Research News 2013

2013 research news

Zack Goettsche (D2) and Nicole Major (D3) attended the 19th Hinman Student Research Symposium on October 25-27, 2013, in Memphis, TN. The symposium is cosponsored by the University of Tennessee Health Science Center Collegeof Dentistry and the Thomas P. Hinman Dental Society. The symposium is supported by the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, ADEAGies Foundation, Procter & Gamble Co., and the Tennessee Dental Association Foundation.

Zack’s abstract was titled “In Vitro Assessment of Three Dentifrices Containing Fluoride in Preventing remineralization of Overdenture Abutments and Root Surfaces.” Dr. Ronald Ettinger, Department of Prosthodontics and Dows, is Zack’s mentor.

Nicole presented “Community-Based Dental Education and Clinical Performance Among Fourth-Year Dental Students.” Dr. Michelle McQuistan, Department of Preventive & Community Dentistry, is her mentor.

bio patch used to regenerate bone A lead research article led by Drs. Satheesh Elangovan and Aliasger Salem has received press reviews from Discovery News (, Iowa Now, and Medical Daily. The collaborative study between the Colleges of Dentistry and Pharmacy was recently accepted for the journal Biomaterials. The article, “The enhancement of bone regeneration by gene activated matrix encoding for platelet derived growth factor,” will be available in the January 2014 issue of Biomaterials [35(2), Jan 2014, p. 737-747]. It is currently available for early bird viewing and is listed in the top five of all articles ranked for attention, according to Biomaterials.

The article describes a non-viral gene delivery system called gene activated matrix (GAM) to enhance bone regeneration. The active ingredient is the DNA encoding growth factor called “platelet derived growth factor (PDGF).” When GAM encoding PDGF-B was implanted into bony defects in rats, enhanced bone regeneration was observed. Drs. Elangovan (Periodontics) and Salem (Pharmacy) report there is huge clinical potential for this non-viral gene delivery strategy, both in dentistry and orthopedics, because of its potential cost-effectiveness compared to protein therapeutics. Ms. Sheetal D’Mello, a doctoral candidate in the College of Pharmacy, performed the experiments. Co-investigators include Drs. Liu Hong (Dows and Prosthodontics), Deborah Dawson (Biostatistics and Pediatric Dentistry), D. Rick Sumner and Ryan Ross (Rush Medical, IL), Clark Stanford (Dows and Prosthodontics), and Georgia Johnson (DEO, Periodontics).

Dr. Veerasathpurush Allareddy, Department of Orthodontics, will receive two Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM) scientific awards. The organization will hold their 43rd Critical Care Congress January 9-13, 2014, in San Francisco, CA. Dr. Allareddy and other awardees will be recognized during a ceremony on Sunday, January 12, 2014. He will receive the two awards for the following studies:

Outcomes of Bone Marrow Transplant Patients with Acute Respiratory Failure Requiring Mechanical Ventilation.

Pediatric Fatalities at 30,000 Feet: Characterizing Pediatric Deaths on Commercial Airline Flights.

Dr. Allareddy will receive a monetary award of $750.

Dr. Evanthia Anadioti (certificate in prothodontics and M.S. in oral sciences '13) won the first place award in the John J. Sharry Student Research Competition at the 2013 American College of Prosthodontists Annual Session in Las Vegas. Dr. Anadioti's presentation was entitled "3D and 2D Marginal Fit of Pressed and CAD/CAM Lithium Disilicate Crowns Made from Digital and Conventional Impressions and was completed as part of her M.S. thesis. Dr. Steven Acquilino, Department of Prosthodontics, was Dr. Anadioti's thesis advisor; her committee included Drs. David Gratton, Julie Holloway, and Isabelle Denry, all Department of Prosthodontics; Dr. Geb Thomas, College of Engineering; and Dr. Fang Qian, College of Dentistry Biostatistics Unit.

Dr. Anadioti is currently completing an implant surgical fellowship at the University of North Carolina. She is one of seventeen students Dr. Aquilino has mentored who were recognized in a national prosthodontic research competition. Dr. Anadioti is also the tenth student of Dr. Aquilino to win a first place award.

