Global Health Nexus, Winter 2003

Bluestone Center for Clinical Research Is Unveiled

New Clinical Research Center Builds Bridges to Discovery.

On October 29, the Leonard I. Bluestone Center for Clinical Research (BCCR), under the direction of Dr. Jonathan Ship, Professor of Basic Science and Craniofacial Biology and of Oral Medicine, opened at NYU Dentistry, signaling a seismic change in the College’s ability to positively impact the health of the public. Located on the second floor of the Weissman Building, the BCCR is a brand-new, state-of-the-art, 8,500-square-foot facility dedicated entirely to the development, implementation, performance, and analysis of clinical research. The BCCR is named for the late Dr. Leonard I. Bluestone, Class of 1940, who bequeathed a $2 million gift to his alma mater in support of clinical research and education, with special emphasis on oral medicine and surgery.

“The BCCR changes the complexion of the College,” said Dr. Ship. “This is the largest center of its kind in any dental school in the world. For NYU Dentistry, the Center adds the capacity to assess potential health improvements and move them into everyday use within a framework of the strictest regulatory controls and ethical guidelines. Moreover, the BCCR will provide training in clinical research for biomedical students and faculty.”

In dedicating the BCCR, Dean Alfano said, “The Bluestone Center will establish new connections among the various health programs both within and outside the University, and new paradigms for dental and medical care through clinical research. By partnering with neighbors such as the NYU Medical Center and Beth Israel Hospital, we can facilitate the cross-fertilization of medicine and dentistry to achieve better patient care, as for example, by studying new cancer therapies.”

The BCCR is designed to be user-friendly by both industry- and government-sponsored researchers and clinical trial participants. Because flexibility 
is a high priority, many of the spaces are multiuse. With eight beds, the BCCR boasts the only overnight clinical research facilities in a dental school in the nation. The Center has two surgical operatories, an eight- chair dental suite equipped with digital intraoral radiography and extraoral radiography/ tomography, a dental laboratory, a biological laboratory to process samples, utility space, a medication storage facility, a nurses’ station, pantry, patient day lounge, and a 15-seat multimedia conference room, as well as four administrative offices and substantial storage space. All patient areas in the BCCR are equipped with cable TV and Internet access.

“One of our greatest measures of success,” says Dr. Ship, will be our ability to maintain a dynamic relationship with practicing dentists in which they refer patients for clinical trials and we provide practitioners with continuing education that will allow them to stay ahead of the curve in such areas as oral medicine and oral surgery (especially implant surgery), bone growth enhancement, and oral pharmacotherapy.”