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Faculty Members

Name/Degree(s)Email/Faculty Web Page

Senu Apewokin, MD
View Senu Apewokin, MDProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Apewokin's research involves studying host-microbe interactions using advanced tools such as organoid models and metagenomic sequencing to characterize microbiomes particularly during events such as chemotherapy and organ transplantation.
Akihiro Asai, MD,
View Akihiro Asai, MD, PhDProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Asai's research project focuses on genetic liver disease of infants with aims to find new direct acting medications. Using a novel method to induce human hepatocyte differentiation from iPSCs (induced pluripotent stem cells), his research team developed in vitro disease models (liver in a dish) to investigate the mechanisms of liver injury caused by genetic defects in bile acid metabolism. He tests CRISPR genome editing on iPSCs derived from patients with cholestatic liver disease to correct their mutations.
Oluwole Awosika,
View Oluwole O. Awosika, MDProfile
Research Interests:The Awosika Lab uses non-invasive neuromodulatory protocols to uncover ways to enhance motor recovery after neurologic injury. The lab's research is human-based and promotes the translation of promising neuroplastic approaches in neurologically intact participants to trials involving individuals with neurologic injuries, such as stroke. 
Khurram Bari,
View Akihiro Khurram Bari, MD (
Research Interests:Dr. Bari's main research focus is clinical and translational research on a variety of topics related to Liver Transplantation.  His active projects include role of Budesonide as a systemic sparing steroid for liver transplant immune suppression; and Frailty assessment in liver transplant candidates and its impact on liver transplant outcomes.  

Jason Blackard, PhD
View Jason T. Blackard, PhDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Blackard's research involves studies of several hepatitis viruses, including hepatitis B (HBV), hepatitis e (HEV), and hepatitis G (HGV/GBV-C) as well as HIV. Ongoing research projects include: 1) characterizing the extent of extrahepatic relication of HCV and development of models of HCV replication; 2) HIV replication in hepatocytes and the development of novel in vitro systems of HIV/HCV co-infection; 3) genotypic and phenotypic characterization of hepatitis viruses, particularly in the context of HIV co-infection.
Vladimir Bogdanov,
View Vladimir BogdanovProfile
Research Interests:  
Kenneth Campbell, PhD
View Kenneth J. Campbell, PhDProfile
Research Interests:Research in the Campbell lab is focused on identifying, and molecularly characterizing, the embryonic neural progenitor sources of the distinct neurons that comprise the basal ganglia and broader ventral telencephalic neuronal subtypes. Our goal is to uncover the molecular genetic mechanisms that control the normal formation of basal ganglia circuitry from defined neural progenitor domains within the embryonic brain. By disrupting or augmenting the formation of these circuits, we hope to learn how normal behaviors are altered.  This knowledge will help us generate mouse models of certain behaviors that characterize childhood neuropsychiatric disorders, paving the way for the development of improved therapeutics. 

Karthickeyan Chella Krishnan, PhD
View Karthickeyan Chella Krishnan, PhDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Chella Krishnan’s major research focus is to understand how host genetic background and sex differences influence the mitochondrial (dys)function and increases the susceptibility to several cardiometabolic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, heart hypertrophy and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). The approaches we use include (1) a population-based ‘systems genetics’ approach to integrate information on natural genetic variations (host genetics) with molecular phenotypes (such as gene expression, proteomics, etc.) and clinical phenotypes to identify candidate mitochondrial genes; (2) characterizing the candidate genes in genetically modified mouse models and/or eukaryotic cell lines; (3) characterizing the mitochondrial functions using a Seahorse Bioanalyzer and (4) characterizing the molecular functions using RNA-Sequencing and Single Cell Genomics.
Laura Conforti,
View Laura Conforti, PhDProfile
Research Interests:

Dr. Conforti's laboratory is interested in cancer and autoimmunity.  We study the mechanisms that cancers utilize to evade the attack of the immune system and specifically we study how the tumor microenvironment suppresses the function of T and NK cells. Our research also focuses on understanding the role that immune cells play in the development of lupus nephritis and diabetic nephropathy.  More information can be found at Conforti Lab.