Dr. Kim Brogden, Department of Periodontics and Dows, gave an invited presentation at the 3rd International Meeting on Antimicrobial Peptides (IMAP 2013), which was held in London, UK, in September. His talk was "HBD3 Regulated Chemokine and Cytokine Responses." The meeting was held in Burlington House, the London Headquarters of the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Dr. Christopher Barwacz, Craniofacial Clinical Research Center and Department of Prosthodontics, has received a two-year $30,000 Dentsply IH AB grant to support a prospective, randomized clinical trial, "Peri-Implant Mucosa Dynamics Around Divergent and Concave Atlantis Abutment Transition Profiles."

The study's goal is to investigate the influence that experimental concavities in the transmucosal transition zone of Atlantic abutments has on the facial peri-implant soft tissue.

Co-investigators include Dr. Gustavo Avila-Ortiz, Department of Periodontics and Dr. Clark Stanford, Dows and Department of Prosthodontics.

Dr. Raymond Kuthy, Department of Preventive & Community Dentistry, was recently awarded a three-year grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) in the amount of $1,364,993. Dr. Kuthy is project director and Dr. Susan McKernan, Department of Preventive & Community Dentistry, is co-director of the project. Deb Hoyle, Office of Iowa Practice Opportunities, and Kevin Sellers, Technology and Media Services, will also participate in this grant.

The goal of the project is to improve statewide efforts to recruit and retain dental providers to underserved communities through increased collaboration among state stakeholders, supported by data-based workforce evaluation and assessment. The project will build on existing state workforce activities with increased collaborative efforts between partners at the UI College of Dentistry, the Iowa Department of Public Health's Bureau of Oral and Health Delivery Systems, the Office of Iowa Practice Opportunities, and the Iowa Primary Care Association.

The College of Dentistry has been awarded a $1.6 million five-year institutional training grant from the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR). The award will support PhD or postdoctoral research training of five dentists and non-dentists each year and represents the continuation of a training program that has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) since 1985 when Dr. Christopher Squier, Dows dental research and oral pathology, radiology and medicine, and the College of Dentistry became one of only eight U.S. dental schools to receive NIH funding for a Dentist-Scientist program.

"What is notable about this award," says Dr. Christopher Squier, the program's director, "is that for the first time we will be able to support graduate research training of a foreign dentist. This is an important benefit when U.S. dental schools are increasingly appointing faculty from abroad."

Dr. Steve Levy, Department of Preventive & Community Dentistry, is the associate director.

The grant represents an interdisciplinary effort involving almost forty faculty mentors from the UI College of Dentistry, Medicine, Public Health, Pharmacy, Engineering, and Liberal Arts and Sciences. Training will be available in the areas of biomaterials and tissue engineering, craniofacial biology, cariology, microbiology, epidemiology, behavioral research and health policy, and mucosal diseases.

Over the past three decades, many training grant recipients have become leaders in research and academia. Some of the past trainees include Dr. Clark Stanford who is currently associate dean for research at the UI College of Dentistry; Dr. Steven Armstrong, head of the UI department of operative dentistry; and Dr. Rebecca Slayton, former head of the UI department of pediatric dentistry and currently director of The Center for Pediatric Dentistry and chair of the department of pediatric dentistry at the University of Washington. Other graduates of the training programs are in academic position at the University of Pittsburgh (PA), Regents University College of Dental Medicine (Augusta, GA), University of Alabama School of Dentistry (Birmingham), and Northwestern University (Chicago, IL).

"The distinguished careers of these individuals show the value for academic dentistry of a long-term investment in training and the threat that the current cuts in the NIH training budget pose to dental academics," says Dr. Squier.

Dr. Satheesh Elangovan, Department of Periodontics, has been selected as the winner of the American Academy of Periodontology (AAP) Foundation's 2013 Sunstar Fellowship. His fellowship includes $50,000 for his research project, "Sequential Delivery of Non-Viral Vectors for Enhanced Bone Regeneration." Dr. Elangovan will be honored at the September AAP Foundation Signature Recognition Event and Awards Ceremony.

