Dr. Gary Slade has been appointed by Dean Weintraub as interim director of the Center for Pain Research and Innovation (CPRI). He replaces Dr. William Maixner who stepped down as director of the CPRI in January 2016 upon his relocation from UNC to Duke University. The search for a permanent director will begin in the coming months.
Slade’s affiliation with the UNC School of Dentistry dates back to 1994, when he was appointed assistant, and subsequently, associate professor. In 2002, Slade returned to his birthplace, Australia, to become professor of oral epidemiology at the University of Adelaide. He returned to UNC in 2009 as the first John W. Stamm Distinguished Professor of Dentistry and fast became an active and contributing member of the CPRI.
Slade has a long history of NIH-funded research, currently serving as co-program director of the OPPERA study, now in its 11th year of enrollment, with Dr. Maixner. In addition, he serves as director of the OPPERA Epidemiology and Modeling Core, overseeing biostatistics graduate students who assist with data management and statistical analyses. Slade also teaches and mentors students as an adjunct professor in the Department of Epidemiology at UNC’s Gillings School of Global Public Health.
Slade’s research into the epidemiology of orofacial pain spans three decades. During that time, he has worked closely with many CPRI members and School of Dentistry faculty on studies investigating the biologic, psychosocial, and genetic processes that contribute to a variety of chronic and overlapping pain conditions. His studies also explore variations in children’s oral health attributable to sociopolitical policies and genetic characteristics, and he most recently received funding to evaluate the association between periodontal and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.
As interim director of the CPRI, Slade is particularly interested in additional opportunities for research collaboration with faculty at UNC and beyond. He has offices in the Koury Oral Health Sciences Building and can be reached via the CPRI Program Manager, Caron Modeas, (919) 537-3281.