2018-2019 Emerging Leaders in Health and Medicine Scholars
Paul P. Christopher, MD, is an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry & Human Behavior at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. His scholarship focuses on ethical issues central to biomedical research and public health policy, with a particular focus on justice-involved and other vulnerable populations. Through a Mentored Career Development Award (K23) from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), he identified a number of urgent and under-recognized problems that exist in modern prison research. As a Greenwall Faculty Scholar in Bioethics, he is currently translating those findings into an ethical framework and tool to guide investigators and institutional review boards in the ethical planning and conduct of clinical research with prisoners. He is also principal investigator on a NIDA-funded study of civil commitment for opioid use disorder. A graduate of Wesleyan University, Dr. Christopher received his medical degree from the University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS) and residency training in psychiatry at Brown. He completed fellowships in Medical Ethics at Harvard Medical School and Forensic Mental Health Research and Policy at UMMS. His work has been published in a wide range of academic journals and newspapers including the New York Times and Washington Post.
Deidra C. Crews is an Associate Professor of Medicine in the Division of Nephrology and Associate Vice Chair for Diversity and Inclusion of the Department of Medicine at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. She is a Core Faculty member of the Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology and Clinical Research, and is affiliated with the Hopkins Center to Eliminate Cardiovascular Health Disparities and the Hopkins Center on Aging and Health. Dr. Crews’ core area of research addresses disparities in the care and outcomes of chronic kidney disease. She has examined the contribution of social determinants of health, including poverty and access to healthful foods, to disparities in kidney disease. Her work in end-stage renal disease includes studies of the optimal timing and setting of dialysis initiation among vulnerable groups, and patient preparation for the start of renal replacement therapy. Dr. Crews was the inaugural Gilbert S. Omenn Anniversary Fellow of the Institute of Medicine (National Academy of Medicine). She is Chair of the American Society of Nephrology Chronic Kidney Disease Advisory Group and a member of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Chronic Kidney Disease Surveillance Team. She has more than 45 peer-reviewed published manuscripts, and serves on the editorial boards of BMC Nephrology and Advances in Chronic Kidney Disease.
Adaeze Enekwechi is the President of Impaq, LLC and its subsidiaries including Impaq International, Maher and Maher, and ASCEND. She provides strategic oversight of all research, technical assistance, and technology services across all program areas including healthcare, workforce development, social programs, education, and international development.
Most recently, Dr. Enekwechi was a Vice President at McDermott+Consulting, and before that served as the Associate Director for Health Programs at the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under President Barack Obama. As the federal government’s chief health care budget official, she provided budget, policy, management, and regulatory oversight for over $1 trillion in spending on a range of federal programs including Medicare, Medicaid, insurance marketplaces, the CMS Innovation Center, and for a number of agencies including CMS, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, National Institutes of Health, the Food and Drug Administration, and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
At the OMB, Dr. Enekwechi managed the review and approval of major CMMI reform proposals, as well as MACRA/Quality Payment Program rulemaking. She also managed OMB processes for reviewing several FDA policies, Medicaid negotiations, Zika and other public health funding requests. Dr. Enekwechi is highly experienced with the Affordable Care Act (ACA) implementation, playing a key role in driving ACA budget, policy, strategy and operational coordination with various agencies, including the Department of Treasury, the Internal Revenue Service, and the Office of Personnel Management, among others.
Dr. Enekwechi was previously a Managing Consultant at the Lewin Group where she specialized in health policy evaluation, Medicare and Medicaid payment policies, and quality measurement. She also worked at the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission, and the Congressional Budget Office. Dr. Enekwechi completed a BA at the University of Iowa, an MPP at the American University, and a PhD in Health Services and Policy from the University of Iowa. Her research area focused on the use of long-term care services among older adults. She completed postdoctoral training at the University of Chicago, School of Medicine. Dr. Enekwechi is also a Research Associate Professor of Health Policy and Management at the Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University, and a Visiting Professor at Meharry Medical College.
