UTHSCSA Faculty Profiles v1.0

Lee, Valerie A.

Dental School
Comprehensive Dentistry
(210) 567-3365
leev@uthscsa.edu

Dr. Lee received a BS Pharmacy from Ohio Northern University in 1975, a DMD from the University of Pittsburgh in 1980 and a PhD in Biomaterials and Materials Science & Engineering from the University of Michigan in 1993. She worked at Michigan for a number of years in positions ranging from Research Fellow to Associate Research Scientist. In 2004 she moved to San Antonio and is now a Research Assistant Professor in the Dental School at UTHSCSA.
Dr. Lee has two areas of research interest. The first concerns the problem of debonding of composite resin from tooth structure in response to stresses set up during polymerization. She has introduced a novel technique in which conventional filler particles are replaced by aggregates of polybutadiene/silica, which are able to expand under the hydrostatic tensile stress state generated during polymerization of bonded composite resin. She has been able to show decreased polymerization shrinkage, decreased polymerization contraction stress and increased flexural modulus, flexural strength and energy to break using this method. She currently has an R21 (NIH/NIDCR) to study this technique.
Dr. Lees second area of interest is in antimicrobial emulsions, which she has shown are able to prevent demineralization (early decay) of tooth structure in an artificial mouth more effectively than does chlorhexidine. She currently has a K08 (NIH/NIDCR) to investigate this area. Dr. Lee has also had a proposal approved by the Department of Defense for investigation of the use of emulsions as a surface disinfectant in field hospitals.

6/2007 - Present Assistant Professor/Research UTHSCSA, Comprehensive Dentistry, San Antonio, TX