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Two dental school faculty named as 2023 Fellows by the American Association for the Advancement of Science2 min read

April 22, 2024

Two dental school faculty named as 2023 Fellows by the American Association for the Advancement of Science2 min read

Ann Arbor, Mich., April 22, 2024 – Two School of Dentistry faculty members are among 12 University of Michigan faculty and staff who have been named 2023 fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Nisha D’Silva and Margherita Fontana were among the 2023 cohort named Thursday by the AAAS, the world’s largest general scientific society. It announced that 502 scientists, engineers, and innovators have been chosen for the lifetime honor for their scientifically and socially distinguished achievements.

Nisha D’Silva

D’Silva is the Donald A. Kerr Endowed Collegiate Professor of Oral Pathology at the dental school, as well as professor of pathology at the U-M Medical School and a member of U-M’s Rogel Comprehensive Cancer Center. AAAS cited her contributions to the field of head-and-neck cancer, especially on biomarkers and molecular mechanisms of tumor progression and treatment resistance.

An oral pathologist, cancer biologist and educator, D’Silva has published more than 100 papers in top journals, including the Journal of Dental Research, the Journal of Experimental MedicineClinical Cancer Research, and Nature Communications.

Margherita Fontana

Fontana is the Clifford Nelson Endowed Professor at the dental school and director of its Global Initiatives Program in Oral and Craniofacial Health. AAAS cited her contributions to the design and assessment of strategies for reducing disparities in how dental caries is recognized and treated in children in underserved regions.

She is recognized internationally as a leading scientist in the field of cariology, the study of tooth decay and how cavities develop and can be controlled, and has an extensive clinical research background in childhood caries management.

More information on the finalists is available on the AAAS website and for the 12 U-M recipients in U-M’s University Record.


The University of Michigan School of Dentistry is one of the nation’s leading dental schools engaged in oral healthcare education, research, patient care and community service. General dental care clinics and specialty clinics providing advanced treatment enable the school to offer dental services and programs to patients throughout Michigan.  Classroom and clinic instruction prepare future dentists, dental specialists and dental hygienists for practice in private offices, hospitals, academia and public agencies.  Research seeks to discover and apply new knowledge that can help patients worldwide.  For more information about the School of Dentistry, visit us on the Web at:  Contact: Lynn Monson, associate director of communications, at, or (734) 615-1971.