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NIDCR strategies for future scientific success

ALEXANDRIA, Va. A guest editorial published in the June issue of the Journal of Dental Research (JDR) celebrates the successes of the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR) in expanding the understanding of, and improving, oral health in the United States. Authored by NIDCR Director Lawrence A. Tabak and Deputy Director A. Isabel Garcia, the editorial examines how oral health research and the traditional research community can be best positioned for the future. The editorial, which is available to the public free of access controls, can be viewed at:

Solving the daunting biologic complexities of oral diseases and treating them effectively will require increased interdisciplinarity, collaboration, and innovation, said Garcia and Tabak. We must think beyond the boundaries of academic departments and disciplines and seek to integrate our most pressing research questions into the larger biomedical construct. They call for the dental research communitys participation in large trans-National Institutes of Health (NIH) initiatives, such as the NIH Roadmap. The trans-NIH programs typically involve cutting-edge research and technologies that are less accessible with other funding sources. The NIH Roadmap project is an example of a trans-NIH program that allows for medical and dental researchers to work together on emerging issues, where traditional funding may not be as readily available. They also cite the NIDCR investment in practice-based research networks as a critical component in moving dentistry to become more biology- and evidence-based.

Garcia and Tabak indicated that the past determination to improve, and success in improving, public oral health are to be celebrated, and can serve as an example for the future. They envision a future where molecular medicine and tissue engineering become common approaches to solving complex oral diseases.

The AADR joins with the NIDCR in looking forward to the results of the upcoming years of innovative and collaborative research into solving and treating the complex biological problems posed by the diseases of the oral and craniofacial complex, said AADR President Brian Clarkson (University of Michigan, Ann Arbor).


Contact: Denise Streszoff
International & American Association for Dental Research

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