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George C. Reisman Professor of Medicine
Chief, Division of Nephrology
Martin Pollak, MD, is the Chief for the Division of Nephrology and the George C. Reisman Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Pollak is a graduate of Princeton University and New York University’s School of Medicine. He did clinical training in Internal Medicine at Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center, completed his nephrology fellowship at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and his postdoctoral research training in the Department of Genetics at Harvard Medical School in the laboratory of Jon and Christine Seidman.
Dr. Pollak is a clinical scientist recognized for his studies in the genetic basis of kidney disease. He is known for his contributions to understanding the molecular and genetic basis of diseases of human glomerular function and in understanding the genetic basis the high rate of kidney disease in individuals of recent African descent. Dr. Pollak’s studies have garnered him considerable international stature as a renal molecular geneticist. He has been continuously funded through the NIH since 1992.
His recent notable accomplishments include being elected member to the National Academy of Sciences (2014), selected as the recipient of the American Society of Nephrology, Homer W. Smith Award (2017), and was named Awarded Medical Honoree, from NephCure Kidney International (2020).
Dr. Pollak’s laboratory in interested in the molecular genetic basis of human kidney disease, with a particular focus on diseases of the glomerulus. His laboratory uses a combination of methods, including human genetics, mouse genetics, cell biology, and biochemical tools to understand the connection between phenotype and genotype and to understand glomerular physiology. He and his colleagues have shown that variants in the APOL1 gene both lead to increased rates of kidney disease in people of recent African ancestry, as well as resistance to certain forms of trypanosomal infection. He and his colleagues continue to study the genetics and biology of APOL1-associated kidney disease, a major public health problem in the US. His laboratory hosts bright trainees in nephrology and genetics from BWH, BIDMC, Children's Hospital, as well as outside institutions. At Harvard, Dr. Pollak is admired for his contributions in teaching human genetics to medical and graduate students, and for providing forward-looking clinical care as an attending physician.
Associate Professor of Medicine
Clinical Chief, Division of Nephrology
Bradley Denker, MD, graduated from State University of New York Medical School in Syracuse, NY, and completed his internal medicine residency at the Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland. He did a one-year Fellowship in Hematology at Johns Hopkins in the laboratory of Dr. Peter Agre and was the lead author on the paper that ultimately led to the discovery of Aquaporins (2003 Nobel Prize). He did his Nephrology Fellowship at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He moved to BIDMC in 2011, and he supervised a basic research laboratory in the Renal Division until 2012 where his work focused on cell signaling in epithelial cells and the role of G proteins in Acute Kidney Injury and Polycystic Kidney Disease. He is the past president of the Medical Advisory Board for the National Kidney Foundation serving New England and has authored numerous chapters and textbooks on kidney disease, including the Renal Pathophysiology, The Essentials with Dr. Helmut Rennke. He lectures regularly at internal medicine and nephrology CME courses on chronic kidney disease, fluids and electrolytes, acute renal failure and hypertension. In addition to his clinical and administrative duties at BIDMC, he also serves as the Chief of Nephrology and the Associate Chief of Medical Specialties at Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates (Atrius), where he continues to study how electronic medical records are used to improve recognition and management of chronic kidney disease as well as the development of new care delivery models to improve quality and reduce costs in the dialysis patient population.
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Director, Nephrology Fellowship Program
Stewart H. Lecker, MD, PhD, FASN, is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at BIDMC and Harvard Medical School. He studied chemistry at Cal Berkeley and graduated from UCLA School of Medicine with a combined MD/PhD in 1992. He completed his internal medicine residency at UCLA before relocating to Beth Israel Hospital for his nephrology training in 1995. He is the current Director of the ACGME-accredited Nephrology Fellowship Program at BIDMC and has served in this role since 2005. He is a leader in the nephrology education community serving on a number of committees and subcommittees at the American Society of Nephrology. He has won numerous teaching awards including the prestigious S. Robert Stone award in 2019. His research has centered around nutrition in chronic and end-stage kidney disease, specifically on the molecular mechanisms of muscle wasting in these settings. He is passionate about physiology education and nephrology curriculum development, with roles as a Core Renal Faculty at Harvard Medical School and Module Leader at the ASN TREKS course at Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratories in Maine, in addition to his work with our nephrology fellows and internal medicine trainees.
