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Associate Junior Faculty Scholars

The Associate Junior Faculty Scholar Program was a new addition to the Bucksbaum Institute in year one after the initial launch of the program. The nomination process for Junior Faculty Scholars consistently generates many exceptional candidate recommendations from various clinical departments. In an effort to retain involvement from these superb faculty who were nominated but did not receive one of the Junior Faculty Scholar Awards, we created the position of Associate Junior Faculty Scholar. The Associate Junior Faculty Scholars are eligible to apply for funding through the Bucksbaum Institute Pilot Grant Program.

2018-19 Associate Junior Faculty Scholars
Mim Ari, MD

Mim Ari, MD
Department of Medicine

Dr. Mim Ari is an Assistant Professor in the Section of General Internal Medicine at the University of Chicago. After attending Georgetown University for her undergraduate degree, Dr. Ari completed medical school, residency in internal medicine (primary care track) and a chief medical resident year at the University of Colorado. After working at Denver Health and Cook County, she joined the Department of Medicine at the University of Chicago in 2017. She is currently a clinician-educator interested in the integration of substance use disorder recognition and treatment into internal medicine practice, behavioral health and underserved/stigmatized populations. She is actively involved and interested in both resident and medical student training. She is currently completing the MERITS Faculty Fellowship in Medical Education at the University of Chicago.

Asim Farooq, MD

Asim Farooq, MD
Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Science

Dr. Asim V. Farooq is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Science. He received his medical degree from the University of Illinois College of Medicine where during his time there, he was awarded a grant from Research to Prevent Blindness, allowing him to devote a year to study the pathogenesis of herpes simplex virus (HSV) infection in the cornea. Following, he then completed ophthalmology residency training at the University of Illinois Eye and Ear Infirmary, and a fellowship in cornea and external disease at the Washington University in St. Louis. During his fellowship, Farooq trained under Dr. Todd Margolis, an expert in herpetic corneal disease.

Dr. Farooq has published 40 peer-reviewed articles and 3 book chapters. His clinical and research interests are focused on ocular surface disease, corneal manifestations of autoimmune disease, as well as corneal infections, especially those caused by HSV, herpes zoster virus (HZV), and cytomegalovirus (CMV). His goal is to better understand the pathogenesis of these viruses, as well as to improve diagnostic accuracy.

Rebecca Garza, MD

Rebecca Garza, MD
Department of Surgery

Dr. Rebecca Garza earned her medical degree from the University of Illinois and then went on to complete an integrated plastic surgery residency at Stanford University. She then pursued an additional fellowship year of training in reconstructive microsurgery at the University of Chicago before joining the faculty as an Assistant Professor in the Section of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

Dr. Garza’s primary clinical focus is on breast reconstruction, lymphedema surgery, and complex reconstructive surgery of the head and neck, extremities, and trunk. She has additional expertise in cosmetic surgery and is working to strengthen resident education in this facet of plastic surgery.

Dr. Garza’s research interests include clinical outcomes in breast reconstruction and lymphedema surgery, as well as studying gender issues and parenthood in surgery.

Kelly Hynes, MD

Kelly Hynes, MD
Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and Rehabilitative Medicine

Dr. Kelly Hynes earned her medical degree from the Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. She then went on to complete her Orthopaedic Surgery residency at the University of Ottawa in Ontario, Canada. She completed her Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Reconstruction Fellowship at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada.

Her clinical interests are foot and ankle trauma surgery, adult foot deformity correction and reconstruction and Arthroscopic surgery of the Foot and ankle. She sits on several committees at a national and international level including the Canadian Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society Executive Committee, the Ruth Jackson Orthopaedic Society Mentoring Committee and the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society Young Physicians Committee.

At the University of Chicago, she is the Ambulatory Medical Director for Orthopaedic Surgery, Medical Director of Informatics and a core member of the Quality Committee for Orthopaedic surgery. She is interested in improving efficiency and quality of care through informatics.