Lori Freedman, PhD is an Associate Professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). Her research is housed within Advancing New Standards In Reproductive Health (ANSIRH), a program of the Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health. Dr. Freedman was a Greenwall Faculty Scholar in Bioethics and currently co-directs the Research Consortium on Religious Healthcare Institutions, a joint program between UCSF and the University of Chicago. She received her PhD in sociology from the University of California, Davis. Her research investigates the ways in which reproductive health care is shaped by our social structure and medical culture. Her book, Willing and Unable: Doctors’ Constraints in Abortion Care, is a qualitative study about abortion and physician practice. Currently, her research focuses on intersection of religion and health care, especially in the case of Catholic-owned hospitals. She studies the implications of religious policies for patient autonomy, and how conscience-based rights are employed by institutions to circumscribe reproductive care.
Christopher Friese is a professor at the University of Michigan School of Nursing, where he focuses on measuring and improving the quality of cancer care delivery. He is also a faculty investigator at the university’s Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation, a faculty member of the Cancer Surveillance, Outcomes and Research Team, and a core member of the Comprehensive Cancer Center. He has practiced as a staff nurse at leading cancer centers, including the University of Pennsylvania, Johns Hopkins Hospital, and the University of Michigan Health System. Dr. Friese is a national expert in the analyses of claims data to study care quality and has executed large surveys of ambulatory oncology nurses. The author of 54 peer-reviewed publications, his research findings were among the first to establish a significant relationship between favorable nurse practice environments and lower surgical mortality.
As the first nurse scientist to complete a K99/R00 Pathway to Independence award from the National Institute of Nursing Research, Dr. Friese leads an interdisciplinary research program to study the quality of care delivered in understudied ambulatory oncology settings from the perspectives of patients and clinicians. He has also led pivotal studies to develop a valid and reliable measure of ambulatory nursing work environments. His recent work looks for patterns and correlates of hazardous drug exposure in oncology nurses. Dr. Friese directs the DEFENS (Drug Exposure Feedback and Education for Nurses’ Safety) Study on nurses’ use of personal protective equipment when handling chemotherapy and leads a National Cancer Institute–funded study on individualized decision making and treatment for breast cancer in an era of precision medicine.
Dr. Friese received a BSN-PhD from the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing and completed a 3-year postdoctoral fellowship in Cancer Control and Outcomes at Harvard University/Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. He is a member of the American Academy of Nursing and received the University of Michigan’s Henry Russel Award for Outstanding Junior Faculty, the first nursing school recipient in the award’s 90-year history.
Jordan J. Green is a Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Oncology, Ophthalmology, Neurosurgery, Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering, and Materials Science & Engineering, at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He is also an associate researcher of the Institute for NanoBioTechnology and co-founder and associate director of the Translational Tissue Engineering Center at JHU. Dr. Green received his B.S. in biomedical engineering and in chemical engineering from Carnegie Mellon University in 2003 and completed his PhD in biological engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2007. Subsequently, Dr. Green was a postdoctoral associate at MIT in chemical engineering from 2007-2008. Dr. Green is also the CTO and co-founder of the Baltimore biotech startup company, AsclepiX Therapeutics and a Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering. His work has resulted in the publication of over 90 papers and he has received numerous awards including the American Institute of Chemical Engineers Allan Colburn Award, the Biomedical Engineering Society Rita Schaffer Award, the American Society for Gene & Cell Therapy Outstanding New Investigator Award, the Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine Young Investigator Award, the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, and was named by Popular Science as one of the “Brilliant Ten.” Dr. Green’s main research interests are in creating biomaterials and nanobiotechnology to engineer cells and develop advanced therapeutics.
Marcia C. Haigis obtained her Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the University of Wisconsin in 2002. She performed postdoctoral studies at MIT studying mitochondrial sirtuins and metabolism. In 2006, Dr. Haigis joined the faculty of Harvard Medical School, where she is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Cell Biology. Dr. Haigis is an active member of the Paul F. Glenn Center for the Biology of Aging and the Ludwig Center at Harvard Medical School. Her research aims to: 1) identify molecular mechanisms by which mitochondria respond to cellular stress and 2) elucidate how these cellular mechanisms contribute to aging and age-related diseases, such as cancer. The Haigis lab has made key contributions to our understanding of metabolic reprogramming in cancer, including a role for prolyl hydroxylase 3 in the control of fat oxidation in leukemia and metabolic recycling of ammonia to generate amino acids important for tumor growth. Dr. Haigis has received a Brookdale Leadership in Aging Award, the Ellison Medical Foundation New Scholar Award and an American Cancer Society Research Scholar Award.