Emily DeFranco, DO
View Emily DeFrancoProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. DeFranco is a clinician scientist. In addition to her clinical work, she leads numerous clinical research studies including pregnant participants. These include clinical trials, large prospective birth cohort studies, and observational epidemiologic studies utilizing large data sets and/or administrative databases. The areas of her active research focus are preterm birth prediction and prevention, infectious disease and vaccines in pregnancy, gestational diabetes, preeclampsia, racial disparities in perinatal outcomes, social determinants of perinatal health, stillbirth, infant mortality, and birth spacing.

Lee (Ted) Denson, MD
View Lee A. Denson, MDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Denson is pursuing a variety of basic and patient based studies related to the pathogenesis and therapy of the Inflammatory Bowel Diseases (IBD) in children which examines the molecular basis for inflammatory growth failure in IBD and novel mechanisms of intestinal epithelial repair and immune tolerance involving human growth hormone and GMCSF.

Prasad Devarajan, MD
View Prasad Devarajan, MDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Devarajan's research examines the roles of Daxx, ASK1, and JNK signal transduction pathways in mediating apoptosis in animal models of acute renal failure and he is examining the role of Golgi-associated isoforms of ankyrin and spectrin in the trafficking of Na, K-ATPase during renal development.

Lawrence Dolan,
View Lawrence M. Dolan, MDProfile
Research Interests:

Dr. Dolan's research includes the epidemiology of obesity, insulin resistance, and diabetes in youth with an emphasis of the effect of each on the development of cardiovascular disease and the effect of the maternal intrauterine environment on the development of diseases in youth and young adults.

James Geller,
View James I. Geller, MDProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Geller's primary professional goal is to develop novel therapy options for infants, children, adolescents, and young adults with solid tumors. For the past two decades, he has worked collaboratively at both the institutional and national levels to achieve this goal. At the institutional level, he achieves this through direct patient care and by leading his teams in clinical and research efforts in his specialty areas of Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center as medical director of the Kidney and Liver Tumor Programs. He runs several registries including the TFE renal cell carcinoma registry and the relapsed and refractory hepatoblastoma registry and is principal investigator of the cisplatin/sodium thiosulfate and SAHA HDAC inhibition study for relapsed embryonal tumors including hepatoblastoma. At the national level, he is a member of the Children's Oncology Group's Renal Tumor and Liver Tumor Committees and currently serves as Chair of the Renal Tumor Committee. He is currently Chair of three national studies: AREN1721 (study of renal cell carcinoma), AREN 1921 (study of high-risk Wilms tumor), and AHEP1531 (study of hepatoblastoma and hepatocellular carcinoma). Previously, he was principal investigator of three novel therapy developmental therapeutics studies (ADVL1111, ADVL1315, and ADVL 1522). 
Donald Gilbert, MD,
View Donald L. Gilbert, MD, MSProfile

Research Interests:Dr. Gilbert's team's research involves clinical neurophysiology in two domains. First, we use Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) to measure excitatory and inhibitory properties in motor and prefrontal cortex and Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) in striatum to identify potential biomarker of treatments to improve symptoms and function in children with Tourette Syndrome, ADHD, Neurofibromatosis Type 1, and dystonia. Second, we use invasive (DBS) and non-invasive (TMS) for neuromodulatory treatments. 

David Haslam, MD
View David B. Haslam, MDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Haslam's research laboratory is studying the role of commensal microorganisms (the microbiome) in defense against infectious diseases and specifically investigating the intestinal microbiome as the source for antibiotic resistant bacterial infections, whether commensal bacteria confer resistance to C. difficile infection and identifying risk factors for invasive infection and sepsis using next generation sequencing and metagenomics analysis.
Kevin Haworth,
View Kevin Haworth, PhDProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Haworth's research interests broadly include biomedical ultrasound imaging and therapy. In particular, he is currently directing and conducting research in medical ultrasound including the use of bubbles for diagnostic and therapeutic applications. His work includes studies of cavitation imaging and acoustic droplet vaporization for gas scavenging and imaging. These studies have been funded through the NIH, the American Heart Association, and institutional awards. Ongoing studies of passive cavitation imaging are being pursued to develop image-guidance for cavitation-based therapies such as drug delivery, thrombolysis, and histotripsy. He has also developed research tools to enable ultrasound-mediated blood brain barrier disruption. Additional studies are being performed to modify the imaging algorithm for improved image quality. Dr. Haworth is the principal investigator of an NIH-NHLBI R01 grant entitled "Ultrasound-mediated controlled hypoxemic reperfusion for inhibition of reperfusion injury." While new therapies restore blood flow during myocardial infarction (i.e., a heart attack) can be life-saving, up to half of the volume of heart tissue at risk during a heart attack dies, paradoxically, due to the return of blood flow. The previously oxygen-started heart muscle responds to the influx of oxygen by creating free radicals that damage the patient's heart cells, so-called reperfusion injury. This project uses a novel, ultrasound-mediated technique to sequester oxygen from the blood to limit free radical formation and reduce reperfusion injury. Extension of this work to other organs, including the kidney are of interest. 

