School of Dentistry


Minnesota Dental Research Center for Biomaterials and Biomechanics

History of the MDRCBB

Historical Development

Establishment of the MDRCBB

In 1991, the School of Dentistry agreed to the founding of the Minnesota Dental Research Center for Biomaterials and Biomechanics (MDRCBB) within the Department of Oral Science, with Dr. William H. Douglas as the first Academic Director. The MDRCBB is an umbrella organization, charged with the management of a large human and physical resource base on a broad platform of research into biomechanics, biomaterials, and related sciences. The MDRCBB was launched when the traditional barriers between University and Industry were coming down - when University and Industry rediscovered each other and realized that their strengths are complementary and that they can leverage each other's ability and productivity by closer cooperation. Innovation, quality, and teamwork are core concepts of the MDRCBB.

3M Company/3M ESPE Dental is a founding member of the MDRCBB and has provided continuous support since 1991.

Current Status

The MDRCBB regularly collaborates with dental products firms to assess the anticipated performance of new dental materials and appliances by using clinical simulation and measurement technology. Notable projects have included the occlusal wear of porcelains and new composites, the fatigue strength of bridge materials, and the wear on opposing dentition by orthodontic brackets.

Dr. Alex Fok became the Academic Director of the MDRCBB in November 2007. He adds his expertise in structural analysis, material characterization and computational mechanics to the research capabilities of the MDRCBB. His research interests include the design of mechanical tests for materials performance, the evaluation and optimization of dental restorations, and material characterization using image-based inverse methods.

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  • Last modified on June 14, 2012