Sandeep Kishore is Associate Director of the Arnhold Institute for Global Health at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Health. He is the President & Founder of the Young Professionals Chronic Disease Network (YP-CDN), a global non-profit of 5000 young professionals from over 140 countries committed to the equitable prevention and treatment of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) as a social justice issue. In this capacity, he served as a delegate to the United Nations General Assembly in 2011, speaker in 2014 and delivered a TED talk at TEDMED 2012 on new approaches to global chronic disease.
He has worked to amend the World Health Organization’s Essential Medicines List with 9 medications–including for heart disease and cancers–which facilitates access to low-cost medicines for free or the cheapest prices possible. He has served as an Advisor to the WHO Global Coordination Mechanism on NCDs regarding expansion of access to low-cost tools globally.
He received his Ph.D. from Cornell University, where his dissertation focused on the evolution of malaria parasitism in humans. His discoveries led him to win the national Raymond W. Sarber award for most outstanding graduate student in microbiology. His work on both innovation + access to health goods has been featured in the popular press (Scientific American, The Huffington Post, National Public Radio and The Scientist), as well as in scholarly journals including JAMA, Health Affairs, The Lancet, the Nature Reviews series and PLoS Medicine. He is on the Medical Review Board of The Huffington Post, the Editorial Advisory Board of TEDMED and is a member of the Forum on Health Professional Education at the Institute of Medicine. He is a graduate of Duke University (B.S.) and Oxford University (M.Sc.), and is the first The Lancet awardee for community service. He completed his MD and PhD degrees at Weill Cornell.
Mark D. Neuman is Associate Professor of Anesthesiology and Critical Care at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine and Senior Fellow at the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics. Dr. Neuman is the founding Director of the Penn Center for Perioperative Outcomes Research and Transformation, which focuses on improving the health and well-being of patients undergoing surgery, critical care, and pain treatment through comparative effectiveness research and implementation science. A practicing general anesthesiologist and health services researcher, his work has been supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), and the Foundation for Anesthesia Education and Research. Dr. Neuman’s work, which has appeared in JAMA, the Lancet, the BMJ, and the New England Journal of Medicine, focuses primarily on understanding the determinants of functional outcomes among older adults undergoing major surgical procedures and the short- and long-term consequences of anesthetic and pain management interventions delivered around the time of surgery; additional work has examined processes by which medical research findings are translated into expert guidelines, and how such guidelines change over time in response to new evidence. He is the Principal Investigator of the PCORI-funded REGAIN trial (Regional versus General Anesthesia for Promoting Independence after Hip Fracture), a 45-center international pragmatic randomized trial to assess the association between commonly used anesthesia treatments for older adults undergoing hip fracture repair with and survival and functional outcomes at up to 1 year after fracture. Dr. Neuman currently chairs the Committee on Geriatric Anesthesia of the American Society of Anesthesiologists and lectures nationally and internationally on the care of older adults undergoing surgery and anesthesia and on the design and conduct of pragmatic trials in perioperative care.
Minal Patel is the John G. Searle Assistant Professor of Health Behavior & Health Education (HBHE) at the University of Michigan School of Public Health. She completed her MPH and PhD in HBHE at the University of Michigan. Broadly, Dr. Patel’s program of research focuses on optimizing the management and prevention of common chronic diseases through a) identification of factors that influence poor behavioral and health outcomes at multiple levels of influence, and b) the development and evaluation of behavioral interventions in disparity populations to improve outcomes. A particular emphasis of her work is access to care, health care navigation, and health-related financial toxicity. Dr. Patel has led studies focused on improving health insurance literacy in economically disadvantaged communities, screening and addressing social determinants of health in clinical settings, health care provider training in implementing guideline-based care. Dr. Patel’s work is primarily situated in in a broad range of health care and health care delivery settings. Her work has been funded through the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the National Institutes of Health, and private foundations. In 2017, Dr. Patel received the Early Career Achievement award from the Behavioral Sciences and Health Services Research Assembly of the American Thoracic Society.
