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Research and Patient Care

Doctor  |  Researcher  |  Teacher

It is indeed rare for a doctor to maintain a busy clinical practice and still pursue significant biological research. Dr. Bronsky is that unusual exception who manages both. He is an active member of an internationally recognized university research team. This enables him to provide special insight into orthodontic diagnosis and treatment.

Dr. Bronsky’s study of human development began early in his academic career. An early research project studied the differences in male and female brain development related to the role of hormones in reproduction. Later, while an intern at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, he became interested in the role of heavy metals as a cause of facial birth defects. This interest in facial development influenced Dr. Bronsky’s choice of a career in dentistry and orthodontics.

After graduating from the Medical College of Virginia, School of Dentistry, Dr. Bronsky completed his residency in Orthodontics and a Masters Degree in Anatomy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC). While at UNC, he joined an internationally renowned research team. This team has contributed to a greater understanding of normal facial development, especially the critical stages in which facial malformations are likely to occur. Their research highlights the important linkages between inherited and environmental factors in facial birth defects. Specifically, Dr. Bronsky and his colleagues clarified the effects of the lack of oxygen (environment) on the unborn child’s facial development, such as cigarette smoking linked to cleft lip and palate. Further, Dr. Bronsky and co-workers summarized research findings relating to the roles of commonly used medications, as well as the role of alcohol, in the development of facial malformations (fetal alcohol syndrome).

As a researcher, Dr. Bronsky continues to study facial development and is highly trained to analyze children’s developmental processes that may be interacting to contribute to a particular orthodontic problem. In this way, he applies his ongoing research with his clinical skills in the treatment of his patients.