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Associate Director, Nephrology Fellowship Program
Jeffrey H. William, MD, graduated magna cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania and received his MD from Tufts University School of Medicine. He completed his residency training at BIDMC as a member of the Clinician Educator Track where he developed and published online modules in high-yield clinical nephrology. After completing his nephrology fellowship at BIDMC, he went on to graduate from the Medical Education Research Fellowship in The Academy at Harvard Medical School. He has been recognized by the BIDMC housestaff with teaching awards at the conclusion of both his residency and fellowship, including the 2013 Lowell McGee Resident Teaching Award and the 2014 Fellow Teaching Award. His research and educational endeavors cover a wide variety of disciplines in education and nephrology, including “real-time” feedback and hypomagnesemia. He currently serves as an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, Firm Chief of the Tullis Firm in the BIDMC Medicine Residency program and Associate Program Director of the Nephrology Fellowship training program. He also serves as Core Faculty at HMS in the pre-clinical integrated physiology course, "Homeostasis II.” He was a nominee for the 2017 S. Robert Stone Award for Excellence in Clinical Teaching at BIDMC and awarded the 2017 Donald O'Hara Faculty Prize for Excellence in Teaching in pre-clinical coursework at HMS and the 2020 Excellence in Classroom Instruction Faculty Award.
Associate Professor of Medicine
Medical Director, Kidney and Pancreas Transplantation
Martha Pavlakis, MD, FASN, FAST, graduated from the State University of New York at Buffalo before completing her residency at Tufts Medical Center. She did her renal and clinical investigation fellowships at Beth Israel Hospital before joining the faculty at Stanford Medical Center. She has been the Medical Director of Kidney and Pancreas Transplantation at BIDMC since 1999. She takes the transplant education at BIDMC for renal fellows very seriously and provides both inpatient and clinic exposure throughout the year on both the inpatient Transplant (“Epstein-Trey”) service and outpatient clinics. She has directed the one-year AST transplant fellowship since 2001. She is active in the American Society of Transplantation where she serves as the immediate past chair of the Education Committee and active in a number of the Communities of Practice (COP) including the Women's Health COP, the Kidney Pancreas COP, the Live donor COP and the ID COP. She is also active in the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) and is incoming Chair of the UNOS Kidney Transplantation Committee.
An Associate Professor of Medicine at HMS, Dr. Pavlakis is involved in a number of multi-center and investigator initiated studies. She is the site PI for a transplant tolerance trial, and a post transplant genomics monitoring trial. In addition, she works with renal fellows on a number of reviews of our center's data and UNOS data for publication. She has over 100 publications including peer reviewed articles, editorials, reviews, book chapters, and abstracts. Dr. Pavlakis is currently working on a review of the impact of removing the Black race variable from eGFR calculation on transplant listing at BIDMC, with Dr. Hoenig.
Seth L. Alper, MD, PhD, Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, and Associate Physician, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC), received his BS in Chemistry from Haverford College (1973), and his PhD in Pharmacology (1979) and MD (1980) from Yale University School of Medicine. He served his Internal Medicine Residency and Clinical Fellowship in Nephrology at Harvard’s Beth Israel Hospital (currently BIDMC). Postdoctoral Research studies were at the Whitehead Institute of MIT (1984-1989). Dr. Alper was appointed Harvard Medical School Instructor in Medicine (1987), Assistant Professor (1989), Associate Professor (1995), and Professor of Medicine (2001-present) at Harvard Medical School, and was named Associate Member of the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard in 2013.
Dr. Alper’s wide-reaching research interests have included 1) renal tubular ion transport pathophysiology and genetic diseases of acid-base transport (renal tubular acidoses), oxalate transport (nephrolithiasis), and systemic transepithelial transport (hypertension, diarrhea, achlorhydria, pancreatic insufficiency, deafness, osteosclerosis); 2) APOL1 ion channel function in APOL1-associated kidney disease; 3) K+ channel function in Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease; 4) Erythroid ion transport and channel function in hereditary hemolytic anemias; 5) and recent collaborative studies in Autosomal Dominant Tubulointerstitial Kidney Disease-MUC1 (ADTKD-MUC1); mesothelial cell function in peritoneal dialysis-associated peritoneal membrane fibrosis and sclerosis; and ion transporters and developmental abnormalities of choroid plexus and other neuroepithelia. These studies have been presented in 276 peer-reviewed research articles, 62 reviews, book chapters, and editorials, 10 manuscripts in current editorial review, and 3 abstracts of yet unpublished work.