James LaBelle, MD, PhD

James LaBelle, MD, PhD
Department of Pediatrics

Dr. James LaBelle is an Assistant Professor Pediatrics in the Section of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology/Stem Cell Transplantation. Dr. LaBelle received his undergraduate degree from Lawrence University and completed a combined MD/PhD program at the Medical College of Wisconsin where his graduate work centered on anti-tumor immunology and stem cell transplantation. He completed his internship and residency in pediatrics at the Boston Children’s Hospital/Boston Medical Center combined residency program followed by pediatric hematology/oncology fellowship and post-doctoral training in cancer chemical biology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

Dr. LaBelle’s research focuses on manipulating the immune system using peptide-based therapeutics against T cell-intrinsic proteins and small molecules targeting the BCL-2 family of apoptotic proteins with a particular focus on reactivating anti-tumor immune responses. He also works closely with nanotechnologists and chemical engineers at the Institute of Molecular Engineering to overcome physiological barriers to efficient and clinically effective intracellular delivery of peptide therapeutics. In addition to his efforts in the laboratory, Dr. LaBelle is the Director of the Pediatric Stem Cell Transplant Program at Comer Children’s Hospital where he focuses on the treatment of graft-versus-host disease and works collaboratively with scientists, clinicians, and patients to make inroads in treating children suffering from refractory malignancies.

Holly Shiao, MD

Holly Shiao, MD
Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neuroscience

Dr. Holly Shiao is an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Director of Emergency Psychiatry. She has a special focus on Psycho-Oncology, providing care to cancer patients both in hospital and clinical settings. She is also an attending on the Consultation/Liaison Psychiatry service.

Dr. Shiao attended medical school at John P. and Kathrine G. McGovern Medical School at the University Health Science Center at Houston. She then completed a General Psychiatry residency at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, followed by a Consultation/Liaison fellowship at Dell Medical School at the University of Texas at Austin.

Dr. Shiao is interested in the benefits of mindfulness and supportive psychotherapy for patients. She also teaches and serves as a mentor for the residents.

Mark Slidell, MD, MPH

Mark Slidell, MD, MPH
Department of Surgery

Dr. Mark Slidell is an Assistant Professor of Surgery in the Section of Pediatric Surgery at The University of Chicago. He earned his medical degree from Brown University School of Medicine and went on to complete his general surgery residency at Georgetown University Hospital in Washington, DC. During his residency, Dr. Slidell completed a Master’s in Public Health at The Johns Hopkins University, Bloomberg School of Public Health with a concentration in Epidemiology and Biostatistics. He subsequently went on to complete a fellowship in Pediatric Surgery at Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, DC. Following that, Dr. Slidell joined the faculty at The University of Chicago Medicine.

Dr. Slidell has specific expertise in advanced minimally invasive surgery in children and newborns, and he applies these skills to the treatment of children with a broad range of diseases such as pediatric pancreatic, liver and bile duct diseases, aerodigestive diseases such as GERD, and to chest wall reconstruction for patients with pectus excavatum and carinatum deformities. Dr. Slidell frequently collaborates with other surgeons and clinicians across disciplines to enhance the care we can provide to pediatric patients. He is a co-founder of The Chest Wall Deformity Program at the University of Chicago, and the Pediatric Aerodigestive Center at The University of Chicago. Dr. Slidell also partners with adult general and transplant surgeons to offer total pancreatectomy with islet cell autotransplantation (TP-IAT) for children with genetic forms of chronic pancreatitis.

Dr. Slidell is also the Director of Pediatric Trauma at Comer Children’s Hospital, which is a high acuity Level One Pediatric Trauma Center. He is currently involved in conducting patient safety, quality improvement and clinical outcomes research to improve the quality of trauma care provided to injured children. He is also an active member of the Outcomes and Evidence Based Practice Committee, of the American Pediatric Surgical Association.

Dr. Slidell is a dedicated educator and mentor, and is passionate about educating and training the next generation of physicians, surgeons and scientists. He has been the recipient of numerous teaching awards throughout his academic career.

2017-18 Associate Junior Faculty Scholars
Jason Alexander, MD

Jason Alexander, MD
Department of Medicine

Dr. Jason Alexander is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine. He received his undergraduate and medical degrees from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. He then completed his medical residency at the University of Chicago and subsequently completed a chief residency at MacNeal Hospital in Berwyn, Illinois. He is currently a clinician-educator in the primary care group and serves as core faculty and director of the evidence-based medicine curriculum for the University of Chicago Internal Medicine Residency Program. Dr. Alexander has academic interests in developing curricula that focus on evidence-based medicine and clinical reasoning.

