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Biologic and Materials Sciences and Division of Prosthodontics

BMS News Archives

Dr. Krebsbach wins IADR Distinguished Scientist Award for Basic Research in Biological Mineralization

The IADR Distinguished Service Award is presented to an individual member of the International Association for Dental Research (IADR) for outstanding instances of service to the Association or distinguished service over a period of time.

Dr. Charlotte Mistretta recognized with the prestigious Kerry-Manheimer Award.

The annual Kerry-Manheimer Award recognizes the career contributions of an
outstanding researcher who has significantly advanced chemosensory science. The award is sponsored by the Monell Center, the world’s only independent, non-profit scientific institute dedicated to basic research on taste and smell.

Dr. Berna Saglik wins the Paul Gibbons instructor of the year award-March 30, 2010

The award honors an instructor who graduating dental students consider to be the greatest influence on them during their four years in the predoctoral program. This is a great honor.

Drs. Berna Saglik and Emily Giroux have been chosen as Clinical Faculty of the Year by their Clinics-March 30, 2010

Emily Giroux won the faculty award for the 3-green clinic.  Berna Saglik won the faculty award for the 2-blue clinic.

Rackham Non-traditional Fellowship Awarded to First Year Prosthodontic Resident, Lisa Kane -March 30, 2010

The Rackham Graduate School Non-Traditional Fellowship Program was established to aid Michigan residents who return to graduate school after an extended absence. Because an interruption in schooling may place such students at a disadvantage in competing for financial assistance awarded at the time of admission, these awards help non-traditional students fund their return to formal education.

Selection is based on academic merit and motivation to complete the degree as demonstrated in the candidate's personal statement, academic record, letters of reference, and prior work or volunteer experience. Special consideration will be given to applicants who have been out of the work force or are changing fields or careers. Those unable to work or engage in volunteer service due to full-time family care responsibilities will receive careful consideration.


Lunch and Learn in Celebration of National Prosthodontics Week, 2010

Dr. Thomas Bloem, Region 3 Director of the American College of Prosthodontics and a Dean’s faculty member here at U of M, will be present to introduce NPAW and discuss specialty practice and other prosthodontic career opportunities. 

National Prosthodontics Awareness Week

The American College of Prosthodontists advocates for the valuable role that prosthodontists play on the dental team. To this end, our National Prosthodontics Awareness Week™ - NPAW™ (March 7-13, 2010) focuses on raising public awareness about the critical importance of a healthy mouth.

A memorable and effective National Prosthodontics Awareness Week™ begins with a solid plan to inform the public that a healthy mouth and replacing missing teeth are necessary for overall health. Additionally, prosthodontists can provide expert care and are well prepared to work with assisting patients in considering the most appropriate options for replacing any number of missing teeth. The ACP invites you to join colleagues across the country in celebrating NPAW in your local community.

More information:
Certificate of Proclamation by Governor Jennifer Granholm
"A Bright Future" powerpoint

Christian Strohler, DMD DR. MED. DENT. Recieves Distinguished Service Award
Dr. Christian Strohler, former chair of the Department of Biologic and Materials Sciences recieved the Distinguished Service Award from the Alumni Society Board of Governors.
Dental UM article on Dr. Christian Strohler

Robert Lorey DDS, MS Inducted into the Dental Schools Hall of Honor
Dr. Robert Lorey dedicated over 40 years of his life teaching in the University of Michigan Prosthodontics Department.

Dental UM article on Dr. Robert Lorey

Dr. Thomas Bloem was recognized in the Fall 2009 Dental UM for his treatment planning seminar that he holds for graduate prosthodontic students twice a month. Bloem explains that "clinical skills are important, but students also need to be practical in successfully managing their patients", as stated in the Dental UM magazine.
DentalUM article on Dr. Thomas Bloem

Drs. Fei Liu and Won Oh New Diplomates

Dr. Fei Liu, an adjunct clinical lecturer and research fellow, and Dr. Won Oh, a clinical associate professor, successfully completed the American Board of Prosthodontics certification process recently.  The ABP certifies individuals who have demonstrated special knowledge and skills in prosthodontics.  

