Newswise — CHICAGO -- The American Association of Endodontists announces noted endodontic educator and Journal of Endodontics Editor-in-Chief Dr. Kenneth M. Hargreaves has been awarded the ADA’s Gold Medal Award for Excellence in Dental Research. Dr. Hargreaves’ accomplishments have had a profound effect on the endodontic specialty. As a prolific researcher, Dr. Hargreaves’ focus areas—pain management and regenerative endodontics—are changing the way endodontists treat patients and introducing cutting-edge treatments that not too long ago were not even possible.

The Gold Medal Award for Excellence in Dental Research is sponsored by the American Dental Association together with Church & Dwight Co., Inc. Established in 1985 and presented every three years, the award honors individuals who, through basic or clinical research, have contributed to the advancement of the profession of dentistry or to major improvement in the oral health of the public.

The Gold Medal Award recipient receives a $25,000 honorarium, a gold medallion and the opportunity to serve a three-year term as a member of the ADA's Council on Scientific Affairs. Dr. Hargreaves will also be recognized with the honor on Oct. 18, during a ceremony at ADA 2018 in Honolulu.

“Dr. Hargreaves is among the most well-known and respected endodontists in the country and a much sought-after speaker, drawing standing-room-only crowds at lectures around the world,” said AAE President Dr. Patrick E. Taylor. “A diligent steward of the AAE’s scientific journal, Dr. Hargreaves leads the Journal of Endodontics with extraordinary skill, managing a tremendous workload with great care and efficiency.”

As a dedicated educator, Dr. Hargreaves has served as chair of the department of endodontics at The University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio (UT Health San Antonio) for more than 20 years, molding the School of Dentistry into a leading endodontic and research institution.

Throughout his distinguished career, Dr. Hargreaves has edited five textbooks, contributed to 33 textbook chapters and published nearly 400 papers, abstracts, reviews and editorials. With more than 13,000 citations of his papers in Scopus, he is one of the most prolific and influential authors and researchers in the history of endodontics. His research has received funding of more than $95 million from sources that include the National Institutes of Health, the Foundation for Endodontics and the Department of Defense. Dr. Hargreaves’ research on pain management not only is changing the way we manage our patients’ pre- and post-treatment pain but also influencing pain management in other areas of medicine. As a result, clinicians are able to rely less on opioids, a step in addressing overprescribing and addiction.

Dr. Hargreaves is a leading researcher in regenerative endodontics, currently managing a $1.7 million multi-center clinical trial to study regeneration of pulp-dentin development in teeth with necrotic pulps and immature roots. Recently, UT Health San Antonio learned it will receive a five-year, $24 million research grant from the NIH for its Clinical and Translational Science Award Program, which helps to speed the translation of research discovery into improved patient care. Dr. Hargreaves is one of the grant’s co-principal investigators.

Dr. Hargreaves has been influential as an academician and administrator as well. He has served as professor and chair of the department of endodontics at UT Health San Antonio since 1997 and also is professor in the school’s departments of physiology, surgery and pharmacology. Dr. Hargreaves instills in his residents the same commitment to clinical, scientific and research excellence that he expects from himself. His Neurotree, an online database documenting the lineage of academic mentorship in neuroscience, shows Dr. Hargreaves’ influence on more than 50 researchers. Many of his students have gone on to educator and leadership roles in other endodontic programs.

As editor-in-chief of the Journal of Endodontics, Dr. Hargreaves has his pulse on new research in endodontics. Receiving more than 1,000 manuscript submissions annually, Dr. Hargreaves works closely with editors and reviewers to manage this incredible workload, which results in publication of less than 20 percent of submitted manuscripts. Dr. Hargreaves’ diligence in ensuring the JOE publishes only high-quality research makes it the most prestigious journal in endodontics. His work has helped the JOE become one of the highest-impact journals in endodontics and dentistry.

Dr. Hargreaves’ other accolades include the AAE’s Louis I. Grossman Award for research; the IADR/AADR William J. Gies Award for Best Paper of the Year in Biomaterials/Bioengineering; the Georgetown University School of Dentistry Gustav O. Kruger Lifetime Achievement Award in Dentistry; UT Health San Antonio’s highest university faculty research honor, the Presidential Distinguished Senior Research Scholar Award; and two IADR Distinguished Scientist Awards, one in Pharmacology, Toxicology & Therapeutics, and the other in Pulp Biology Research.

In addition to all of that, Dr. Hargreaves is an accomplished athlete, having completed four Ironman Triathlon races and currently in training for a fifth. He is also a loving husband and father of two grown children pursuing medical careers. He is well regarded as a wonderful colleague and a warm and caring friend. 

“I can think of no one who more embodies the spirit of the Gold Medal Award for Excellence in Dental Research than Dr. Ken Hargreaves,” Dr. Taylor said. “His research contributions extend beyond endodontics and dentistry to the larger medical community. His academic influence is evident in the accomplishments of his students and will be realized for generations to come.”


About the American Association of Endodontists

The American Association of Endodontists, headquartered in Chicago, represents more than 8,000 members worldwide. Endodontics is one of nine dental specialties formally recognized by the American Dental Association. The AAE, founded in 1943, is dedicated to excellence in the art and science of endodontics and to the highest standard of patient care. The Association inspires its members to pursue professional advancement and personal fulfillment through education, research, advocacy, leadership, communication and service. For more information about the AAE, visit the Association’s website at