Prof. Dr. Martyn Timothy Cobourne

Prof. Dr. Martyn Timothy Cobourne

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Professor of Orthodontics
Faculty of Dentistry, Oral & Craniofacial Sciences
King’s College London

Honorary Consultant in Orthodontics
Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust
King’s Health Partner’s

Martyn Cobourne graduated from King’s College London School of Medicine and Dentistry in 1990.
After a series of junior hospital appointments in Bristol and London he undertook specialty training in orthodontics at King’s College Hospital, obtaining his Membership in Orthodontics in 1997. This was followed by a Medical Research Council Clinical Training Fellowship in 1998, and a PhD in Developmental Biology at the United Medical and Dental Schools, University of London (2002).
Martyn was appointed as a Senior Lecturer and Hon Consultant in Orthodontics at King’s College London Dental Institute in 2004 and promoted to Professor of Orthodontics in 2011. He became Academic Head of Orthodontics in 2016 and currently runs the Specialist Training Programme in Orthodontics at King’s College London.
His research is primarily focused on the role of molecular signaling pathways during early development of the head and face and he runs a laboratory-based research group in the Centre for Craniofacial Development & Regeneration at KCL.
He is also interested in the effectiveness of contemporary orthodontic treatment interventions and has led a number of randomized controlled trials investigating treatment efficiency.
He has published 150+ peer-reviewed articles and is the author of three successful orthodontic textbooks.
He was Director of Research at the British Orthodontic Society (2012-2016) and is currently Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Orthodontics and an editorial board member of Scientific Reports.
He is Junior Vice-Dean of the Board of Faculty of Dental Surgery at the Royal College of Surgeons of England and a full member of the North Atlantic Division of the US Angle Society.


Seppala M, Thivichon-Prince B, Xavier GM, Shaffie N, Sangani I, Birjandi AA, Rooney J, Lau JNS, Dhaliwal R, Rossi O, Riaz MA, Stonehouse-Smith D, Wang Y, Papageorgiou SN, Viriot L, Cobourne MT (2022). Gas1 Regulates Patterning of the Murine and Human Dentitions through Sonic Hedgehog. J Dent Res 101:473-482.

Savarirayan R, Ireland P, Irving M, Thompson D, Alves I, Baratela WAR et al. (2022). International Consensus Statement on the diagnosis, multidisciplinary management and lifelong care of individuals with achondroplasia. Nat Rev Endocrinol 18:173-189.

Kim Y, Lee J, Seppala M, Cobourne MT, Kim, SH (2020). Ptch2/Gas1 and Ptch1/Boc differentially regulate Hedgehog signalling in murine primordial germ cell migration. Nat Commun 11, 1994, doi:10.1038/s41467-020-15897-3 (2020).

Okuhara S, Birjandi AA, Adel Al-Lami H, Sagai T, Amano T, Shiroishi T, Xavier GM, Liu KJ, Cobourne MT, Iseki S (2019). Temporospatial sonic hedgehog signalling is essential for neural crest-dependent patterning of the intrinsic tongue musculature. Development 146.

Papageorgiou SN, Xavier GM, Cobourne MT, Eliades T (2018). Registered trials report less beneficial treatment effects than unregistered ones: a meta-epidemiological study in orthodontics. J Clin Epidemiol 100:44-52.

Zoupa M, Xavier GM, Bryan S, Theologidis I, Arno M, Cobourne MT (2018). Gene expression profiling in the developing secondary palate in the absence of Tbx1 function. BMC Genomics 19:429-434.

Saloom HF, Papageorgiou SN, Carpenter GH, Cobourne MT (2017). Impact of Obesity on Orthodontic Tooth Movement in Adolescents: A Prospective Clinical Cohort Study. J Dent Res 96:547-554.

Xavier GM, Seppala M, Barrell W, Birjandi AA, Geoghegan F, Cobourne MT (2016). Hedgehog receptor function during craniofacial development. Dev Biol 415:198-215.

Brock LJ, Economou AD, Cobourne MT, Green JB (2016). Mapping cellular processes in the mesenchyme during palatal development in the absence of Tbx1 reveals complex proliferation changes and perturbed cell packing and polarity. J Anat 228:464-473.

Xavier GM, Patist AL, Healy C, Pagrut A, Carreno G, Sharpe PT, Pedro Martinez-Barbera J, Thavaraj S, Cobourne MT, Andoniadou CL (2015). Activated WNT signaling in postnatal SOX2-positive dental stem cells can drive odontoma formation. Sci Rep 5:14479.

Woodhouse NR, DiBiase AT, Papageorgiou SN, Johnson N, Slipper C, Grant J, Alsaleh M, Cobourne MT (2015). Supplemental vibrational force does not reduce pain experience during initial alignment with fixed orthodontic appliances: a multicenter randomized clinical trial. Sci Rep 5:17224.

Woodhouse NR, DiBiase AT, Johnson N, Slipper C, Grant J, Alsaleh M, Donaldson AN, Cobourne MT (2015) Supplemental Vibrational Force During Orthodontic Alignment: A Randomized Trial. J Dent Res 94:682-689.

Papageorgiou SN, Xavier GM, Cobourne MT (2015). Basic study design influences the results of orthodontic clinical investigations. J Clin Epidemiol 68:1512-1522.

Seppala M, Xavier GM, Fan CM, Cobourne MT (2014). Boc modifies the spectrum of holoprosencephaly in the absence of Gas1 function. Biol Open 8:728-740.

Economou, AD, Brock, LJ, Cobourne MT, Green JB (2013). Whole population cell analysis of a landmark-rich mammalian epithelium reveals multiple elongation mechanisms. Development 140:4740-4750.

Xavier GM, Panousopoulos L, Cobourne MT (2013). Scube3 is expressed in multiple tissues during development but is dispensable for embryonic survival in the mouse. PLoS One 8:e55274.

Economou AD, Ohazama A, Porntaveetus T, Sharpe PT, Kondo S, Basson MA, Gritli-Linde A, Cobourne MT, Green JB (2012). Periodic stripe formation by a Turing mechanism operating at growth zones in the mammalian palate. Nat Genet 44:348-351.

Ohazama A, Haycraft CJ, Seppala M, Blackburn J, Ghafoor S, Cobourne MT, Martinelli DC, Fan CM, Peterkova R, Lesot H, Yoder BK, Sharpe PT (2009). Primary cilia regulate Shh activity in the control of molar tooth number. Development 136:897-903.

Cobourne MT, Xavier GM, Depew M, Hagan L, Sealby J, Webster Z, Sharpe PT (2009). Sonic hedgehog signalling inhibits palatogenesis and arrests tooth development in a mouse model of the nevoid basal cell carcinoma syndrome. Dev Biol 331:38-49.

Seppala M, Depew MJ, Martinelli DC, Fan CM, Sharpe PT, Cobourne MT (2007). Gas1 is a modifier for holoprosencephaly and genetically interacts with sonic hedgehog. J Clin Invest 117:1575-1584.

Cobourne MT, Miletich I, Sharpe PT (2004). Restriction of sonic hedgehog signalling during early tooth development. Development 131:2875-2885.

Sarkar L, Cobourne MT, Naylor S, Smalley M, Dale T, Sharpe PT (2000). Wnt/Shh interactions regulate ectodermal boundary formation during mammalian tooth development. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 97:4520-4524.