Director: Dr. Luca Francetti
Cracks and Fractures in Teeth: Diagnosis of cracked teeth; Management of cracked teeth and repair of root fractures; Investigation of treatment modalities for vital teeth and endodontically treated teeth; Development of in vitro and in vivo model systems to evaluate materials, techniques, and assessment of clinical outcomes; Epidemiology of cracked teeth and endodontic sequelae. Endodontic/Implant Relationships: Relationship between endodontically treated teeth and adjacent implant(s); Assessment of clinical outcomes of implants vs. endodontically treated teeth. Educational Research: Current and projected status of endodontic education; Development and assessment of creative models and application of these models in graduate student, dental student, and continuing education programs; Design of innovative programs that would use technology to improve the quality and efficiency of graduate student, dental student, and continuing education programs; Development of a telecommunication system, “teledentistry,” to enhance continuing education and consultations. Tissue Engineering—Regeneration of the Pulpodentin Complex and Periradicular Tissues: Optimal scaffold materials and signaling molecules needed to regenerate the pulp-dentin complex and periradicular tissues; Source of cells needed to regenerate pulp-dentin complex and periradicular tissues; Molecular processes that control stem cell activity within the pulp-dentin complex; The fate of the stem cells within the pulp-dentin and periradicular tissues; Advantages and disadvantages of different sources of cells to regenerate the pulp-dentin complex and periradicular tissues; Animal models that can be used to replicate disease conditions and test hypotheses related to regenerating the pulp-dentin complex and periradicular tissues; The influence of enhanced methods of disinfecting and shaping the root and root canal system on regenerative procedures; Identification of desirable/undesirable outcomes of regenerative procedures; Identification of appropriate outcome measures of regenerative endodontic procedures for example; in vivo imagining, laser Doppler flowmetry, micro-CT, etc.; Patient and clinical factors affecting the outcomes of regenerative endodontic procedures.