Research

Research

Stephen R. Hammes, M.D., Ph.D.

Professor of Medicine
Chief, Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism
Director, Endocrinology and Metabolism Fellowship Program
Dr. Hammes graduated summa cum laude from Cornell University, after which he received his M.D. and Ph.D. in Immunology and Microbiology from Duke University. He then completed an Internal Medicine residency training followed by clinical and research Endocrinology fellowships at the University of California at San Francisco. Dr. Hammes spent the next several years in the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, where he was an Endowed Physician Scientist and served as co-Director of the Endocrinology Fellowship Program.

Dr. Hammes is interested in ovarian development and function. Specifically, his laboratory studies steroid synthesis and actions in the ovary, with a focus on the pathophysiology of Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). Dr. Hammes is an internationally recognized leader in the field of nongenomic, or transcription-independent steroid signaling, serves on editorial boards of major Endocrine and Reproduction journals, and is a member of the American Society for Clinical Investigation.

Marilyn Augustine, M.D.

Assistant Professor of Medicine

Marilyn Augustine received her medical degree from the University of Buffalo. She trained as a resident in Internal Medicine and was honored to serve as a chief resident at the University of Rochester. She then completed a fellowship in Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism at the University of Pittsburgh.

Dr. Augustine's clinical practice is in general endocrinology, including diabetes, thyroid, adrenal and pituitary disease. She has a particular research and clinical focus on bone and calcium metabolism, including disorders such as osteoporosis and parathyroid disease.

Laura M. Calvi, M.D.

Professor of Medicine
Co-Director, Multidiscliplinary Neuroendocrine Clinic

Laura's ResearchDr. Calvi graduated summa cum laude from Union College and received her Medical Degree from Harvard Medical School. She then remained in Boston to complete her residency training in internal medicine followed by her clinical and research fellowships in Endocrinology at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. Dr. Calvi has a long-standing clinical interest in metabolic bone disorders. In addition, she created and now, along with Dr. Edward Vates, co-directs the Multidisciplinary Neuroendocrine Clinic. Her basic research program focuses on hemopoietic stem cells (HSCs) and the microenvironment, or niche, in which they reside. Specifically, she uses mouse models to study how activation of the PTH/PTHrP receptor in osteoblastic cells regulates the HSC niche. Dr. Calvi is a Wilmot Scholar and a Pew Scholar in Biomedical Sciences.

Ethan David Cohen, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Medicine

Dr. Cohen graduated cum laud from Lebanon Valley College before completing both his graduate and postdoctoral research at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. Dr. Cohen’s research is largely focused on understanding how intercellular signaling directs cardiac morphogenesis and how defect in this signaling contribute to human disease. Congenital heart defects are present in approximately 1% of newborn babies, 10% of stillborn fetuses and responsible for nearly 6% of deaths among children under one year of age. Furthermore heart disease is the leading cause of death among adults in the Western world. A better understanding of the mechanisms underlying cardiac development will aid in the discovery of new methods to detect and treat congenital heart defects. Moreover since aberrant signaling by embryonic pathways is often associated with disease, this same information will also aid in the discovery of novel treatments for adult cardiomyopathy. Many of these new treatments are likely to involve using stem/progenitor cells to replace damaged cardiac tissues. However, our ability to differentiate multi-potent stem cells into functional cardiomyocytes is still limited and further insight into the molecular cues that guide cardiac development will be necessary to reach the full potential of regenerative medicine.

Victoria Hsiao, M.D., Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Medicine

Dr. Hsiao, originally from Boulder, Colorado, received her B.A. magna cum laude in Biology from Harvard University, her Ph.D. in Pathobiology from Columbia University, and her M.D. from the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University. She completed her residency training in Internal Medicine at the Johns Hopkins Hospital, and completed her fellowship training in the Division of Metabolism, Endocrinology, and Diabetes at the University of Michigan Hospital. After being on the faculty at the University of Michigan, she moved to the University of Rochester Medical Center as an Assistant Professor in the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism in July 2010.

Dr. Hsiao's clinical interests are in general endocrinology, including patients with diabetes, thyroid, adrenal, bone, and pituitary disorders. Dr. Hsiao's research interests include patient, provider, and health plan factors affecting delivery of diabetes care and health outcomes. Her research findings have been published in the Journal of Cell Science, Diabetes Care, American Journal of Managed Care, Pharmacoepidemiology and Drug Safety, and the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. She was also the recipient of the 2009 Lilly Endocrine Scholars Award from The Endocrine Society for her research on how high blood glucose levels affect bone marrow transplantation outcomes.

Jacob Moalem, M.D.

Assistant Professor of Medicine
Assistant Professor of Surgery, Oncology
Born in Jerusalem, Israel, Dr. Moalem, Assistant Professor of Surgery, received his Bachelors and Master of Science degrees from the State University of New York at Buffalo and his medical degree from SUNY Downstate in Brooklyn.
Dr. Moalem developed an interest in endocrine surgery during his residency at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Jersey, where he also served as the Executive Chief Resident. He then pursued further subspecialty training during a premier Endocrine Surgical Oncology Fellowship at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), with Dr. Orlo Clark.

