Stony Brook University School of Dental Medicine researchers are going high-tech to help solve some of the world’s leading oral health problems. Two projects totaling approximately $2 million in grant monies are being funded by the National Institute of Dental & Craniofacial Research (NIDCR) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Bone Scaffold Technology
Dr. David Lam, chair of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, and Dr. Srinivas Myneni, director of Periodontal Research, are leading an effort to advance a bone scaffold technology that is designed to use nanomaterial to spur bone growth in craniofacial tissue. Restoring craniofacial bone surgically is challenging and limited, and this new technology is promising as a potential treatment for patients who have bone loss in and around the mouth due to conditions such as cancer, trauma, infections, congenital defects and tooth loss. Their NIH SBIR grant totals $1.7 million. The researchers are partnering with NuShores Biosciences LLC to develop the technology.
“The collaboration between Dr. Lam, Dr. Myneni and NuShores Biosciences launches the School of Dental Medicine into novel and vital surgical tissue engineering that has the potential to transform approaches in patient regenerative medicine,” said Dr. Mary Truhlar, dean of the School of Dental Medicine.
Periodontal Disease Diagnostics
Dr. Wellington Rody, chair of the Department of Orthodontics and Pediatric Dentistry, is developing a novel and noninvasive method to detect and monitor periodontal disease and dental root resorption. Supported by a $319,000 NIDCR grant, Dr. Wellington is using oral fluids to identify biomarkers that may help detect periodontal disease and dental resorption early in the disease process. Current methods to detect these conditions are through x-rays, which often do not confirm disease until late in the process.
“The School of Dental Medicine is committed to recruiting the next generation of talented researchers and academic leaders,” said Dr. Truhlar. “With the recent addition of Dr. Rody, we are hopeful that chair-side diagnostic tests for real-time detection of root resorption and periodontal disease will soon become a reality.”