uk) and Dr Seva Telezhkin (vsevolod.telezhkin@ncl.ac.uk)

Recent publications