Liu and Oh have been with the School of Dentistry since 2006.

Liu completed two years of postdoctoral training at Michigan with support from the NIH-funded training program in tissue engineering and regeneration before beginning his appointment as assistant professor.  He graduated from the West China College of Stomatology in 1996 and then completed two years of advanced prosthodontics training.  He received a master’s degree in prosthodontics from the University of Connecticut School of Dental Medicine in 2006.  In addition to his tissue engineering and regeneration research at Michigan, Liu also teaches and treats patients in the School’s prosthodontics clinics.

Oh practiced dentistry for six years after graduating from the Chonbuk National University School of Dentistry in Jeonju, South Korea.  In 2000 he earned a master’s degree in prosthodontics from the University of Minnesota.  He was an assistant professor at the University of Florida College of Dentistry for four years before coming to Michigan.  At U-M he teaches third- and fourth-year dental students in undergraduate clinics and in the prosthodontics graduate clinic. He is also a course director in removable prosthodontics at undergraduate and graduate levels.

Prosthodontic Residents win Delta Dental Funding
Dr.'s and residents Emily Giroux, Anfal Mandekar and Penny Spyropoulou have been approved for funding for their Master Thesis research project through the Delta Dental Foundation. Congratulations! 

Dr's Berna Saglik and Hal O'Kray have been chosen as Clinical Faculty of the Year by their Clinics

Please join us in congratulating Dr.'s Berna Saglik and Hal O'Kray for being chosen as Clinical Faculty of the Year in their clinics (Berna, 2-Blue; Hal,2-Green).

Congratulations Dr. Vesa Kaartinen for promotion to Associate Professor of Dentistry with Tenure

During the the May 14th meeting the Regents of the University of Michigan approved Vesa's promotion to Associate Professor of Dentistry with tenure in the department of Biologic and Materials Sciences.
Vesa's body of work and expertise in heart and craniofacial developmental biology and genetics brings great value to our department, school and university.  His research is extremely important in understanding the underlying causes of both cleft palate and congenital heart diseases.

 Dental School Researchers to Investigate What May Trigger Migraine Headaches
Ann Arbor, MI - March 3, 2009 - A University of Michigan School of Dentistry researcher has received a grant to investigate the factors that may be responsible for triggering migraine headaches. Dr. Alex DaSilva, assistant professor in the Department of Biologic and Materials Sciences, was awarded a $200,000 grant from the Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives to try to determine what cellular and/or molecular changes in the brain may be responsible.

2009 Biological and Materials Sciences Research Day Award Winners:

Undergraduate, DDS, DH, MS/Certificate - Clinical Application and Technique 
Third Prize: Nellie L. Kippley (Undergraduate, Mentor: Alexandre DaSilva)
Neuroplastic Changes in the Cortex of Chronic TMD Patients
Ph.D./Postdoctoral Fellow/Staff Award 
First Prize: Laura Smith (Postdoctoral Fellow, Mentor: Peter Ma)
Nano-fibers Enhance Osteogenic Differentiation of Human Embryonic Stem Cells
Audience Choice Award  
Tiffany Tsang (Ph.D. Student, Mentor: Eric Krukonis)Characterization of Ail-mediated adhesion of Yersinia pestis to host cells

 Accepted Table Clinic at the American Academy of Fixed Prosthodontics

Dr. Yi-Hua (Eva) Niu presented her research entitled "CAD/CAM technology for the Surgical and Restorative Treatment" at the 2009 American Academy of Fixed Prosthodontics conference in Chicago. Her mentors were Dr. Marianella Sierraalta and Dr. Renée E. Duff.

Congratulations to Dr. Karen-Lee Jones Stewart

Karen-Lee Jones Stewart (DDS 1994) of Ann Arbor, Michigan, recently completed the ADA's Institute for Leadership and Diversity Program. Her project was Oral Health Literacy, Working with the Public Libraries. Stewart donated and developed a dental area for each of the public libraries in Washtenaw County.

