Belinda Farias Nicolau

Academic title(s): 

Assistant Dean of Research and Graduate Dental Education; 
Canada Research Chair in Life Course Oral Epidemiology (Tier 2)

Belinda Farias Nicolau
Contact Information
514-398-4400 Ext 094655
Email address: 
belinda.nicolau [at]

I obtained my DDS degree from the Federal University of Paraná, Brazil and MSc and PhD degrees from the University College London (UCL), London, United Kingdom. After a brief stint with Paul Speight also at UCL, I pursued a postdoctoral fellowship with Drs Allison and Franco at McGill University. I am currently a Professor and the Assistant Dean of Research at the McGill University Faculty of Dental Medicine and Oral Health Sciences. I am also an Associate Member of the Department of Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Occupation Health and the Department of Oncology (Faculty of Medicine, McGill University) and the director of the McGill Summer Institute in Innovative Methodologies. As Canada Research Chair in Life Course Oral Epidemiology, I lead a research program investigating the aetiology of chronic oral diseases using epidemiological methods within a life course approach. Specifically, my research program addresses two major current public health challenges: sharp increases in human papillomavirus-related oral/oropharyngeal cancer and obesity-related diseases (the links between periodontal diseases and obesity).

In her role as Assistant Dean of Research and Graduate Dental Education (RGDE), Dr. Nicolau supports the research mission of the Faculty, takes a leading role in epidemiology, public health and health services research, adresses the Faculty’s current challenges in research and graduate studies, including research funding; research space management; graduate student recruitment and admissions strategies. 

Areas of expertise: 
  • Oral Epidemiology
  • Life Course Approach to Oral Health
2001 McGill College, Suite 527
Research areas: 
Population Oral Health
Selected publications: 


Eslamiamirabadi N*, Nurelhuda, NM, Nicolau B, Macdonald ME (2022). Advancing a programme theory for community-level oral health promotion programmes for humanitarian migrants: a realist review protocol. BMJ open 2022;12:e049923. DOI:10.1136/ bmjopen-2021-049923

Madathil S, Rousseau MC, Joseph L, Alli B*, Duran D*, Nicolau B (2022) . Life course tobacco smoking and risk of HPV-negative oral cancers in two countries. Frontier Oral Health, published online DOI

Nurelhuda NM, Keboa MT, Lawrence HP, Nicolau B, Macdonald ME (2021) Advancing Our Understanding of Dental Care Pathways of Refugees and Asylum Seekers in Canada: A Qualitative Study, Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health, 18, 8874. DOI

Al-Waeli H, Reboucas AP, Mansour A, Morris M, Tamimi F, Nicolau B (2021) Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and bone healing in animal models—a systematic review and meta-analysis. Systematic Review, 8;10(1):201, DOI:

Auger N, Low N, Lee G, Lo E, Nicolau B. (2020) Maternal mental disorders before delivery and the risk of dental caries in children. Caries Research, 54(3):242-249.

Petersen FC, Dahle UR, Nicolau B, Casals-Pascual C. (2020) COVID-19: Looking Into the Overlooked, Frontier in Molecular Bioscience, Vol. 7, Article 165, DOI:

Gaio DC*, Bastos FI, Moysés SJ, Moysés ST, Corrêa da Mota J, Nicolau B, Ignacio S, Cubas MR, Vettorazzi MLT, Gonçalves Dos Santos ZFD, Werneck RI. (2020) Assessing oral health of crack users in brazil: perceptions and associated factors, findings from a mixed method study. Global Public Health. 16(4):502-516, DOI:

Alli BY*, Burk RD, Fatahzadeh M, Grossberg RM, Smith RV, Ow J T, Wiltz M, Polanco J, Rousseau M-C, Nicolau B, Schlecht, NF. (2020) HIV modifies the effect of tobacco smoking on oral human papillomavirus infection. The Journal of Infectious Diseases, 222,(4) 646–654, DOI:

