AAE Publishes “A Different Kind of Case”

Dr. Levin examines mandible of Sir George Yeardley
In the lab at Jamestown Rediscovery, Dr. Levin examines the mandible of a specimen presumed to be Sir George Yeardley, Lord Governor of Jamestown. An isolation suit was worn to minimize DNA contamination of the specimen. (Photo by Michael Lavin, Jamestown Rediscovery).

The American Association of Endodontists (AAE) published an interview with Dr. Martin D. Levin about his work with archaeologists and scientists in their newsletter published on March 2, 2020. The article was based on an interview with Michael Dobrow, Integrated Communications Specialist at the AAE, “A Different Kind of Case.”

The purpose of the article was to highlight Dr. Levin’s investigations of specimens from Jamestown, the Smithsonian and the Penn Museum. His work, along with a team of anthropologists, archaeologists, other dental specialists, physicians and a broad range of scientists helped to better understand what life was like for the first settlers in early 17th Century Jamestown.

The article also highlighted another project about his work with a team of archeologists at the University of Pennsylvania to help settle the mysteries around whether Chicago’s World’s Fair serial killer H.H. Holmes, the subject of the novel, The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson, was in fact buried in a nearby Philadelphia cemetery.

University of Pennsylvania anthropologists Drs. Janet Monge and Samantha Cox were engaged by the History Channel to determine if H. H. Holmes was actually the person executed at Moyamensing Prison in Philadelphia in 1896 for the murders he committed.  I was asked to document and compare Holmes’ teeth with photographs of his dental casts in his prison records. We performed a CBCT and laser scan of his mandible and maxilla to segment his teeth and create a virtual model of his dentition, which exactly matched his prison dental records. After the tests were concluded, Holmes’ body was reinterred.

Endodontic Society of the Philippines 37th Annual Meeting

The Endodontic Society of the Philippines 37th Annual Meeting was held at the Marco Polo Hotel, Ortigas Center, Pasig City on July 13-14, 2019. Dr. Levin joined Drs. Arnaldo Castellucci, Alan Gluskin, Sai Kalyan and Somsinee Pimkhaokham in conducting the two-day program, which included the use of advanced technologies such as CBCT. The meeting included about one hundred eighty attendees.

Before the congress, Dr. Levin lectured to the pre-doctoral students and the endodontic residents at the University of the East in downtown Manila.

Ingle’s Endodontics, Ed 7 is Published

Ingle’s Endodontics, Ed 7

The seventh edition of Ingle’s Endodontics is the most recent revision of the text that has been known as the “Bible of Endodontics” for half a century.  It continues continues the tradition of including an international group of authors, contributing new cutting-edge knowledge and updates on topics that have formed the core of this book for years and also contributing new chapters that reflect the ways in which the field has evolved over the 50 years since its inception.

The main divisions of the book in the new edition are The Science of Endodontics, The Practice of Endodontics, and Interdisciplinary Endodontics.

The 40 chapters are enhanced with color illustrations. New chapters in this edition include:

  • Periradicular disease
  • Dental innervations and pain of pulpal origin
  • Cone beam computed tomography
  • Magnetic resonance imaging
  • Preparation for endodontic treatment
  • Endodontic therapy in teeth with anatomical variations
  • Achieving long-term success with endodontic therapy
  • Management of teeth with immature apices
  • Regenerative endodontics
  • Intentional replantation of endodontically treated teeth
  • Endodontic therapy in the elderly patient
  • Endodontic therapy in the pediatric patient

Mid-Atlantic Archaeological Conference Paper Presented on Early Dentistry from a Native American Burial in the Southern Chesapeake Region, Virginia

Archaeologist Kerry S. González presented a paper on March 23, 2019, documenting the work of a team of researchers, including Dr. Martin D. Levin, on a Native American showing evidence for prehistoric dentistry.

“The specimen was examined with optical focus-stacking microscopy, periapical radiography, cone beam computed tomography and micro-CT scanning to image the carious lesion and compare it to a smaller carious lesion on another tooth. “These studies revealed compelling evidence for purposeful removal of decayed tissue. Scanning electron microscopy was also used to examine striations observed on the interior surface of the cavity to help identify the tools and methods employed in the treatment of the tooth. In addition, there is evidence for extraction of the mandibular right third molar, suggesting that the individual sought treatment for dental disease on at least two occasions.”* There was evidence of a pulp exposure of the meisobuccal pulp horn with associated evidence of bleeding confined to a 2 mm round area of dentin discoloration.