Michael Helmrath, MD
View Michael A. Helmrath, MDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Helmrath's laboratory has a long history of studying the adaptive response to intestinal loss using murine models of short bowel syndrome. Recent work has identified the role of intestinal stem cell during this response, which has led to the development of new methods to study both murine and human intestinal stem cells. These include methods to FACS sort, culture and expand both murine and human intestinal stem cell and models of transplantation.
Gurjit (Neeru) Khurana Hershey, MD, PhD
View Gurjit "Neeru" Khurana Hershey, MD, PhDProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Khurana Hershey's research centers on identifying the genetic and environmental factors important in asthma and allergy, especially at the epithelial surfaces, and dissecting the molecular mechanisms underlying their contributions. Current projects in the laboratory include (1) Elucidation of epithelial genes and pathways critical to asthma and allergic disease; (2) Pathogenesis of atopic dermatitis and the mechanistic basis of the atopic march; (3) Identification of environmental factors that contribute to childhood asthma and allergy phenotypes and defining the molecular mechanisms driving the associations; and (4) Identification of molecular endotypes of childhood asthma and allergy. Dr. Khurana is an internationally recognized expert in pediatric allergy and immunology, genetics, and environmental health. Over the last 2 decades she has built and contributed to several innovative longitudinal cohorts including the Mechanisms of Progression of AD to Asthma in Children(M-PAACH) cohort, the first early life prospective cohort of infants/toddlers with AD; the Greater Cincinnati Pediatric Clinic Repository (GCPCR, N>7,500); the Ohio Pediatric Asthma Repository (OPAR, N>3,500), the first state-wide repository for asthma; and the Cincinnati Childhood Asthma and Air Pollution Study (CCAAPS, N=600) birth cohort. These cohorts link longitudinal biospecimens and data, and provide a tremendous and unique infastructure for research. Dr. Khurana Hershey is committed to the education and mentoring of trainees at all levels. She has an established record of employing the highest standards of rigor and transparency in her research. She regularly engages in activities that promote trainee career development including the utilization of individual Development Plans. She is fully committed to providing a safe and inclusive work environment, which celebrates diversity, equity and inclusion at all levels. 
David Hildeman,
View David A. Hildeman, PhDProfile
Research Interests:The Hildeman Lab studies the molecular mechanisms controlling lymphocyte homeostasis and function. We use cellular, genetic, and bioinformatic approaches in animal models and human samples to investigate lymphocyte fate and function in health and disease. The lab has 3 major areas of interest: (i) the role of Bcl2 family members in the development of immunity and autoimmunity (Shanmuganad et al BIORXIV 2023); (ii) the role of counter-regulatory mechanisms in control of immune suppression in aging (Almanan et al Sci. Adv.2020); and (iii) deconstructing kidney allograft rejection at single cell resolution (Shi et al J. Clin. Invest. 2023). The long-term goal of the lab is to uncover novel therapeutic targets that can be used to promote T cell survival in some instances (e.g. vaccines) and enhance T cell apoptosis in other instances (e.g. autoimmunity, solid organ rejection). 
Christy Holland,
View Christy K. Holland, PhDProfile
Research Interests:In ongoing studies, Dr. Holland's research team has demonstrated that pulsed ultrasound accelerates clot dissolution in vitroand in a porcine thromboembolism model in vivo, and that sustained bubble activity nucleated by echo contrast agents is correlated with enhancement of thrombolytic efficacy. The overall goal is to harness the physical mechanisms underlying clot dissolution with ultrasound and to extend our investigations with a lytic and a commercial echo contrast agent. Definity, to the EKOS endovascular system in an in vitro model of deep vein thrombosis, DVT. Successful completion of these studies will provide new information for the development of an effective catheter-directed therapeutic strategy to promote rapid restoration of flow in the deep veins. 
Stacey Huppert,
View Stacey S. Huppert, PhDProfile