Robinson Takes 1st Place at SNDA

Third-year dental student Allen Robinson won first place for his research and a research presentation he delivered at a national meeting in summer of 2007.  During the National Dental Association/Student National Dental Association Table Clinic last summer, Robinson took top honors for his work: Are children's oral health and general health related?  The answer appears to be "yes," based on his research conducted during the summer of 2006 at pediatric dental clinics in Ann Arbor and Flint.

Eighty-two parents, whose children ranged in age from 4 to 12, answered questionnaires about a child's oral health, general health, and quality of life. Also analyzed were the medical history and dental visits of the 82 children. 

Conducted at Mott Children's HealthCenter in Flint and the U-M School of Dentistry in Ann Arbor, Robinson's research results showed both children and their parents observed a significant correlation between oral and general health.

One of the recommendations from the study is that dentists and dental hygienists provide more information to parents. Another is that pediatricians and dentists should strengthen their collaborative efforts. 

Drug to Fight Virus in Transplant Patients Begins Phase 3 Trials
Maribavir Developed by Profs. Drach and Townsend 

A drug that has been jointly developed by U-M School of Dentistry and College of Pharmacy professors and scientists from pharmaceutical companies is now undergoing Phase 3 testing at several sites across the nation, including the U-M MedicalCenter.

Following more than 20 years of research by School of Dentistry Professor John Drach and College of Pharmacy Professor Leroy Townsend, the antiviral drug maribavir recently moved to Phase 3 clinical trials in transplant patients after it was found to be safe and effective against cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection in Phase 2 studies. The drug has been designed and developed to prevent CMV infections in patients who undergo bone marrow and liver transplants. Maribavir is being produced by ViroPharma, Inc. under the name Camvia™, a combination of "CMV" and "via," for life.

Dental Students Win 42 Percent of AADR Fellowships

Student: Steven Obreiter
Mentor: Dr. David Kohn
Project Title: Effects of Age and Mechanical Properties and Fatigue-Induced Microdamage of Bone
What the Project's About:This research continues previous work that showed exercise reduced skeletal fragility in adolescent mice. This study now seeks to define relationships between age and the ability of bone to withstand repetitive forces and to determine if mechanical loading has the same beneficial effect in older subjects as it does in younger ones. By better understanding the properties of bone that change with age, it may be possible to develop preventive measures to counteract these changes and reduce susceptibility to fracture. It may also give insights into dental implants and orthodontic procedures.

Student: Jamie Scott Luria

Mentor: Dr. Paul Krebsbach

Project Title: Biological Effects of Bone Morphogenetic Protiens in Oral Cancer Cells

 What the Project's About:This project will use bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) to reconstruct craniomaxillofacial and mandibular defects due to ablative cancer surgery. These proteins have powerful bone-forming activity and have already led to dramatic improvements in treating patients with orthopedic problems. BMP use in oral cancer defects is currently contraindicated due to uncertainties whether these proteins have adverse biologic effects on human oral squamous cell carcinoma or contribute to tumorigenesis. The project will test the hypothesis that BMPs do not produce adverse biologic effects on oral squamous cell carcinoma or enhance the growth of residual tumor cells.

Dr. Paul Krebsbach is nominated for AADR Treasurer
Dr. Paul Krebsbach, Chair of the Department of Biologic and Materials Sciences, has been nominated for AADR treasurer. Recently appointed to serve a three-year term on IADR’s Hatton Awards Committee, he is currently serving a three-year term as a member of AADR’s Constitution Committee.

Research Day Award Winners from BMS department

Dental and dental hygiene students, graduate and doctoral students, and post-doctoral fellows presented summaries of their research during the School of Dentistry's annual Research Day on Feb. 12. Sixty-nine posters outlining multiple areas of research were displayed in the Grand Ballroom at the Michigan League.
Thirty-four judges evaluated the poster presentations. Twenty-nine exhibitors also participated.
Undergraduate, DDS- Basic and Current Research, 2nd Prize: Jamie Scot Luria (D3) Mentor: Paul Krebsbach
PhD, 3rd Prize: Shelley Brown (PhD student) Mentor: Paul Krebsbach.

