Faculty News

Posted on: Sunday, 03/13/2016

Remembering Dr. Harold Hargis

In November, the School of Dentistry said goodbye to one of its most valued and respected friends. Dr. Harold Hargis, professor emeriti, passed away from natural causes on November 17th at his home in Los Angeles. He celebrated his 90th birthday on June 11, 2015. The dental school community came together to commemorate his life's accomplishments at a memorial service on January 9th.

Dr. Hargis was a pioneer in the field of oral and maxillofacial surgery who devoted his career to teaching dental students and residents. After 21 years of service he retired in 1993, but continued to serve the School as a volunteer faculty member.

For many years after he became a volunteer professor, Dr. Hargis continued to see and treat private patients in the intramural faculty practice, but he refused to be compensated from the practice. His sole purpose for continuing to perform oral and maxillofacial surgery was because of his love for the specialty and to enhance resident education. All patient care fees collected on behalf of Dr. Hargis were donated, at his suggestion, to a special fund dedicated for OMS resident education. 

Click here to read the full eulogy. Click here to view the Legacy.com page that has been set-up in his honor.

Article of the Year for Ben Wu

Dr. Ben Wu, Professor and Chair of the Division of Advanced Prosthodontics and Director of the Weintraub Center, will be recognized by the Institute of Biological Engineering at their upcoming annual conference in April.  

Dr. Wu’s article, "Recent advances in 3D printing of biomaterials" (volume 9:4), was chosen by the Editors-in-Chief as the "Article of 2015" in the Journal of Biological Engineering. The Article of the Year honor is based on number of accesses during a calendar year, number of all-time accesses and number of citations. Dr. Wu’s article was accessed over 13,000 times in the ten months from the time of its publication on March 1 to the end of the year – an incredibly high number for such a competitive topic.

Helping Children Smile

Dr. Earl Freymiller, Professor and Chair of the Division of Diagnostic and Surgical Sciences, was recognized for his 20+ years of volunteer work at the Thousand Smiles cleft missions. The award was given to Dr. Freymiller by the San Diego Rotarians for his exceptional commitment to the children of Ensenada. He has been a volunteer surgeon at the quarterly clinics for over 20 years and has helped hundreds of children.

At their latest mission held in November, the group operated on five children with cleft lip and palate, including two babies with cleft lip. An additional eight children had ear tubes placed by an ear, nose and throat (ENT) doctor. In total, 100 children were seen at the temporary clinic for their cleft lip and received additional services including speech therapy, pediatric dentistry, orthodontic care and ENT services.

Awarding Innovation 

Dr. Alireza Moshaverinia, Assistant Professor in the Division of Advanced Prosthodontics, recently received the GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Prosthodontist Innovator Award from the American College of Prosthodontists (ACP) Education Foundation and the ACP Research Committee. Dr. Moshaverinia’s application was chosen, out of several other applicants, for merit and its potential impact on the specialty of prosthodontics. A grant was also awarded and will go towards the development of smart osteoconductive and adhesive membranes that will provide an appropriate microenvironment to direct the fate of the local progenitor stem cells for periodontal tissue regeneration.

Dr. Moshaverinia was also awarded a prestigious 2016 Academy of Osseointegration Research Grant for research that will lead to the development of a novel treatment for patients suffering from peri-implant bone loss. The award, worth $30,000, lasts one year. This grant will help Dr. Moshaverinia to develop a 3-D hydrogel scaffold with a defined and predictable biodegradability as a delivery vehicle for mesenchymal stem cells as a novel treatment modality for peri-implant bone loss.

Future of Medicine

Dr. Dean Ho, Professor in the Section of Oral Biology and Co-Director of the Weintraub Center, had the honor of speaking on a panel on Tuesday, March 8th under the FuturizeX speaker's series. This event focused on the "Future of Medicine", and Dr. Ho was joined by other thought leaders in the field, including Peter Diamandis, CEO of the Foundation who acted as the moderator, Dr. Pamila Brar, medical director of the Human Longevity Institute, and Nick Desai, CEO of Heal. 

