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Vida Zohoori

01642 342973
Job title:
Professor in Oral Public Health and Nutrition
School of Health & Social Care
Health & Social Care research

About Vida Zohoori

Vida Zohoori

Vida Zohoori
Professor in Oral Public Health and Nutrition, School of Health & Social Care
T: 01642 342973
Research: Health & Social Care research

Vida Zohoori is a Professor of Oral Public Health and Nutrition.  She has a first degree in Nutrition, an MSc in Dietetics, and received her PhD in 1998 from Newcastle University, School of Dental Sciences.  Her research interests are fluorides and public health, with a particular focus on oral health.

Vida was an expert panel member of the World Health Organisation (WHO) Global Oral Health technical working group on 'Monitoring of Renal Fluoride Excretion in Community Preventive Programmes on Oral Health' (2011) and subsequently served as reporteur (2011-12).  She also served as the rapporteur at the ‘Fluoride Symposium: Guidelinesfor Fluoride Intake - Are They Appropriate?’ which was held in San Francisco-USA (March 2017).

Vida is a member of the International Association for Dental Research, the British Society for Oral and Dental Research, the European Organisation for Caries Research, and the Centre of Translational Research in Public Health (Fuse).  She holds a ‘visitinglecturer’ position at Newcastle University - School of Dental Sciences. She is also a member of the Fluoride Research Group , Newcastle University.
She was the winner of the Teesside University ‘Vice-chancellor’s Award’ for ‘Research Performance’ category in 2013.  Her expertise is internationally recognised and she has delivered numerous invited presentations, including to the WHO. She is a recipient of the Oral & Dental Research Trust Award (1997, 2004), the Royal Society Conference Award (2004), and the Royal Society Science Networking Award (2008).

Research interests

Research interests (in brief)

  • Fluoride exposure and retention in infants and children
  • Fluoride metabolism including interaction of fluoride with other nutrients
  • Development of standard methods of fluoride analysis of biological and non-biological samples
  • Development of biomarkers for fluoride exposure
  • Genetic and fluoride metabolism
Externally funded projects (since 2007)
  • Development of a fluoride assay methodology for plasma from capillary blood samples (2015-2017). The Borrow Foundation [Principal Investigator].
  • Fluoride (F) metabolism/body F retention: Effects of host (genetic variation) and environment (F dose and exercise) factors (2015-2016). São Paulo Researchers in International Collaboration (SPRINT) [Joint Principal Investigator].
  • Assessment of fluoride intake, excretion and retention of infants in the UK. (2013-2016). The Organix Foundation [Principal Investigator].
  • Fluoride Research I-IV (2011-2016). The Borrow Foundation [Co-Investigator]. 
  • Establish international research collaboration (2014). British Council Seed Funding Grant [Co-Investigator].
  • Fluoride metabolism and public health - a "Question of DETAIL" (2013). British Council- Sao Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP) Researcher Links [Co-Investigator].
  • Does knowledge and awareness of oral cancer signs and symptoms in at-risk individuals improve the likelihood of early attendance rate in an area experiencing high mortality rates? (2010). Tees NHS & Teesside University Research Fund [Principal Investigator].
  • Assessment of fluoride intake of infants in the UK (2009-2010). The Organix Foundation [Principal Investigator].
  • Dental and skeletal fluorosis in Tanzania (2008). Royal Society; Ghana/Tanzanian – UK Science Networking Scheme [Principal Investigator].
  • Fluoride contents of baby foods in the UK (2008). The Organix Foundation [Principal Investigator].
  • Effect of three oral hygiene regimes on salivary fluoride concentration (2007). Johnson & Johnson [Principal Investigator].
  • Development of Gold Standard Methods for Fluoride Analysis. (2003-2011). National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. Project number IR21DE014716 -01.  (Principal Investigator; Dr EA Martinez-Meir, University of Indiana, USA). Collaborating centres: Brazil, Chile, Ireland, Thailand, UK and US (Iowa, California, Georgia) [Co-Investigator].
Industrial Relevance
  • Running externally funded workshops in fluoride analysis of fluoridated milk for staff of dairies
  • Fluoride analysis of food and drink samples
  • Clinical trials of dental health products
External Research collaboration
  • Dental School, University of Adelaide, Australia
  • Oral Health Research Institute, Fluoride Research Programme, Indiana University, USA.
  • Department of Biological Sciences, Bauru Dental School, University of Sao Paulo, Brazil. 
  • School of Food Engineering, Harbin Commerce University, Harbin, China. 
  • School of Dental Sciences, Centre for Oral Health, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK. 
  • Graduate School of Medical and Dental Sciences, Niigata University, Japan. 
  • Institute of Nutrition and Food Technology (INTA), University of Chile, Chile.
Current projects
1) Development of a fluoride assay methodology for plasma from capillary blood samples
Despite the importance of plasma fluoride for pharmacokinetic and analytical epidemiology studies, there are insufficient data on plasma fluoride concentrations, particularly in children, to determine their normal baseline values for different levels of fluoride intake and exposure. When measuring plasma fluoride in children or undertaking pharmacokinetic studies with frequent blood collection, the preferred collection method is capillary blood draw, by fingerpick sampling. This produces sample volumes smaller than those required for currently available methods for fluoride analysis. We are currently undertaking a collaborative project with universities of Indiana (USA), Sao Paulo (Brazil) and Newcastle (UK) to develop and validate a precision and true method for plasma fluoride analysis in micro-gram samples containing nano- or sub-nano-gram amounts of fluoride.