The Department of Periodontics is now offering an individualized professional development program for dentists and dental specialists. The main objective of the UI Visiting Scholar Professional Development Program in Periodontics is to provide an outstanding and customized professional experience for dentists or dental specialists who are interested in advancing their knowledge in periodontics and oral implantology. Individuals participating in this program will have the opportunity to attend periodontal seminars and lectures, observe periodontal faculty membeers and/or residents in a clinical setting, and participate in research-related activities. They will not have patient care responsibilities. Participants may pursue either a six-month or a twelve-month program and receive continuing education credit for their participation.

Dr. Juan Gonzalez de Buitrago Garcia (above, left) is the first participant in this new program. He earned his DDS from the Unviersity of Grenada (Spain) in 2008. He later initiated his doctorate studies in the same institution, which he combined with part-time private practice work. He also completed a periodontics expert course with Dr. Mariano Sanz at the University Complutense of Madrid in 2010. His research interests are in the area of periodontal and alveolar bone regeneration.

Dr. Gustavo Avila, Department of Periodontics, will serve as the mentor for this program.

Dr. Christopher Squier, Dows and Department of Oral Pathology, Radiology and Medicine, gave a presentation, "The Role of the Dental Profession in Tobacco Cessation and Control in Malaysia," during his visit to the Asian Institute for Medical Science and Technology in Kadah, Malaysia. The dean of the dental faculty at the institute presented Dr. Squier with a plaque to thank him for his visit and presentation.

The Department of Pediatric Dentistry recently received a $15,000 Philips Sonicare grant towards its community outreach and dental care programs from the National Children's Oral health Foundation (NCOHF). The mission of the NCOHF is to eliminate pediatric oral disease and promote overall health and well being for millions of children from vulnerable populations. The organization NCOHF is a comprehensive resource provider for non-profit community programs delivering critical preventive, educational, and treatment services.

Funding from this grant will enable the department to expand and enhance their ability to provide vital services to underserved children. Ms. Gayle Gilbaugh and Ms. Cathy Skotowski are the lead investigators with this project.

As of July 1, 2013, Dr. Isabelle Denry, Department of Prosthodontics and Dows Institute for Dental Research, is the author of first and co-author of the third most cited articles in Dental Materials since 2008. The journal's impact factor is 3.773.

According to the Elsevier database Scopus, the number one most cited article, "State of the art of zirconia for dental applications," has been cited 212 times. The second article, "Stabilized zirconia as a structural ceramic: an overview," has been cited 114 times.

Dr. Satheesh Elangovan, Department of Periodontics, has received a two-year, $104,625 grant from the Osteology Foundation (Switzerland) for his research project, "A Novel RNA Based Biomaterial for Bone Regeneration." The goal of this research will be to develop a safe and efficient non-viral RNA delivery system in vivo for periodontal and bone regeneration and other orthopedic applications. Co-investigators include Dr. Liu Hong, Dows and Prosthodontics; Dr. Aliasger K. Salem, College of Pharmacy; and Dr. Deborah Dawson, College of Dentistry. Drs. Georgia K. Johnson, Clark M. Stanford, and Michael Kormann (Germany) are consultants in this project.

Dr. Kim A. Brogden, Dows and Department of Periodontics, visited Dr. Gary Moran, associate professor of microbiology and director of research in the Division of Oral Biosciences, Trinity College School of Dental Science, at the University of Dublin, Ireland. Dr. Brogden also presented a seminar entitled "Human ß Defensin 3 Modulation of Chemokine and Pro-inflammatory Cytokine Responses: It's All in the Timing" to the faculty, staff, and students at the school.

Dr. Ronald Ettinger, Department of Prosthodontics and Dows, was a keynote speaker at the Linda C. Niessen Geriatric Dentistry Symposium: New Treatments, Improved Outcomes. The symposium was held May 31, 2013, at Texas A&M University Baylor College of Dentistry and was hosted by the Department of Restorative Sciences.

Dr. Ettinger presented "Dental Treatment of the Frail and Older Patient."

The 2013 James S. Wefel Symposium on Early Childhood Caries (ECC) was held at the College of Dentistry on Friday, April 19, 2013. The symposium began with a welcome, introductions, and a tribute to Dr. Wefel, which were given by Dean David Johnsen and Associate Dean for Research, Dr. Clark Stanford.

Dr. Wefel's family, including his wife, Jan; his son, Jay, wife Kara, and daughter, Sophia; and his second son, Jeff, attended the welcome and introductions. Jan Wefel was presented with a memorial plaque and flowers.

