Steven Wendell, PhD




615 Salk Hall
3501 Terrace Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15261

Research Assistant Professor

Department of Oral Biology
School of Dental Medicine

Research Interests

Dental caries is the most prevalent childhood and chronic disease worldwide.  Caries occurrence and progression is known to be influenced by a complex interplay of both environmental and genetic factors, with numerous contributing factors having been identified including bacterial flora, dietary habits, fluoride exposure, oral hygiene, salivary flow, salivary composition, and tooth structure.  As part of the Center for Craniofacial and Dental Genetics, we are investigating the association of genes involved in biological processes that contribute to dental caries risk or protection. 

Functional in vitro assessment of identified gene variants is a critical step in understanding the role of these genes in the biological processes that impact dental caries.  Notably, cell culture models provide a valuable approach to study the role of genetic variance in taste receptors genes and their response to different tastants.