Deirdre de Ranieri, MD

Deirdre de Ranieri, MD
Department of Pediatrics

Deirdre De Ranieri, MD,RhMSUS is an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, in the Section of Pediatric Rheumatology. She completed her undergraduate degree in Mathematics at Washington and Lee University, graduated from Tulane University School of Medicine in 2008, and did her medical training, including residency and fellowship, at the University of Chicago. She is currently serving as the Director of the Pediatric Rheumatology Fellowship Program. Dr. De Ranieri has a large clinical practice, mostly comprised of children with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA), and has been involved in several clinical trials which focus on the treatment of children with JIA. Dr. De Ranieri’s main research interest is in using musculoskeletal ultrasound (MSK US) to diagnose, monitor and treat children with JIA. She is involved in an international collaboration designed to standardize views of children’s joints. This year, she received a grant from CARRA (Childhood Arthritis and Rheumatology Research Alliance) to help identify subclinical disease in children with JIA, in the hopes of providing earlier more aggressive therapy (that is currently limited to polyarticular JIA) to these children, with the goal of minimizing disease sequelae, such as joint deformity, limitation, and pain. She is involved in teaching MSK US to her colleagues and fellows, as well as the Peds ER fellows, and is a part of the American College of Rheumatology MSK US examination certification program, which certifies rheumatologists in MSK US.

Dr. De Ranieri is now at the Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago in Chicago, IL. She is also an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.

Ami Desai, MD, MSCE

Ami Desai, MD, MSCE
Department of Pediatrics

Dr. Ami Desai is an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics in the Section of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology and Stem Cell Transplantation. Dr. Desai earned a BA in economics, with highest honors, from Rutgers University and an MD from the Rutgers-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School (7-year Baccalaureate/MD Program). She completed her internship and residency in pediatrics at Yale-New Haven Children’s Hospital and a fellowship in pediatric hematology/oncology at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. She also completed the Master of Science in Clinical Epidemiology (MSCE) Program at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, with a concentration in pharmacoepidemiology, during her fellowship.

Dr. Desai’s research focus is on clinical drug development for childhood and young adult cancers, and understanding treatment-related toxicities, particularly with regard to solid tumors such as neuroblastoma and sarcomas. She is also interested in the discovery and use of biomarkers of drug toxicity and disease response in drug development and treatment paradigms. Dr. Desai has served as an Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation Developmental Therapeutics Scholar, among other honors. In addition to her efforts in the solid tumor program and developmental therapeutics, Dr. Desai serves as the Director of the Pediatric Cancer Risk Program.

Zhen Gooi, MD

Zhen Gooi, MD
Department of Surgery

Dr. Zhen Gooi is an Assistant Professor of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery. He completed his residency in otolaryngology-head and neck surgery and fellowship in advanced head and neck surgical oncology at the Johns Hopkins Hopsital. His clinical focus is on patients with head and neck cancers. He has a special interest in the use of minimally invasive surgical techniques to preserve speech and swallowing function in the treatment of these patients. Dr. Gooi believes that head and neck cancer care is most effective when delivered in a multi-disciplinary setting. In this regard, he is an active collaborator in novel treatment de-intensification protocols to reduce the side effects of head and neck cancer treatment with University of Chicago medical and radiation oncologists. He is passionate in raising the profile of head and neck cancer in the larger medical community and is involved in efforts to increase the awareness of national guidelines pertaining to the treatment of head and neck cancers.

Priti Jani, MD, MPH

Priti Jani, MD, MPH
Department of Pediatrics

Dr. Jani is an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics in the section of Critical Care Medicine. She completed her medical school training at Rush University College of Medicine and her Masters in Public Health at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Committed to working with an underserved population, she came to the University of Chicago where she completed her residency and fellowship prior to joining the faculty. Dr. Jani cares for patients in the both the Pediatric Intensive Care unit and on the Pediatric Sedation service.

