Clinical Research

The College of Dentistry is committed to research that advances the scientific basis of craniofacial, oral and dental health, and enhances the quality of dental health. Current clinical research in our academic divisions includes: 


Research on bacterial flora of the oral and gastrointestinal cavities. 

Dental Hygiene

The effects of bleaching on patient sensitivity.


Dental local anesthesia, new medications, injection techniques and delivery systems. Research includes clinical trials investigating new local anesthetics, injection techniques and local anesthetic delivery technology. Also being evaluated are post-endodontic pain control methods, specifically looking at different oral and injectable medications to help eliminate/reduce the use of narcotic medications by patients.

Oral Maxillofacial Surgery and Anesthesiology, Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology

Research involves phase I/II clinical trials on bioadhesive gels to assess the effects of a topical application of 10% freeze dried black raspberries (FBR) on premalignant oral lesions. Other studies include: a pharmacokinetic study to determine bioavailability of FBR compounds following topical intraoral application; a Phase I study to assess the safety profile of a “boosted” gel formulation that contains the vitamin A precursor, β-carotene.


Research includes studies of craniofacial anomalies, involving a multicenter cleft palate study; evaluation of treatment outcomes of orthognathic surgery and camouflage treatment; bone biology and biomechanics, including ONJ, bisphosphonates, bone adaptation to mechanical loads, nanoindenation, and implants.

Pediatric Dentistry

The effects of oral disease on the systemic health of children and the effect of systemic illness on the health and function of the oral cavity, including related issues involving congenital heart disease, asthma, ADHD, trauma management, parental stress, autism spectrum disorders and upper airway disease in general anesthesia. 


Research includes signal transduction involved in periodontal/peri-implant wound healing, treatment outcome, the bacterial community profile in periodontal health and disease, host-bacterial interactions, and the relationship between the oral cavity and endocrine end organs. 

Restorative and Prosthetic Dentistry

Research focus is on clinical trials that examine the safety and efficacy of dental implants. Research also includes dental implant biomechanics, accuracy and esthetics; analyses of scientific aspects of color and appearance of natural and restorative dental materials, and dental materials development.