Recent Awards Granted to Faculty


September/October 2017

Dr. Gill Diamond, Department of Oral Biology is partnered in a research agreement with the Colgate-Palmolive Company (A-2017-231-OC), with the overall goal of working together towards a treatment for periodontal disease. Dr. Diamond has been a research professor of oral biology for over 15 years. The research in his laboratory focuses on the role of host defense peptides in the defense against infectious diseases at mucosal surfaces. Dr. Diamond has demonstrated his expertise in 60 publications specializing in advances in cellular and molecular biology.

July/August 2017

Dr. Roger FillingimDr. Roger Fillingim, Community Dentistry and Behavioral Sciences/Director of the Pain Research and Intervention Center of Excellence (PRICE) is a participant of the National Institute of Health and the National Institute on Aging Mentored Research Scientist Development Award (K01AG054764).  As a renowned pain researcher and former president of the American Pain Society, he provides the principal investigator, Dr. Yu-Jung Wei, UF Department of Pharmacology with career development training and resources related to pain mechanisms and research.



Dr. Micaela Gibbs, Community Dentistry and Behavioral Sciences received an award for $7,307 from Health Resource Source Administration, for a six-month project entitled “Ryan White Dental Reimbursement Program for University of Florida College of Dentistry Community Based Programs” (T22HA31224). The purpose of the program improves access to oral health care services for low-income, underinsured and underserved people living with HIV (PLWH), and to train dental and hygiene students, and dental residents to deliver dental care to these individuals.

Dr. Gibbs is a former faculty member for the Florida and Caribbean AIDS Education and Training Center, and previously was the dental director of an HIV-only public health facility.


Dr. Shannon Wallet, Department of Oral Biology received two awards in July. The first is a subaward from Dr. Benjamin Keselowsky, Department of Biomedical Engineering, originating from the NIH/NIDCR R01DE027301. The project is entitled “Tissue-targeted enzyme for localized tryptophan catabolism to direct subcutaneous and oral mucosal inflammatory responses”. Dr. Wallet is receiving $179,354 over a four-year period for her extensive experience with immune regulation, as well as immunity/pathogenesis of periodontal disease.

Dr. Wallet also received a University of Florida College of Dentistry’s Bridge Funding, for $45,000. The program, intended to provide limited interim financial support for ongoing funded federal research projects, which have a strong chance for external support based on excellent priority scores or very positive reviewer comments.  Bridge funding is provided by the UFCD Office of Research, the Center for Molecular Microbiology and the Center for Immunology and Transplantation.


Danielle Vermilyea, a graduate assistant in the Department of Oral Biology received a Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (F31DE027278) for an Individual Predoctoral Fellowship, from the NIH/National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research entitled “Determining how PPAD modulates Porphyromonas gingivalis biofilm development.” The award is given to promising predoctoral students and totals $79,621, covering a two-year period.  Danielle is mentored by Dr. Mary Davey, Associate Professor in the Department of Oral Biology, while she continues with her dissertation research.



Dr. Kesavalu Lakshmyya, Department of Periodontology received $419,375 from the NIH National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. The two- year project (R21NS102926) is entitled “Periodontal bacteria and Alzheimer’s disease”. Dr. Lakshmyya is collaborating with Drs. Yona Levites and Todd Golde of the Department of Neuroscience in the College of Medicine for their expertise in neuroinflammatory mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases. Together they will work towards determining a link between oral bacteria and Alzheimer’s disease.


Dr. Jeannine Brady, department of Oral Biology received an UFRF Professorship Award is funded for three years in the  amount of  $3,000.



Dr. Ann Progulske-Fox, department of Oral Biology received a NextScience LLC award for one year, in the amount of $161,024.  The title of her project, Clinical effectiveness of Next Science oral rinse in controlling plaque and gingival inflammation”.



Dr. Roger Fillingim

Dr. Roger Fillingim,  department of Community Dentistry and Behavioral Science, PRICE received a Subaward from Dr. Marco Pahor, UF Institute for Aging for one year in the amount of $19, 222 titled “Claude D. Pepper older Americans independence: pilot project” NIH/NIA P30AG028740″ .

Dr. Fillingim also received from Duke University NIH/NIAMS R0AR055899 Subaward from Physical Therapy; College of Health Professions, PI Dr. Mark Bishop for four years, in the amount of $61,046 titled “Biopsychosocial influence of shoulder pain” .


Dr. Scott Tomar, department of Community Dentistry and Behavioral Science received an award titled “The child health quality (CHeQ) partnership program” Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality U18HS0252998 Subaward from Elizabeth Shenkman, M.D., Institute for Child Health Policy for one year in the amount of $35,821.



Drs. Zsolt Toth (PI) and Bernadette Papp (C0-I),  department of Oral Biology, Dr. Laurence Morel (Co-I) MD-Pathology and received an award titled “Immune evasion mechanisms during oral infection by an oncogenic herpevirus” DSP Opportunity Fund for two years in the amount of  $95,000.



Dr. Mary Ellen Davey

Dr. MaryEllen Davey (Co-I), department of Oral Biology and Dr. Shouguang Jin, (PI) MD, Molecular Genetics, received a DSP Opportunity Fund for two years in the amount of $95,000 and titled“Identification of fecal bacteria with anti-clostridium difficile activities”.



 Dr. Shannon Holliday (CO-I) department of Orthodontics and Dr. Laurie Gower (PI), department of Engineering-Materials Science received an award from US Army W81XWH-17-1-0100  in the amount of $148,858 for two years and titled “Biomimetic bone for load-bearing bioresorbable nanostructured bone substitutes”.



Dr. Wellington Rody

Dr. Wellington Rody, department of Orthodontics received a UFCD Seed Grant for one year in the amount of $16,000, and titled “Characterization of clastic-cell exosomes in oral fluids: a step toward clinical application”.

Dr. Rody also received a “Pilot study: Metabolomics profiling of gingival crevicular fluid (GCF) in the presence of dentin resorption”, from UF Southeast Center for Integrated Metabolomics, for one year in the amount of $10,750.


Dr. Robert Caudle, department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery received from the US Department of Veterans Affairs, Gainesville Florida $33,782 for two years, titled “Intergovernmental Personnel Agreement”.

Dr. Monica Fernandez Recipient of NIH Diversity Supplement, and Dr. Josephine Esquivel (PI) department of Restorative Dental Sciences received an award from NIH/NIDCR  in the amount of $314,744  for two years, titled “Novel coatings to minimize surface degradation and fracture susceptibility of dental ceramics”.