Columbians Ahead of Their Time
 Irwin D. Mandel
Irwin D. Mandel "Even in the oral cavity microcosm, we tolerate our neighbors but eschew uninvited strangers."

Irwin D. Mandel (1922– )
Oral Biologist
DDS 1945, ScD 1996 (hon.)
Faculty 1946-92

As a researcher, author, and teacher, Irwin D. Mandel has played a major role in shifting the focus of dentistry from repair to prevention. The author of more than 200 scientific articles and 17 books or book chapters, Mandel conducted pioneering research on the role of dental plaque in tooth decay and periodontal disease, and is also known for studies of salivary composition as it relates to dental disease and systemic disease. Reflecting his own sense of humor, Mandel has been affectionately called "the General of the Salivation Army." Mandel, who won the American Dental Association's Award for Excellence in Dental Research in 1985, is now the preventive dentistry consultant to NASA's manned mission to Mars project.

With the exception of two stints in the Navy Dental Corps (1945-46 and 1952-54), Mandel has spent his entire career at Columbia, where he received his dental degree in 1945. He began as a research assistant in 1946, and gave up his part-time private practice in 1968 to devote himself full-time to research and teaching. In 1971, he founded the Division of Preventive Dentistry at the School of Dental and Oral Surgery, the first such department in the country, and served as its first director. Mandel also founded and directed the Center for Clinical Research in Dentistry and served as the Dental School's associate dean for research before attaining emeritus status in 1992. On Sept. 10, 2004, as part of Columbia's 250th anniversary celebration, Mandel will be honored at the symposium, "Irwin D. Mandel: His Legacy in Oral Health Care."


The School of Dental and Oral Surgery


Lawrence A. Tabak


Bessie Delany

Write Columbia's History

Columbia's history, as seen by those who have studied, taught, and worked here.

Columbians Ahead of Their Time

Columbians have changed the world and how we see it.

C250 Celebrates | C250 Perspectives | C250 Forum | C250 Events | C250 To Go |
Contact C250 | Privacy Policy | About This Web Site | © Copyright 2004 Columbia University