Dr. Jani’s scholarly interests focus on using simulation-based medical education to improve resuscitation quality and outcomes. She is highly invested in resident education and directs a simulation-based curriculum to increase competency in resuscitation skills and knowledge. She also serves as the chair of the pediatric Resuscitation Quality Review and Improvement committee and is an active participant in the PediRES-Q network, a national collaborative dedicated to producing evidence-based solutions for quality improvement initiatives and outcomes during pediatric cardiopulmonary arrest. Serving as the current president of the Chicago Simulation Consortium, she leads a multidisciplinary group of simulation-based health professions educators across the Chicagoland area in sharing resources, enhancing professional development and facilitating collaborative research.

Christopher Kramer, MD

Christopher Kramer, MD
Department of Neurology

Dr. Christopher Kramer is an Assistant Professor of Neurology and Neurosurgery in the Section of Neurocritical Care. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Illinois and his medical degree from the Chicago Medical School. He then went on to pursue his Neurology residency training at the Mayo Clinic in Arizona followed by his Neurocritical Care fellowship at Mayo Clinic in Minnesota before joining the faculty at the University of Chicago.

He has a passion for quality improvement and currently serves as the Neurology Quality Chief and is involved in numerous resident-initiated QI projects and the maintenance of the Comprehensive Stroke Center. In addition to quality improvement, he has a keen interest in medical education and serves as the Neurocritical Care Fellowship Program Director and as a member of the Neurology Resident Education Committee and the Clinical Competency Committee. Furthermore, he is a faculty advisor to neurology residents, is developing a simulation-based curriculum for learners of various levels and backgrounds on neurological emergencies, has published numerous reviews and book chapters, and has lectured and led workshops on a national level.

Ricardo Lastra, MD

Ricardo Lastra, MD
Department Pathology

Dr. Ricardo Lastra is an Assistant Professor of Pathology. He completed with medical training at the Universidad Central de Venezuela, and subsequently completed his residency in Anatomic and Clinical Pathology at Pennsylvania Hospital. This was followed by Surgical Pathology and Cytopathology Fellowships, both at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, and the Advanced Specialty Training Program in Gynecologic Pathology at the Johns Hopkins Hospital.

Dr. Lastra joined the University of Chicago in 2015, and participates in the gynecologic pathology and cytopathology services in the Department of Pathology. He is actively involved in medical student, resident, and fellow education, and is currently section co-coordinator for the Obstetrics and Gynecology Section of the Clinical Pathophysiology and Therapeutics Course at the Pritzker School of Medicine of the University of Chicago. Additionally, he is the program director for the recently approved Gynecologic and Breast Pathology Fellowship at the University of Chicago.

His primary research interest is in the fields of gynecologic pathology and cytopathology, and he has focused on evaluating the use of distinctive morphologic, immunohistochemical, and molecular features in the characterization of gynecologic tract lesions.

Patrick Reavey, MD, MS

Patrick Reavey, MD, MS
Department of Surgery

Dr. Patrick Reavey is an Assistant Professor of Surgery in the Section of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. He graduated from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and completed his general surgery residency at Columbia University Medical Center. During general surgery residency he also completed a two-year Outcomes Research Fellowship at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and obtained a Masters in Biostatistics. He subsequently went on to complete a residency in plastic surgery at New York University and an orthopedic hand fellowship at the University of California-Irvine. Dr. Reavey joined the University of Chicago after completing his training. His clinical focus is on hand surgery and lower extremity reconstruction, including diabetic limb salvage. He is committed to providing patient-centered care and involving patients in shared-medical decision-making to tailor the best treatment plan for each patient. His research interests include the development and utilization of patient-reported outcome measures to evaluate and guide patient care. Dr. Reavey is respected clinical educator, and is actively involved in both resident and medical student training. He is the director of the plastic surgery medical student student clinical clerkship and the Associate Residency Program Director for Plastic Surgery.

