Larry L. Bellinger, Ph.D.

Regents Professor
Associate Dean for Research & Graduate Studies

Member of the Texas A&M Graduate Faculty 

3302 Gaston Ave.
Dallas, Texas 75246
Phone: 214-828-8322
Fax: 214-874-4537
Google Scholar Profile
ORCID Number 0000-0002-4769-6805
Scopus Author ID 7004399616
Complete List of Published Work in MyBibliography

Education and Post-Graduate Training

  • Postdoctoral Fellowship, Department of Surgery, State University of New York, Buffalo, NY (1974-1976)
  • Ph.D.,Graduate Program Physiology, University of California at Davis (1974)
  • B.S.,  Department of Zoology, University of California at Davis (1969)

Career History

  • Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies, Texas A&M University College of Dentistry (2004-present)
  • Regents Professor,Department of Biomedical Sciences, Texas A&M College of Dentistry (2003-present)
  • Professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences, Texas A&M University College of Dentistry (1985-2003)
  • Associate Professor, Department of Physiology, College of Dentistry (1979-1985)
  • Associate Professor, Baylor University Graduate School, Dallas (1979-1985)
  • Assistant Professor,Department of Physiology, College of Dentistry (1976-1979)
  • Assistant Professor,Baylor University Graduate School, Dallas (1976-1979)

Teaching Interests

Teaching Responsibilities Include:
  • Applied Medical Physiology (Graduate)
  • Dental Physiology
  • Physical Growth and Maturation (Graduate)
  • Research Design and Methodology (Graduate)
  • Responsible Conduct in Research (Graduate)

Research Interests

Dr. Bellinger was awarded title of Regents Professor by the Texas A&M University System Board of Regents and the Chancellor, December 4, 2003.  This award is given to 4-5 individual each year from over 3,000 faculty members at Texas A&M University.  Dr. Bellinger is a world-renowned expert on the role of the dorsomedial hypothalamic nucleus in regulating ingestive behavior and body weight.  Most recently he has used his knowledge of feeding behavior to develop an NIH-funded R01 animal model to study temporomandibular joint, myofacial and tooth nociception.  hese studies have led to a greater understanding of how gonadal hormones affect nociception both peripherally and centrally.

Dr. Bellinger has been Principal Investigator or Co-Investigator on 20 extramural NIH, NSF or company grants and many in-house grants. These projects have produced 162 peer-reviewed research publications and 224 abstracts. Dr. Bellinger’s publications have appeared in American Journal of Physiology; Archives in Oral Biology; Arthritis Rheumatism; Brain Research Review; BMC Neuorology; European Journal of Pain; Hormone and Metabolic Research; International Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery; Journal of Cellular Physiology; Journal of Dental Research; Journal of Neuroscience; Journal of Nutrition; Journal of Oral Maxillofacial Surgery; Life Science; Neuroendocrinology; Neuroscience; Osteoarthritis and Cartilage; Peptides; Pharmacology, Biochemistry and Behavior; Physiology and Behavior; Journal of Cellular Physiology; Journal of Neuroscience;  Proceedings of the Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine and many other journals.  Dr. Bellinger’s work has been well accepted and cited over 4,675 times with an h-index of 34 and h-110 of 107. He has been asked by 35 different journals, including Nature, Science and Proceeding of the National Academy of Science, to review manuscripts and has reviewed NIH and NSF grants. He has been interviewed by Science magazine several times.

Dr. Bellinger has been asked to present his work numerous times, including several invited symposium talks in Japan, at the North American Association for the Study of Obesity, several Experimental Biology meetings, and the Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior, as well as at various universities in the United States. One of Dr. Bellinger’s former students, Carolyn Kerins, DDS, PhD, was awarded the first-ever NIH Individual Predoctoral Dental Scientist Fellowship in September 1998.  This award of over $200,000 in direct/indirect costs funded Dr. Kerins' DDS and PhD program.  She completed her DDS degree in 2002 and was awarded the PhD in May 2004. She is currently a tenured Associate Professor in the Department of Pediatric Dentistry, Texas A&M College of Dentistry.

