USC researchers probe how nerves impact stem cells

It’s well known that nerves are vital for sensing the world, but researchers are now discovering how they also change the behavior of stem cells, which could have implications for regrowing teeth. …

Image courtesy of the Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC

Mini organs pave the way for understanding gastroesophageal cancer

USC researcher Dechen Lin has created miniature organs — with the hope of fighting a rare type of cancer. CANCERS THAT IMPACT THE JUNCTION of the esophagus and the stomach are rare …

Image courtesy of the Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC

Figuring out how teeth are built, one cell at a time

USC researchers look inside teeth to figure out how we might regenerate teeth in the future. TEETH ARE MARVELOUSLY  COMPLICATED structures — and the way they develop is also complex. The majority …

Microscope (Photo courtesy of the Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC)

Investigating the neighboring environment for stem cells

A long-held goal in dental research is to harness the power of stem cells to regenerate bone and dental tissue. But to do so, it’s important to fully understand the environment the …

Heart (Image courtesy of iStock)

Hunting for heart cells that can grow back after an injury

Hearts are tough organs. Over the course of a lifetime, they beat ever second of every day, keeping the entire body nourished with life-giving blood. But, even with all that stamina, heart …

Brainy baby

Probing the genes that organize early brain development

When brains begin developing, there are a lot of moving parts — and when mutations happen in early neurodevelopment, it can lead to disorders like macrocephaly and autism. But scientists don’t know …


USC researchers tackle a growing problem: Dental implant disease

More than 3 million dental implants have been placed in the mouths of U.S. patients, and that number rises by 500,000 each year. While implants help many people restore their oral health, …

Giorgia Quadrato

Baxter Foundation supports research in pediatric blindness, human brain development

The Donald E. and Delia B. Baxter Foundation is supporting researchers exploring the causes of pediatric blindness and intellectual disability research by granting $100,000 awards to two assistant professors at the Keck …

Assistant Professor Jianfu Chen is working on ways to understand how the disorder is regulated in genes, and hopes one day to find treatments.

Ostrow researcher probes the roots of microcephaly, inside cells

Microcephaly is a condition where the circumference of an individual’s head is smaller than normal. It can be caused by genetic abnormalities as well as fetal exposure to drugs; alcohol; certain viruses, …

USC researcher Yang Chai has received another five-year grant to bolster his research into the causes of one of the most common congenital birth defects.

Cleft palate research continues to help patients

Associate Dean of Research Yang Chai PhD ’91, DDS ’96 has been awarded a five-year, nearly $2 million grant by the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR) for research focused …

The discovery could change the way dental implants are placed, allowing dentists to regenerate tooth roots that better integrate with jaw bone structures.

Ostrow researchers discover how genes for tooth roots turn on and off

To figure out how the body changes over time, researchers are increasingly looking to understand epigenetics, the study of changes in organisms caused by modification of gene expression rather than alteration of …

How the roots of teeth develop has long been a mystery. Professor Yang Chai aims to change that — and eventually regrow the roots of teeth.

Researchers seek the root of tooth development

The lower two-thirds of a tooth are known as the root. Normally covered in bone, they anchor the tooth into the jaw. But the exact mechanisms and pathways that create the root …

Janet Moradian-Oldak (Photo by Vern Evans)

Regrowing enamel? USC Dental Professor Janet Moradian-Oldak is on the case

Dental enamel is tricky stuff. Even though it’s the body’s hardest material, if it wears away from cavities, acidic food or drinks or overbrushing, it doesn’t regenerate.  All that could change in …

Findings published in Biomaterials Special Issue of the Journal of the Minerals, Metals and Materials Society

USC dental researchers developing special film that could revolutionize the way peri-implantitis treated

Three million people in the United States currently have dental implants, and every year that number increases by about 500,000. But, for some, getting a dental implant is not the end of …

Malcolm Snead (Photo courtesy of the Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC)

From teeth the spines, growing bone in new ways

Bone is crucial. After blood, it’s the most frequently transplanted tissue, with 1.6 to 2 million bone transplants performed in the United States each year.

A new gel technology pioneered by Janet Moradian-Oldak and her team may eventually reach an elusive goal: filling without drilling.

Ostrow researcher makes strides in gel to regrow tooth enamel

Around the globe, dental cavities are the leading source of disability and pain: they affect 35 percent of the world’s population, with an economic impact in the hundreds of billions of dollars. …

Jianfu Chen (Photo courtesy of the Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC)

A Zika surprise: African strain can do more damage than Asian strain

The Zika virus has spread to 44 countries, with thousands infected and thousands of babies born with microcephaly, a rare complication that causes small heads. But even though research dollars are being …

Yang Chai (Photo courtesy of the Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC)

Stem cells may hold the key to helping patients with cleft palate

Every time we drink or breathe, the soft palate is hard at work. It acts like a trap door, allowing air to squeeze through or shutting so liquids can pass by. And …

Jian Xu (Photo courtesy of the Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC)

Researcher Jian Xu earns accolades for cell fate studies

Basic science can often be far from basic—especially for Jian Xu, who believes cells are kind of like people. “In simple terms, we look at how cells determine their own fate,” said …

Katharine Gammon