Dr. Alper’s contributions to scholarship also include service as Editor of Physiological Genomics and as Associate Editor of the American Journal of Physiology Cell Physiology, and service on the Editorial Boards of the American Journal of Physiology Cell Physiology, American Journal of Physiology Renal Physiology, Journal of General Physiology, Journal of Membrane Biology, Histochemistry and Cell Biology, Nature Scientific Reports, American Journal of Kidney Diseases, Journal of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, World Journal of Biochemistry, and Journal of Pediatric Biochemistry, and extensive ad hoc editorial review for 124 independent biomedical research journals. Leadership positions have included service on the Advisory Council of the Society for General Physiology, on the External Advisory Board for the Center of Biomedical Research Excellence in Membrane Physiology at Kansas State University, and on the External Evaluation Board for the Swiss National Science Foundation NCCR Transcure Center for Excellence in Membrane Transport Research, and the Executive Board of the Harvard Digestive Diseases Center. Dr. Alper has also provided ad hoc grant review for NIH, NSF, AHA, ASN, NKF, and numerous other state, national, and international research funding agencies and international charitable research foundations across a variety of subspecialties and disciplines.
Dr. Alper’s awards and honors include selection as Established Investigator of the American Heart Association (1994-99), Election as Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Medical Sciences Section (1997), NIH MERIT Award (1998), Organizer of NIH Meeting on Advances in Membrane Transport (1999), Elected as Member of the Interurban Clinical Club (Osler Society, 2006), Elected Membership in and Secretary of the Salt and Water Club, Elected Membership in and Meeting Organizer for the Red Cell Club, Symposium organizer and speaker for the American Society of Physiology and the International Society of Physiology, Litchfield Lecturer (University of Oxford), Suk-Ki-Hong Lecturer (University Of Buffalo), Schrier Lecturer (American Society of Nephrology), and keynote lecturer for the American Heart Association Kidney Council, the Society for Experimental Biology, the University of Verona Experimental Hematology Conference, and McGill University Undergraduate Research Day.
Rhea Bhargava, MD, graduated from Armed Forces Medical College, India. She completed her residency at University of Missouri and moved to Boston for her nephrology fellowship. After completing her nephrology fellowship at BIDMC, she went on to graduate from the Clinical and Translational Science Academy at Harvard Catalyst. She is part of Dr. George Tsokos's laboratory and the Lupus Center at BIDMC. Her research is focused on the interaction of kidney resident cells with the immune system and she is passionate about improving the care for patients with SLE. She is also an active member of the Massachusetts Medical Society serving on the Committee of Young Physicians and the Women's Health Committee.
Robert S. Brown, MD, FACP, serves as the Associate Chief for Academic Affairs in the Nephrology Division at BIDMC. He was formerly Clinical Chief of Nephrology for over 40 years and a former Medicine Firm Chief for 12 years. His current areas of interest are: (1) clinical research to improve vascular access and decrease bloodstream infections in hemodialysis patients, optimize blood pressure in CKD patients, and as principal investigator of three studies (assessing kidney fibrosis non-invasively with magnetic resonance elastography, assessing the natural history of focal segmental glomerulosclerosis in subjects of recent African ancestry, and assessing kidney transplant hypertrophy); (2) quality improvement, serving as the Director of Regulatory Affairs for the Department of Medicine and Associate Medical Director of the DaVita Brookline Dialysis Center, and (3) educational activities now working on the second edition of his nephrology pocket textbook and innovating teaching with two electronic smartphone/iPad apps using interactive tools and algorithms for the bedside care and teaching of nephrology and of acid-base and electrolyte disorders. He has formed and leads a nonprofit tax-exempt organization (TORCH, The Organization for Renal Care in Haiti) to bring preventive and therapeutic care of kidney disease, including dialysis and transplantation, to patients in Haiti who are now dying without treatment. He has received the ACGME Parker J. Palmer “Courage to Teach” Award and the HMS 2020 Dean’s Community Service Faculty Award. He lectures regularly in national CME courses, has over 125 publications, and is a member of many professional medical societies, including Alpha Omega Alpha and the Gold Humanism Honor Society of the Arnold P. Gold Foundation.
