The focus of the experiments in the laboratory is to isolate and purify components or vectors of these organisms that activate or aggregate platelets, and explore the effect common anti-platelet aggregating medications, eg. aspirin, on these interactions.

Oral Biology Research Laboratory

Director

Eugene J. Whitaker, DMD, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Department of Restorative Dentistry
Phone: 215-707-3924
e-mail: gwhitaker@dental.temple.edu

Facilities

Building 600, Room 403 (1,036 square feet)

The Laboratory of Oral Molecular Biology, located on the 4th floor of the dental school has bench space, cabinets, plumbing and vacuum accessories and houses the following equipment: platelet aggregometer, microscope and phase microscope, spectrophotometer, multiple table top and clinical centrifuges, an IEC low speed centrifuge, incubators and ovens, a PCR thermocycler, gel electrophoresis apparatus (SDS PAGE and immunoblot equipment), immunoelectrophoresis equipment, gel drier, multiple power supplies, LKB Uvicord chromatography equipment, pH meter, conductivity meter, water bath, analytical balances, fraction collector, columns for purification, magnetic stirrers, 35 mm camera, digital camera, Polaroid MP4 camera with UV transilluminator, micropipettes. The laboratory also has office space with a computer and printer. A common lab has walk-in cold and warm rooms, -70ºC freezers, conventional refrigerators and freezers, glassware processing and sterilization facilities, autoclave and Millipore filtration units, liquid scintillation counter, and lyophilizer.

Research Focus

The broad, long-term objective of research in the laboratory is to investigate the interactions between two pathogenic red-complex bacteria (Porphyromonas gingivalis , Tannerella forsythensis) and human platelets, both ex vivo and in vivo. Research is designed to show that these organisms, which are etiologic agents of both chronic and aggressive periodontitis, aggregate platelets, thereby rendering the surface of platelets procoagulant, and creating a state of disordered humoral immunity. The focus of the experiments in the laboratory is to isolate and purify components or vectors of these organisms that activate or aggregate platelets, and explore the effect common anti-platelet aggregating medications, eg. aspirin, on these interactions.

Representative Publications

Whitaker EJ, Thomas I, Falk J, Hammond BF. "Effect of Acetylsalicylic Acid on Aggregation of Human Platelets by Porphyromonas gingivalis" ; General Dentistry 55:64-68; 2007.

Whitaker, EJ. " Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary Treatment of Dental Caries: A 20 Year Case Report". JADA 137:348-352; 2006.

Pham K, Feik D, Hammond, BF, Rams TE, Whitaker E.J. " Aggregation of Human Platelets by Gingipain -R from Porphyromonas gingivalis Cells and Membrane Vesicles". Platelets 13:21-30; 2002.

Whitaker EJ, Rams TE, Feik D, Hammond BF. "IgG Immune Complexes Enhance Aggregation of Human Platelets by Clinical strains of Porphyromonas gingivalis." Annals of Periodontol 6: 64-65; 2001.

Whitaker, EJ, Pham K, Feik D, Rams TE, Barnett ML, Pan P. "Effect of an Essential Oil-Containing Antiseptic Mouthrinse on Induction of Platelet Aggregation by Oral Bacteria in Vitro." J. Clin. Perio. 27:370-373;2000.