Research Interests:

The goal of Dr. Huppert's research is to identify and define the molecular factors that regulate hepatic stem/progenitor cell lineage decisions for formation of the hepatic architecture, both during normal hepatic morphogenesis and during regeneration.
Jessica Kahn, MD,
View Jessica A. Kahn, MD, MPHProfile
Research Interests:

Dr. Kahn is a Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Adolescent and Transition Medicine at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital (CCHMC) and the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine. Her overall research objectives are to decrease morbidity and mortality due to cervical cancer and other diseases caused by human papillomavirus (HPV) and to reduce racial and ethnic disparities in these diseases. Her research program focuses on primary and secondary prevention of HPV-related diseases through technologies such as Pap testing, HPV DNA testing, and HPV vaccines. Studies have characterized attitudes about HPV vaccination among adolescents, parents, and clinicians; predictors of clinician recommendations and adolescent uptake of HPV vaccines; epidemiology and risk factors for HPV in adolescents; acceptability and accuracy of HPV DNA self- and clinician-testing in adolescents; impact of HPV vaccination on sexual attitudes and behaviors; immunogenicity and safety of HPV vaccines in HIV-infected young women and men; the epidemiologic impact of HPV vaccine introduction in communities; and the use of technologies to improve HPV vaccine uptake.


Min Liu, PhD
View Min Liu, PhDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Liu's long-term research goal is to understand the regulation of energy balance and develop potential therapeutic approaches for both obesity and diabetes. His major focus is to elucidate molecular mechanisms mediating the actions of apolipoproteins and other natural compounds in the regulation of energy and glucose homeostasis by 1) studying the interactions of central apolipoproteins A-IV with estrogen in the control of food intake and body weight, and 2) identifying safe and effective natural compounds, e.g. ginsenoside Rb1 (an active compound extracted from ginseng), for prevention and treatment of obesity and related diseases.

Bryan Mackenzie, PhD
View Bryan Mackenzie, PhDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Mackenzie's major focus is the molecular physiology DMT1 and its role in intestinal metal-ion absorption. Efforts are concentrated on understanding its molecular mechanisms, substrate selectivity, structure-function, and the functional interaction of DMT1 with other intestinal proteins.
Satish Madala,
View Satish K. MadalaProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Madala's lab's research goals are to identify mechanisms underlying the initiation and maintenance of fibrosis in multiple organs and develop novel therapies that prevent fibrosis and support the regeneration of severely damaged fibrotic tissues. Fibrosis is due to the excessive disposition of collagen and other extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins in tissues, a pathology common to several fibrotic lung and kidney diseases.  Fibrosis in the distal areas of the lung disrupts gas exchange and is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in severe fibrotic diseases including idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF), cystic fibrosis (CF), and systemic sclerosis (SSC-ILD).  Nevertheless, despite the enormous impact of fibrotic diseases on human health, there are currently few treatments with limited or no cure.  

Alexander Miethke, MD
View Alexander G. Miethke, MDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Miethke's lab focuses on mechanisms driving bile duct injury and fibrosis in the two most common obstructive cholangiopathies affecting children: biliary atresia and primary sclerosing cholangitis (PSC). In both diseases, they aim to understand how regulatory T cells control lymphocyte medicated bile duct injury and stellate cell driven fibrosis. To this end, they use transgenic mice facilitating precise quantification and targeted depletion of various immune cells. More recently, they started investigating how metabolic factors, for instance bile acids or phospholipids, modulate activation and recruitment of lymphocytes, especially of regulatory T cells. Methods used commonly in our laboratory include real-time PCR, immunohistochemistry, and multi-color flow cytometry. They collaborate closely with the department of pathology, especially with the mass spectrometry core. They also study whether these mechanisms are relevant in humans. We examine immunoregulatory circuits in liver tissue and peripheral blood from children with biliary atresia or PSC, and correlate clinical disease course with prevalent pathways of immune activation.

Phillip Minar, MD
View Phillip Minar, MDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Minar's research is interested in the advancement of personalized medicine in the care of children with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), both Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. We are committed to the investigation of novel, blood biomarkers to predict and monitor response to anti-TNF therapies while also investigating the pharmacokinetics of these medications.
Mark Mitsnefes, MD,
View Mark M. Mitsnefes, MD, MSProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Mitsnefes' research focus understands risk factors for cardiovascular disease in children with chronic kidney disease. The long-term goal of his research is to define biologic targets for interventions to prevent and slow progression of cardiovascular disease in children with chronic kidney disease.

