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AU collaborating with China on facial pain research

The Department of Dentistry has entered into a partnership for a Danish-Chinese pain research centre in conjunction with one of the leading dentistry schools in China. The new relationship opens up for research projects that would otherwise be difficult to realise in Denmark.

The good connections between Aarhus University and China have been strengthened following the Department of Dentistry’s entering into a cooperation agreement on a Danish and Chinese pain research centre. The centre is affiliated with a dentistry school in Chengdu in Western China. The partnership will involve the exchange of knowledge and material on pain research and the plan is also for postgraduate students from China to be able to visit the department at Aarhus University.

The incentive to build up a strong Danish-Chinese relationship within the field of research helps both parties, says Professor Peter Svensson from the Section of Clinical Oral Physiology. Together with Professor Kelun Wang from the Centre for Sensory-Motor Interaction at Aalborg University, he is the Danish liaison in the collaboration.

"Both countries have something to gain here, even though our starting points are different. Danish pain research has methods that the Chinese researchers can benefit from learning. On the other hand, we can benefit from the far larger number of patients in China," says Peter Svensson.

One of the challenges facing Danish researchers is the difficulty in recruiting sufficient numbers of patients to be able to carry out systematic studies. This applies e.g. in relation to the treatment of patients with acute facial and oral pain. In China there is a long queue of people suffering from pain outside the dentistry school in Chengdu each day waiting for the school to open in the morning. This makes it possible to carry out research projects that would otherwise take a very long time for dentists to carry out in Denmark.

"Volume is very important. If we can prepare or receive the study material from our colleagues in China then we will benefit greatly from this agreement," says Peter Svensson.

The new agreement on the pain research centre is the third in a row for the Department of Dentistry. The department already has similar agreements with dentistry schools in Beijing and Nanjing and dentists from both locations have also visited Aarhus on exchange programmes.

Further information

Professor Peter Svensson
Aarhus University, Department of Dentistry, The Section of Clinical Oral Physiology
Direct tel.: +45 8716 8132