Auger N, Low N, Lee GE, Ayoub A, Nicolau B.(2020) Prenatal substance use disorders and dental caries in children, Journal of Dental Research, 99(4):395-401, DOI:

Durán D*, Al-Soneidar WA*, Madathil SA, Kaufman JS, Nicolau B. (2020) Quantitative Bias Analysis of misclassification in case-control studies: an example with Human Papillomavirus and Oropharyngeal Cancer. Community Dental Health, 37, (1):96-101, DOI:

H. Al-Waeli*, B. Nicolau, L. Stone, L. Abu Nada, Q. Gao, MN. Abdallah, E. Abdulkader, M. Suzuki, A. Mansour, A. Al Subaie & F. Tamimi (2020). Chronotherapy of Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs May Enhance Postoperative Recovery. Scientific Reports 10, 468. DOI: https://10.1038/s41598-019-57215-y.

Jessani AA*, Aleksejuniene, J; Phillips JC, Donnelly L; Nicolau B, Brondani M.(2020) What are the self-reported unmet dental treatment needs of people living with HIV in British Columbia? A case of minority sub-population in Canada. Journal of Public Health Dentistry, Published online January 17,

Mukherjee S, Madathil S*, Ghatak S, Jahau L, Pautu JL, Zohmingthanga J, Pachuau L, Nicolau B, Kumar NS (2020). Association of tobacco smoke-infused water use by (Tuibur) Mizo people and risk of Helicobacter pylori infection.
Environmental Science and Pollution Research, 27:8580–8585. DOI:

Madathil S*, Rousseau M-C, Joseph L, Coutlée F, Franco E, Nicolau B.(2020) Latency of tobacco smoking for head and neck cancer among HPV-positive and HPV-negative individuals. International Journal of Cancer, 147(1):56-64,

Gomaa N*, Glogauer M, Nicolau B, Tenenbaum H, Siddiqi A, Fine N, Quinonez C. (2020) Stressed-Out Oral Immunity: A Gateway from Social Adversity to Periodontal Disease? Psychosomatic Medicine, 82(2):126-137. DOI:

Keboa M, Enrique N, Martel M, Nicolau B, Macdonald M-E.(2020) Oral health implications of cannabis smoking: A rapid evidence review. Journal of Canadian Dental Association, 86:k2.

Al-Soneidar WA*, Madathil SA*, Nicolau B. (2019) Commentary: Oral cancer examinations and lesion discovery as reported by U.S. general dentists. Preventive Medicine 124:124-125. DOI:

AboSharkh H, Madathil S*, Al-Ghamdi O*, Agnihotram RV, Sinha A, Nicolau B, Makhoul N (2019). A comprehensive clinical care pathway for microvascular maxillofacial and reconstructive surgery. Journal of Oral Maxillofacial Surgery Published online May 7, DOI:

Sfreddo CS*, Moreira CHC, Nicolau B, Ortiz FR, Ardenghi TM. (2019) Socioeconomic inequalities in oral health-related quality of life in adolescents: A cohort study. Quality of Life Research, 28(9):2491-2500. DOI:

Hong QN*, Pluye P, Fàbregues S., Bartlett G., Boardman F, Cargo M, Dagenais P, Gagnon M-P, Griffiths F, Nicolau B, O’Cathain A, Rousseau M-C, Vedel I. (2019) Improving the content validity of the Mixed Methods Appraisal Tool (MMAT): a modified e-Delphi study. Journal of Clinical Epidemiology, 111:49-59. DOI:

ThekkePurakkal A*, Nicolau B, Franco, E, Burk R, Schlecht N. (2019) Genetic variants in CYP and GST genes, smoking and risk for head and neck cancers: a gene-environment interaction hospital-based case-control study among Canadian Caucasians. Carcinogenesis, 40(9):1021-1069. DOI:

Keboa M*, Hovey R, Nicolau B, Esfandiari S, Carnevale F, Macdonald ME (2019). Oral healthcare experiences of humanitarian migrants in Montreal, Canada. Canadian Journal of Public Health, 110(4):453-461. DOI:

Macdonald ME, Keboa MT*, Nurelhuda NM, Lawrence HP, Carnevale F, McNally M, Singhal S, Ka K, Nicolau B. (2019) The oral health of refugees and asylum seekers in Canada: A mixed methods study protocol. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 16(4):542. DOI:

Jessani AA*, Aleksejuniene, J; Donnelly L; Phillips JC, Nicolau B, Brondani M. (2019) Dental care utilization: patterns and predictors in persons living with HIV in British Columbia, Canada. Journal of Public Health Dentistry, 79(2):124-136. DOI:

Rajeh M*, Nicolau B, Qutob A, Pluye P, Esfandiari S. (2019) A survey of the barriers affecting the career practice and promotions of female dentists in Saudi Arabia. JDR Clinical & Translational Research, 4(2):187-195. DOI:

Keboa M*, Nicolau B, Hovey R, Esfandiari S, Carnevale F, Macdonald ME (2019). A qualitative study on the oral health of humanitarian migrants in Canada. Community Dental Health, 36(2):95-100. DOI:

Laprise C*, Madathil SA*, Schlecht NF, Castonguay G, Soulières D, Nguyen-Tan PF, Allison P, Coutlée F, Hier M, Rousseau M-C, Franco EL, Nicolau B. (2019) Increased risk of oropharyngeal cancers mediated by oral human papillomavirus infection: Results from a Canadian study. Head and Neck, 41(3):678-685. DOI:

Nicolau B, Madathil SA*, Castonguay G, Parent M-É, Rousseau M-C, Siemiatycki J. (2019) Shared social mechanisms underlying the risk of nine cancers: a life course study. International Journal of Cancer, 144(1):59-67. DOI:

Hong QN*, Fàbregues S, Bartlett G, Boardman F, Cargo M, Dagenais P, Gagnon M-P., Griffiths F, Nicolau B, O’Cathain A, Rousseau M-C, Vedel I, Pluye P. (2018). The Mixed Methods Appraisal Tool (MMAT) version 2018 for information professionals and researchers. Education for Information, 34(4), 285-291. DOI:

Keboa MT*, Madathil SA*, Nicolau B. (2019) Perceived and assessed dental treatment needs of schoolchildren in Benoe Division, Cameroon. JDR Clinical & Translational Research, 4(2):160-166. DOI:

Sfreddo CS*, Moreira CHC, Celeste RK, Nicolau B, Ardenghi TM. (2019). Pathways of socioeconomic inequalities in gingival bleeding among adolescents. Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology, 47(2): 177-184. DOI:

de Oliveira RC, Nicolau BF, Levine A, Mendonça AVM, Videira V*, Duarte Vargas AM, Ferreira EF. (2019) When a Tihik drinks kaxmuk he neither has a father, nor a mother, or a brother": perceptions of Maxakali on the effects of sugarcane liquor consumption. Ciência e Saúde Coletiva, 24(8):2883-2894. DOI:

Madathil SA*, Blaser C, Nicolau B, Richard H, Parent M-E (2018). Disadvantageous socioeconomic position at specific life periods may contribute to prostate cancer risk and aggressiveness. Frontiers in Oncology, 8:515. DOI:

Nicolau B, Madathil S*. (2018) Inconclusive evidence exists regarding the association between dental caries and BMI in children under age 18 years. Journal of Evidence-Based Dental Practice, 18(4):355-357. DOI:

ThekkePurakkal AS*, Naimi AI, Madathil SA*, Kumamangalam Puthiyannal SH*, Netuveli G, Sacker A, Schlecht NF, Nicolau B. (2018) Differential impact of socioeconomic position across life on oral cancer risk in Kerala, India: An investigation of life‐course models under a time‐varying framework. Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology, 46(6):592-600. DOI:

Madathil SA*, Joseph L, Hardy R, Rousseau M-C, Nicolau B. (2018) A Bayesian approach to investigate life course hypotheses involving continuous exposures. International Journal of Epidemiology, 47(5):1623-1635. DOI:

Nicolau B, Castonguay G, Madathil S*, Vuong T*, Almeida TDD*. (2018) Periodontal diseases and traumatic dental injuries in the pediatric population. Pediatric Clinics of North America, 65(5), 1051–1061. DOI:

Madathil S*, Senthil Kumar N, Zodinpuii D, Muthukumaran RB, Lalmuanpuii R, Nicolau B. (2018) Tuibur: tobacco in a bottle – commercial production of tobacco smoke-saturated aqueous concentrate. Addiction, 113:577-580. DOI:

Tamimi I*, Nicolau B, Eimar H, Madathil SA*, Kezouh A, Karp I, Tamimi F. (2018) Acetylcholinesterase inhibitors and the risk of osteoporotic fractures: Nested case-control study. Osteoporosis International, 29(4):849-857. DOI:

Furlini L, Noushi N*, Castonguay G, Allison P, Bedos C, De Souza R, Esfandiari S, Hovey R, Macdonald ME, Morris M, Nicolau B, Power F, Feine J. (2018) Assessing dental students’ readiness to treat populations that are underserved: A scoping review. Journal of Dental Education, 82(5):483-491. DOI:

Rajeh M*, Nicolau B, Qutob A, Pluye P, Esfandiari S. (2018) The development and validation of a questionnaire measuring barriers to career progression faced by women dentists in Saudi Arabia. Open Journal of Social Sciences, 6: 131-146. DOI:

Farsi NJ*, Rousseau M-C, Schlecht N, Castonguay G, Allison P, Nguyen-Tan PF, Soulières D, Coutlée F, Hier M, Madathil S*, Franco EL, Nicolau B. (2017) Aetiological heterogeneity of head and neck squamous cell carcinomas: the role of human papillomavirus infections, smoking and alcohol. Carcinogenesis, 38(12):1188-1195. DOI:

dos Santos BF*, Madathil S*, Zuanon ACC, Bedos C, Nicolau B. (2017) Brazilian dental students’ attitudes about provision of care for patients living in poverty. Journal of Dental Education, Nov 1;81(11):1309-1316. DOI:

Kâ K*, Rousseau M-C, Tran SD, Henderson M, Nicolau B. (2017) Association between metabolic syndrome and gingival inflammation in obese children. International Journal of Dental Hygiene, 2017:1-7. DOI:

Edasseri A*, Barnett TA, Kâ K*, Henderson M, Nicolau B. (2017) Oral health–promoting school environments and dental caries in Québec children. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 53(5):697–704. DOI:

Da Rosa P*, Rousseau M-C, Edasseri A*, Henderson M, Nicolau B. (2017) Investigating socioeconomic position in dental caries and traumatic dental injury among children in Quebec. Community Dental Health, 34(4):226-233. DOI:

Gomaa N*, Nicolau B, Siddiqi A, Tenenbaum H, Glogauer M, Quinonez C. (2017) How does the social “get under the gums”? The role of socio-economic position in the oral–systemic health link. Canadian Journal of Public Health, 108(3):e224-e228. DOI:

Tamimi I, Madathil SA*, Kezouh A, Nicolau B, Karp I, Tamimi F. (2017) Effect of acetylcholinesterase inhibitors on post-surgical complications and mortality following a hip fracture: a cohort study. Journal of Musculoskeletal & Neuronal Interactions, 17(2):69-77. Available at:

Laprise C*, Madathil SA*, Schlecht NF, Castonguay G, Soulières D, Nguyen-Tan PF, Allison P, Coutlée F, Hier M, Rousseau MC, Franco EL, Nicolau B. (2017) Human papillomavirus genotypes and risk of head and neck cancers: Results from the HeNCe Life case-control study. Oral Oncology, 69:56-61. DOI:

Nicolau B, Castonguay G, Levine A, Hong QN*, Summer Institute 2015 Participants, Pluye P. (2017) Applied mixed methods in oral health research: Importance and example of a training program. JDR Clinical & Translational Research, 2(3):206-210. DOI:

Rajeh M*, Nicolau B, Pluye P, Qutob A, Esfandiari S. (2017) Are there barriers for professional development of women dentists? A qualitative study in Saudi Arabia. JDR Clinical & Translational Research, 2(2):119-131. DOI:

Wu X*, Al-Abedalla K, Abi-Nader S, Daniel NG, Nicolau B, Tamimi F. (2017) Proton pump inhibitors and the risk of osseointegrated dental implant failure: A cohort study. Clinical Implant Dentistry and Related Research, 19(2): 222-232. DOI:

Wu X*, Al-Abedalla K, Eimar H, Madathil SA*, Abi-Nader S, Daniel NG, Nicolau B, Tamimi F. (2016) Antihypertensive medications and the survival rate of osseointegrated dental implants: A cohort study. Clinical Implant Dentistry and Related Research, 18(6): 1171–1182. DOI:

Brondani MA, Amin MS, Poon B, Nicolau B. (2016) Life course approach to oral health research workshop: A summative report. Journal of the Canadian Dental Association, 82:g25. Available at:

Baldisserotto J*, Kopittke L, Nedel FB, Takeda SP, Mendonça CS, Sirena SA, Diercks MS, de Lima LA, Nicolau B. (2016) Socio-demographic characteristics and prevalence of risk factors in a hypertensive and diabetics population: A cross-sectional study in primary health care in Brazil. BMC Public Health, 16:573. DOI:

Laprise C*, Shahul HP*, Madathil SA*, Thekkepurakkal AS*, Castonguay G, Varghese I, Shiraz S, Allison P, Schlecht NF, Rousseau MC, Franco EL, Nicolau B. (2016) Periodontal diseases and risk of oral cancer in Southern India: Results from the HeNCe Life study. International Journal of Cancer, 139(7):1512-1519. DOI:

Madathil SA*, Rousseau M-C, Wynant W, Schlecht NF, Netuveli G, Franco E, Nicolau B. (2016) Nonlinear association between betel quid chewing and oral cancer: Implications for prevention. Oral Oncology, 60: 25-31. DOI:

Nicolau B. (2016) Remembering my mentor, Professor Aubrey Sheiham. JDR Clinical & Translational Research, 1(2):106-107. DOI:

Dahan H, Shir Y, Nicolau B, Keith D, Allison P. (2016) Self-reported migraine and chronic fatigue syndrome are more prevalent in people with myofascial vs nonmyofascial temporomandibular disorders. Journal of Oral and Facial Pain and Headache, 30(1):7-13. DOI:

Laprise C*, Madathil S*, Allison P, Abraham P, Raghavendran A, Shahul H*, Thekkepurakkal A*, Castonguay G, Coutlée F, Schlecht N, Rousseau M-C, Franco E, Nicolau B. (2016) No role for human papillomavirus infection in oral cancers in a region in Southern India. International Journal of Cancer, 138(4):912-917. DOI:

Farsi NJ*, El-Zein M, Gaied H*, Lee YCA, Hashibe M, Nicolau B, Rousseau M-C. (2015) Sexual behaviours and head and neck cancer: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Cancer Epidemiology, 39(6):1036-1046. DOI:

Rashid-Kandvani F*, Nicolau B, Bedos C. (2015) Access to dental services for people using a wheelchair. American Journal of Public Health, 105(11):2312-2317. DOI:

Madathil SA*, Rousseau M-C, Allison P, Netuveli G, Humphris GM, Varghese I, Shiraz S, Castonguay G, Thekkepurakkal AS*, Shahul HP*, Nicolau B. (2015) Maternal and paternal contribution to intergenerational psychosocial transmission of paan chewing. Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology, 43(4):289-97. DOI:

Wu X*, Al-Abedalla K, Rastikerdar E, Abi Nader S, Daniel NG, Nicolau B, Tamimi F. (2014) Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors and the risk of osseointegrated implant failure: A cohort study. Journal of Dental Research, 93(11):1054-61. DOI:




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