Paulette Spencer, D.D.S., Ph.D.

Paulette Spencer
  • -Director, Institute for Bioengineering Research
  • -Deane E. Ackers Distinguished Professor, Mech. Eng.


Associated Tracks


-Biomaterials & Tissue Engineering

-Biomedical Product Design & Development

Research Interests

Professor Spencer and her research team are designing, synthesizing, and developing novel biomaterials for the repair and replacement of mineralized tissues. Under in vivo conditions, failure of a repair or replacement generally begins at the biomaterial/tissue interface and thus, a key aspect of our work is understanding the fundamental phenomena that control biological interactions at material interfaces.

Short Bio

Dr. Spencer joined the department in 2007. She was previously a faculty member at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Dentistry (1998 – 2007) and is a Curators’ Professor Emeritus from the University of Missouri. Working with her research team, Dr. Spencer designs, synthesizes, and develops novel biomaterials for the reconstruction of mineralized tissues damaged by disease, age or trauma. Dr. Spencer has published more than 150 articles, conference proceedings papers, and book chapters.

Dr. Spencer’s work has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health for more than 20 years. She has served as Mentor on 4 NIH-supported career development awards and as Director of a NIH-supported training program. She serves on several editorial review boards, is a past member of the Center for Scientific Review, NIH (2010 – 2012), and was Visiting Professor at the Bauru School of Dentistry, University of Sao Paulo in 2009. She is a Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering, the Biomaterials Science and Engineering International Union of Societies for Biomaterials Science and Engineering, the American College of Dentists, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.


  • Society for Applied Spectroscopy (2002 - Present)
  • Society for Biomaterials (1997 - Present)
  • American Dental Association (1996 - Present)
  • Missouri Dental Association (1996 - Present)
  • American Association for the Advancement of Science (1992 - Present)
  • Omicron Kappa Upsilon-Rho Chapter (1992 - Present)
  • American Association of Dental Research, Kansas City Section (1988 - Present)
  • Sigma Xi (1987 - Present)
  • International Association of Dental Research (1982 - Present)