10 Dec, 12:23
Ireland's John Lacey will referee his first ever RBS 6 Nations match in February, while Alain Rolland is also included in the Elite Panel in what is his last season.
The Ireland-capped back rower has enjoyed impressive outings for Ulster Ravens in recent weeks and scored two tries in last Sunday's British & Irish Cup loss to Bristol.
Declan Fitzpatrick had suffered a recurrence of a medial ligament injury prior to the Connacht match earlier this month.
However, the Ireland prop has undertaken full training over the past week and will be hopeful of getting some much needed game-time.
Stephen Ferris has been included in the selected squad after missing the last two games with a back injury, while out-half Niall O'Connor has also been added to the panel.
Meanwhile, Johann Muller has been ruled out for eight weeks after sustaining a thumb injury during the Heineken Cup win over Glasgow. Ireland back rower Chris Henry will captain the side in Muller's absence.
ULSTER Squad (v Newport Gwent Dragons) - Backs (11): Paul Marshall, Ruan Pienaar, Niall O'Connor, Paddy Jackson, Paddy Wallace, Luke Marshall, Darren Cave, Andrew Trimble, Tommy Bowe, Craig Gilroy, Jared Payne.
Forwards (15): Rory Best, Nigel Brady, Tom Court, Callum Black, Declan Fitzpatrick, Adam Macklin, John Afoa, Lewis Stevenson, Dan Tuohy, Iain Henderson, Stephen Ferris, Mike McComish, Chris Henry (capt), Nick Williams, Roger Wilson.