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                                                                       Page 2; Vol. 1 No. 2


                              Spotlight On: New Research Heroes

Staff Spotlight:

Jabeen Noore, Ph.D. joined our staff May 15 as a research associate for endodontic research supported by KeybayPharma, Pittsburgh, PA.  Jabeen’s primary focus will be addressing the use of cationic peptides (eCAP) in prevention of selected root canal pathogens.  She will focus on the environment of the root canal and the impact on pH/Eh upon anti-infectives.  Jabeen received her Ph.D. in India from Sri Venkateswara University and spent as a post-doc 1 ½ years at NIOSH here at Morgantown and investigated The Biochemical Parameters of Oxidative Stress, induced by Carcinogens and Pesticides in Wild Type and Glutathione Peroxidase Overexpressing Transgenic Mice.  Her background of biochemistry will enhance our ability to better create models reflecting the environment of the biofilm.  She has also shown great interest in a reverse gel (Poloxamer) for studying susceptibility testing for biofilms.

Jason Ellis, B.S., a pre-dental student, continues to expand his interest in biofilms and the ability to upregulate planktonic organisms to the biofilm phenotype with subsequent susceptibility testing in research supported by Tulsa Dentsply.  We are particularly excited about a new method employing reverse gels that will further expand the measurement of MTAD (BioPure) Dentsply on selected Enterococcus faecalis biofilm isolates. 

Congratulations to Lindsay Nakaishi, BS who is in pursuit of her Master’s in Public Health, was awarded a stipend to travel in Tanzania for three weeks, beginning June 26.  Her goal will be to study international community development, global ethics and particularly focus on the simple but significant means of preventing infection. 

Student Spotlight:

Students continue to be the focus of our research laboratory, and their growth as health care providers understanding the rigors of good science. 
Two Pharm.D. students in their last year chose our laboratory for one month rotations:

Cheryl Neace focused on the economics of the oral flora and the consequences of chronic diseases associated with oral biofilms.  Her gathering was remarkable and provided significant into the reasons why whole mouth care is significant and its cost.
Stephen Cincotta assisted us in the evaluation of patients with fungal biofilms and the use of or MDRA using clinical data linked to laboratory data.  We originally presented as a poster at the Interscience Conference of Anitmicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC) in September, 2006 called “Linking Adverse Outcomes of Fungemic Patients to Organism Resistance Phenotypes: MBEC¬50:MIC,” and his work expanded this with a greater insight into the medical risk indicators for fungemia in the ICU. 

Kent McBride D.D.S. (Endodontics), successfully defended his Master’s thesis in endodontics and will continue to be a key part of our evaluation of the eCAP (Engineered Cationic Peptide) and its influence on selected endodontic pathogens.  Kent’s thesis was entitled, “An in Vitro Assessment of an Engineered Cationic Antimicrobial Peptide Diseases (eCAP) against planktonic strains of E. faecalis.”  Although leaving us physically in the summer, Kent will remain in Morgantown, WV as a practicing endodontist and will be a vital part of our continued research in chronic infections in the root canal and ways of enhancing standard treatment.

Lindsey Jackfert, D.D.S. (Orthodontics Resident) continues her work in the orthodontic environment.  Her Master’s thesis is entitled “A Comparison of Bacterial Adherence on Standard Orthodontic Brackets and Titanium Miniscrew Implants: An In Vitro and In Vivo Study,” and she hopes to complete her research in the next three months with her graduation slated for May of ’08.  Her focus is the potential enhanced adherence of oral flora to brackets which may hinder the eradication of the biofilm.

During “Table Clinics,” three of our third year dental students (Jon Pyle, Tony Smallwood and Cody Lockhart) evaluated the growing importance of synergy amongst selected organisms.  We emphasized oral flora but included the potential synergy with ventilator associated pneumonia isolates.  The study organisms included Strep. mutans, Lactobacillus, Prophymonas gingivalis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Candida albicans.  Titles of the two table clinics were:
Synergistic Relationships among the Oral Pathogenic Bacteria.
Microbial Synergy Comparing an Engineered Tooth Model to Broth.
A fourth dental student, Misty Cline, published findings on an artificial toothbrush using the silver-coated TYCO, Nellcor endotrach as a source of toothbrush bristles.
The Addition of Silver Releasing Compound to Toothbrush Bristles to Reduce the Accumulation of Biofilm.