Amy Merrill-Brugger (Photo by Phil Channing)

Inside the hunt to understand developing baby skulls

If you’ve ever held a baby, you probably remember soft spots on their heads — space for the developing skulls to grow around the brain. When the system works correctly, it leaves …

At the lab bench (Photo by Chris Shinn)

Ten USC Stem Cell PhD students and recent graduates earn NIH fellowships

Ten USC Stem Cell PhD students and recent graduates have been awarded fellowships from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Known as F31 awards, these prestigious fellowships provide promising PhD students with …

Jian Xu (Photo by John Skalicky)

Ostrow faculty member Jian Xu does craniofacial biology with heart

The researcher was recently promoted to the rank of Associate Professor of Dentistry with tenure. TO SOME, IT MIGHT SEEM UNUSUAL that Jian Xu, whose PhD research focused on cardiac hypertrophy and …

The coronal suture contains stem cells (green).

Study of skull birth defect takes it from the top

Contrary to the popular song, the neck bone is actually connected to one of 22 separate head bones that make up the human skull. These plate-like bones intersect at specialized joints called …

Image courtesy of the Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC

Could stem cell- or molecular-based treatment be the solution to temporomandibular joint disorders?

A new study, led by Amy Merrill-Brugger, could lead to new treatments for the common disorder. Our jaws allow us to talk, chew, swallow, sing and even yawn. All these activities require …

Robert E. Maxson

USC celebrates Robert E. Maxson’s lifetime of achievement and adventure

USC Emeritus Professor Robert E. Maxson has an understated explanation for why he’s flown so many planes, sailed so many boats, skied so many mountains, played so many guitars, taken so many …

Amy Merrill-Brugger (Photo courtesy of the Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC)

Amy Merrill-Brugger receives $2 million NIH grant for craniofacial birth defect research

USC Stem Cell principal investigator Amy Merrill-Brugger received the National Institute of Health Research Project Grant (R01) for her scientific investigation on inherited human conditions that cause facial bones to develop abnormally.

“Tin Woman” Michaela Patterson, a postdoctoral scholar in the lab of Henry Sucov, studies heart regeneration — with no help from the Wizard of Oz. (Photo by Cristy Lytal)

Halloween retreat showcases USC’s “scary smart” stem cell researchers

It was no tricks and all treats at the seventh annual retreat for the Eli and Edythe Broad Center for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research at USC, held at the university’s …

Human skull with sutures (Public domain image courtesy of Gray's Anatomy)

USC, UCLA and UCSF put their heads together to find stem cell-based cures for craniofacial defects

One in every 2,000 babies is born with a skull that can’t grow normally. Various sections of these babies’ skulls are fused together at joints called sutures, constricting the developing brain and …

Amy Merrill-Brugger, PhD