Nexus - Fall 2000 Issue     
Recruiting the Best

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Dr. Louis Terracio Named
Associate Dean for Research
Dr. Louis Terracio, previously the associate dean for basic sciences and Carolina Distinguished Professor of Developmental Biology and Anatomy at the University of South Carolina School of Medicine, has been named associate dean for research at NYUCD.

Dr. Terracio received his Ph.D. degree in anatomy from the University of Minnesota. A leading authority on muscle tissue engineering, he brings with him major funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the U.S. Army. His investigations focus on chemical and physical factors affecting heart development. In the long term, his work may lead to the ability to grow replacement heart tissue for implantation into humans.

Dr. Terracio’s appointment is expected to precipitate an aggressive program of collaboration between clinical and basic scientists at NYUCD, between student and faculty researchers, and between NYUCD and the NYU School of Medicine, as well as with other major medical institutions in the New York metropolitan area.

The author or coauthor of many papers, book chapters, and articles, Dr. Terracio is a frequent reviewer for NIH grants and for a host of major scientific journals.

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Dr. Jonathan A. Ship Appointed Director,
Bluestone Center for Clinical Research
Dr. Jonathan A. Ship has been named director of the Leonard I. Bluestone Center for Clinical Research. Dr. Ship had been at the University of Michigan School of Dentistry as a professor and vice-chair of oral medicine/ pathology/oncology and director of the program in geriatric dentistry and oral medicine.

Dr. Ship will be responsible for formulating and implementing a program to establish collaborative links among the Bluestone Center, the faculty, the practicing community, and the pharmaceutical industry by leveraging the research potential of NYUCD’s enormous, diverse patient population.

In the laboratory, Dr. Ship’s investigations focus on aging and oral health. He currently directs six major grants for research and training in this area, and is a past-chair of the Geriatric Oral Research Group Distinguished Scientist Committee. The author or coauthor of 11 books and more than 170 monographs, abstracts, and articles, Dr. Ship holds a D.M.D. degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine. He recently won the International Association for Dental Research (IADR) Geriatric Oral Research Award.

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Dr. David A. Sirois Named Chair,
Department of Oral Medicine
Dr. David A. Sirois, founding director of the Division of Oral Medicine and the Oral Medicine Fellowship Program at UMDNJ New Jersey Dental School, has been named chairman of the Department of Oral Medicine.

Prior to coming to NYUCD, Dr. Sirois held a joint faculty appointment as associate professor of oral pathology, biology, and diagnostic sciences and of neuroscience at UMDNJ. Under Dr. Sirois’s leadership, the UMDNJ Division of Oral Medicine became nationally recognized as a leading center in the field of oral medicine, with a combined resident, faculty, and staff membership of 40 individuals and an operational budget in excess of $2 million annually, derived primarily from grant and patient revenues.

A Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Medicine, Dr. Sirois holds both a D.M.D. degree and a Ph.D. in neuroscience from the University of Pennsylvania.

Dr. Sirois’s research focuses on pain and pain control. His studies involve investigation of the capacity for the central nervous system to undergo functional and anatomical changes in response to changes in sensory experience, such as may follow nerve injury, sensory deprivation, or sensory enrichment.

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Dr. Joan A. Phelan Named Chair,
Department of Oral Pathology
Dr. Joan A. Phelan, a leading authority in the field of oral pathology, has rejoined NYUCD as professor and chairman of the Department of Oral Pathology. From 1980 to 1990, Dr. Phelan was a member of the College’s Department of Oral Medicine and Pathology.

Prior to returning to NYUCD, Dr. Phelan was chief of the dental service at the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Northport, New York, and an associate professor of oral biology and pathology at the State University of New York at Stony Brook, where she earned her dental degree. Dr. Phelan also holds an M.S. degree in dental hygiene from Columbia University. She is a Diplomate of the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology and a Fellow of the American Academy of Oral Pathology.

Noted for her research and publications in the area of HIV infection, Dr. Phelan currently directs an NIDCR-supported oral substudy of the NIH-supported Women’s Interagency HIV Study (WIHS).

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Dr. Peter Sacks
Dr. Peter Sacks, a renowned cancer researcher, has joined NYUCD as an associate professor of basic sciences. Dr. Sacks is one of the very few people in the world who has been able to develop and maintain pre-malignant cell lines, thereby providing a unique resource for cancer research since he can test medications that could stop malignant cancer from becoming fully developed. His research focuses on studies involving head and neck cancer.

Dr. Sacks comes to NYUCD from the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, where he was an associate attending cell biologist and associate laboratory member in the department of surgery.

Dr. Sacks holds a Ph.D. degree in biology from Syracuse University. He has published nearly 150 scientific papers, reviews, articles, monographs, and abstracts in his field.

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Dr. Kathleen Walsh Kinnally
Dr. Kathleen Walsh Kinnally, an expert in the electrophysiology of mitochondrial membranes, has been appointed a professor of basic sciences. Using patch clamping as a technique, Dr. Kinnally studies programmed cell death, a pivotal area in understanding basic mechanisms in cancer.

Prior to joining NYUCD, Dr. Kinnally had been an associate professor of biomedical sciences at the University of Albany School of Public Health. Concurrently, she was also serving as an adjunct associate professor of biology at SUNY/Albany and as a research scientist at the Wadsworth Center of the New York State Department of Health.

Dr. Kinnally holds an R.N. degree and a Ph.D. in biology. She is a prolific author and symposium speaker and is currently the principal investigator on a major NIH grant, “The Role of Mitochondrial Channels in Cell Death,” and a National Science Foundation grant entitled “Molecular Studies of a Mitochondrial Ion Channel.”

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Dr. Douglas E. Morse
Dr. Douglas E. Morse, an epidemiologist, has joined the NYUCD faculty as an assistant professor of epidemiology and health promotion. Dr. Morse holds a D.D.S. degree from the University of Texas School of Dentistry and a Ph.D. in chronic disease epidemiology from Yale University. He also received a master’s degree in epidemiology from Harvard University.

Among his contributions to advances in epidemiology is a major ongoing study of environmental risk factors and biomarkers for oral carcinogenesis.

In addition to his duties teaching in the Department of Epidemiology and Health Promotion, Dr. Morse will also be teaching in the new M.S. Program in Clinical Research, scheduled to begin in fall 2001.