Charles Rhee, MD

Charles Rhee, MD
Department of Medicine

Dr. Charles Rhee is an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Section of Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Biology from Stanford University and his M.D. from the University of Illinois at Chicago. He completed his residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Chicago followed by a fellowship in Hospice & Palliative Medicine at Northwestern University. He returned to join the faculty at the University of Chicago in 2014 and currently serves as the Director of the Hospice & Palliative Medicine Fellowship program as well as the director of the cardiac palliative care program, which he started. His work has focused on integration of palliative care with cardiology, with an emphasis on advanced heart failure patients. He is currently working on development of a primary palliative care curriculum which includes basics of symptom management and communication skills for cardiology providers. He also lectures frequently on the principles of palliative care to learners of all levels, from medical students to attendings.

Namrata Setia, MD

Namrata Setia, MD
Department Pathology

Dr. Namrata Setia is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pathology and specializes in gastrointestinal pathology and cytopathology. Her clinical interests are focussed on medical and neoplastic gastrointestinal disease diagnoses. She is a dedicated educator and works closely with fellows and residents, mentoring them in clinical outcomes research. In her clinical research, Namrata is working on developing prediction models for personalized medicine in gastric carcinoma with a goal to integrate advanced genomics in routine clinical practice. She is also working on promoting international academic and diagnostic collaborations. As a part of this effort, she is establishing a working group focused on inflammatory bowel disease with the support of the University of Chicago's Global Engagement program.

Dimitra Skondra, MD

Dimitra Skondra, MD
Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Science

Dr. Skondra, Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology and Visual Science at the University of Chicago. Dr. Skondra is the Director of the J. Terry Ernest Ocular Imaging Center who focuses on the medical and surgical treatment of vitreoretinal diseases. She in an expert in delivering care for diabetic eye disease, age-related macular degeneration, retinal detachment, retinal vein occlusions, eye trauma, proliferative vitreoretinopathy and intraocular infections, with advanced training and expertise in surgical repair of complex diabetic retinal detachments.

As a physician-scientist, Dr. Skondra is dedicated to investigating methods to improve prevention, diagnosis and treatment strategies for retinal conditions with special focus on the role of microbiome in age related macular degeneration and retinal disorders. Throughout her career, Dr. Skondra has received several prestigious awards for her translational research on diabetic retinopathy, ocular angiogenesis and age related macular degeneration, including the Retina Society Raymond Margherio Award, Harvard /Alcon Clinical Scholar Award, AUPO Research Award, ARVO/Alcon Early Career Clinician Scientist Award, Joslin/Tonseth Research Fellowship Award and the Knights Templar Award. She trained at Weill Cornell Medical College (residency) and Harvard Medical School (postdoctoral research fellowship and vitreoretinal surgical fellowship).

Gaurav Upadhyay, MD

Gaurav Upadhyay, MD
Department of Medicine

Dr. Gaurav Upadhyay is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine. An expert in cardiac rhythm devices, Gaurav A. Upadhyay, MD, cares for patients with arrhythmia (including atrial fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia), fainting (syncope) and heart failure. Dr. Upadhyay focuses on innovative electrical therapies in heart disease, including cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT), His-bundle pacing (HBP), and optimizing the management of remote monitoring for implantable cardiac devices.

Dr. Upadhyay strives to improve the quality of life for his patients. His goal is to implement pioneering technologies to treat symptoms of heart failure and manage arrhythmia in the outpatient setting in order to prevent hospitalization and improve overall health.

Paralleling his focus on patient care, Dr. Upadhyay is an active clinical investigator. An invited national and international speaker, he has co-authored and delivered over 70 oral presentations, manuscripts, book chapters and abstracts. He is also deeply committed to teaching, and seeks out opportunities to collaborate and engage trainees in teaching at the bedside as well as in transforming models of care.

2016-17 Associate Junior Faculty Scholars
Lolita Alkureishi, MD

Lolita Alkureishi, MD
Department of Pediatrics

Lolita (Maria) Alkureishi, MD, is an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, in the Section of Academic Pediatrics. Following her residency at UCSF, Dr. Alkureishi served as the Pediatric Medical Director for the San Mateo County Keller Center for Family Violence Intervention. Since joining the University of Chicago as faculty in 2011, she has continued her commitment to caring for underserved children and her outpatient clinical time is based at the Friend Family Health Center Pulaski location, a Federally Qualified Health Clinic which serves primarily underserved Spanish-speaking patients. Dr. Alkureishi has a particular interest in advocating for and developing curricula to improve patient-centered technology use in order to enhance, rather than compete with, communication and the patient-doctor relationship and she has received a number of awards and grants in recognition of her work.