FuturizeX is a platform on the UCLA campus for students and the greater Los Angeles community to explore the new breakthroughs and ideas that are transforming the blueprint of tomorrow in medicine, engineering, education, and beyond.

Emerging Technologies to Treat and Manage Oral Cancer

Diana Messadi - CDA Guest EditorDr. Diana Messadi, Professor and Chair of the Section of Oral Medicine & Orofacial Pain and Associate Dean for Education and Faculty Development, was invited to be the guest editor of the February 2016 CDA Journal. Dr. Messadi contributed an article on "Oral Cancer: Novel Concepts for the Oral Health Care Practitioner." She explores the emerging technologies in early intervention, potential therapies and dental management of cancer survivors. Other UCLA dental school faculty members, including Drs. Reuben Kim, Eric Sung, and Fariba Younai, also provided articles on the same topic, and Dr. Paul Yang, UCLA DDS/PhD candidate, contributed to an article on oral cancer. Download a copy of the February 2016 journal.

Academic Leadership

Drs. Sotirios Tetradis, Professor and Chair of the Section of Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology and Daniela Silva, Associate Clinical Professor and Chair of the Section of Pediatric Dentistry, were both accepted as 2016-17 American Dental Education Association Leadership Institute Fellows. The ADEA Leadership Institute is a year-long program designed to develop the most promising individuals at academic dental institutions to become leaders in dental and higher education.


Awarding Excellence

Dr. Jeff McCullough, part-time Lecturer in the Section of Periodontics, receivied the 2015 Dr. and Mrs. Gerald M. Kramer Scholar Award for Excellence in Periodontics, offered by the American Academy of Periodontology Foundation. Dr. McCullough is an outstanding 2015 graduate of the Periodontics Residency and the MS in Oral Biology programs at the School of Dentistry. He was selected among several other country-wide applicants who were third year residents in periodontics in the 14/15 academic year. The section of periodontics is extremely proud of Dr. McCullough’s achievements and is thankful for his current and future contributions to our academic programs as a faculty member.

The Dr. and Mrs. Gerald M. Kramer Scholar Award for Excellence in Periodontics is highly competitive and prestigious in the field of periodontics because it recognizes the most accomplished graduating periodontics resident in the United States. In addition to the recognition, the awardee also receives a $10,000 cash prize.

Academic Personnel Actions

October 2015 - March 2016

First Name
Last Name
Title Abbrev.
Hire Date
SHUTING                        SUN                            ADVANCED PROSTHODONTICS VISITING ASST PROJ SCIENTIST        11/16/15
FLORENCE                       AU                             ENDODONTICS        LECTURER 10/7/15
YANGPEI                        CAO                            ENDODONTICS        HS ASST CLIN PROFESSOR    12/1/15
SATOSHI                        KAWANO                         ENDODONTICS        VISITING ASSOC RESEARCHER                 10/5/15
ZUOHUI                         SHI                            ENDODONTICS        VISITING ASST PROJ SCIENTIST        1/28/16
HYOJUNG                        LEE                            ORAL BIOLOGY VISITING ASST PROJ SCIENTIST        2/9/16
GUO                            LIU                            ORAL BIOLOGY VISITING ASST PROJ SCIENTIST        11/5/15
XIAOYAN                        CHEN                           ORTHODONTICS       VISITING ASST PROJ SCIENTIST        1/15/16
KYUNGHWA                       KANG                           ORTHODONTICS       VISITING ASST PROJ SCIENTIST        1/5/16
HUNG                           VU                             ORTHODONTICS       LECTURER 11/6/15
NIKI                           MOSSADED-REZZADEH              RESTORATIVE LECTURER 10/25/15
ARDESHIR                       SADEHKHOU                      RESTORATIVE LECTURER 1/1/16
EVAN                           SMITH                          RESTORATIVE LECTURER 1/1/16
DONALD                         YAN                            RESTORATIVE LECTURER 1/1/16