Dental Education News: April 2021
Columbia University College of Dental Medicine Cancer Scientist Receives AACR-Mark Foundation Grant for Health Disparities Research

Fatemeh (Flora) Momen-Heravi, DDS, PhD, has been awarded a “Science of the Patient” grant from the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) and the Mark Foundation for Cancer Research. The three-year, $750,000 award will support Dr. Momen-Heravi’s research into the existing racial disparities in head and neck cancer. Read more.
University at Buffalo School of Dental Medicine Awarded $1.5 Million to Reprogram White Blood Cells in Fight Against Oral Cancer

The University at Buffalo has received a $1.5 million grant from the United States Department of Defense to develop new therapies that help reduce chronic inflammation and immunosuppression in oral cancers. Through the three-year grant, the research will center on a type of white blood cell called a macrophage that – after migrating to oral tumors – triggers uncontrolled inflammation, which suppresses the body’s immune response and lowers the effectiveness of anticancer therapies. Read more.
Education & Training
Touro College of Dental Medicine at New York Medical College: Pre-Dental Program for Undergraduate Students Launches at Touro College of Dental Medicine

Touro College of Dental Medicine (TCDM) is launching a four-day program, the TCDM Pre-Dental Experience(opens in a new tab), designed to introduce undergraduate students to the world of dentistry in an intimate class setting. The program will be held in person from June 14 - June 17 at TCDM, located on the campus of New York Medical College in Hawthorne, NY. COVID-19 safety protocols will be practiced, including daily screening, mask requirements, and social distancing. Read more.
Touro College of Dental Medicine at New York Medical College: ‘Name That Injection’: TCDM D2 Students Participate in Innovative Educational Experience

An innovative educational experience conceived by Howard Israel, D.D.S., Clinical Professor of Dental Medicine, and Raquel Rozdolski, D.M.D., Clinical Assistant Professor of Dental Medicine, the game show style assessment was developed for D2s as part of TCDM’s Pain and Anxiety Control course—a cornerstone in the education of second year dental students as they prepare to have their first ever patient care experiences this June in their D3 year. Read more.
Oral Health Care Access
Touro College of Dental Medicine at New York Medical College Hosts 4th Annual Kids a Smile! Program Virtually

With the hecticness that ensued in making the move from Brooklyn to Westchester right before the start of the pandemic, Samoina Malloy and her family had delayed their dental care and finally found a moment at the beginning of 2021 to play catch-up. With two teenagers and two toddlers, she was happy to find out about TCDM’s Give Kids A Smile! program and take advantage of both free dental care and the convenience of a large dental practice for her family through Touro Dental Health, the 115-chair teaching practice of the Touro College of Dental Medicine (TCDM). Read more.
NYU College of Dentistry: Lemurs Can Sniff Out Hidden Fruit From Afar

Lemurs can use their sense of smell to locate fruit hidden more than 50 feet away in the forest—but only when the wind blows the fruit’s aroma toward them, according to a study published in the American Journal of Physical Anthropology. “This is the first time research has demonstrated that primates can track a distant smell carried by the wind,” said anthropologist Elena Cunningham, a clinical associate professor of molecular pathobiology at NYU College of Dentistry and the study’s lead author. Read more.
NYU College of Dentistry: Targeted Opioid That Hones in on Inflamed Tissues Stops Colitis Pain Without Side Effects

A targeted opioid that only treats diseased tissues and spares healthy tissues relieves pain from inflammatory bowel disease without causing side effects, according to new research published in the journal Gut. The study, led by researchers at New York University College of Dentistry and Queen’s University in Ontario, was conducted in mice with colitis, an inflammatory bowel disease marked by inflammation of the large intestine. Read more.
NYU College of Dentistry: What NYU Researchers Have Learned About Vaccine Acceptance and Hesitancy

COVID-19 vaccines are currently in high demand, with many Americans competing for scarce appointments in a process that’s been likened to the Hunger Games. But as vaccine supply increases in the U.S. and around the world, public health officials are concerned that hesitancy to get the vaccine will put a damper on this demand and keep us from reaching herd immunity. Read more.
Stony Brook School of Dental Medicine: Dr. Soosan Ghazizadeh Receives $431,000+ in NIH Funding for Research on the Regeneration of Salivary Glands

According to Soosan Ghazizadeh, PhD, millions of Americans are currently suffering from the loss of salivary gland function, greatly affecting oral health and overall quality of life. Beyond xerostomia, more commonly known as dry mouth, decreased saliva can be harmful to the teeth and gums, potentially leading to permanent tooth loss. Saliva also plays a vital role in how we eat – from chewing and swallowing to digestion. Without it, eating can be far less enjoyable. Read more.
University at Buffalo School of Dental Medicine Receives $780,000 Grant for New 40-Foot Mobile Dental Clinic

The University at Buffalo School of Dental Medicine has received a $780,000 grant from the Mother Cabrini Health Foundation to expand its successful S-Miles to Go dental program through the addition of a second, drivable mobile dental clinic. The new mobile dental van – a 40-feet-long, two-chair clinic outfitted with a state-of-the-art panoramic X-ray unit, digital radiography, a sterilization center, wheelchair lift and electronic health record system – will meet the oral health care needs of Erie County’s underserved populations, including older adults and people with disabilities. Read more.