Recent Grants

  1. NIH 1R01 DE026749 $1,250,000 (direct costs) 2018-2023, Title: Estradiol and Zoster Associated Orofacial Pain.  Dr. P.R. Kramer, PI, Dr. L.L. Bellinger, Co-investigator (5% effort).
  2. Estrogen and TMJ Pain.Kramer, P.R. (PI); Bellinger, L.L. (Co-PI; 17% effort).  NIH/NIDCR 1 R01 DE022129; 2012-2016, $1,000,000 (direct costs).
  3. College of Dentistry's Program for Bioengineering Science and Translational Research: "B-BEST".  D'Souza, R. (PI); Bellinger, L. (Co-Investigator); Dechow, P. (Co-Investigator).  NIH/NIDCR 1 P30 DE020742-01; 2009-2012,  $1,000,000. 
  4. Sex Steroids and TMJ Pain. Bellinger, L. (PI); Grogan, D. (Collaborator); Hutchins, B. (Collaborator); Kramer, P. (Co-PI); Spears, R. (Collaborator).   NIH/NIDCR R01 DE016059-10A1; 2005-2011, $1,500,000.
  5. Sex Steroids and TMJ Pain. Bellinger, L.; Kramer P. NIH/NIDCR 3 R01 DE01605904S1 (ARRA Supplement); summer supplement 2009, $13,185.
  6. Integrative Responses to Amino Acid Deficiencies. NIH NS 33347, 2001-2006. (PI of Subcontract, D. Gietzen, PI)