There, he gained additional experience in the multidisciplinary management of benign and cancerous disorders of the thyroid, parathyroid and adrenal glands and served as a clinical instructor.
Dr. Moalem's clinical and research concentrations focus on cancerous and benign lesions and disorders of the thyroid, parathyroid and adrenal glands, as well as endocrine tumors of the pancreas. He brings expertise in minimally invasive thyroidectomy and parathyroidectomy, in addition to laparoscopic adrenalectomy.
Certified by the American Board of Surgery, Dr. Moalem is also licensed in the states of New Jersey and California. He has authored numerous publications and is a member of professional organizations including the American College of Surgeons, American Medical Association, American Association for Clinical Endocrinologists, American Thyroid Association and The Endocrine Society.

Ismat Shafiq , M.B.B.S.

Assistant Professor of Medicine

Dr. Shafiq received her medical education from Khyber Medical College, Pakistan. She then completed internal medicine residency training at Catholic Health System, University of Buffalo, NY, followed by subspecialty training in Endocrinology, Metabolism and Diabetes at The University of Rochester, NY.

Dr. Shafiq is interested in thyroid disease.  Specifically, she performs thyroid ultrasounds and ultrasound-guided fine-needle aspirations, thus affording patients efficient workups of their thyroid nodules.  Dr. Shafiq is also interested in the diagnosis and management of Neuroendocrine tumors, and participates in the Multidisciplinary Neuroendocrine Clinic.

Michael Sellix, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Medicine

Circadian clocks are all but ubiquitous in nature.  Circadian rhythms, those biological rhythms with a period at or near 24h, are found in most, if not all, physiological systems ranging from cellular physiology and biochemistry to whole animal physiology. The mechanism controlling these oscillations is a now well-understood molecular oscillator composed of an autoregulatory transcriptional-translational feedback loop.  This loop consists of interacting “clock gene” transcriptional regulators that facilitate precision through an elegant temporal scheme of positive and negative gene expression.

Sellix.figure2

Our lab and others have recently determined that the circadian clock mechanism is present in the cells of the ovarian follicle.  Further, we have determined that the ovary maintains an “endogenous” pattern of sensitivity to gonadotrophins that does not appear to be dependent on the timing of the LH surge or a fully developed endocrine and neuroendocrine system.  These data, together with the data from other labs, suggests that the ovarian clock may play a substantial role in the timing of events in the ovary, related to both the ovulatory response to gonadotrophins and the timing of steroidogenesis.

The Sellix laboratory is currently focused on two distinct but interrelated facets of this research by asking two fundamental questions:

  1. Does “clock-controlled” gene expression in the ovary, more specifically the various ovarian cell types, play a substantial role in the timing of ovarian physiology and more specifically the timing of ovulation and/or steroid hormone biosynthesis
  2. Do disease states that negatively impact reproductive function (e.g. PCOS, etc.) do so by altering the timing of clock gene or clock-controlled genes in the tissues of the hypothalamo-pituitary-ovarian axis? Further, is phase-synchrony among these oscillators (or lack thereof) a contributing factor to the onset and progression of disease?

Laticia Valle, M.D.

Senior Instructor of Clinical Medicine

Laticia Valle obtained her medical degree at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry in 2002. She finished her Internal Medicine residency at the University of Rochester in 2005. After finishing residency she worked as a hospitalist at Highland Hospital in Rochester from 2005-2009. While working as a hospitalist she developed a special interest in endocrinology and diabetes and went on to complete a fellowship in Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism at The Ohio State University.
Dr. Valle is interested in the management and diagnosis of general endocrinology, including patients with diabetes, thyroid, adrenal, bone, and pituitary disorders.

Steve Welle, Ph.D.

Director, Functional Genomics Center (FGC)
Director, CRC Core Laboratory

After receiving his B.S. in Psychology from the University of Illinois, Dr. Welle obtained a Ph.D. in Neurobiology from Northern Illinois University.

Dr. Welle's research deals with regulation of muscle protein metabolism and gene expression, and how these are affected by aging and by endogenous growth factors. He also collaborates with faculty in the neuromuscular research group (neurology department) to study the effects of muscular dystrophies on gene expression. Finally, Dr. Welle plays a critical role in running many of the core facilities at the University of Rochester, serving as Director of the Functional Genomics Center and the CRC Core laboratory.

Steven D. Wittlin, M.D.

Professor of Medicine
Clinical Director, Endocrine-Metabolism Division and Director, Diabetes Service

Dr. Wittlin received his M.D. from Tel Aviv University with honors. He then completed his residency training in internal medicine at Booth Memorial Medical Center, followed by an endocrinology fellowship at New York University Medical Center. He served as Chief of Endocrinology and subsequently Assistant Chairman of Medicine at Booth Memorial Medical Center for a twelve-year period. He moved to Rochester in 1993.

Dr. Wittlin's major clinical interest, apart from general endocrinology, is treatment of diabetes, especially new modalities of therapy with an emphasis on insulin pumps and continuous glucose monitoring. His research interests have mainly focused on novel diabetes treatments, preservation of beta cell function, new modalities for assessing diabetes and postprandial glucose control, and assessment of cardiovascular risk in diabetes.

Best Hospitals, U.S. News & World Report: Diabetes & Endocrinology 2013-14

Best Regional Hospitals, U.S. News & World Report: Diabetes & Endocrinology 2013-14

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