CONTACT: LINDSAY RUNYAN
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 335-9585; fax (319) 384-4638
Release: Nov. 29, 2001
UI working with Czech researcher on fluoride study
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The UI College of Dentistry is hosting Romana Ivancakova,
M.D., Ph.D., as a part of a fellowship funded by the International Association
for Dental Research and the Borrow Dental Milk Foundation. This is the first
time this fellowship research will be conducted in the United States instead
University of Iowa researchers are looking into whether fluoridated milk
can prevent the formation of cavities.
Ivancakova, head of pediatric dentistry at Charles University in Hradec
Kravloce, Czech Republic, will conduct research at the UI for the next nine
months. In conjunction with UI investigators, she will assess the effect of
fluoridated milk on the formation, progression, arrestment and remineralization
of dental caries, including tooth decay. The research will be done on human
teeth extracted for orthodontic reasons. The teeth will be sterilized and
then put into one of four solutions: deionized water, plain milk or one of
two different concentrations of fluoridated milk.
UI researchers and Ivancakova have nearly finished the pilot study stage
of their research. They expect to find that the fluoridated milk will have
some protective effect on teeth.
"Fluoridated milk is a very good idea because, unlike fluoride in the
drinking water, people have the choice of whether they want it or not,"
Ivancakova said. "It is also an easy way to build fluoride into a child's
Fluoride has been added to some water supplies in the United States, but
other than the United Kingdom and Ireland, Europe does not have fluoride in
their water supplies. Fluoridated milk currently is available in some countries
as an alternative.
The fellowship is being supervised by James S. Wefel, Ph.D., professor and
director of the Dows Institute for Dental Research at the UI College of Dentistry.
In addition to Ivancakova, UI staff on the research team include Cindy Asmussen,
Maggie Hogan and Jeff Harless, who are all research assistants for the UI
College of Dentistry.