The research will also be presented at the Society for American Archaeology in Albuquerque, NM on April 13, 2019.

Abstract: Kerry S. González, Joseph R. Blondino, Joanna Wilson-Green, PhD, Jazriel Cruz, DDS, Martin D. Levin, DMD. Primitive Dentistry from a Native American Burial in the Southern Chesapeake Region, Virginia. Abstract, 2019 SAA Conference, Albuquerque, NM.

University of Pennsylvania, School of Dental Medicine Alumni Profile: Dr. Martin D. Levin, D’72, GD’74

The University of Pennsylvania published an Alumni Profile about Dr. Levin’s high-tech approach used to help investigate 400 year-old remains at Jamestown, Virginia. The article describes the the team of archaeologists and other researchers who together characterized the dentition and life of the first to die at Jamestown soon after arriving from England in 1607. The article said that Dr. Levin observed a large apical lesion on a fractured tooth that on specimen JR1225B at a Smithsonian exhibit, and was curious about what further investigations might reveal.  To help with the analysis, Dr. Levin enlisted a group of researchers to perform advanced examinations, including micro-CT, Raman spectroscopy, focus-staking microscopy, scanning electron microscopy and paleontology. To link to the article, please click here.

Dr. Levin Addresses the American Academy of Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology on the Analysis of Dental Remains from 1607 Jamestown, Virginia

The American Academy of Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology hosted a lecture by Dr. Levin titled: Analyses of Dental Remains from 1607 Jamestown, Virginia Using Cone-beam CT imaging, 3D Digital Reconstruction, Micro-CT Imaging, Paleobotany, SEM-EDX and Raman Spectroscopies. During the talk, he explained the use of advanced technologies in the analysis of JR1225B, a specimen from the Early Settlers collection of Jamestown Rediscovery and the Smithsonian Institution.

Dr. Levin Speaks at the International Congress of Dentists, Section XII (China) in Macau

Dr. Levin and other panelists answer questions from the dentists attending the congress.

The International Congress of Dentists, Section XII (China) held their annual congress in  Macau on June 18-20, 2018. Dr. Levin lectured on advances in the use of CBCT in endodontics. He talked about the value of an emerging technology: volumetric analysis of apical periodontitis in outcomes analysis.

Dr. Levin Participates in Examination of Skeleton Believed to be Sir George Yeardley

Dr. Levin in isolation suit to protect Yeardley’s jaw specimen from DNA contamination.

At Jamestown, a team of archaeologists have exhumed the skull and teeth that may belong to Sir George Yeardley. He is best known for his role as a colonial governor who presided over the first representative assembly in the Western hemisphere. He was also one of America’s first slave owners. Yeardley died in 1627 at the age of 39 and was possibly buried in the second church’s central aisle – a place of honor.

The burial site was excavated by a team of archaeologists led by David Givens from Jamestown Rediscovery, museum curator Michael Lavin and forensic anthropologists from the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, led by Dr. Doug Owsley. They were joined by geneticist and archaeologist Turi King, from the University of Leicester. Dr. Levin assisted in the identification of the mandible and teeth found at the church. Additional scientific assessment to determine if the remains were Yeardley’s will be conducted in the coming months. Dr. D. Joshua Cohen, a scientist at Virginia Commonwealth University, will perform additional studies using micro-CT and scanning electron microscopy.

Jamestown: Early Settlers and What Teeth Can Tell Us

Drs. Janet Monge and Martin D. Levin examine skeletal remains at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology.

“What Can Teeth Tell Us? Life and Death in Early Colonial Jamestown”

Levy Seminar Series at the School of Dental Medicine, University of Pennsylvania
What can the study of skeletal material teach us about life and death? Janet Monge, PhD, Associate Curator and Keeper of Physical Anthropology and Adjunct Associate Professor in Penn’s Department of Anthropology, and Martin D. Levin, DMD, Adjunct Professor, Department of Endodontics at Penn Dental Medicine, will present an investigation of the teeth and skeletal remains from the colonial site of Jamestown, VA. They will discuss the evidence of trauma and the scientific basis of their findings, using cone-beam computed tomography, intraoral radiography, micro computed tomography, scanning electron microscopy and Raman spectroscopy. This research shows how advanced technologies can be used to characterize aspects of life and the disease state of skeletal remains. Hello to all.