Dr. Alkureishi also serves as the Clerkship Director for Pediatrics, and oversees all fourth year sub-internships and electives within the Department. Dr. Alkureishi is a Fellow of the Academy of Distinguished Medical Educators and was a recipient of the Leonard Tow Humanism in Medicine Award, the Richard M. Rothberg Faculty Award for Excellence in Patient Care and Resident Education, and was an AOA Faculty Inductee.

Anna Volerman Beaser, MD

Anna Volerman Beaser, MD
Department of Medicine

Dr. Anna Volerman is an Assistant Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics. She earned her undergraduate degree at Northwestern University and her MD at Boston University School of Medicine, graduating summa cum laude. She completed her medical training at the Harvard Brigham and Women’s Hospital / Boston Children’s Hospital Residency Program in Internal Medicine and Pediatrics. She joined the faculty of University of Chicago and is currently a primary care physician seeing both adults and children in her clinic. Dr. Volerman is committed to fostering innovation in health care delivery and medical education in clinical, classroom, and community settings. She is the Co-Director of LUCENT – a multidisciplinary primary care leadership training program for residents and faculty – as well as Associate Director for Education in the Medicine-Pediatrics Residency Program. Her research focuses on reducing disparities for children with asthma through schools and in clinical settings, as well as fostering interprofessional collaboration and team-based care in clinics.

Megan Conti Mica, MD

Megan Conti Mica, MD
Department of Orthopaedic Surgery

Dr. Megan Conti Mica, assistant professor of Orthopaedic Surgery in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and Rehabilitation Medicine at the University of Chicago Medicine, has extensive expertise in the surgical management of hand and upper extremity surgery including athletic injuries, trauma, arthritis, congenital deformities and complex reconstruction. With her special interest in hand, wrist, elbow and shoulder pathology, Dr. Conti Mica utilizes both minimally invasive (arthroscopic) and microvascular (microscopic) techniques. She is the dedicated hand surgeon for the sports service and works actively with high level athletes.

Dr. Conti Mica obtained her undergraduate bachelor’s degree at University of Washington in Seattle, Washington and graduated from the University of Arizona School of Medicine with Honors in Research. She completed her Orthopaedic Residency at Loyola University in Chicago and two post-graduate fellowships. She successfully completed the Fellowship in Hand and Microvascular Surgery at The Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota and was awarded the Schwartz Travelling Fellowship, an opportunity to expand her education in shoulder and elbow surgery with experts in Europe. Dr. Conti Mica joined the University of Chicago in 2015.

Dr. Conti Mica has a personal interest in international medicine having participated in several international medical missions. She has trained under the instruction of renowned Orthopaedic experts in the United States and abroad.

Patrick Cunningham, MD

Patrick Cunningham, MD
Department of Medicine

Dr. Patrick Cunningham is an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Section of Nephrology. His clinical interests are focused on kidney transplantation, including the selection of appropriate kidney transplant recipients and living donors, as well as managing the many complications of patients after they receive a kidney transplant. Additionally, he runs a subspecialty clinic caring for patients with glomerulonephritis and other inflammatory diseases of the kidney, including lupus nephritis. As part of this work, he performs many kidney biopsies and is working with collaborators on a project designed to improve the safety of this procedure. Relevant to both transplant and glomerulonephritis, Dr. Cunningham is conducting clinical research into the consequences of mutations in the APOL1 gene, which have been found to greatly increase the risk of various kidney diseases in African Americans. The availability of genetic testing for APOL1 mutations raises several ethical questions which he intends to explore. His past scientific research has studied the molecular mechanisms of acute kidney injury and immune mediated glomerular diseases and he continues an active role in peer review in these areas.