Selected Publications

      1. Bellinger, L.L., J.F. Evans, and D.W. Gietzen. Dorsomedial hypothalamic lesions alter intake of an imbalanced amino acid diet in rats. J Nutr 128:1213-1217, 1998.
      2. Bellinger, L.L.A non-essential role of liver innervation in controlling feeding behavior. Nutrition 15:506, 1999.
      3. Bellinger, L.L.and L.L. Bernardis. Effect of dorsomedial hypothalamic nuclei knife cuts on ingestive behavior. Am J Physiol 276: R1772-R1779, 1999.
      4. Bellinger, L.L., J.F. Evans, C.M. Tillberg, and D.W. Gietzen. The effects of the dorsomedial hypothalamic nucleus on intake of an imbalanced amino acid diet.Am J Physiol 277: R250-R262, 1999.
      5. Bellinger L.L.and L.L. Bernardis. The dorsomedial hypothalamic nucleus and its role in ingestive behavior and body weight regulation; lessons learned from lesioning studies. Physiol Behave 76:431-442, 2002.
      6. Bellinger, L.L.,J. Wellman and A. Cepeda-Benito. The effects of intermittent nicotine administration on meal patterns in male rats.  Pharm Biochem Behave 74:495-504, 2003.
      7. Kerins, C.A., J. E. McIntosh, D.S. Carlson and L. Bellinger. Ibuprofen effects on meal patterns during acute temporomandibular joint inflammation in male and female rats.Pharm Biochem Behave 75:181-189, 2003.
      8. Bellinger, L.L., A. Cepeda-Benito, R.L. Bullard and P.J. Wellman. Effect of i.c.v. infusion of the alpha-MSH agonist MTII on meal patterns in male rats following nicotine withdrawal.Life Sciences 73:1861-1872, 2003.
      9. Spears R., R. Oakes,L. Bellingerand B. Hutchins. Tumor necrosis factor-alpha and apoptosis in the temporomandibular joint. Archives of Oral Biology 48:825-34, 2003.
      10. Spears R., R. Oakes, C. Moore, L. Bellingerand B. Hutchins. A determination of tumor necrosis factor expression in TMJ inflammation using microarray analysis. J Dent Res 82:807-813, 2003.
      11. Kerins, C.A., R. Spears, L. Bellingerand B. Hutchins. The prospective use of COX-2 inhibitors for the treatment of temporomandibular joint inflammatory disorders. International Journal of Immunopathology and Pharmacology 16:1-9, 2003.
      12. Kerins, C.A., D.S. Carlson, J.E. McIntosh and L. Bellinger. A role for cyclooxgenase II inhibitors in modulating temporomandibular joint inflammation from a meal pattern analysis perspective.  J Oralmaxillofacial Surgery 62:989-995, 2004.
      13. Guan, P.J., L. Bellinger, and P.R. Kramer.  The fourth ventricle as a site of nicotine’s action on feeding behavior.Life Sci 742725-2737, 2004.
      14. Wellman, P.J., L. Bellinger, A. Cepeda-Benito, A. Susabda, D. Ho and K. Davis.  An inexpensive food cup for use in a commercially available food monitoring system.Physiol Behave 83:525-530, 2004.
      15. Bellinger, L.L., F.E. Williams, J. Lucente, J. Palvelka and D.W. Gietzen.  Effects of blocking sympathetic efferents on intake of an isoleucine imbalanced amino acid diet. Pharm Biochem Behave 81:24-31, 2005.
      16. Bellinger, L.L., P.J. Wellman and A. Cepeda-Benito.  The effects of intermittent nicotine administration on meal patterns in female rats.  Pharm Biochem Behave 80:437-440, 2005.
      17. Kerins, C.A., D.S. Carlson, R.J. Hinton, B. Hutchins, D.M. Grogan, K. Marr, P.R. Kramer, R.D. Spears and L. Bellinger. Specificity of meal pattern analysis as an animal model of determining temporomandibular joint inflammation/pain.  Internet J Oral and Maxillofacial Surg 34:425-431, 2005.
      18. Spears R., L.A. Dees, M. Sapozhnikov, L. Bellingerand B. Hutchins. Adjuvant application results in altered levels of inflammatory mediators in the trigeminal ganglion and tissues of the temporomandibular joint.  J Orofacial Pain19:34-40, 2005.
      19. Guan, G., C.A. Kerins, L. Bellingerand P.R. Kramer.  Estrogenic effect on swelling and monocytic receptor expression in an arthritic temporomandibular joint model. The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 97:241-250, 2005.
      20. Wellman, P.J., L. Bellinger, A. Cepeda-Benito, A. Susabda, D.H. Ho and K.W. Davis.  Meal patterns and body weight after nicotine in male rats as a function of chow or high fat diet.   Pharm Biochem Behave  82:627-34, 2005. 
      21. Kramer, P.R., S.F. Kramer, K. Marr, G. Guan, P.J. Wellman andL. Bellinger.Nicotine administration, changes in feeding behavior and the impact of NPY in rat hypothalamic nuclei.  Regulatory Peptides 138:66-73, 2007.
      22. Bellinger, L.L., R.D. Spears, C.M. King, F. Dahm, B. Hutchins, C. Kerins and P.R. Kramer. Meal duration as a measure of TMJ pain: the role of capsaicin-sensitive neurons in inflammation-induced TMJ nociception in female and male rats.  Physiol Behave 90:782-789, 2007.
      23. Kramer, P.R., G. Guan, P.J. Wellman and L. Bellinger.  Nicotine’s attenuation of body weight involves the perifornical hypothalamus. Life Sci.81:500-508, 2007.
      24. Kramer, P.R., G. Guan, Z. Zhou, Z. Hu and L. Bellinger.  Selective blockade of the rat brain aqueduct with thermogelling hydrogel nano particle dispersion.  Physiol. Behave.  93:546-552, 2008.
      25. Kramer, P.R. and L. Bellinger.  The effects of cycling levels of 17beta-estradiol and progesterone on the magnitude of temporomandibular joint-induced nociception.  Endocrinology150:3680-9, 2009.
      26. Puri, J., B. Hutchins,L. Bellinger, and P.R. Kramer.  Estrogen and inflammation modulate estrogen receptor alpha expression in specific tissues of the temporomandibular joint. Reprod Biol Endocrinol 7:155, 2009.
      27. Bellinger, L.L., P.J. Wellman, R.B. Harris, E.W. Kelso and P.R. Kramer. The effects of chronic nicotine on meal patterns, food intake, metabolism and body weight of male rats.  Pharmacol Biochem Behave 95: 92-99, 2010.
