Bulletin of Dental Education

Eastman Institute for Oral Health News Round Up

 Permanent link   All Posts

Learn more about the latest news and research from the Eastman Institute for Oral Health (EIOH) at the University of Rochester Medical Center in the following news round up.

EIOH Welcomes Inaugural Class of Fellows

EIOH welcomed its inaugural class of fellows of the new National Dental Faculty Development Center.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has partnered with EIOH and invested $3.5 million to help combat the challenges dental schools are facing with faculty recruitment and retention.  

Eatsman Photo Collage_Group SHots_Nov 2022 BDE_8 in w

“We recognize there really is not a lot out there focusing on dental faculty training, and that’s one of the reasons we have this great collaborative agreement with Eastman and the University of Rochester,” Jennifer Holtzman, D.D.S., M.P.H., Dental Officer with HRSA’s Bureau of Health Workforce, told the fellows about why the Center was established. “You were selected because you are all excellent, and we are excited to have this opportunity to work with you.”

“Our nation needs both strong educators and a pipeline of providers who have had experience working in the community, in public health settings, and also working with other health professionals in some interdisciplinary settings,” said Jesse Ungard, a Public Health Analyst with HRSA. 

Eastman_EPIC one_8 in w

“By maximizing trainees’ experience and competence to build resources and infrastructure at their home institutions, we are confident we can support the academic careers of junior faculty, promote clinical education in community-based training sites, and strengthen faculty recruitment and retention,” said Sean McLaren, D.D.S., one of the program managers.

The next cohort will be open for applications in fall 2023. For more information, visit the website.

New Chapter in Basic Science Research

Thomas Diekwisch, D.M.D., Ph.D., Ph.D., has been named the Founding Chair of EIOH’s newly established Department of Oral and Craniofacial Sciences.


Thomas Diekwisch, D.M.D., Ph.D., Ph.D.

Dr. Diekwisch joins EIOH from Texas A&M School of Dentistry, where he was Director for the Center for Craniofacial Research and Diagnosis and Head of the Department of Periodontics. The Principal Investigator of three federally funded grants totaling $4.7 million, Dr. Diekwisch will lead the development of high-quality, strategic and innovative oral health related research and education in the newly established department, which replaces the Center for Oral Biology.

Nearly 25 years ago, when the EIOH merged with the University of Rochester, they became formal partners in oral health care, graduate education and research. Founded a year later, the Center for Oral Biology quickly built its reputation of excellence through several multimillion-dollar grants and attracting internationally recognized and influential scientists working on critical topics in oral biology.

Today, the journey continues with a different organizational structure that will encourage increased research collaborations, faculty engagement and improved productivity within URMC and EIOH.

The widely published and well-funded Dr. Diekwisch will play an integral role in supporting graduate and post graduate education and develop a Ph.D. track in oral biology.

“This is an exciting new era for oral biology research at the university,” said Eli Eliav, D.M.D., Ph.D., EIOH Professor and Director. “With his leadership skills and significant accomplishments in program development and recruitment, I’m confident in his ability to direct our research priorities and strengthen collaborations throughout the medical center and university.”

Dr. Diekwisch’s first faculty recruit is Xianghong Luan, M.D., previously a professor at the Texas A&M School of Dentistry. Dr. Luan is the Principal Investigator of two federally funded grants totaling $3.8 million.

Possible Opioid Alternative for Dentists?

Since it was published in JAMA Network Open , an EIOH study about treating dental pain has received wide media attention. The study compares two large groups of patients representing an equal number of men and women who had dental extractions at the Institute.

“We hypothesized that using a combination of the non-opioid pain medications and adding gabapentin to the mix for pain would be an effective strategy to minimize or eliminate opioids for dental pain,” said Yanfang Ren, D.D.S., Ph.D., M.P.H., Professor and Clinical Chief at Howitt Urgent Dental Care.  

“This study represents continued efforts by our team and other dentists to minimize the use of opioids for dental pain,” said Eli Eliav, D.M.D., Ph.D., EIOH Director and Pain Expert. “Additional studies, preferably randomized controlled clinical trials, are needed to confirm the safety and effectiveness of this approach. It is our duty to continuously seek safe and effective treatment for our patients in pain, and for those who are unable to tolerate the combination of ibuprofen and acetaminophen.”

Eastman Institutes Global Rounds for Clinical Care and Research

After the success of the Rochester, NY, Dental Dispensary founded by George Eastman in 1915, he established similar institutions in London, Rome, Brussels, Stockholm and Paris. Integrated into outstanding universities, all of these institutions, except Brussels, are linked together through the Eastman International Alliance (EIA), established to address global problems related to access; to collaborate in education, clinical care and research; and to engage in faculty and student exchanges.


EIOH hosts the Eastman International Alliance Global Rounds, where oral health experts from EIA institutions share complex patient cases in various specialties in real time. To view previous sessions, visit Dental Education - Eastman Institute for Oral Health - University of Rochester Medical Center.

Courtesy of Eastman Institute for Oral Health at the University of Rochester Medical Center

Published on November 9, 2022

Duggan ad 2013