Suchi Saria is the John C. Malone Assistant Professor of computer science, statistics and health policy and the Director of the Machine Learning and Healthcare Lab at Johns Hopkins University. She is also the founding Research Director of the Malone Center for Engineering in Healthcare at Hopkins. Her research focuses on developing next generation diagnostic and treatment planning tools that leverage statistical methods to individualize care. Towards this, her methodological work focuses on questions such as: How can we combine different sources of information with prior knowledge to derive actionable inferences? How can we characterize and improve reliability of the resulting inferences in challenging real- world settings? How can we support decision-making in safety-critical domains? Her work has received recognition in numerous forms including best paper awards at machine learning, informatics, and medical venues, a Rambus Fellowship (2004-2010), an NSF Computing Innovation Fellowship (2011), selection by IEEE Intelligent Systems to Artificial Intelligence’s “10 to Watch” (2015), the DARPA Young Faculty Award (2016), MIT Technology Review’s ‘35 Innovators under 35’ (2017), the Sloan Research Fellowship (2018), and the World Economic Forum Young Global Leader (2018). In 2017, her work was among four research contributions presented by Dr. France Córdova, Director of the National Science Foundation to Congress’ Commerce, Justice Science Appropriations Committee. Saria joined Hopkins in 2012. Prior to that, she received her PhD from Stanford University working with Prof. Daphne Koller.
Gretchen Schwarze is an Associate Professor in the Departments of Surgery and Medical History and Bioethics. She received her medical degree from Harvard Medical School and master’s degree in public policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government. She completed residency at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. Her fellowship training in vascular surgery and clinical ethics was done at the University of Chicago Hospital and Clinics. She is a practicing vascular surgeon and health services researcher who also directs the clinical ethics curriculum for the UW School of Medicine and Public Health. Her research interests are in patient-doctor decision making for high risk operations and end-of-life care. She is an alumna of the Greenwall Faculty Scholars program and was an Anniversary Fellow at the IOM in 2010. She is now funded by the NIH (NIA) and PCORI to test interventions to improve patient-doctor communication. She also receives funding from the National Palliative Care Research Center and the Greenwall Foundation.
Julie Segre received her BA summa cum laude in mathematics from Amherst College, where she now serves on the board of trustees. She received her PhD in 1996 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the laboratory of Eric Lander, PhD, and the newly formed genome center. Dr. Segre then performed postdoctoral training with Elaine Fuchs, Ph.D., an expert in skin biology, at the University of Chicago.
Dr. Segre joined the National Human Genome Research Institute of NIH in 2000 and was promoted to a senior investigator with tenure in 2007. Dr. Segre’s laboratory utilizes high-throughput sequencing and develops algorithms to study the microbial diversity of human skin in both health and disease states, with a focus on eczema and other microbial-associated infections. Dr. Segre published the first topographical maps of human skin bacterial and fungal diversity. Dr. Segre’s laboratory also develops genomic tools to track hospital-acquired infections of multi-drug resistant organisms, including the NIH’s recent Klebsiella pneumoniae outbreak.
Dr. Segre’s research is based on active collaborations with the NIH Intramural Sequencing Center and the clinical departments of Infection Control, Microbiology, and Dermatology. Dr. Segre is a leader in the NIH Roadmap Human Microbiome Project, communicating with multiple media sources to promote the concept of humans as ecological landscapes. Together with the NIH epidemiologist, Tara Palmore, MD, Segre received the 2013 Service to America Medal, considered among the most prestigious for a federal employee, for their work to establish the clinical utility of microbial genomics.
Jacob S. Sherkow is a Professor of Law at the Innovation Center for Law and Technology, New York Law School. His research focuses on the intersection of advanced biotechnologies and intellectual property and regulation. Prof. Sherkow is the author of over 30 articles on these and related topics in both traditional law reviews and scientific journals, including Science, Nature, the Yale Law Journal, and the Stanford Law Review. He is also the winner of the 2018 Otto L. Walter Distinguished Writing Award and the Class of 2017 Teaching Award. On matters pertaining to biotechnology and patent law, Professor Sherkow has advised both the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary and a committee of France’s National Assembly. Aside from his appointment at New York Law School, Professor Sherkow is a Permanent Visiting Professor at the Center for Advanced Studies in Biomedical Innovation Law at the University of Copenhagen Faculty of Law and a community member of the New York Genome Center. Previously, Professor Sherkow has held research positions at Stanford Law School and Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. Professor Sherkow graduated cum laude from the University of Michigan Law School, where he was an editor of the Michigan Law Review. He also holds an MA in biotechnology from Columbia University and a BSc from McGill University in molecular biology.