Robert A. Cohen, MD, MSc, is a seasoned clinical nephrologist, educator, and curriculum innovator in the nephrology division. He received his AB from Brown, MD from Temple and MSc from Harvard School of Public Health. After completing a residency at University of Michigan, he was a nephrology fellow at Beth Israel and subsequently an epidemiology fellow at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He was recently a Gold Humanism Scholar at the Harvard Macy Institute. Rob’s area of expertise is the intersection of palliative care and nephrology, with a focus on communication skills for challenging conversations with patients and family members in the setting of advanced kidney disease. Over a decade ago he created one of the first communication skills courses for nephrology fellows. Conducted annually for all Harvard nephrology trainees, this full-day course has been endowed by a donor. He has also developed a framework for discussing kidney failure options with older, frail patients and has co-created a curriculum that teaches nephrology fellows about conservative care that was piloted at 19 ACGME nephrology training programs. As a result of his expertise, he has presented nationally at ASN Kidney Week, NKF Clinical Meetings, and has been invited to deliver nephrology, palliative care and medical grand rounds at numerous academic medical centers throughout the country. He has also developed and conducted communication skills courses for nephrology and palliative care fellows at numerous academic medical centers nationally. He is the Director of Education in the nephrology division and also directs the HMS nephrology elective and medicine elective in nephrology at BIDMC. Lupus nephritis, kidney stones, and chronic kidney disease are Rob’s area of clinical expertise. He has over 25 peer reviewed publications in such journals as Nature, NEJM, JASN, CJASN, and AJKD.
John Danziger, MD, MPhil, board certified in internal medicine and nephrology, is a full time academic and clinical nephrologist at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, and Assistant Professor at Harvard Medical School. He has a wide range of clinical experience in internal medicine, nephrology, and critical care, seeing patients at a tertiary academic medical center, as well as within community hospitals. He has a large dialysis practice, served as the medical director for the NxStage Boston South dialysis center, which prioritized home and novel therapies, and has recently been named the medical director of Davita Brookline Dialysis center. His research interests include critical care nephrology, health disparities, and better understanding the susceptibility to environmental hazards for those with kidney disease. He has authored more than 40 journal articles, book chapters, and a renal physiology textbook for medical students.
Lisa Dumouchel, NP, graduated from Simmons College, Master of Science in Nursing and is a board certified Adult Nurse Practitioner. She has over 25 years of nephrology nursing experience in caring and treating patients on inpatient services and outpatient clinics. She has expertise in peritoneal dialysis, chronic kidney disease management and treatment modalities for end stage kidney disease. She is a member of the American Nephrology Nurses Association (ANNA) and has traveled to Port Au Prince, Haiti to teach dialysis education and training. Ms. Dumouchel develops, teaches and shares best practices and patient management strategies with physicians, nurses and health professionals who care for patients with Chronic Kidney Disease.
David Friedman, MD, graduated from Harvard College and Yale School of Medicine. He completed internal medicine training and renal fellowship at BIDMC. He is currently an attending nephrologist at BIDMC and an Associate Professor at Harvard Medical School.
The Friedman Laboratory studies the genetics of chronic kidney disease, particularly in populations with exceptionally high rates of kidney failure. Our approach is to use human population genetics to find genetic variants that cause susceptibility to kidney disease, and then to investigate the mechanisms using mouse models and molecular biology. One major interest is understanding how genetic variants in the APOL1 gene cause high rates of kidney failure in African Americans. The laboratory is also investigating a kidney failure epidemic in Central America called Mesoamerican Nephropathy where thousands of young men who work in agriculture and other manual labor jobs are dying of kidney failure. We are particularly interested in the interaction between genes and environment in causing kidney dysfunction. The laboratory is currently funded by grants from NIDDK, NIMHD, Department of Defense, and through academic-industry partnerships.
Warren Hill, PhD, completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Otago in New Zealand, and he graduated with his doctorate from the University of Adelaide in Australia. Both his PhD and early post-doctoral work at the University of Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania focused on the pathophysiology of cystic fibrosis. His current research focuses on benign urological diseases such as overactivity, frequency, urgency and incontinence. He and others in his team seek to define the genetic underpinnings of these common and highly bothersome lower urinary tract symptoms.
Melanie Hoenig, MD, has found her niche at BIDMC in the renal division, her family away from home. She wears several hats as a nephrology educator. She has a continuity clinic with a nephrology fellow that is a general nephrology clinic, though her clinical interests are in transition to adult care for young individuals with renal disease as well as kidney disorders in the context of HIV infection.
