Marc D. McKee

Marc D. McKee, Ph.D.

Professor, Faculty of Dentistry, and Dept. of Anatomy and Cell Biology
Associate Dean Graduate Studies and Research (Dentistry)
McGill Centre for Bone and Periodontal Research
McGill Facility for Electron Microscopy Research
Faculty of Dentistry, McGill University, 3640 University Street, Montreal, QC H3A 0C7

Tel: 514-398-7203 ext. 00041

marc.mckee [at]

Biographical Sketch

Dr. Marc D. McKee is a full professor at McGill University in Montreal with a joint appointment in the Faculties of Dentistry and Medicine. He received his B.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees from McGill University in cell biology, and completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Orthopedic Surgery at Harvard University and The Children's Hospital in Boston. He then held academic appointments at the Forsyth Institute in Boston (1989), and at the University of Montreal (1990), after which he moved to McGill University in 1998.

Dr. McKee’s research focuses on molecular determinants of biomineralization in bones and teeth, and in pathologic calcification as found in kidney stones and vascular calcification.

Of 214 total publications, Dr. McKee has 184 scientific articles published in peer-reviewed journals (including in Nature, Nature Genetics, Nature Communications, Cell, J. Experimental Medicine, J. Cell Biology, Genes & Development, Development, Circulation, Circulation Research, Advanced Materials, Biomaterials, J. Bone and Mineral Research and J. Dental Research), 22 book chapters and conference proceedings papers, and over 360 scientific abstracts. He has a Thomson Reuters Citation Reports h-index of 60 with >14,000 total citations, and a Google Scholar h-index of 72 with >21,000 total citations).


Bone, teeth, extracellular matrix, biomineralization, ultrastructure, structural biology, osteopontin, X-linked hypophosphatemia, hypophosphatasia, osteomalacia.

Research or Clinical Activities

Research in my laboratory is primarily focused on mineralization (calcification) of extracellular matrices in bones and teeth, and in other biomineralizing systems such as inner-ear otoconia and eggshells.  In particular, we are investigating the role of mineral-binding proteins, peptides, amino acids and other small molecules in normal hard-tissue mineralization and in rare hypomineralization (osteomalacia) diseases of bones and teeth, such as X-linked hypophosphatemia and hypophosphatasia.  Our work also includes investigating pathologic circumstances and the actions of regulatory molecules where unwanted and debilitating mineral is deposited in soft tissues such as in the kidney (urolithiasis, kidney stones) and in blood vessels (vascular calcification, including atherosclerosis).  We study how biomineralization is controlled by components of the extracellular matrix, and how enzymes modify these components to affect their mineralization-regulating activities.  The proteins/enzymes that we are currently focusing on are osteopontin and PHEX, with additional work being done on bone sialoprotein, dentin matrix protein-1, matrix Gla protein, ALPL (TNAP, TNSALP) and PHOSPHO1.  In other work we are examining extracellular matrix organization and composition at cell-matrix and matrix-matrix interfaces, including at implantable biomaterial interfaces.  To study these processes, a variety of morphological, biochemical, immunochemical, cell biological and molecular techniques are used which include among others: electron microscopy, focused-ion beam milling, atomic force microscopy, confocal microscopy, immunocytochemistry, in vivo experimentation using normal and transgenic mice, in vitro cell culture and crystal growth systems, and standard biochemical and chemical assays.

Selected Recent Publications

Eimar H, Tamimi F, Retrouvey JM, Rauch F, Aubin JE and McKee MD (2016) Craniofacial and dental defects in the Col1a1Jrt/+ mouse model of osteogenesis imperfecta. J. Dent. Res. 95:761-768. 

Boukpessi T, Hoac B, Coyac BR, Leger T, Garcia C, Wicart P, Whyte MP, Glorieux FH, Linglart A, Chaussain C and McKee MD (2017) Osteopontin and the dento-osseous pathobiology of X-linked hypophosphatemia.  Bone  95:151-161 

Jiang W, Pacella MS, Athanasiadou D, Nelea V, Vali H, Hazen RM, Gray JJ and McKee MD  (2017) Chiral acidic amino acids induce chiral hierarchical structure in calcium carbonate.  Nature Commun.  8, 15066 doi: 10.1038/ncomms15066. 

Hoac B, Nelea V, Jiang W, Kaartinen MT and McKee MD (2017) Mineralization-inhibiting effects of transglutaminase 2-crosslinked polymer osteopontin.  Bone 101:37-48.

Hoac B, Susan-Resiga D, Essalmani R, Marcinkiweicz E, Seidah NG, McKee MD (2017) Osteopontin as a novel substrate for the proprotein convertase 5/6 (PCSK5) in bone.  Bone 107:45-55.

Google Scholar – M. McKee

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