M. Hakan Ozdener

Senior Research Associate


Senior Research Associate, Monell Chemical Senses Center


M.D., Ondokuz Mayis University, Samsun, Turkey
Ph.D., Biochemistry; Ondokuz Mayis University, Samsun Turkey, -ICGEB, New Delhi India
MPH, (Public Health); Temple University

Laboratory Of

Dr. Robert Margolskee

Research Summary

My primary research focuses on the development of in vitro chemosensory cell culture systems for the study of chemosensory biology and disorders. I utilize chemosensory cells obtained from humans and from rodents to examine the factors involved in differentiation and maturation and to better understand how chemosensory receptor cells interact in their responses to stimuli. This work will enable us to develop and characterize novel tastant and new therapeutic targets to promote regeneration following injury from surgery, radiation, toxic exposures, or deterioration due to aging or neurodegenerative disease. My work also involves exploring the molecular mechanisms of taste transduction of novel and known taste molecules in mammalian taste cells utilizing molecular biology, biochemistry, and cell physiology techniques.


taste cell, olfactory cells, development, cell culture, chemosensory cells, infection

Representative Publications

Ozdener MH (2023) Taste and Smell Loss in COVID-19: Possible Mechanisms, Challenges and Clinical Implications. J Infect Dis Ther 11: 550.

Donadoni M, Kaminski R, Liao S, Al Janabi S, Margolskee RF, Ozdener MH, Sariyer IK Coronavirus infection in chemosensory cells. J Neurovirol. 2023 Jan 31:1-10. doi: 10.1007/s13365-023-01117-3.

Elkaddi N, Malik B, Spielman AI, Ozdener MH. Reprogramming cultured human fungiform (HBO) taste cells into neuron-like cells through in vitro induction. In Vitro Cell Dev Biol Anim. 2022 Oct;58(9):817-829. doi: 10.1007/s11626-022-00724-4.

Ozdener MH., Mahavadi S, Mummalaneni S, Lyall V. Relationship between ENaC Regulators and SARS-CoV-2 Virus Receptor (ACE2) Expression in Cultured Adult Human Fungiform (HBO) Taste Cells. Nutrients. 2022; 14(13):2703. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu14132703

Ozdener, M.H., Spielman, A.I. and Wise, P.M. (2021), Sophorolipid Reduces Bitter Taste in Humans In Vivo and In Vitro. J Surfactants Deterg, 24: 941-948. https://doi.org/10.1002/jsde.12526

Gerkin RC, Ohla K, Veldhuizen MG, … M. H. Ozdener, … SD, Parma V (Global Consortium for Chemosensory Research (GCCR)). (2021), Recent Smell Loss Is the Best Predictor of COVID-19 Among Individuals With Recent Respiratory Symptoms. Chem Senses. 2021 Jan 1;46:bjaa081. doi: 10.1093/chemse/bjaa081.

Erik Schwiebert, Yi Wang, Ranhui Xi, Katarzyna Choma, John Streiff, Linda J. Flammer, Natasha Rivers, Mehmet Hakan Ozdener, Robert F. Margolskee, Carol M. Christensen, Nancy E. Rawson, Peihua Jiang and Paul A. S. Breslin (2021) 6-Methylflavone blocks bitterness of tenofovir. Molecular Pharmacology 99 (5) 319-327; https://doi.org/10.1124/molpharm.120.000071

Parma V, Ohla K, Veldhuizen MG, … M. H Ozdener, … Hayes JE. (Global Consortium for Chemosensory Research (GCCR)). (2020) More Than Smell-COVID-19 Is Associated With Severe Impairment of Smell, Taste, and Chemesthesis. Chem Senses. 2020 Oct 9;45(7):609-622. doi: 10.1093/chemse/bjaa041.

Ozdener, M.H.; Donadoni, M.; Cicalese, S.; Spielman, A.I.; Garcia-Blanco, A.; Gordon, J.; Sariyer, I.K. (2020) Zika virus infection in chemosensory cells. J Neurovirol. doi: 10.1007/s13365-020-00835-2. [Epub ahead of print]

Malik, B.; Elkaddi, N.; Turkistani, J.; Spielman, A.I.; Ozdener, M.H. (2019) Mammalian Taste Cells Express Functional Olfactory Receptors. Chemical Senses. 44, 289-301. doi: 10.1093/chemse/bjz019.

Murtaza, B.; Hichami, A.; Khan, A.S.; Shimpukade, B.; Ulven, T.; Ozdener, M.H.; Khan, N.A. (2019) Novel GPR120 agonist TUG891 modulates fat taste perception and preference and activates tongue-brain-gut axis in mice. Journal of Lipid Research. pii: jlr.RA119000142. doi: 10.1194/jlr.RA119000142.

Ozdener, M.H.; Ashby, R.D.; Jyotaki, M.; Elkaddi, N.; Spielman, A.I.; Bachmanov, A.A.; Solaiman, D.K. (2019) Sophorolipid Biosurfactants Activate Taste Receptor Type 1 Member 3‐Mediated Taste Responses and Block Responses to Bitter Taste In Vitro and In Vivo. Journal of Surfactants and Detergents. doi:10.1002/jsde.12246

Sariyer, I.K.; Gordon, J.; Burdo, T.H.; Wollebo, H.S.; Gianti, E.; Donadoni, M.; Bellizzi, A.; Cicalese, S.; Loomis, R.; Robinson, J.A.; Carnevale, V.; Steiner, J.; Ozdener, M.H.; Miller, A.D.; Amini, S.; Klein, M.L.; Khalili, K. (2019) Suppression of Zika Virus Infection in the Brain by the Antiretroviral Drug Rilpivirine. Molecular Therapy. doi: 10.1016/j.ymthe.2019.10.006.

M. Hakan Ozdener

Contact Information

(267) 519-4824