Hanni Stoklosa is the Executive Director of HEAL Trafficking, an emergency physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital with appointments at Harvard Medical School and the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative. She is Director of the Global Women’s Health Fellowship at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Connors Center. Dr. Stoklosa is an internationally-recognized expert, advocate, researcher, and speaker on the wellbeing of trafficking survivors in the U.S. and internationally through a public health lens. She has advised the United Nations, International Organization for Migration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, U.S. Department of Labor, U.S. Department of State, and the National Academy of Medicine on issues of human trafficking and testified as an expert witness multiple times before the U.S. Congress. Moreover, she has conducted research on trafficking and persons facing the most significant social, economic, and health challenges in a diversity of settings including Australia, China, Egypt, Guatemala, India, Liberia, Nepal, Kazakhstan, the Philippines, South Sudan, Taiwan, and Thailand. Among other accolades, Dr. Stoklosa has most recently been honored with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Women’s Health Emerging Leader award and the Harvard Medical School Dean’s Faculty Community Service award for her tireless efforts to advance the public health response to trafficking. Her anti-trafficking work has been featured by the New York Times, National Public Radio, Glamour, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, STAT News, and Marketplace. Dr. Stoklosa published the first textbook addressing the public health response to trafficking, “Human Trafficking Is a Public Health Issue, A Paradigm Expansion in the United States.”
Sohail Tavazoie is the Leon Hess Associate Professor and Head of the Elizabeth and Vincent Meyer Laboratory of Systems Cancer Biology. He graduated from the University of California Berkeley, completed an MD-PhD program at Harvard-MIT followed by residency training in Internal Medicine at Brigham & Women’s Hospital/HMS and medical oncology and postdoctoral fellowships at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. In 2009, he was recruited to Rockefeller University as Head of the Laboratory of Systems Cancer Biology where his group studies the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying cancer metastasis as well as the mechanisms of gene expression regulation by non-coding RNAs. Sohail also attends as an oncologist at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Dr. Tavazoie’s group employs a combination of molecular, genomic, biochemical, genetic, computational, and clinical association approaches to study the biology of metastatic disease. This systematic approach has revealed that the acquisition of the metastatic phenotype by cancer cells requires the modulation of specific small noncoding RNAs (microRNAs). Altered expression of these small RNAs changes the expression of their target genes, which the lab has identified to be effectors or repressors of metastatic progression. His group has developed a small-molecule targeting one such metastasis-regulatory pathway that is in a first-in-man national phase 1 trial. Through their studies of metastatic disease, his lab has uncovered surprising roles for other non-coding RNAs such as tRNAs and tRNA-derived fragments in cancer progression and gene expression control.
Dr. Y. Claire Wang is Vice President for Research, Evaluation, and Policy at the Academy. In this role, she is responsible for promoting the climate for excellent research, strengthening the research infrastructure, and fostering collaborations among the Academy’s researchers and external partners. Dr. Wang is trained as a physician epidemiologist with expertise in decision sciences, chronic disease prevention, and public health policy. Prior to joining the Academy, she was Associate Professor of Health Policy and Management at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health. During her tenure at Columbia, she served as the faculty director of the MPH certificate in Comparative Effectiveness and Outcomes Research and as co-director of the Obesity Prevention Initiative, a cross-disciplinary team focusing on environmental and policy approaches to preventing obesity at the community level. She also taught decision analysis and economic evaluation of health technologies, and mentored numerous graduate students and clinical scientists. She obtained her medical degree from National Taiwan University, as well as a MS in Epidemiology and ScD in Health Policy and Decision Sciences from Harvard Chan School of Public Health. She was elected Fellow of The New York Academy of Medicine in 2013.
