Temple University School of Dentistry: Empowering Communities
It may take a village to raise a child, but a growing number of researchers say it may take a systems approach to address long-standing inequalities in the nation's oral health. One scientist who continues to give this issue a great deal of thought is Dr. Amid Ismail, dean of the Maurice H. Kornberg School of Dentistry at Temple University in Philadelphia. more...ARRA: Helping a Few to Teach the Many
ARRA funds have provided summer employment for myriad students and teachers across America. Find out how two high school science teachers are spending their summer vacations at Baylor College of Dentistry. more...
Listening to Learn: Southeast Center for Research to Reduce Disparities in Oral Health
Public awareness has been slow to extend to the head and neck cancers, including oral cancer, particularly among the low-income and underserved Americans that are most at risk. To learn how to enhance awareness and save lives, the NIDCR began supporting the Southeast Center for Research to Reduce Disparities in Oral Health at the University of Florida’s College of Dentistry in Gainesville. The Inside Scoop
recently spoke with Dr. Henrietta Logan, the center’s principal investigator and a professor at the College of Dentistry, to find out more. more...
CAN DO: Center to Address Disparities in Children's Oral Health
In 2001, the NIDCR began supporting the Center to Address Disparities in Children’s Oral Health at the University of California at San Francisco. After seven productive years, the center recently received NIDCR support for another seven years. Known by its acronym CAN DO, the center is one of three NIDCR-supported centers with a primary focus on early childhood caries, a serious form of tooth decay. As CAN DO scientists often note, the lessons learned in California will be of benefit to public health programs throughout the country. To tell us more, we spoke with Jane Weintraub, DDS, MPH, a researcher at the University of California at San Francisco and the center’s principal investigator and director. more...
Disparities Research: Center for Native Oral Health Research
Many fundamental aspects of American Indian and Native Alaskan health remain to be fully understood and systematically addressed. Numbered prominently among them is oral health. In late 2008, NIDCR began supporting a new oral health disparities center in Denver. To hear more about this center in the making, The Inside Scoop spoke to two of its primary investigators: Judith E. N. Albino, Ph.D., Clinical Professor in the University of Colorado School of Public Health and the director and principal investigator of the NIDCR-supported Center for Native Oral Health Research, and Spero M. Manson, Ph.D., who heads the Centers for American Indian and Alaska Native Health at the University of Colorado School of Public Health and is a member of the Pembina Chippewa tribe. He is the oral health center’s associate director. more...
A Look at Oral Health Disparities in Appalachia
In many parts of Appalachia, tooth decay remains an unfortunate rite of childhood that too often leads to a lifetime of poor oral health. In West Virginia, population 1.8 million, dentists pulled an estimated 31,800 children’s teeth in 2006. By age 65, about 40 percent of the state’s retirees have none of their natural teeth remaining. Given the troubling scope and consequences of this largely preventable problem across Appalachia, researchers are now attempting to more clearly define the causes of poor oral health in the region and develop practical, low-cost solutions. Prominent in this effort is the Center for Oral Health Research in Appalachia (COHRA). For an overview of this NIDCR-supported project, we recently spoke to Mary Marazita, Ph.D., a scientist at the University of Pittsburgh and co-principal investigator of COHRA. more...
Evolutionary Biology: Cichlids, Gene Networks, and Teeth
In the journal PLOS Biology, NIDCR grantees report they have deduced a network of dental genes in fishes called cichlids that likely were involved in building the first tooth half a billion years ago. The researchers say their finding introduces into the scientific literature a core evolutionary list of molecular pieces needed to make a tooth. These original parts were then gradually rewired, replaced, or left in place to produce the various shapes and sizes of teeth now found in nature, from shark to mouse to monkey to human. The Inside Scoop spoke with Todd Streelman, Ph.D., a scientist at Georgia Tech University in Atlanta and a senior author on the study, to learn more about his group’s discovery. more...