The day-long symposium included several speakers:

Dr. Brian Clarkson, University of Michigan School of Dentistry, who presented “Redefining Cariology.” Dr. Clarkson was a UI College of Dentistry faculty from 1976-1986.

Dr. Kathy Phipps, data and oral health surveillance coordinator consultant, Association of State and Territorial Dental Directors, presented “Early Childhood Caries: A View from 20,000 Feet.”

Dr. David Drake, Dows Institute and Department of Endodontics, presented “Demonstration Project – ECC Study in Native American Children.”

Dr. Ann Griffen, Ohio State University, gave a presentation, “The Oral Microbiome and its Role in ECC.”

Dr. Margherita Fontana, University of Michigan, presented “Caries Risk Assessment and its Role in ECC.”

Dr. Norman Tinanoff, University of Maryland, presented “Considerations of Risk Factors Related to Management of ECC.”

Dr. Karin Weber-Gasparoni, Department of Pediatric Dentistry, presented “Role of Behavioral, Social and Psychological Dynamics in ECC.”

Dr. David Quissell, University of Colorado, gave “Preventing Caries in Preschoolers: Testing a Unique Service Delivery Model in American Indian Head Start Programs.”

Dr. James S. Wefel came to the UI College of Dentistry in 1972 after receiving his PhD in physical chemistry from the State University of New York, Buffalo.  He later joined the Department of Pediatric Dentistry and became a research intensive faculty in the Dows Institute for Dental Research.  In 1990, Jim was appointed director of the Center for Clinical Studies and head of the division of cariology. Jim took over directorship of the Dows Institute in 1993, and in 1999, he became administrative director of the Office of Clinical Research.  When the Department of Pediatric Dentistry was searching for a new head in 2007, Jim became interim head of the department.

Jim received his first major grant in 1978 from the National Institute for Dental Research (now NIDCR) to study the kinetics and mechanisms of fluoride.  This grant was later renewed three times.

An intraoral crown model was developed by Dr. Wefel and a former faculty, Dr. Mark Jensen, in 1988 to measure changes in hard tissue lesions in a realistic environment.  This model has been used in more than 20 studies and remains in use today.

During his 40 years at the College of Dentistry, he received NIDCR, NIH, industrial and foundation funding that shaped the future of research at the dental college: an NIDCR short-term training grant, which laid the groundwork for the College of Dentistry’s current dental student research program;  an NIDCR grant, which was later renewed, helped fund the College’s Clinical Core Center for Oral Health Research, the only center in the U.S. to focus on older patients and those who were at high risk for oral disease; an NIH program project grant in 1984 that helped establish the Specialized Caries Research Center; a program project award that was used to study early caries detection and intervention; it was renewed in 2005 for five more years.

As a result of his research on the mechanism of the action of fluoride as well as early caries detection and intervention, Jim Wefel published more than 140 books chapters and journal articles.  He was an invited speaker innumerable times, both in the U.S. and abroad.

Over the years, Jim also mentored more than 80 MS and PhD candidates.

In 2000, Dr. Wefel received the Regent’s Award for Faculty Excellence.  His scientific expertise was also recognized internationally: in 1997 and again in 2010, he received the prestigious International Association for Dental Research Distinguished Scientists E.W. Borrow Memorial Award. Last year, Jim was recognized by the College for his 40 years of service. He died September 1, 2012.

Dr. Ronald Ettinger, Dows and Department of Prosthodontics, recently received two awards. He was given the Special Care Dentistry Association's Presidential Citation for his high level of excellence while serving as editor-in-chief of Special Care in Dentistry for 17 years. Dr. Ettinger also received the Special Care Dentistry Association's Saul Kamen Award, which honors individuals demonstrating exemplary leadership and contributions to the advancement of oral healthcare for persons with special needs. The award is named after Dr. Saul Kamen whose dental career focused on improving oral healthcare for individuals with special needs.