Ardythe Morrow, PhD
View Ardythe Morrow, PhDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Morrow's research is directly related to the biologic importance of human breast milk. She has founded multidisciplinary Human Milk Research Program involving clinical and basic scientists studying the effects of bioactive components of human milk on protection against infectious and chronic diseases.
Marialena Mouzaki, MD,
View Marialena Mouzaki, MD, MScProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Mouzaki is doing clinical research in pediatric non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). She is particularly interested in identifying risk factors of disease severity, as well as determining the role of the intestinal microbiome in the pathogenesis of NAFLD.
Takahisa Nakamura,
View Takahisa Nakamura, PhDProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Nakamura's lab research meticulously delves into the complex world of RNA-associated pathways, shedding light on their crucial role in the onset of metabolic disorders like type 2 diabetes, pancreatitis, NAFLD/steatosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma. We are committed to translating these scientific insights into innovative therapeutic strategies, with the ultimate goal of pioneering new treatments for these widespread diseases and making a global impact on millions of lives.  
Laura Ngwenya, MD, PhD,
View Laura B. Ngwenya, MD,PhDProfile
Research Interests:The Translational Neurotrauma Laboratory aims to understand the mechanisms behind poor cognitive recovery after traumatic brain injury. The lab studies spreading depolarizations, adult neurogenesis, and molecular substrates to ultimately derive targeted interventions for injured patients. 
Ernest Pedapati, MD, MS,
View Ernest Pedapati, MD, MS, FAAPProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Pedapati's research involves biomarker and interventional trials in neurodevelopmental disorders including Fragile X Syndrome and autism. Ongoing research projects include: 1) cognitive enhancement in children with intellectual disability by neural entrainment, 2) non-invasive brain stimulation to improve depression and cognitive flexibility in autism, 3) development and characterization of adeno-associated virus (AAV) gene therapy for Fragile X Syndrome. 

Scott Powers, PhD
View Scott W. Powers, PhD, ABPP, FAHSProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Powers is investigating methods to increase adherence to dietary adherence in cystic fibrosis and evaluating the effectiveness of a combined coping skill training and amitriptyline intervention of children with chronic headaches.

Marc Rothenberg, MD, PhD
View Marc E. Rothenberg, MD, PhDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Rothenberg's research is focused on elucidating the the mechanisms of allergic responses especially in mucosal tissues such as the lung and the gastrointestinal tract. The goal of the research is to identify novel pharmaceutical approaches and treatment strategies for allergic disorders such as eosinophil-associated gastrointestinal disorders, asthma and food allergies.
Daniel Schauer, MD,
View Daniel P. Schauer, MD,MSc.Profile
Research Interests:Dr. Schauer completed medical school and residency training at the University of Cincinnati and completed an outcomes research fellowship at UC and Harvard University School of Public Health. His methodological expertise is in the decision sciences, patient-centered outcomes and comparative effectiveness research.  Much of his research is focused in two areas: graduate medical education outcomes and the outcomes associated with bariatric surgery, including cancer. He has experience using many of the large publicly available datasets including the National Health Interview Survey that is linked to the National Death Index and the Nationwide Inpatient Sample in his research. Additionally, as associate program director for resident research, he oversees all of the resident research in the department of Internal Medicine. 
Kenneth Setchell, PhD
View Kenneth D. Setchell, PhDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Setchell's research activities include the application of mass spectrometry to study the pathogenesis and treatment of inborn errors of bile acid metabolism and other cholestatic diseases in collaboration with Dr.Kathy Campbell. He also has a focus on nutritional research into the properties of bioactive soy isoflavones, lipid metabolism related to genetic dyslipidemias and cancer biology, and in drug metabolism, while directing an active Core Mass Spectrometry Facility for other investigators within CCHMC and UC.

