The Task Force on Design & Analysis in Oral Health Research's origins can be traced back to the late 1960s, when a small group of biostatisticians met as one of four subcommittees of the organizing committee of the 1968 Conference on Testing of Cariostatic Agents for Dental Caries. This conference was co-sponsored by the American Dental Association (ADA) and the US Public Health Service (PHS). One conference goal was to develop a standardized methodology for conducting field trials to evaluate the efficacy of products designed to prevent dental caries.
New Jersey department of Health to organize a steering committee and two task forces to plan for an International Conference on Clinical Trials of Agents Used in the Prevention/Treatment of Periodontal Diseases.
The conferences were directed by Drs. John C. Greene, John D. Suomi, John Fertig, and Neal Chilton in April of 1973. The proceedings of this conference were published in the Journal of Periodontal Research.1
Subsequent to the Sugar Loaf conference, Dr. Chilton obtained financial support from industry for the Task Force on Design and Analysis to hold regular semi-annual meetings. A Task Force meeting normally consists of from six to eight informal presentations dealing with specific aspects of clinical studies. Each presentation is a dialogue between the speaker and members of the audience. Statistical, clinical, and methodological issues are usually the focus.
A second major international conference on clinical trials was organized by the Task Force in conjunction with the ADA. This conference was held in Chicago in 1983 led by Drs. John Fertig and Neal Chilton. Primary funding was obtained from the National Institute of Dental Research, and Conference Proceedings were published in the Journal of Dental Research.2
Dr. John Fertig served as Chairman of the Task Force from its inception in 1971 until 1983 and was succeeded by Drs. Joseph Fleiss with Dr. Neal Chilton as Executive Director.
A Conference on Clinical Trials in Periodontitis, hosted by the ADA in Chicago during May of 1985, was organized by the Task Force and totally funded by corporate sponsors. The proceedings appeared in the Journal of Clinical Periodontology.3 Many of the basic designs for gingivitis and periodontitis clinical trials were introduced at this conference.
The Task Force organized a fourth major international conference, held in Chicago during May of 1991, focusing on methodology for demonstrating superiority or equivalence of products for gingivitis and periodontitis. Co-sponsored by the Task Force and the ADA, this meeting was supported by commercial contributors. Conference proceedings were published in the Journal of Periodontal Research.4
At the request of the ADA, the Task Force prepared recommendations for clinical trials to qualify gingivitis and chronic periodontitis for the ADA Seal. In November, 1991, the Task Force held a Workshop involving representatives from academia, independent research organizations, and industry, to develop a framework for its recommendations. In 1994, separate publications recommending updates to the existing ADA guidelines for gingivitis trials, and proposing new guidelines for trials involving non-surgical therapeutic interventions for adult periodontitis, appeared in the Journal of Periodontal Research.5,6
In 1990, the Task Force reorganized itself formally as a non-profit research corporation with corporate officers and a Board of Directors. Dr. Chilton served as Executive Director. In 2004 Dr. Chilton passed away and was succeeded by Dr. Sebastian G. Ciancio as Executive Director. Dr. Bruce Pihlstrom served as consultant during this transition. In 2005 the Task Force established the Foundation for Design and Analysis of Dental & Oral Health Research, Inc. Today, the Task Force benefits from a reserve account. This fund ensures coverage of the routine activities associated with meetings and also provides funding for recently established Neal Chilton Fellowship and a postdoctoral fellowship on biostatistics, Task Force on Design & Analysis Traineeship in Oral-Health Research Statistics.REFERENCES
- Chilton NW, editor (1974). Proceedings of an international conference on clinical trials of agents used in the prevention/treatment of periodontal diseases, Philadelphia, PA, April 2-3, 1973. J Periodont Res (14 Suppl):S1-S21).
- Chilton NW, editor (1984). Clinical caries trials, Chicago, IL, May 17-19, 1983. J Dent Res 63(Spec Iss):700-827.
- Chilton NW, editor (1986). Proceedings of a conference on clinical trials in periodontal diseases. Chicago, IL, May 21-23, 1985. J Clin Periodontol (Spec Iss):344-549.
- Chilton NW, editor (1992). Conference on equivalency and superiority claims for products for gingivitis and periodontitis, Chicago, IL, May 14-16, 1991. J Periodont Res (Pt 2):305-456.
- Imrey PB, Chilton NW, Pihlstrom BL, Proskin HM, Kingman A, Listgarten MA, et al. (1994a). Recommended revisions to American Dental Association guidelines for acceptance of chemotherapeutic products for gingivitis control. J Periodont Res 28:299-304.
Imrey PB, Chilton NW, Pihlstrom BL, Proskin HM, Kingman A, Listgarten MA, et al. (1994b). Proposed guidelines for the American Dental Association acceptance of products for professional, non-surgical treatment of adult periodontitis. J Periodont Res 28:348-360.