About this event

  • Date and time Fri 19 May 2023 from 12:30pm to 19 May 2023 at 9:00pm
  • Location Hunterian Museum
  • Organised by Odontology, Comparative Medicine

The Odontological and Comparative Anatomy sections of the RSM owe much to the Royal College of Surgeons and the Hunterian Museum for providing the scientific basis for the two professions to advance.

To celebrate the reopening of the RCS and the Hunterian after a three-year reconstruction, the two sections are having a scientific meeting entitled “some recent advances in comparative dental anatomy”. A private viewing of the Hunterian Museum is also on offer for attendees. The celebratory meeting will end with a dinner and an additional talk.

The purpose of this meeting is to show the latest scientific advances being made in comparative dental anatomy that are important to dentists and veterinary surgeons, also reflecting the traditions of the Hunterian Museum and the Odontological Collection, and its founding fathers, such as John Hunter and Sir John and Sir Charles Tomes.

Benefits of attending: 
  • Gain an appreciation of how the scientific information presented will help towards understanding the important similarities and differences of teeth across a wide range of animals  

Due to the logistics of the private viewing of the Hunterian Museum, numbers attending the conference will be limited to 50, so an early booking is advisable to avoid disappointment.


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Key speakers

Professor Abigail Tucker

Professor of Development and Evolution, King’s College London

Speaker's biography

Abigail Tucker obtained her DPhil from Oxford University in 1996 in the lab of Prof Jonathan Slack. She then worked as a post-doctoral fellow at Guy’s Hospital, London, in the labs of Prof Paul Sharpe and Prof Andrew Lumsden. Here she started her interest in formation of the head. She set up her own lab as a Wellcome Trust Research Career Development fellow in 1999 in the MRC Centre for Developmental Neurobiology at King’s. In 2002 she moved to the Department of Craniofacial Development within the Dental Institute at King’s College London and was promoted to Professor in 2015. She recently completed a Wellcome Senior Investigator Award and is currently funded by the Medical Research Council (MRC), Biotechnology and Biological Science Research Council (BBSRC) and the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC). Prof Tucker is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology, a Fellow of the Anatomical Society, and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Emeritus Professor Christopher Dean

University College London and Centre for Human Evolution Research, Natural History Museum

Speaker's biography

Emeritus Professor Christopher Dean studied dental surgery at UCL. After qualifying in 1975 he worked in general dental practice, first full time and then part time, in Camden, Islington and Oxford, until 2003. In parallel he studied human biology and then completed a PhD on the comparative anatomy of the hominoid cranial base at The Middlesex Hospital Medical School in 1983. In 1985 he was appointed Wellcome Trust Lecturer in the Department of Anatomy, now Cell and Developmental Biology, at UCL where he first taught dental histology and then anatomy to medical, dental and science students. He was promoted to Reader in 1990 and then Professor of Anatomy in 1996. He is currently part time at the Centre for Human Evolution Research, Natural History Museum, London, and is an emeritus professor at UCL. He has published extensively on comparative primate anatomy and dental histology and in 1990 with Prof. Leslie Aiello wrote “An introduction to human evolutionary anatomy”, Academic Press.


View the programme


Hunterian Museum, Royal College of Surgeons of England, 38–43 Lincolns Inn Fields, London WC2A 3PE

Welcome and introduction

Session 1

Comparative dental anatomy of sharks and rays

Dr Zerina Johanson, Researcher, Natural History Museum

The control of tooth shape and tooth replacement

Professor Abigail Tucker, Professor of Development and EvolutionKing’s College London

The origins of tooth attachment tissues and the importance of the Hunterian Museum

Dr Aaron LeBlanc, Lecturer in Dental Biosciences, King's College London

Tea and coffee break

Session 2

Combat, challenge and canines: The teeth of free - living gorillas in health and disease

Professor John E Cooper, Institute of Primate Research, Karen, Kenya and Professor Arthur Kemoli, Department of Paediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics, University of Nairobi, Kenya

Veterinary dentistry in perspective

Dr Peter Kertesz, Dental Surgeon

Dentistry in companion animals progress in the last 20 years and what might the future hold?

Mr Andrew Perry, Head of Dentistry and Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Eastcott Veterinary Clinic and Hospital

Panel discussion
Closing remarks
Tour of the Hunterian Museum
View the programme (Dinner)

Dinner at the Royal Society of Medicine

For those who have pre-registered

The Piltdown hoax: Exposing the forger’s motives and methods

Emeritus Professor Christopher Dean, University College London and Centre for Human Evolution Research, Natural History Museum


Hunterian Museum, Royal College of Surgeons of England, 38–43 Lincolns Inn Fields, London, WC2A 3PE


Registration for this event will close at 1:00am on Thursday 18 May 2023. Late registrations will not be accepted.

The agenda is subject to change at any time

If the event is recorded, we are only able to share presentations that we have received permission to share. There is no guarantee that all sessions will be available after the event, this is at the presenter’s and RSM’s discretion.

All views expressed at this event are of the speakers themselves and not of the Royal Society of Medicine, nor the speaker's organisations.

This event will be recorded and stored by the Royal Society of Medicine and may be distributed in future on various internet channels.

Domus reception

While you’re attending this event

Stay in the comfort of our hotel, Domus Medica, or hire one of our private dining rooms to socialise with your peers.

RSM members enjoy access to our enviable club facilities. For more information, please contact our team at domus@rsm.ac.uk or restaurant@rsm.ac.uk.

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