Alex Fok, PHD, MSc

Professor, Department of Restorative Sciences

Alex Fok

Contact Info

Office Phone 612-625-5406

Fax 612-626-1484

Office Address:
16-212 Moos Tower
515 Delaware St. SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

PhD, University of Manchester, UK (Mechanical Engineering), 1994

MSc, University of Oxford, UK (Mathematical Modeling and Numerical Analysis), 1999

BEng, University of Manchester, UK (Mechanical Engineering), 1990; BA, Open University, UK (Mathematics) , 1998


Dr Fok obtained his BEng and PhD in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Manchester, UK. He also holds a BA in Mathematics from the UK Open University and an MSc in Mathematical Modeling and Numerical Analysis from the University of Oxford.

Dr Fok has expertise in stress and structural analysis. His research activities cover a range of topics in the biomechanics of dental restorations. These include probabilistic failure analysis, micro-structural modeling of composite materials, shrinkage stress and strain, design of mechanical tests, nondestructive examination and shape optimization of dental restorations. A principal aim of his research is to instill more rigorous engineering principles into the design and assessment of dental restorations and treatments so as to improve their reliability.

Dr Fok has been the Director of the Minnesota Dental Research Center for Biomaterials and Biomechanics (MDRCBB) since 2007. Established as an industrial-academic collaboration, with the 3M Foundation and 3M Dental Products Division providing the founding funds, the MDRCBB works with industry on the development of new dental biomaterials and technologies. New materials are evaluated using the many techniques unique to the MDRCBB to determine their applicability and chances for clinical success in the oral cavity. The MDRCBB has been continuously funded since 1991.

Awards & Recognition

  • Fellow, Academy of Dental Materials, 2007
  • Member of Chair Professor Group, Tsinghua University, China 2007-2010
  • Visiting Professor, Guanghua School of Stomatology, Sun Yat-sen University, China, 2012-2015
  • Honorary Member, Omicron Kappa Upsilon, Honor Dental Society, 2013
  • High Impact Research Icon, University of Malaya, Malaysia, 2015


Research Summary/Interests

Shape optimization of dental restorations; Characterization of biomaterials; Probabilistic failure analysis; Nondestructive examination


Guo J, Holmes B, Yang B, Li Y, Heo YC, Chen J, Fok A, ‘Determining the temporaral development of dentin-composite bond strength during curing’, Dental Materials , 2016, in press. HYPERLINK "" \t "doilink" doi:10.1016/

Yang B, Guo J, Huang Q, Heo Y, Fok A, Wang Y, ‘Acoustic properties of interfacial debonding and their relationship with shrinkage stress in Class-I restorations’, Dental Materials, 2016, 32(6): 742-748, 10.1016/

Li Y, Chen X, Fok A, Rodriguez-Cabello JC, Aparicio C,‘Biomimetic mineralization of recombinamer-based hydrogels toward controlled morphologies and high mineral density’, ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces, 2015, 7(46): 25784-25792. HYPERLINK "" 10.1021/acsami.5b07628

Lau A, Li J, Heo YC, Fok A, 'A study of polymerization shrinkage kinetics using digital image correlation', Dental Materials, 2015, 31(4): 391-398. HYPERLINK "" 10.1016/

Carrera CA, Lan C, Escobar-Sanabria D, Li Y, Rudney J, Aparicio C, Fok A, 'The use of micro-CT with image segmentation to quantify leakage in dental restorations', Dental Materials, 2015, 31(4): 382-390. HYPERLINK "" 10.1016/

Wu SD, Zhang H, Dong XD, Ning CY, Fok ASL, Wang Y, 'Physicochemical properties and in vitro cytocompatibility of modified titanium surfaces prepared via micro-arc oxidation with different calcium concentrations', Applied Surface Science, 2015, 329: 347-355. HYPERLINK "" 10.1016/j.apsusc.2014.12.039

Barsness SA, Bowles WR, Fok A, McClanahan SB, Harris SP, 'An anatomical investigation of the mandibular second molar using micro-computed tomography', Surgical and Radiologic Anatomy, 2015, 37(3): 267-272. HYPERLINK "" 10.1007/s00276-014-1364-9

Xiong Y, Huang SH, Shinno Y, Furuya Y, Imazato S, Fok A,et al. ‘The use of a fiber sleeve to improve fracture strength of pulpless teeth with flared root canals.’ Dental Materials. 2015, 31 (12): 1427-1434. HYPERLINK "" 10.1016/

Chen Y, Fok A. ‘Stress distributions in human teeth modeled with a natural graded material distribution.’ Dental Materials. 2014, 30(12):e337-e348. HYPERLINK "" 10.1016/

Li J, Thakur P, Fok ASL. ‘Shrinkage of dental composite in simulated cavity measured with digital image correlation’. Journal of Visualized Experiments. 2014, (89): e51191. HYPERLINK "" 10.3791/51191