Adrianne Dade, MD

Adrianne Dade, MD
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Dr. Adrianne Dade works at the University of Chicago as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Generalist Section. She received her medical degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago and completed her residency training at the University of Chicago. Currently, Dr. Dade also serves as the Associate Residency Program Director. She practices general Obstetrics and Gynecology with specific interest in preventative medicine, abnormal uterine bleeding, uterine fibroids, normal pregnancy, and DaVinci Robotics. Dr. Dade organizes and leads the DaVinci simulation program for the University of Chicago OB/GYN residents. Dr. Dade has a special interest in medical education with a current focus on resident education and interprofessional relations. She is a former APGO Scholars and Leaders Fellow. Dr. Dade is also a past University of Chicago MERITS Fellow, which is a program that focuses on medical education and research. Dr. Dade is an ABOG Oral Board Examiner and a SASGOG Board member. She serves on the APGO Diversity and Inclusion Task Force and the University of Chicago-Wide Student Disciplinary Committee.

Wendy S. Darlington, MD, MAPP

Wendy S. Darlington, MD, MAPP
Department of Pediatrics

Wendy S. Darlington, MD, MAPP, is a Clinical Instructor in the Section of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology who specializes in benign hematology and the malignant diseases of childhood. During her time as a fellow Dr. Darlington completed a Master’s at the Harris School of Public Policy at the University of Chicago. She has developed, in conjunction with others, the Chicago Sickle Cell Disease Research Group. This is a multifaceted group of clinicians and researchers dedicated to all avenues of research surrounding sickle cell disease. She currently focuses her research in understanding the interplay of public policies with the social determinants of health and health outcomes among patients with sickle cell disease, especially in the transition from pediatric to adult care.

Edwin K. McDonald IV, MD

Edwin K. McDonald IV, MD
Department of Medicine

Edwin K. McDonald IV, MD, is dedicated to improving the health of individuals and communities through nutrition education. He works with patients with small bowel diseases, obesity and other conditions affecting the digestive system.

Dr. McDonald’s interest in the effects of nutrition on health and disease stem from his experience with Project Brotherhood — an innovative clinic dedicated to providing accessible, affordable care for black men on Chicago’s South Side. While training barbers to serve as health educators, he became keenly aware of the impact of social determinants of health, including the role of nutrition. In 2012, Dr. McDonald received a certificate in professional cookery from Kendall College School of Culinary Arts.

Dr. McDonald also is an active researcher. He recently investigated the effects of vitamin deficiency in patients requiring parenteral nutrition (intravenous feeding) and studied the usefulness of fecal calprotectin in patients with inflammatory bowel disease. He also created a web-based mobile program to assess the utility of applications in managing inpatient hepatology patients. Dr. McDonald’s work has been funded by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK).

Neil Sengupta, MD

Neil Sengupta, MD
Department of Medicine

Dr. Neil Sengupta is an Assistant Professor in the Section of Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition. He completed his medical degree at the University of Florida College of Medicine, and his residency training in Internal Medicine at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. He subsequently completed his fellowship in Gastroenterology and Hepatology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

Dr. Sengupta’s research interests lie in optimizing the care and outcomes of patients hospitalized with gastrointestinal bleeding. He has conducted work defining the role of endoscopic and radiologic testing in patients with lower gastrointestinal bleeding, and has specific interests in complications of patients who have bleeding while on systemic anticoagulation. In addition, Dr. Sengupta serves as the Quality Improvement director for the Section of Gastroenterology, and has several active projects focusing on improving the quality of colorectal cancer screening at a local and institutional level. He is currently mentoring medical students, residents, and fellows in outcomes research, as well as quality improvement research initiatives.

Meltem Zeytinoglu, MD, MBA

Meltem Zeytinoglu, MD, MBA
Department of Medicine

Dr. Zeytinoglu’s clinical practice emphasizes management and prevention of endocrine disorders, including diabetes, osteoporosis, and obesity, in older adults.

Individuals’ risk of acquiring these conditions rises substantially with aging, and older adults represent the largest demographic with these diseases. Unlike many younger adults, as individuals age and acquire different medical conditions, their health status often begins to look very different from that of their age-matched peers.

Despite this, there is limited evidence to guide health-care providers and patients in how to optimize care for metabolic diseases in geriatric patients with heterogeneous health conditions — a group which has frequently been excluded from randomized clinical trials. Dr. Zeytinoglu’s research interests are focused on helping to improve this gap and studying methods and treatments for optimizing management of chronic metabolic conditions such as diabetes and osteoporosis in older adults.