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Pediatric Dentistry


Research


The Department of Pediatric Dentistry has a well established and long history of conducting research in a wide variety of fields to improve the oral health of children. The department is currently involved in research in areas of genetics, child health services research, and clinical studies. Faculty, residents, PhD students and dental students are all actively involved in interdisciplinary research projects. In addition to the descriptions below more information about the Department of Pediatric Dentistry's diverse research program can be found at ReachNC. ReachNC is a Web portal that enables users to search, browse and find experts and assets within North Carolina higher education and research institutions.

GENETICS RESEARCH

The Department of Pediatric Dentistry is actively involved in craniofacial genetics research and has been a leader in this field. Current research investigates the molecular control of tooth formation and the identification and characterization of hereditary conditions involving the craniofacial complex. These studies involve human and mouse models. The Department has substantial funding from the National Institute of Dental Research for characterization of the phenotype and genotype of hereditary craniofacial conditions such as cleft palate and amelogenesis imperfecta. The Department is also engaged in investigations to understand environment and genetic interactions of conditions such as fluorosis and determinants of bone density.

CHILD HEALTH SERVICES RESEARCH

Health Services Research is the pursuit of knowledge and the understanding of the financing, organization, delivery, and outcomes of health services. Translation to better patient care and providing policymakers and other health care leaders with information needed to make critical health care decisions. The department is actively involved in all four major domains of health services research: quality, effectiveness efficiency and ecology. More specifically current-ongoing studies examine healthcare disparities in oral healthcare delivered to low-income young children, dental health professional shortage areas, and costs effectiveness studies of publicly financed programs.

FACULTY RESEARCH AREAS

Eric T. Everett, PhD

Research Interests

Genetic factors underlying congenital and acquired disorders of craniofacial/oral/dental structures.

List of current research projects in progress

List of current MS/DDS/PhD students projects

Promising areas for future research for students

Kimon Divaris DDS, PhD

Research interests

Diverse research interests that include both proximal and distal oral health determinants with emphasis on caries, periodontitis and children's oral health outcomes, and span from population genetics to dental education, health disparities and oral health literacy. Also interested in methodological topics such as causality, heterogeneity, effect estimation, Bayesian applications, and others.

List of current research projects in progress

List of current MS/DDS/PhD students projects

Promising areas for future research for students

Hiroko Iida DDS, MPH

Research interests

Oral and social epidemiology, maternal and child health, children with special health care needs, population-based oral health research and interventions.

List of current research projects in progress

List of current MS/DDS/PhD students projects

Promising areas for future research for students

Analysis of national/state surveillance data to explore the associations between oral health outcomes and various individual-, family-, and neighborhood- factors.

Jina Kang DMD, MS

Research interests

Research interests include prenatal and infant oral health, sedation in a dental setting, and childhood obesity/nutrition in a dental setting.

List of current research projects in progress

Current MS/DDS/PhD students projects

Promising areas for future research for students

The use of sedation in pediatric dentistry.

Lorne Koroluk DMD, MSD, MS

Research interests

Research interest including behavioral / risk aspects of dental trauma, Orthodontic Treatment Outcomes, and Web-based teaching methodologies.

List of current research projects in progress

List of current MS/DDS/PhD students projects

Promising areas for future research for students

Pilot study on the association between Executive Function Disorder and dental trauma.

Jessica Y. Lee DDS, MPH, PhD

Research interests

Research interests include child health services research, health literacy, and health disparities.

Current research projects in progress

Current MS/DDS/PhD students’ projects

Promising areas for future research for students

Michael Milano, DMD

Research interests

Research interests include child behavior, dentistry for the special patient and issues related to access to dental care.

Current research projects in progress

Current MS/DDS/PhD student projects

Promising areas for future research for students

Rocio B. Quinonez, DMD, MS, MPH

Research interests

Research interests include, integration of oral health in medicine, perinatal and infant oral health and access to care.

Current research projects in progress

List of current MS/DDS/PhD students projects

Promising areas for future research for students

Michael W. Roberts DDS, MScD

Research interests

Medically compromised patients, hospital dentistry, lasers and eating disorders.

Current research projects in progress

Current MS/DDS/PhD student projects

Promising areas for future research for students

William F. Vann, Jr DMD, MS, PhD

Research interests

Community partnerships focused on access to oral health care, oral health literacy, childhood obesity and dental trauma and conscious sedation-related projects that involve secondary data collection.

Current research projects in progress

Current MS/DDS/PhD student projects

Most promising areas for student projects.

J. Timothy Wright DDS, MS

Research interests

Understanding molecular mechanisms involved in tooth and craniofacial formation and the use of this information in advancing our diagnostic and clinical treatments. Investigating the molecular controls involved in initiating, defining and maintaining odontogenic tumors in humans. Identifying caries objective caries risk assessment tools including plaque metabolomics.

Current research projects in progress

List of current MS/DDS/PhD students projects

Promising areas for future research for students