National Dental Research Meeting Held Here

Nov. 6, 2014

NIDCR Director Dr. Martha Somerman, Dr. Donald DeNucci,
NIDCR program specialist, EIOH's Drs. Cyril Meyerowitz and
Dorota Kopycka-Kedzierawski, Dr. Dena Fischer, NIDCR program
director, EIOH Director Dr. Eli Eliav and Dr. Lillian Shum, acting
director of NIDCR Extramural Research.

Some 50 leaders from around the U.S., representing a $67 million, seven-year National Institutes of Health/National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research grant on practice-based research were in Rochester recently to evaluate progress to date, share input from various teams and committees and set strategic goals moving forward.

The group is part of the National Dental Practice Based Research Network (PBRN).  URMC’s Eastman Institute for Oral Health houses one of the six U.S. regional centers and is responsible for research activities in the northeast. Cyril Meyerowitz, DDS, the principal investigator of the Northeast region, leads a team of faculty and research coordinators, developing and implementing studies in the region. The Network is a consortium of more than

5,000 U.S. providers representing dental practices and clinics who are devoted to conducting research with practical impact on care, paying special attention to topics where there are gaps in knowledge.

“The PBRN is an investigative union of practicing dentists and academic scientists,” said Dena Fischer, DDS, MSD, program director for the Clinical Research and Epidemiology Program at NIDCR. Fisher, NIDCR Director Martha Somerman, DDS, PhD, and Donald DeNucci, DDS, a program specialist in the NIDCR Practice Based Research Networks, attended the meeting. Dr. Somerman graduated from EIOH’s Periodontics Program in 1978.

“The network provides practitioners with an opportunity to propose or participate in research studies that address day-to-day issues in oral healthcare,” Fischer continued. “The studies, conducted in participating dental offices with consenting patients, help to expand the profession’s evidence base and further refine care.”

Discussions among the regions reviewed the implementation of studies in the network, dissemination of study results, steps to maintain and strengthen practitioner engagement and overall program evaluation.