Through the integration of clinical and laboratory research, Alpdogan (Alp) Kantarci focuses on helping people live healthier lives with healthy mouths. “I see patients in the clinic, and when I work in the laboratory, I am keeping those patients front and center,” said Kantarci. “How can we learn more and improve the oral health of patients? This question is what drives our lab.”
The underlying theme in much of his research is inflammation—a connecting factor between oral disease and systemic diseases. Specifically, Kantarci investigates the molecular mechanisms and resolution pathways of inflammation in patients with periodontal disease and how systemic diseases are connected with periodontal disease. Since inflammation is the basis of many diseases in the human body, emphasis in Kantarci’s lab is placed on understanding the role of various conditions that affect the immune and inflammatory responses by the host to microbes. Recent work from the Kantarci laboratory is focused on the link between Alzheimer’s disease and periodontal disease.
As a board-certified periodontist and dentist, Kantarci is focused on saliva as a diagnostic milieu for dental-oral diseases as well as systemic conditions. He has been working on the clinical applications of high-throughput analysis in his research, particularly using xMAP Multiplexing (Luminex) for salivary diagnostics.
In parallel, he works on the role of osteoblasts and osteoclasts during orthodontic tooth movement and is applying novel techniques to shorten the treatment time for orthodontic patients. These include the use of minimally invasive surgical approaches and non-invasive technologies such as visible light. The benefits of accelerated tooth movement will be especially important for adults who want less time in braces.
University of Istanbul, DDS, MSc, 1991, Dentistry
University of Istanbul, PhD, 1998, Periodontology
Boston University Goldman School of Dental Medicine, CAGS, 2004, Periodontology