Maurizio Pacifici, PhD

Maurizio Pacifici, PhD, is director of orthopedic research at CHOP and has a special interest in creating new treatments for rare spine conditions.

Locations: Main Campus
Appointments and Referrals: 1-800-TRY-CHOP (1-800-879-2467)

  • Education and Training


    Post-doctoral Fellow — Institute of Histology and Embryology, University of Rome, Rome, Italy
    European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) Fellow — Department of Anatomy, School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA

    Additional Training

    Research Associate — Department of Anatomy, School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA

    Board Certification

    Orthopedic Surgery

    Undergraduate Degree

    BA — Liceo Scientifico

    Graduate Degree

    PhD — Institute of Histology & Embryology, University of Rome School of Medicine, Rome, Italy

  • Titles and Academic Titles

    Director of Research, Department of Orthopedic Surgery

  • Departments and Services
  • Research Interests
    • Mechanisms that control skeletal development and growth
    • Synovial joint formation in fetal and postnatal life
    • Creating new treatments for diseases such as hereditary multiple exostoses (HME) and heterotopic ossification (HO)
  • Publications



    Koyama E, Yasuda T, Minugh-Purvs N, Kinumatsu T, Yallowitz AR, Wellik DM, et al. Hox 11 genes establish synovial joint organization and phylogenetic characteristics in developing mouse zeugopod skeletal elements. Development . 2010; 137: 3795-3800.

    Williams JA, Kane M, Okabe T, Enomoto-Iwamoto M, Napoli JL, Pacifici M, et al. Endogenous retinoids in mammalian growth plate cartilage: analysis and roles in matrix homeostasis and turnover. J. Biol. Chem. 2010; 285: 36674-36681.

    Kondo N, Yuasa T, Shimono K, Tung W, Okabe T, Yasuhara R, et al. Imbalance of Wnt/b-catenin signaling causes deformity of intervertebral disc organization. Spine. 2011 Epub Jan. 25; doi 10:1097/BRS.0b013e3181f52cb.  

    Koyama, E., Yasuda, T., Wellik, D.M., and Pacifici, M. (2010). Hox11 paralogous genes are required for formation of wrist and ankle joints and articular surface organization. Annu. N.Y. Acad. Sci. 1192, 307-316.

  • Editorial and Academic Positions
    Editorial positions

    2007-present,  Editorial Advisory Board, Journal of Cell Communication and Signaling
    2007-present,  Editorial Advisory Board, Journal of Arthroplasty
    2006-present,  Editorial Advisory Board, Matrix Biology 

    Academic positions 

    2008-2010, Member, Research Advisory Committee, Thomas Jefferson University
    2003-2010, Member, Kimmel Cancer Center, Thomas Jefferson University
    2003-2007, Member, Research Committee, Thomas Jefferson University
    2002-present, External examiner, Honors Program, Swarthmore College
    1999-present,  External examiner, PhD thesis, Medical School, University of Rome