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Wellington Rody Jr.
Wellington Rody Jr.
UF Prof Honored for Clinical, Translational Studies

Wellington Rody Jr. is an assistant professor in the orthodontics department at the University of Florida, Gainesville. He completed his D.D.S. and residency in orthodontics in Brazil and also pursued a master's degree in the United States. In 1999, he was selected as a Magnuson Scholar at the University of Washington for his research project on osteoclast recruitment after appliance activation.

Wellington used to be a private practitioner and part-time professor in Brazil for eight years before starting his full-time academic career in orthodontics at the University of Manitoba, Canada. In 2009, he was granted a three-year, full-time, faculty teaching fellowship by the American Association of Orthodontists, and his peer-reviewed evaluations were highly positive.

He has mentored several undergraduate and graduate students as they performed research and has published papers in well-recognized dental journals. Wellington was recruited to the University of Florida in 2012 and is motivated by the opportunity to consolidate his academic career in the United States.

His research career has been dedicated to clinical orthodontics and translational projects. In the past three years he has secured grant support to study protein expression in gingival crevicular fluid during orthodontic treatment. Although proteins are fragile molecules that need sophisticated techniques to be characterized, proteomic platforms developed over the past few years have given clinicians the ability to identify protein markers in various human clinical samples.

The application of proteomic techniques and strategies to the field of medicine is known as clinical proteomics, which in turn is devoted largely to one main idea: biomarker discovery in body fluids. The main goal is to develop "biomarker profiles" to manage clinical interventions based on individual tissue responses to avoid side effects.

Proteomic research may be helpful to the field of orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics because at present patients are treatment planned without measurement of current phenotypic conditions at the biological or molecular levels. Indeed, potentially measurable conditions that reflect biological and molecular variations in the future may explain the frequently observed differences in the outcomes of treatment between patients with similar malocclusions.

The AAOF award will give him personal financial support to focus on his goals as well as additional funds to improve his training in proteomic methods with an emphasis on protein identification tools.

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