Patricia M. White, Ph.D.

Patricia M. White, Ph.D.

Contact Information

University of Rochester Medical Center
School of Medicine and Dentistry
601 Elmwood Ave, Box 603
Rochester, NY 14642

Office: (585) 273-2340

Professional Bio

Dr. White received her bachelor's degree in Biology from the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena in 1989. She completed her Ph.D. degree in Developmental Biology, also at Caltech, in 2000, where she researched neural stem cells. She began post-doctoral work in hearing regeneration at the House Ear Institute, and joined the faculty at the University of Rochester Medical and Dental Center in 2010.

Dr. White's goal is to find a biological treatment to reverse noise-induced hearing loss through a better understanding of the function of different genes in the cochlea.

Research Bio

Scientific Goals

I want to realize the promise of developmental biology for human medicine. If we can define, describe, and understand the molecular mechanisms that regulate cell division and differentiation, then in principle, we can manipulate cells and tissues to rebuild damaged or diseased organs.

We have begun this process for human deafness, which impacts one quarter of adults over the age of 65. For many of these individuals, decades of noise exposure results in the progressive loss of mechanosensory hair cells, which detect sound vibration in the cochlea. In mammals, lost hair cells are not replaced; consequently, damage accumulates as people age. Surprisingly, when we tested the developmental capacities of nearby cells to divide and create new sensory cells, we found a latent ability for regeneration. My work here at Rochester centers on identifying what molecules regulate inner ear regeneration in mammals. My goal is to find a biological treatment for noise-induced hearing loss.

Awards & Honors (Local)

ARCS Scholar
Hearst Scholar

Recent Journal Articles

Showing the 5 most recent journal articles. 6 available »

2009 Jul
Kwan T, White PM, Segil N. "Development and regeneration of the inner ear." Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences. 2009 Jul; 1170:28-33.
2006 Jun 22
White PM, Doetzlhofer A, Lee YS, Groves AK, Segil N. "Mammalian cochlear supporting cells can divide and trans-differentiate into hair cells." Nature. 2006 Jun 22; 441(7096):984-7.
2004 Aug 15
Doetzlhofer A, White PM, Johnson JE, Segil N, Groves AK. "In vitro growth and differentiation of mammalian sensory hair cell progenitors: a requirement for EGF and periotic mesenchyme." Developmental biology. 2004 Aug 15; 272(2):432-47.
2001 Jan
White PM, Morrison SJ, Orimoto K, Kubu CJ, Verdi JM, Anderson DJ. "Neural crest stem cells undergo cell-intrinsic developmental changes in sensitivity to instructive differentiation signals." Neuron. 2001 Jan; 29(1):57-71.
1999 Oct
White PM, Anderson DJ. "In vivo transplantation of mammalian neural crest cells into chick hosts reveals a new autonomic sublineage restriction." Development. 1999 Oct; 126(19):4351-63.

Current Appointments

Assistant Professor - Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy (SMD) - Primary


PhD | Developmental Biology | California Inst of Tech2000
BS | Biology | California Inst of Tech1989