Congratulations to Dr. Robert Bradley

Dr. Robert Bradley successfully competed for the renewal of his R01 grant entitled: Afferent and Efferent Interactions in Taste. Dr. Bradley will begin the 23rd year of continuous funding on this grant!

Drug to Fight Virus in Transplant Patients Begins

A drug that has been jointly developed by U-M School of Dentistry and College of Pharmacy professors and scientists from a pharmaceutical companies is now undergoing Phase 3 testing as several sites across the nation, including the U-M Medical Center.
UM dental news and announcements article

Congratulations to Dr. Yamakoshi

Dr. Yasuo Yamakoshi has been recently promoted from Assistant Research Scientist to Associate Research Scientist. Dr. Yamakoshi is a member of BMS and runs his laboratory at the Eisenhower facility. He is an accomplished biochemist working in a challenging area of oral biology and an internationally recognized expert in the structure and biochemistry of enamel and dentin. Yasuo augments the outstanding work in this area by the Simmer and Hu labs and his work brings honor and distinction to our department and school.

BMS Honors Two Student Researchers:  Wei-Wen Hurs & Sharon Segvich

The Department of Biologic and Material Sciences recently honored two student researchers with the Dominic D. Dziewiatkowski Award.

Elizabeth Rodriguiz wins Ida Gray Award

The Ida Gray Award for Distinguished Contribution to diversity Matters in the University of Michigan School of Dentistry. 

Annually the Multicultural Affairs Committee honors and recognizes those individuals associated with the School of Dentistry who have contributed to the advancement of diversity and the improvement in the climate for work, learning, research, and patient care. An award has been named for Dr. Ida Gray, the first black woman to graduate from our School, the first black woman in the country to earn a formal Doctor of Dental Surgery degree, and the first black woman to practice dentistry in Chicago.

Staff Award: Elizabeth Rodriguiz, Department of Biologic and Materials 

Simmer Wins Prestigious Award

Jim Simmer has been selected as the 2007 recipient of the IADR Distinguished Scientist Award - Basic Research in Biological Mineralization Award.

This prestigious award is granted to only one individual per year. The recognition by his international peers confirms that Jim is a leader in the chemistry and biology of mineralized tissues and is the world's authority on the extracellular matrix of teeth.

Gift for Clayton Scholarship Fund

“I was a student in Joe’s crown and bridge program, and knowing him as I have over the years, I thought it was fitting that we try to help students meet some of their expenses with a gift for scholarships,” said Dr. John Burau (DDS 1970). “He helped me and others at the school for many years, so now it’s our turn to do something.”
Established in the late 1990s, the Joseph Clayton Scholarship Fund annually awards a scholarship to a graduate prosthodontics student. The award is from an endowment initiated by Dr. Joseph A. Clayton who, for 25 years, until his retirement in 1996, developed, directed, and taught the graduate program in restorative dentistry. 
Burau also gives credit to his wife, Dalores, for his success. “Because she worked while I was in dental school, I was able to graduate without any debt. So that was a big burden that we did not have to deal with,” he said. “But for today’s dental students, it’s a much different story.” A general dentist in Gaylord, Michigan, Burau said he plans to retire around Thanksgiving. But he and his wife don’t be going far. “Our home, previous office, and our summer cottage are all within walking distance,” he said with a laugh.

Kudo's for Simmer Lab

Jim Simmer and his lab-mates are authors on 6 of the 50 most cited papers published in the Journal of Dental Research. This data goes back to at least 1955.

Jim is the world's leader in the biochemistry and genetics of proteins that are expressed in vertebrate teeth. We are all proud that one of our own has such a high impact in a field directly related to Oral Biology! 

Rui-Feng Wang Builds Pagoda in China

A research lab specialist in the Department of Biologic and Materials Sciences, Wang came to Ann Arbor in 1979 from the Natural Science Academy of China where he conducted genetic research. He returns to China every year to visit friends. For more information click here

Yi-Ming (Ben) Yang presents at the American Academy of Fixed Prosthodontic Meeting in Chicago February 19-20, 2010