2) Fluoride (F) metabolism/body F retention: Effects of host (genetic variation) and environment (F dose and exercise) factors
In areas with naturally excessive concentrations of fluoride in the water there is considerable variation in fluorosis prevalence and severity among and within populations, suggesting a genetic involvement in fluoride absorption and metabolism. However, resistance and susceptibility to fluorosis appears to be influenced by host (e.g. age, genetics) and environment (e.g. diet and physical activity) factors and their interactions. Since fluorosis in general is a multi-factorial problem requiring a holistic approach to its mitigation, more in-depth research is needed to tackle it effectively. We are currently undertaking a collaborative pilot project with universities of Sao Paulo (Brazil) and Newcastle (UK) to investigate the effects of i) genetic variation (host); ii) F dose and exercise (environment) on fluoride metabolism and body retention.

3) Assessment of fluoride intake, excretion and retention of infants in the UK
An estimation of total daily F intake at both an individual and community level is very important when recommendations for F use are being considered with the goals of maximising dental caries prevention while minimising risk of dental fluorosis. However, knowing the proportion (or fraction) of F intake retained in the body is more important than the absolute F intake as several factors can alter F ingestion, absorption and retention rates in different age groups. Since the critical period for development of fluorosis in late developing primary teeth is from 4 months in utero until 11 months of age, in this ongoing study, we are measuring total fluoride intake and excretion  in pre- and post-weaned infants  living in a  fluoridated area or a non-fluoridated area of North East England.

Ongoing PhD projects
  • Public Perception of Community Water Fluoridation
  • Effect of Altitude on Fluoride Metabolism
  • Effect of Physical Activity on Fluoride Metabolism
  • Biomarkers of Fluoride Exposure
Vida welcomes applications for PhD study in the above areas.


Selected publications

Omid N, Maguire A, O'Hare WT, Zohoori, FV (2017). Total daily fluoride intake and fractional urinary fluoride excretion in 4‐to 6‐year‐old children living in a fluoridated area: weekly variation? Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology 45(1): 12-19.

Zohoori, FV and Duckworth, RM (2017). Fluoride: Intake and Metabolism, Therapeutic and Toxicological Consequences', in Collins, J.F. (ed.) Molecular, Genetic, and Nutritional Aspects of Major and Trace Minerals. 1st edition. Boston: Academic Press, 539-550

Zohoori, FV and Maguire A (2015). Development of a database of the fluoride content of selected drinks and foods in the UK. Caries Research, 50 (3):331–336.

Zohoori, FV, Innerd A, Azevedo LB, Whitford G, Maguire A (2015). Effect of exercise on fluoride metabolism in adult humans: a pilot study. Scientific Reports, 5: 16905.

View Vida Zohoori's Publications on TeesRep

In the news

  • Working to beat tooth decay
    Evening Gazette, 20/03/14, P.42
    Dr Vida Zohoori, a Reader in Oral Public Health and Nutrition at Teesside University, says the gap between the recommended daily intake of fluoride in children and the level which could cause tooth mo