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Douglas Ramsay, DMD, PhD, MSD

Douglas Ramsay

Professor, Oral Health Sciences
Professor, Orthodontics and Pediatric Dentistry, Adjunct Professor, Psychology



Doug was born and raised in Pennsylvania where he received a B.A. in psychology from Franklin & Marshall College in 1979 and a D.M.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1983.  He came to the UW in 1983 as a senior fellow and in 1985 entered the UW’s NIH-funded Dentist-Scientist Training Program, which supported his doctoral studies in psychology (PhD, 1988) and specialty training in orthodontics (MSD, 1990).  He joined the UW faculty in 1990 and is currently Chair of the Department of Oral Health Sciences and the Associate Dean for Research and Faculty in the School of Dentistry.  

Doug is a professor of Orthodontics, Oral Health Sciences and Pediatric Dentistry.  In addition to receiving numerous NIH research grants, he was also the recipient of a Research Career Development Award from the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR).  Doug is a Diplomate of the American Board of Orthodontics and a member of the Edward H. Angle Society of Orthodontists.  Doug is the Director of the UW’s Regional Clinical Dental Research Center and is currently the Director of the T90/R90 NIDCR-supported institutional training grant at the UW School of Dentistry.  Doug has directed courses in the predoctoral dental and graduate dental specialty programs, supervised patient care in the graduate orthodontics clinic, and been Chair of numerous thesis committees.

Dr. Ramsay teaches and supervises students at the undergraduate, graduate, and post-doctoral levels. Each year he directs a didactic seminar for the graduate students in Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics and provides guest lectures in other courses. As a board-certified orthodontist, he teaches and supervises patient care in the graduate orthodontics clinic throughout the year.

Dr. Ramsay’s research interests are broad and he has a record of conducting both basic and clinical research. A primary research interest of his is in the area of behavioral pharmacology with a focus on the mechanisms underlying the development of drug tolerance. His scientific interests include: mechanisms of drug tolerance, behavioral pharmacology, patient compliance, learning and memory, regulatory behavior, tooth circulation, addictive disorders, pain (mechanisms and psychophysics).

  1. Ramsay, D.S., Kaiyala, K.J and Woods, S.C. Individual Differences in Biological Regulation: Predicting Vulnerability to Drug Addiction, Obesity, and Other Dysregulatory Disorders.  Experimental and Clinical Psychopharmacology, 28, 388–403, 2020. [doi:10.1037/pha0000371].
  2. Ramsay, D.S. and Woods, S.C. Physiological regulation: How it really works.  Cell Metabolism, 24, 361-364, 2016.
  3. Ramsay, D.S., Rothen, M., Scott, J., and Cunha-Cruz, J; on behalf of the Northwest PRECEDENT network.  Tooth wear and the role of salivary measures in general practice patients.  Clinical Oral Investigations, 19, 85-95, 2015.
  4. Ramsay, D.S., Al-Noori, S., Shao, J., Leroux, B.G. and Woods, S.C., Kaiyala, K.J. Predicting addictive vulnerability: Individual differences in initial responding to a drug’s pharmacological effects.  PLoS ONE, 10(4), e0124740-e0124740, 2015. [doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0124740].
  5. Ramsay, D.S. and Woods, S.C.  Clarifying the roles of homeostasis and allostasis in physiological regulation.  Psychological Review, 121 , 225-247, 2014.
  6. Ramsay, D.S., Woods, S.C. and Kaiyala, K.J.  Repeated nitrous oxide exposure in rats causes a thermoregulatory sign-reversal with concurrent activation of opposing thermoregulatory effectors.  Temperature [Special Issue on Temperature and Toxicology with Focus on Drugs of Abuse], 1, 257-267, 2014.
  7. Ramsay, D.S., Woods, S.C. and Kaiyala, K.J.  Drug-induced regulatory overcompensation has motivational consequences: Implications for homeostatic and allostatic models of drug addiction.  Temperature [Special Issue on Temperature and Toxicology with Focus on Drugs of Abuse], 1, 248-256, 2014.
  8. Ramsay, D.S.  Patient compliance with oral hygiene regimens:  A behavioural self-regulation analysis with implications for technology.  International Dental Journal, 50, 304-311, 2000.
  9. Ramsay, D.S. and Woods, S.C.  Biological consequences of a drug administration:  Implications for acute and chronic tolerance.  Psychological Review, 104, 170-193, 1997.
  10. Ramsay, D.S., Årtun, J., and Martinen, S.S.  Reliability of pulpal blood flow measurements utilizing laser Doppler flowmetry.  Journal of Dental Research, 70, 1427-1430, 1991.

A complete list of Dr. Ramsay’s published work can be found in MyBibliography