Department of Dental Anesthesiology

Department of Neuroscience and Oral Physiology

The dental anesthesiology is one of the clinical science based on the physiology and pharmacology, so the wide knowledge beyond the dentistry are quite needed. Therefore, we investigate subjects across the spectrum from basic to clinical research.


E-mail (below@,
Hitoshi Niwa
Associate Professor
Associate Professor
Chiho Kudo
Associate Professor
Hiroshi Hanamoto
Assistant Professor
Aiko Oyamaguchi
Assistant Professor
Mika Inoue

Research projects

1.  Migraine and cortical spreading depression (CSD)
Migraine is a common condition observed in approximately 10 % of the population in Japan. The clinical characteristics of migraine are the unilateral and pulsating severe headache lasting for 4-72 hours, and sometimes associated with nausea, vomiting, photophobia and phonophobia. Migrane patients sometimes complain of the tooth or facial pain during the attack. CSD, which is an observationally-defined, slowly propagating wave of neuronal and glial depolarization, that develops within brain areas such as cerebral cortex, cerebellum or hippocampus, has been reported as one of the possible mechanisms of the migraine. It has been reported that CSD can activate the trigeminal sensory systems that innervates to the orofacial area, and presumably lead to migraine headache. Our group focuses on CSD and tries to elucidate the mechanism of the migraine from various respects using the CSD animal models.

2.  Parkinson’s disease (PD) and the pain perception at the oral region
PD is associated with pain symptoms as well as movement disorder such as muscular rigidity and bradylinesia. However, it is unclear how PD modifies pain perception. Our group assesses whether pain threshold in oral region could be influenced in the 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) treated rat, which has been widely used as a PD animal model, by the formalin test, the immunohistochemistry of c-fos expression and the measurement of somatosensory evoked potential by the electrical stimulation to the tooth pulp.

3.  The clinical research by the heart rate variability analysis
Recently, first choice drug of the intravenous sedation for dentistry is propofol, and it’s more effective than N2O (nitous oxide) inhalation sedation. Our group examines to compare the fluctuation of the autonomic nervous system and cardiovascular parameters among the inhalation sedation, the intravenous sedation and the combination of these two sedations, using the analysis of the heart rate variability. These data will strongly help us to propose the better quality of the sedation to the patients during the dental treatments.

Department of Neuroscience and Oral Physiology