Jonathan H. Watanabe is an associate professor of clinical pharmacy at the University of California San Diego Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences and is the National Academy of Medicine Anniversary Pharmacy Fellow 2016-18 supported by the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy and the American College of Clinical Pharmacy. He was a contributor to the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine Ensuring Patient Access to Affordable Medications study and report. Dr. Watanabe examines large, real-world data with the goal of developing policy solutions to improve patient care, augment population health, and reduce medical costs. Watanabe focuses on improving access to evidence-driven medication use and pharmacist-directed patient care. He serves as an advisor to the California Health Benefits Review Program for the California State Legislature. He is an investigator, faculty, and fellowship director for the federal Health Resources and Services Administration funded San Diego Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program and is also supported by the NIH National Institute on Aging to examine high-risk medication use and costs in older adults. Dr. Watanabe was the inaugural recipient of the University of Washington/Allergan Global Health Economics and Outcomes Research Fellowship. Professor Watanabe is a clinical consultant at the St. Paul’s Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) Clinic in San Diego, CA and the Villa Pomerado Skilled Nursing Facility in Poway, CA. He received his BS from the University of Washington. Watanabe completed his doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) at the University of Southern California. He received an MS and PhD from the University of Washington Comparative Health Outcomes, Policy, and Economics (CHOICE) Institute. He is a Board Certified Geriatric Pharmacist (BCGP).
Joseph C. Wu is the Simon H. Stertzer, MD Professor of Medicine (Cardiology) and Radiology, and the Director of the Stanford Cardiovascular Institute. Dr. Wu received his medical degree from Yale. He completed his medicine internship, residency and cardiology fellowship training at UCLA followed by a PhD (Molecular & Medical Pharmacology) in the UCLA STAR program. Dr. Wu has received several awards, including the Burroughs Wellcome Foundation Career Award in Medical Sciences, BWF Innovation in Regulatory Science Award, Baxter Foundation Faculty Scholar Award, American Heart Association Innovative Research Award, AHA Established Investigator Award, National Institute of Health Director’s New Innovator Award, NIH Roadmap Transformative Award, and Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers given out by President Obama. He is on the editorial board of Journal Clinical Investigation, Circulation Research, Circulation Cardiovascular Imaging, JACC Cardiovascular Imaging, Human Gene Therapy, Molecular Therapy, Stem Cell Research, and Journal of Nuclear Cardiology. Dr. Wu is is a Council Member for the American Society for Clinical Investigation (ASCI) and a Scientific Advisory Board Member for the Keystone Symposia. He is also a member of the Association of University Cardiologists (AUC) and Association of American Physicians (AAP). His clinical activities involve adult congenital heart disease and cardiovascular imaging. His lab research focuses on stem cell biology, drug discovery, personalized medicine, and molecular imaging.
Ramnik Xavier, MD, ChB
Chief of Gastroenterology
Director, the Center for the Study of Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Massachusetts General Hospital
Kurt Isselbacher Professor of Medicine
Harvard Medical School
Ramnik Xavier, an institute member of the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, is also Chief of Gastroenterology at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), Kurt Isselbacher Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, and the director of Center for Microbiome informatics and therapeutics, MIT. As a clinical gastroenterologist and molecular biologist, he studies the specific molecular mechanisms involved in innate and adaptive immunity as well as the genetic variants associated with Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and autoimmunity. His laboratory uses genetic, structural, computational, and animal models, as well as clinical research to define the mechanisms controlling inflammation and immunity in vivo. Dr. Xavier is seeking a better understanding of Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, based on the soaring number of genes now known to be implicated in the two immune-related disorders. His lab has translated an unprecedented number of genes to function, and Xavier has published more than 250 peer-reviewed papers over the course of his career.
Through a transformative collaboration with the Broad’s Chemical Biology Platform, the Xavier laboratory aims to discover small molecules that can correct pathways defective in Crohn’s and autoimmunity. Xavier and his colleagues have made progress in identifying small molecules in the autophagy pathway (Crohn’s), and small molecules that control cytokine function and regulatory T cells.
In his role as Chief of Gastroenterology at MGH, which he assumed in 2010, Xavier oversees one of the only comprehensive, multidisciplinary programs in New England dedicated to diagnosing, treating, and managing patients with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. Xavier was elected to the American Association of Physicians in 2011and is also a fellow of the American College of Physicians and a fellow of the American College of Gastroenterology. Dr. Xavier received his MB, ChB from the University of Zimbabwe and completed his residency and fellowship at MGH.