Department of Preventive and Restorative Dental Sciences


The Department of Preventive and Restorative Dental Sciences (PRDS) is the largest of four departments in the School of Dentistry at UCSF, and is responsible for teaching in excess of 67% of the pre-doctoral DDS curriculum and the majority of the International Dentist Program.


  • Chair - Taylor, George, DMM, MPH, DrPH
  • Department Manager Ė Katsus, Rose

The Department of Preventive and Restorative Dental Sciences (PRDS) is the largest department in the School of Dentistry. The Department is comprised of seven divisions including Behavioral Sciences and Community Dental Education; Biomaterials and Bioengineering; Clinical General Dentistry; Patient Care Simulation; Endodontics, Oral Epidemiology and Dental Public Health; and Prosthodontics. Preclinical and clinical educational programs operate within the laboratories and clinics of the dental facilities on campus and through the schoolís satellite facilities, including the community clinic at 100 Buchanan Street. The Department offers accredited three-year residency programs in prosthodontics and endodontics and an accredited one or two year residency in Dental Public Health. In addition, PRDS offers postgraduate education in dental public health and epidemiology, in conjunction with the School of Public Health at UC Berkeley as part of the Dentist Scientist Award Program for dentists interested in combining specialty training with a PhD in epidemiology. The Division of Behavioral Sciences and Community Dental Education offers a one year Masterís of Science in Dental Hygiene as well as a one year Advanced Education in General Dentistry residency program in conjunction with Lutheran Medical Center and several Community Clinic Federally Qualified Health Centers.

In the predoctoral dental curriculum, the division of Behavioral Sciences and Community Dental Education teaches integrated Cultural Competency courses spread throughout the four-year curriculum. This core curriculum includes clinical care and current issues in dentistry, behavioral sciences, ethics, and the community based dental externships. The Department is responsible for the pre-clinical and clinical teaching for the DDS and International Dental Program pre-doctoral students for three of the schoolís five curriculum streams (Preventive and Restorative Dental Sciences, Patient Centered Care and Scientific Methods) and has the largest responsibility for the didactic and clinical teaching (over 60%) of all the departments in the School.

Research in the PRDS spans the spectrum from basic to translational to clinical research. Areas of emphasis include, the application of the analytical techniques of materials science to the characterization of dental hard tissues and hard tissue cellular matrix and restorative materials; characterization and testing of dental materials; the effects of restorative procedures on the dental pulp; basic research into that organís biology; psychological aspects of temporomandibular joint disorders; multi-school collaborative electronic patient record studies; preventive, diagnostic, and laser research for modifying the enamel to be more resistant to dental caries and therapeutic laser applications in dentistry; caries risk assessment; and caries prevention and management.

Research in oral epidemiology, public health, and behavioral science includes a spectrum of ongoing projects on the epidemiology of oral diseases and the delivery of dental care. The Department houses the Schoolís NIH-funded Center to Address Disparities in Childrenís Oral Health (CAN DO) and is one of only five such centers in the US and the only one in California. The CAN DO Center aims to understand, prevent and reduce oral health disparities in young children, with a primary focus on preventing early childhood caries. Faculty in the department have ongoing studies in patient and population-based research, including clinical trials and other types of clinical research. Faculty are working with dental insurers to develop new, nonsurgical approaches and insurance products that will emphasize preventive measures to prevent, treat, and manage dental caries as well as understand the effects of dental care on medical care costs.


  • Incorporate our preventive and minimally invasive treatment philosophy, together with new and existing diagnostic and behavioral methods, throughout our teaching programs.
  • Provide an enriching work environment for faculty, staff and students.
  • Provide development and educational programs to enable our faculty to fully participate in our new teaching program and to be positive role models for our students.
  • Educate and inspire dental students, residents and graduate students who will become future leaders in dental science, education, and practice.
  • Build an outstanding translational, clinical, outcomes, and behavioral research program, in concert with our basic science program.
  • Enhance the curriculum in concert with the overall School of Dentistry five-stream educational philosophy.
  • Devise and promote effective public health measures for delivering prevention-based dentistry for individuals and communities.
  • Recruit faculty in the clinical, adjunct, in-residence, and ladder rank series who will help to fulfill the mission of the department.
  • Provide opportunities in the curriculum for students to explore the dental profession beyond the School of Dentistry via externships and other suitable means.

Divisions and Faculty

The department has 6 divisions, each headed by a division chair. There are two vice chairs, one responsible for oversight of clinical affairs, and one for oversight of research. The organizational chart (pdf) is attached. The divisions are (1) behavioral sciences, professionalism and ethics, (2) biomaterials and bioengineering, (3) general dentistry, (4) endodontics, (5) oral epidemiology and dental public health, and (6) prosthodontics. We have 86 paid faculty (many of whom are part time clinical faculty), 160 volunteer faculty and 85 staff.

Teaching, Patient Care and Research

The department conducts multidisciplinary instruction, research, and patient care programs through its 6 divisions. Teaching includes pre-doctoral general dentistry and comprehensive care, prosthodontics, endodontics. We offer clinical specialty programs in prosthodontics and endodontics, and a residency in dental public health. Our faculties participate in several graduate groups including oral biology, bioengineering (joint with UCB and UCSF) and the bioinformatics program. The department administers a Faculty Group Practice that provides the opportunity for faculty in any department in the School to practice dentistry. Specialty care in prosthodontics and endodontics is offered through the graduate programs and through faculty practice. A residency in dental Public Health is offered through the department as well.


Research in the department spans the spectrum from behavioral to basic through translational to clinical research. External funding support is approximately $6 million direct costs annually. Areas of emphasis include applications of materials science analytical techniques to the characterization of dental hard tissues and the interface between hard tissues and restorative materials; characterization and testing of dental materials; psychological aspects of temporomandibular joint dysfunction; preventive, therapeutic and diagnostic applications in dentistry; fundamental science and clinical applications of lasers in dentistry; caries risk assessment and caries management; oral health disparities; oral epidemiology of dental diseases; clinical studies to better deliver dental care for disadvantaged populations; dentist and physician roles in domestic violence identification and management; smokeless tobacco manifestations and prevention. We have recently recruited a faculty member to coordinate and foster clinical research in the department, and to strengthen and build our translational research activities. We have one large NIH-funded program project in the department (in the Division of Biomaterials and Bioengineering) which studies the fundamental properties of dentin using nano-techniques, with the aim of eventual practical applications for new biomaterials and tissue engineering. The Division of Oral Epidemiology and Dental Public Health is the focus of a NIH-funded "Center for Oral Health Disparities". This is supported by seven years of funding with several clinical and preclinical studies being conducted under its umbrella, involving several other departments and institutions.

UCSF/Lutheran Medical Center Advanced Education in General Dentistry Program

UCSF has collaborated with Lutheran Medical Center (LMC) in offering an AEGD program. This one-year program, option for two, will begin July 2011. A unique program in concept and design, the Advanced Education in General Dentistry Program Lutheran Medical Center/UCSF places residents in community health center sites (UCSF, Eureka, Pittsburg, East Palo Alto) for comprehensive general dentistry training.

New Master of Science in Dental Hygiene

The faculty in the UCSF School of Dentistry offers a multidisciplinary curriculum of graduate study leading to a Master of Science Degree in Dental Hygiene (MS). Graduates are prepared to engage in multidisciplinary problem solving related to oral disease prevention and health promotion to improve the oral health of varied populations throughout the world. Graduates are prepared to assume roles as educators and research collaborators in academic, public health or oral healthcare-related industry settings.

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