Dr. Emily Chu completed her undergraduate studies at Washington University in St. Louis in 2006, and graduate studies at the University of Washington, receiving her D.D.S. in 2012 and her Ph.D. in 2015. She subsequently began postdoctoral training in the Laboratory of Oral and Connective Tissue Biology at the National Institutes of Health.

Research Statement

Dr. Chu’s research focuses on investigating factors with critical roles in the development and maintenance of the periodontal complex. The lab uses a variety of techniques, including transgenic animal models, histological stains, medical imaging, and in vitro cell culture. In understanding interactions between factors critical to the periodontal complex, their environment, and other molecules, the lab aims to develop therapies toward regeneration of the periodontium.

Our lab's recent focus areas have been:

  • Role of phosphate and pyrophosphate metabolism in physiology and pathology of the dentoalveolar complex.
  • Role of extracellular matrix proteins and signaling molecules in development of the tooth root and differentiation of associated cell types.
  • Novel approaches for periodontal regeneration.
  • Clinical manifestations of mutations associated with alterations in the dentoalveolar complex.

Scientific Publications

Full Spectrum of Postnatal Tooth Phenotypes in a Novel Irf6 Cleft Lip Model.

Chu EY, Tamasas B, Fong H, Foster BL, LaCourse MR, Tran AB, Martin JF, Schutte BC, Somerman MJ, Cox TC
Journal of dental research.
2016 Oct;
doi: 10.1177/0022034516656787
PMID: 27369589

High phosphate feeding promotes mineral and bone abnormalities in mice with chronic kidney disease.

Lau WL, Linnes M, Chu EY, Foster BL, Bartley BA, Somerman MJ, Giachelli CM
Nephrology, dialysis, transplantation : official publication of the European Dialysis and Transplant Association - European Renal Association.
2013 Jan;
doi: 10.1093/ndt/gfs333
PMID: 23045434

The progressive ankylosis protein regulates cementum apposition and extracellular matrix composition.

Foster BL, Nagatomo KJ, Bamashmous SO, Tompkins KA, Fong H, Dunn D, Chu EY, Guenther C, Kingsley DM, Rutherford RB, Somerman MJ
Cells, tissues, organs.
doi: 10.1159/000323457
PMID: 21389671

Ablation of systemic phosphate-regulating gene fibroblast growth factor 23 (Fgf23) compromises the dentoalveolar complex.

Chu EY, Fong H, Blethen FA, Tompkins KA, Foster BL, Yeh KD, Nagatomo KJ, Matsa-Dunn D, Sitara D, Lanske B, Rutherford RB, Somerman MJ
Anatomical record (Hoboken, N.J. : 2007).
2010 Jul;
doi: 10.1002/ar.21152
PMID: 20583265

Characterization of mandibular bone in a mouse model of chronic kidney disease.

Lee MM, Chu EY, El-Abbadi MM, Foster BL, Tompkins KA, Giachelli CM, Somerman MJ
Journal of periodontology.
2010 Feb;
doi: 10.1902/jop.2009.090379
PMID: 20151810

Aberrant cementum phenotype associated with the hypophosphatemic hyp mouse.

Fong H, Chu EY, Tompkins KA, Foster BL, Sitara D, Lanske B, Somerman MJ
Journal of periodontology.
2009 Aug;
doi: 10.1902/jop.2009.090129
PMID: 19656036


University of Washington, School of Dentistry
Ph.D., Department of Oral Biology, 2015

University of Washington, School of Dentistry
D.D.S., Department of Oral Biology, 2012

Washington University in St. Louis
B.A., Biology, Mathematics, 2006


Research Scientist I
University of Washington School of Dentistry, Department of Periodontics; Seattle, WA, 2006 - 2008

Research Assistant
Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology, Washington University in St. Louis, 2003 - 2006

Summer Scholar
Howard Hughes Medical Institute Summer Prefreshman Program, Washington University in St. Louis, 2002 - 2002

Last Updated: June 2020