UCLA School of Dentistry to Receive $2.5 Million to Establish the Nobel Biocare Endowed Chair in Surgical Implant Dentistry

Posted on: Friday, 09/15/2006

The UCLA School of Dentistry has received a pledge of $2.5 million from Nobel Biocare, the world leader in innovative esthetic dental solutions, for the purpose of establishing the Nobel Biocare Endowed Chair in Surgical Implant Dentistry. 

An alternative to dentures, bridges and crowns, surgical dental implants represent the modern way of restoring teeth that most closely mimics a patient's natural dentition.

"Nobel Biocare recognizes the ongoing efforts of the UCLA School of Dentistry to promote the art and science of implant dentistry," said Heliane Canepa, president and CEO of Nobel Biocare Holding AG. "Supporting training and education programs that provide students and practitioners with access to the latest implant technologies is critical to ensuring patients now, and in the future, receive the best solutions for their dental problems. It is our pleasure to make this contribution to UCLA's exceptional program."

"This endowment is a very important and exciting development for the section of oral andmaxillofacial surgery, the division of diagnostic and surgical sciences, and the school as a whole," said Dr. No-Hee Park, dean of the UCLA School of Dentistry. "The Nobel Biocare Endowed Chair in Surgical Implant Dentistry is a wonderful way to advance the teaching and research activities of a leading scholar while helping to strengthen UCLA's standing at the forefront of dental education."

"Many people consider dental implants to be the most revolutionary aspect of the practice of dentistry in the past two decades," said Dr. Earl Freymiller, chair of the section of oral and  maxillofacial surgery at the UCLA School of Dentistry. "We are still discovering ways that patients can benefit from them, ways to improve implants and methods for enhancing the bone and soft tissue in which they reside. This endowed chair will attract a world leader to UCLA who will position us on the cutting edge of this burgeoning field."

The occupant of the endowed chair will be a worldwide leader in implant dentistry education and research, deeply involved in the training of undergraduate and graduate students, faculty members and practitioners both nationally and internationally.Dean Park is currently forming a committee to conduct an international search to fill the position, which becomes effective July 1, 2007.

The Nobel Biocare Endowed Chair in Surgical Implant Dentistry is part of UCLA's Ensuring Academic Excellence Initiative, a five-year effort aimed at generating $250 million in private commitments specifically for the recruitment and retention of the very best faculty and graduate students. The initiative was launched in June 2004. Its goals include $100 million to fund 100 new endowed chairs for faculty across campus, $100 million to fund fellowships and scholarships in the UCLACollege, and $50 million for fellowships and scholarships in UCLA's 11 professional schools.

To date, $170 million in total has been raised for the initiative, with $1.75 million raised year-to-date, not including the new Nobel Biocare Endowed Chair.

"We are extremely grateful for Nobel Biocare's generous support, which will benefit the UCLA School of Dentistry's students, faculty and patients for many generations to come," said Thomas Mitchell, assistant dean and director of development at the UCLA School of Dentistry.

The UCLA School of Dentistry is dedicated to improving the oral health of the people of California, the nation and the world and has established an international reputation for its teaching, research, patient care and public service initiatives. The school provides education and training programs that develop leaders in dental education, research, the profession and the community; conducts research programs that generate new knowledge, promote oral health and investigate the cause, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of oral disease, and delivers patient‑centered oral health care to the community and state.