Dr. Ronald Ettinger, Department of Prosthodontics and Dows Institute, was a judge for the IADR Arthur Frechette Award competition, which was held in Seattle during the recent meeting of the International Association for Dental Research. New investigators in prosthodontics are encouraged to submit their research to be considered for one of two awards: one for prosthodontics research undertaken with a materials science- or bioengineering-oriented protocol and the other for biological sciences- and tissue engineering-oriented protocol. Each award carries a cash prize of $1,000.

As a judge, Dr. Ettinger looked for originality and scientific design of the research, suitable methods of analysis, and the work’s scientific value. Oral presentations were 10 minutes long, and an additional five minutes was given for questions from the judges and audience.

Dr. Ettinger also attended a conference and workshop, “Developing Pathways for Oral Care in Elders,” which was held in memory of Dr. Asuman Kiyak at the Arctic Club Hotel in Seattle, Washington, on March 24. Dr. Kiyak was a faculty member of the University of Washington School of Dentistry and an adjunct faculty in the psychology and architecture departments at the U WA. She taught dental students about the physical, psychological, social, and cultural aspects of working with aging adults. She taught architecture students how to design homes for elderly people. She was also involved with community outreach. Dr. Ettinger was a guest lecturer in her geriatric dentistry class. The conference was sponsored by Colgate Palmolive in association with the IADR Geriatric Oral Research Group.

Drs. Clark Stanford, David Gratton, Ghadeer Thalji, and Satheesh Elangovan, all Department of Prosthodontics faculty, attended the 28th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Osseointegration, which was held March 7-9, 2013, in Tampa, Florida.

Dr. Stanford's keynote presentation, "The Dental Implant: What Are the 'Right' Implants for Today's Indications? Surfaces, Connections, and Flexibility," was telecast worldwide.

Dr. Satheesh Elangovan, an Osseointegration Foundation Clinical Implant Research Grant recipient, presented "The Effect of Obesity on Peri-implant Health: A Cross-Sectional Study."

Dr. David Gratton presented "The Role of CAD/CAM in Contemporary Implant Prosthodontics."

Dean Johnsen and Dr. Clark Stanford, associate dean for research, gave welcome comments during the 60th Annual Meeting of the Iowa Section of the American Association for Dental Research (AADR) on February 19. Dr. Steven Vincent, head of Oral Pathology, Radiology, and Medicine, introduced the keynote speaker, Dr. Mark Lingen, from the University of Chicago, Pritzker School of Medicine. Dr. Lingen's presentation was "Targeting the Angiogenic Phenotype for the Treatment and Prevention of Oral Cancer."

There were 70 abstracts submitted; 68 abstracts were presented at the annual meeting.

The awards banquet was held on the evening of February 19 at the Coralville Holiday Inn. Approximately 115 guests attended.

Dr. Karin Weber-Gasparoni, Department of Pediatric Dentistry, has received a $43,000 Delta Dental of Iowa Foundation grant for her research project, "Development of Videotaped Oral Health Messages for ECC Prevention Among Low-income, High Risk Infants and Toddlers." The grant funding will help finance the development and production of two videotaped oral health messages that can be used in a larger study to address the impact of the self-determination theory (SDT)-framed intervention on ECC prevention. One videotaped message will be facilitated by the SDT, while the other videotaped message will be delivered in a neutral style. The funding will also be used to invite 20 WIC (Women Infants Children) mothers to watch a previous R21 DE016483-02 videotaped oral health message and take part in a focus group to identify knowledge gaps and discuss their perceptions of the message, particularly the education on cariogenic foods and beverages.

Dr. Weber-Gasparoni is principal investigator. Co-investigators for this continuing research include Derek Blanchette and Dr. Deborah Dawson, Biostatistics Unit; Dr. David Drake, Dows and Endodontics; Dr. Matt Geneser and Gayle Gilbaugh, Pediatric Dentistry; Drs. Teresa Marshall and John Warren, Preventive and Community Dentistry; and Dr. Natoshia Skelson, Community and Behavioral Health, UI Public Policy Center.

Dr. Satheesh Elangovan, Department of Periodontics, has received a $47,000 grant from the International Team for Implantology (ITI) Foundation for his research project, "In vivo Non-viral Based Combinatorial Gene-Delivery System for Bone Regeneration."

The goal of this research will be to develop a safe and efficient non-viral gene delivery system to deliver multiple genes in vivo for periodontal and bone regeneration and other orthopedic applications.