Kenneth Sherman, MD, PhD
View Kenneth E. Sherman, MD,PhDProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Sherman's research focuses on the interactions of hapatotropic viruses in immunosuppressed hosts. In particular, his laboratory investigates the relationship between hepatitis C virus (HCV) and immunodeficiency virus infection.
Dorothy Supp,
View Takanori Takebe, MD, PhDProfile
 Our lab studies wound healing and tissue engineering. We are focused on improving wound healing outcomes, reducing excessive scar formation, and replacing tissue that is lost due to injury or disease. Current studies are aimed at understanding the mechanistic basis for formation of fibrotic scars, such as hypertrophic scars and keloids, including the role of nutritional deficiencies in scar formation, and identifying novel therapeutic interventions to improve regenerative healing. Although our focus in on the skin, fibrotic scars occur in internal organs as well, so our research has implications for fibrosis of the lung, liver, heart, and kidney in addition to skin wounds. Our tissue engineering research aims to replace skin with autologous (e.g., patient-derived) tissue that can restore the structure and functions of uninjured skin. We are developing engineered skin substitutes with increased complexity over prior models by incorporation of pigmentation, blood vessels, hair follicles, and neurons, and are developing skin and mucosal tissue substitutes as a therapy for treatment of recessive dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa (RDEB). RDEB is a hereditary blistering disease that affects skin and the lining of the gastrointestinal tract. We are developing novel therapies of RDEB utilizing gene-edited patient-derived cells to generate next-generation skin and mucosal substitutes that resist blister formation and restore normal tissue function. Collaborative studies are utilizing our engineered skin substitutes as an organotypic model for studies of wound healing and cancer therapy. 
Takanori Takebe,
View Takanori Takebe, MD, PhDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Takebe is studying hepato-biliary-pancreatic system development and disease. With a goal to direct organogenesis ex vivo, his lab mainly utilizes healthy and patients' pluripotent stem cells to self-organize into three-dimensional (3-D) structures reminiscent of human organs, so-called organoids for disease modeling, drug testing and transplant approach towards therapy.
Patrick Tso,
View Patrick Tso, PhDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Tso's laboratory is currently studying the mechanisms of fat and cholesterol absorption. They are also examining food intake regulation by gastrointestinal peptides and the effect of apo AIV on food intake and the factors that affect the absorption of metabolism of organochlorine compounds by the gastrointestinal tract.
Yvonne Ulrich-Lai,
View Yvonne Ulrich-LaiProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Ulrich-Lai's preclinical research program is focused on identifying the neural and hormonal substrates that are responsible for interactions among diet, obesity and stress. Major projects include understanding how the eating of "comfort" foods provides stress relief, and how experiencing chronic psychological stress impacts food choice, metabolism and energy balance.
Kelli VanDussen,
View Kelli L. VanDussen, PhDProfile
Research Interests:Dr. VanDussen’s research investigates mechanisms of inflammatory bowel disease pathogenesis, with a focus on intestinal epithelial cells. Her lab aims to translate findings from human patients to experimental animal and culture models in the lab.
James Wells,
View James M. Wells, PhDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Wells' research focuses on understanding the molecular basis of endoderm development and disease which includes 1) identifying the cause of congenital defects affecting the pancreas, stomach and hepatobiliary system and intestines, 2) directing the differentiation of human embryonic and induced pluripotent stent cells (iPScs) into endoderm organ tissues including pancreatic, gastric, and intestinal tissue, 3) identifying molecular pathways involved in diseases affecting adult endoderm organs, including cancer, cystic fibrosis and diabetes.
Jeffrey Whitsett,
View Jeffrey A. Whitsett, MDProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Whitsett is internationally known for his research in pulmonary medicine and his clinical expertise in neonatology. Dr. Whitsett has made groundbreaking contributions to pulmonary medicine and biology in his studies of the surfactant proteins A, B, C, and D, cloning their genes and clarifying their roles in lung development and function. Throughout his career, Dr. Whitsett has transitioned from molecular biology to animal models and then to the diagnosis and therapy of human disease. Notably, he has played a critical role in making surfactant protein replacement routine in the treatment of immature lungs and respiratory distress syndrome in premature infants. Notably, his laboratory has contributed to the identification of a number of genes critical for lung formation and function and shown that mutations in genes regulating surfactant homeostasis are responsible for acute and chronic lung disease in infants and adults. Dr. Whitsett is the author of over 600 basic science and clinical literature papers. 