      28. Kramer, P.R., C.A. Kerins, E. Schneiderman, andL. Bellinger. Measuring persistent temporomandibular joint nociception in rats and two mice strains.  Physiol Behave 99:669-678, 2010.
      29. Kramer, P., J. Puri,  Bellinger.  Knockdown of Fcy receptor III in an arthritic temporomandibular joint reduces the nociceptive response in rats. Arthritis Rheum 62:3109-18, 2010.
      30. Puri J., L. Bellinger and P.R. Kramer. Estrogen in cycling rats alters gene expression in the temporomandibular joint trigeminal ganglia and trigeminal subnucleus caudalis/upper cervical cord junction.  J Cellular Physiology226:3169-80, 2011.
      31. Puri J, P. Vinothini, J. Reuben, Bellinger, L. Ailing, Y. Peng and P. Kramer.  Reduced GABAA receptor alpha-6 expression on the trigeminal ganglion alters inflammatory TMJ hypersensitivity.  J  Neuroscience 213: 179-190, 2012.
      32. Kramer, P.R., J. Puri, and L. Bellinger. Modulation of temporomandibular joint nociception and inflammation in male rats after administering a physiological concentration of 17 beta-estradiol. European Journal of Pain 17:174-184, 2013.
      33. Kramer, P.R. and L. Bellinger. Reduced GABAAreceptor α6 expression in the trigeminal ganglion enhanced myofacial nociceptive responses.  Neuroscience 245: 1-11, 2013.
      34. Kramer, P.R. and  L. Bellinger.  Infusion of Gabra6 siRNA into the trigeminal ganglia increased the myogenic orofacial nociception response of ovariectomized rats treated with 17beta estradiol.  Neuroscience 278:144-153, 2014.
      35. Komabayashi T. , A. Wadaijkar, S. Santimano, C. Ahn, Q. Zhu, L. Opperman, L. Bellinger,  J. Yang, and K.T. Nguyen.  Preliminary study of light-cured hydrogel for endodontic drug delivery vehicle.  Journal of Investigative and Clinical Dentistry electronic publication on July 22, 2014; PMID: 25048311.
      36. Kramer P. R. , M. Umorin, and L. Bellinger.  Attenuation of myogenic orofacial nociception and mechanical hypersensitivity by viral-mediated enkephalin overproduction in male and female rats.  BMC Neurology 34:34(12 pages), 2015.
      37. Kramer P.R., M. Umorin andL. Bellinger Attenuation of myogenic orofacial nociception and mechanical hypersensitivity by viral-mediated enkephalin overproduction in male and female rats.  BMC Neurology 15:34 (12 pages), 2015. DOI 10. 1186/s1286/s12883-015-0285-5. PMID: ; 5925885338 PMCID: PMC4369359.
      38. Umorin M, C. Stinson L. Bellinger and P.R. Kramer.  Genes in the GABA pathway increase in the lateral thalamus of Sprague Dawley rats during the proestrus/estrus phase.  J. Cellular Physiology 231:1057-1064, 2016.  PMID:  26388520.
      39. Stinson C, M. Deng, M.B. Yee, L. Bellinger. P. Kinchington and P. Kramer.  Sex differences  underlying orofacial varicella zosster associated pain in rats. BMC Neurology 171):95 PubMed PMID:28514943; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5436469.
      40. Umorin M., P.R. Kramer and L. Bellinger.  Distanced-based permutation of inter-meal differences as a sensitive test of temporomandibular joint nociception in rats, Journal of Applied Biobehavioral Research (in press). 
      41. Stinson, C.J. Puri, L.L. Bellinger, S.D. Bender and P.R. Kramer.  Estrogenic effects on temporomendibular disorder and pain.  Journal of Applied Biobehavioral Research (in press). 
      42. Kramer P.R., Stinson C, Bellinger L.L., Umorin M., Deng M., Rao M., Yee M.B. and Kinchington P.R. Lateral thalamic control of nociceptive response after whisker pad injection of varicella zoster virus.  Neuroscience (in press). 
      43. Kramer, P.R., J Strand, C. Stinson, L. Bellinger, P. R. Kinchington, M. B. Yee and Y. Peng.  Role for the ventral posterior medial/posterior lateral thalamus and anterior cingulate cortex in affective/motivation pain induced by varicella zoster virus. Frontiers in Integrative Neuroscience October 16, 2017, doi: 10.3389/fnint.2017.00027; PMCID: PMID:29089872
      44. Umorin, M., P.R. Kramer and L. Bellinger. Distance-based permutation of inter-meal differences as a sensitive test of temporomandibular joint nociception in rats,” J Appl Biobehav Res. 2017 Sep;22(3). pii: e12067. doi: 10.1111/jabr.12067. Epub 2017 Apr 18; PMCID: PMID: 29104423
      45. Umorin M., Bellinger and P.R. Kramer.  Effect of pregnancy on TMJ nociception in rats.  J. Oral Science Research 34: 332-338, 2018
      46. Strand J, C Stinson, L. Bellinger, Y Peng and P.R. Kramer.  Gi protein functions in thalamic neurons to decrease orofacial nociceptive response. Brain Research 1694:63-72, 2018.
      47. Stinson, C., J. Puri, L. Bellinger, S. D. Bender and P. R. Kramer. Estrogenic Effects on Temporomandibular Disorder and Pain. Journal of Applied Biobehavioral Research, 2019.
      48. Liu, S, Y. Tang, Y. Xing, P. Kramer, L. Bellinger and F. Tao. Potential Application of Optogenetic Stimulation in the Treatment of Migraine Headache.  Brain Sciences 2019, 9, 26; doi:10.3390/brainsci9020026
      49. Stinson, C., S. M. Logan, L. Bellinger, M. Rao, P.R. Kinchington and P.R. Kramer. Estradiol acts in lateral thalamic region to attenuate varicella zoster virus associated affective pain.  Neuroscience 444:99-111, 2019.
      50. Shu, H., S. Liu, Y. Tang, B. Schmidt, J. C. Dolan, L. Bellinger, P. R. Kramer, S. D. Bender and Feng Tao. A Pre-Existing Myogenic Temporomandibular Disorder Increases Trigeminal Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptide and Enhances Nitroglycerin-Induced Hypersensitivity in Mice.  Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2020, 21, 4049; doi:10.3390/ijms21114049

Total Peer Reviewed Papers: 162 and 224 Abstracts

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