Dr. Elangovan is the principal investigator. Co-investigators include Dr. Liu Hong, Dows and Department of Prosthodontics, and Dr. Aliasger Karimjee Salem, College of Pharmacy.

Dr. Jorge Garaicoa, a second-year resident in the Department of Prosthodontics, was awarded the best clinical poster presentation during the recent 85th Annual Meeting of the American Prosthodontics society, which was held February 21-22, 2013, in Chicago, IL. His presentation was "Accurate Screw Access Guide for Cement-Retained Implant Crowns." Co-authors on his research include Dr. Ayman Ahmed, graduate fellow, and Dr. Julie Holloway (both Department of Prosthodontics).

Chad Allen (D2) is one of 48 dental students nationwide to be awarded the 2013 American Association for Dental Research (AADR) Bloc Travel Grant for travel funds to attend the IADR/AADR/CADR General Session and Exhibition in Seattle, Washington, on March 20-23, 2013. Based on the scientific excellence of the abstract he submitted, “Sequencing Analysis of CAPZB, a New Candidate for NSCL/P,” Chad will receive $1,000 to assist with paying for his travel expenses to the conference. He will provide a follow-up report to the AADR containing an evaluation of the meeting and how the program enhanced his career plans to pursue research activities.

This grant was received by the American Association for Dental Research (AADR) from the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR).

The UI Office of the Provost’s “Better Futures for Iowans Fund” is providing $148,170 for a collaborative project between the UI College of Dentistry Departments of Preventive & Community Dentistry, Pediatric Dentistry, and Operative Dentistry, and the College of Education Department of Psychological and Quantitative Foundations. This activity, which is supported primarily by the University of Iowa’s Office of the Provost, extends University resources to Iowans and addresses an important goal of the University Strategic Plan—to provide better futures for Iowans.

Project SEALED (Service, Engagement and LifeCareer Education in Dentistry) has created a partnership with Allamakee County to improve the oral health of underserved children, enhance career development for the participating UI faculty and students, and help create a more diversified dental workforce in Iowa.

“This outreach opportunity to the far northeast corner of the state provides University of Iowa dental students with unique educational experiences and communities with much-needed dental care,” said Dr. Dan Caplan, head of the Department of Preventive and Community Dentistry. “Our contacts in these communities are excited to be participants in this collaborative effort and have gone out of their way to make it successful.”

The project’s planning began during summer 2012 and the first dentistry visit to Waukon and Postville occurred on December 18-19, 2012. Dental students and faculty saw approximately 100 children in grades kindergarten through second, who were provided with dental screening exams, sealants, fluoride varnish, and dental cleanings as requested by parents. Another 41 children who participate in the Postville Head Start program also received fluoride varnish. “We hope to be able to provide additional services in the future, such as dental restorations and tooth extractions,” added Dr. Caplan.

Although it is a two-year funded project, it is hoped that the partnership can be continued indefinitely.

UI faculty involved with Project SEALED include Drs. Dan Caplan, Michelle McQuistan, and Steven Levy, Department of Preventive and Community Dentistry; Drs. Tad Mabry, Rebecca Slayton, and Michael Kanellis, Department of Pediatric Dentistry; Drs. Steven Armstrong, Marcela Hernandez, and Sandra Guzman-Armstrong, Department of Operative Dentistry; and Dr. Saba Ali, Department of Psychological and Quantitative Foundations in the College of Education.

Dr. Michelle McQuistan, Department of Preventive and Community Dentistry, will serve on the Healthiest State Initiative - Dental Health Committee. As a committee member, she will assist in  the dental health goal to increase the number of adults who visit a dentist annually. The committee will also plan an oral health message campaign.

A paper published in a 2011 issue of Journal of Dental Research has been awarded the prestigious Gies Award by the International/American Association for Dental Research. Co-authors include Dr. Steven Levy, Department of Preventive and Community Dentistry; Dr. Rebecca Slayton, head of the Department of Pediatric Dentistry; Dr. Jeffrey Murray, Colleges of Medicine and Dentistry; and Barbara Broffitt, Department of Preventive and Community Dentistry.

The award will be presented to the recipients at the 2013 AADR meeting in Seattle, Washington.

Research News 2013