Jason Winnick, PhD
View Jason J. Winnick, PhDProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Winnick’s research expertise is the field of hepatic glucose metabolism, where he utilizes both human and animal models to gain insights into the pathology of diabetes (both type 1 and type 2) and the development of treatments to improve patient care. Specific topics include 1) the regulation of hepatic glucose uptake and glycogen synthesis in response to feeding; 2) the effect of various interventions (e.g., exercise, sleep and weight loss surgery) on fasting and postprandial hepatic glucose metabolism; and 3) the regulation of hormonal and hepatic responses to insulin-induced hypoglycemia (which is our lab’s primary focus at this time).
Trisha Wise-Draper, MD,
View Trisha M. Wise-Draper, MD,PhDProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Wise-Draper's laboratory is focused on understanding mechanisms of resistance and developing novel treatment strategies for head and neck cancer. Her laboratory utilizes patient samples from clinical trials to mechanistically understand why a patient responds or doesn't respond to therapy. Her laboratory has discovered that patients treated with metformin, a diabetes medication, respond better to standard treatments, have an enhanced innate immune response with increased and enhanced cytotoxic NK cells, as well as suppression of cytokines such as IL-6 and IL-9. Currently, they are studying potential mechanisms in which this effect occurs through the CXCR2/CXCL1 and metabolic pathways for possible improved treatment in the future.
Daniel Woo, MD,
View Daniel Woo, MD, MSProfile
Research Interests:

Dr. Woo is a Professor of Neurology and has been mentoring students and trainees since 1998. His own research is in molecular epidemiology of complex traits. Dr. Woo has access to multiple large-scale datasets with phenotypic, neuroimaging, outcomes and genetic epidemiology data including race/ethnic/sex and age diversity. Dr. Woo is currently faculty for the NINDS Clinical Trials Methodology Course, founder of the NINDS NeuroNEXT Education Committee, Principal Investigator of the T32 Cerebrovascular Disease Fellowship, and mentor on multiple NIH K-awards. Dr. Woo's regulatory experience includes service to the IRB including as Vice-Chair and medical director of the post approval monitoring program and his editorial experience includes section editor for the American Heart Association Journal Stroke. Dr. Woo has mentored multiple students through successful MSSRP summer student projects including data generation, abstract submission to national meetings and manuscripts.

Jessica Woo, MHSA, PhD
View Jessica Graus Woo, MHSA, PhDProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Woo is an epidemiologist with a research program focused on childhood obesity development. Specifically pertaining to nutrition, her research includes breastfeeding and human milk composition, complementary feeding patterns, diet quality in early childhood, maternal feeding practices and feeding styles, and dietary interventions in children with obesity. A focus on how dietary intake is related to childhood growth and obesity is central to these projects. She is developing additional research pertaining to improving dietary habits and evaluating food purchasing patterns in families with young children, with a goal of establishing healthy eating habits in infancy and toddlers. In addition, she is the PI of several epidemiologic cohorts with rich longitudinal dietary data, which are available for analysis. Dr. Woo is the current chair of the Maternal, Perinatal and Pediatric Research Interest Section of the American Society of Nutrition.
Amoah Yeboah-Korang, MD,
View Amoah Yeboah-Korang, MD,MPHProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Yeboah-Korang's research interests are: 1) drug-induced liver injury and 2) interventions to reduce cardiovascular events and cardiovascular death after liver transplant.
Chunyue Yin,
View Chunyue Yin, PhDProfile
Research Interests:Dr. Yin's research focuses on the molecular genetics of childhood inherited intrahepatic cholestasis type II that is caused by deficiency of bile salt export pump. In collaboration with Dr. Alexander Miethke, she has also established a pipeline to discover novel genetic causes of chronic cholestasis syndromes.
Aaron Zorn,
View Aaron M. Zorn, PhDProfile

Research Interests:

Dr. Zorn's lab's focus is to understand the molecular mechanisms controlling development of the liver, pancreas and gastrointestinal tract derived from the embryonic endoderm. They use frog and mouse embryos to investigate the genetic pathways underlying this poorly understood process of organ formation. Their research will help our understanding of congenital diseases in these organ systems and the ability to direct the development of stem cells to make therapeutically useful tissue.


The College of Medicine and NIH sponsors (through a mentored medical student research program) a program for students after the 1st year of medical school. The program is designed to expose students to the methods and techniques utilized in biomedical research. The long term goal is to encourage medical students and young physicians to pursue careers in biomedical research.

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Medical Student Summer Research Program
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center
240 Albert Sabin Way
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Phone: 513-636-9776
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