Cell and Developmental Biology


Prof Christopher Dean

Prof Christopher Dean


Anatomy Building, UCL
Gower Street


  • Emeritus Professor of Anatomy
    Div of Biosciences
    Faculty of Life Sciences
  • Professorial Research Associate
    Cell & Developmental Biology
    Div of Biosciences

Joined UCL


My principal research aim is to determine where, when and why modern humans evolved an extended ~20 year period of growth and development. To research this problem I have pioneered ways of studying incremental markings in fossil primate tooth tissues. Teeth are abundant in the fossil record and contain incremental markings that allow us to retrieve information about the rates of and direction of cell movement during tooth development. Some of the mechanisms of morphological change during human evolution have been described in this way and it has been possible to determine the timing of key events during the period of growth and development in certain fossil primates. This research theme drives an extensive international interdisciplinary research effort with collaborations that draw on clinical science, comparative anatomy and palaeoanthropology.
Award year Qualification Institution
1993 Dip.
Diploma in General Dental Practice
Clinical Dentistry
Royal College of Surgeons of England
1983 PhD
Doctor of Philosophy
University of London
1977 Dip.
Diploma in Human Biology
Human Biology
University of Oxford
1975 BDS
Bachelor of Dental Surgery
Clinical Dentistry
University College London


Comparative anatomy|*|Comparative microanatomy of dental hard tissues|*|Dental tissues|*|Enamel|*|Human Evolution|*|Human and primate evolution