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New leadership for biomedical sciences

Paul Dechow

Dr. Paul C. Dechow, biomedical sciences chair

Media Resources/Steven Doll

Dechow’s recent appointment is a nod to more than 25 years of dedication to craniofacial research and curriculum development. Here’s a bit more on biomedical sciences’ newest chair.

On Oct. 1, Dr. Paul C. Dechow became the new chair of the Department of Biomedical Sciences at Texas A&M Health Science Center Baylor College of Dentistry in Dallas.

“I welcome the opportunity to serve,” Dechow says, “especially at such a crucial time, given the broad advances in both dental curriculum and dental and craniofacial research.”

Dechow has served the department as vice chair since 2009 and was director of the graduate program in biomedical sciences from 1996 to 2009. The college’s liaison with UT Southwestern Medical Center on its Clinical Research Scholars Program and Clinical and Translational Science Award, Dechow became a professor in biomedical sciences in 2004. He joined the dental school faculty in 1986 as assistant professor in what was then the Department of Anatomy, subsequently becoming associate professor in the newly created Department of Biomedical Sciences in 1993.

Highly involved in the evidence-based dentistry initiative at TAMHSC-BCD, Dechow teaches predoctoral and graduate courses. He has mentored numerous master’s degree and doctoral students and is active in curriculum development in the predoctoral program and the biomedical sciences graduate program. He is a graduate faculty member of Texas A&M Health Science Center.

Dechow’s research interests focus on the growth, adaptation and evolution of the craniofacial skeleton and related soft tissues. Currently his work concentrates on the structural properties, biomechanics and modeling of the craniofacial skeleton. He has received funding from the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation and industry. Dechow is currently serving as president of the Clinical and Translational Sciences Network of the International Association for Dental Research and as president of the Texas Association of Biological Anthropologists.

Dechow earned a Ph.D. in anatomy at the University of Chicago in 1980 and completed a postdoctoral fellowship in craniofacial biology and human growth and development at the University of Michigan in 1984.

Want to know more about Dechow's goals for biomedical sciences? Look for his Progress Notes Q-and-A column, available in the November Baylor Dental Record Online.