Dr. Hoenig teaches at all levels of medical education and has received multiple teaching awards. She ran the renal pathophysiology course at Harvard Medical School for more than a dozen years and the renal section of the physiology course for 2 years. She was co-chair of the Steering Committee to reform the pre-clerkship curriculum at HMS and is now the course director for a course called "Homeostasis 2," which includes physiology and pathophysiology of the renal, endocrine and gastrointestinal systems. She has been very involved with the American society of Nephrology and helped develop the Kidney Self-Assessment program (KSAP) and was the editor for six years. She is also the renal section editor for Knowledge Plus, a board review and MOC product from the NEJM.
Dr. Hoenig helped the BIDMC discard with race in estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) reporting in 2017, the first academic medical center to do so in the nation, and she is Chair of the American Association of Clinical Chemistry’s Race and eGFR Task Force. Dr Hoenig is passionate about renal physiology and thrilled to be part of the podcast: Channel your Enthusiasm: The Burton Rose Book Club. Dr. Hoenig also serves as the Associate Co-Director for the Harvard Summer Program in Kidney Medicine, a research program for undergraduate students.
Philip Kemp, MD, MPH, attended Columbia University where he student biomedical engineering, inspiring him to pursue a career in medicine. He returned to his home town of St. Louis for medical school at the Washington University School of Medicine. His medical career since then has been based at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, where he was trained in Internal Medicine and then Nephrology. His primary focus is general clinical nephrology, and he enjoys caring for patients with kidney disorders that are associated with heart disease, autoimmune conditions, and cancer. In 2019 he completed a master’s degree in Healthcare Quality and Safety at Harvard Medical School, and seeks to develop and refine processes for delivering safe and effective care for patients treated by the Nephrology division. As a fellow, he was recognized with a teaching award by the Beth Israel Deaconess Internal Medicine Residency program. He now has the honor of serving as an instructor in the Harvard Medical School Homeostasis II course.
Joseph Kupferman, MD, was born and raised in Mexico City. He came to the United States to attend Brandeis University where he majored in biology and biochemistry. After graduating, he attended Tufts Medical School and completed his internal medicine residency at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. He first came to BIDMC in 2012 for his renal fellowship where he completed both clinical and research fellowships, where he received the Fellow Teaching Award at the conclusion of his first year. He joined the nephrology faculty in 2016 and works in the laboratory of Dr. David Friedman studying Mesoamerican Nephropathy, a form of chronic kidney disease of unknown cause in Central America.
Alexander Morales, MD, is an instructor in medicine at Harvard Medical School, and a faculty member in the department of nephrology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. He graduated from the University of Connecticut as a New England Scholar with a bachelor's degree in Exercise Science, and attended medical school at the University of the Caribbean School of Medicine in St. Maarten, completing his clinical training primarily in New York City and the United Kingdom. Alexander went on to complete his internal medicine training at the Memorial Hospital of Rhode Island and Kent County Hospital - Alpert Medical School of Brown University. In addition to providing consultative care on the inpatient nephrology and end-stage kidney disease services at BIDMC, he is a co-instructor for the Harvard Medical School's 'Homeostasis II' course. He has published articles in several journals including the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, Seminars in Dialysis, and Kidney 360. Alexander is also a co-investigator in ongoing clinical trials exploring the efficacy of novel therapies for IgA nephropathy, and FSGS. His clinical interests include disturbances of acid-base and electrolyte homeostasis, acute kidney injury, and all modalities of kidney replacement therapy.
Samer Nasser, MD, graduated from the American University of Beirut and completed his residency and fellowship at SUNY Upstate Medical University. He then joined a private practice in Western Pennsylvania prior to joining the BIDMC team in 2016. His current practice is a diverse mix of outpatient nephrology at Atrius Health in Quincy, MA, BIDH-Milton, BIDMC, and dialysis coverage in Quincy and Weymouth. He also sees patients on the inpatient services in BIDH-Milton and BIDMC. Despite the busy schedule and structuring of the practice in the South region, he does find time for academic activities. His research interests and focus are mainly clinical and include nephrolithiasis prevention and peritoneal dialysis. His greatest reward at BIDMC is working with medical students, residents and fellows in the clinic and on rotations as well as working with a very seasoned faculty.
Nathan Raines, MD, MPH, received his BA at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire and his MD and MPH from Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City. He joined BIDMC for his residency in internal medicine and his subsequent fellowship in nephrology prior to transitioning to faculty. Dr. Raines’ research interests revolve around the epidemiology and pathophysiology of chronic kidney disease in populations with unique risk factors, with a particular focus on chronic kidney disease of nontraditional cause (CKDnt) in Mesoamerica. Recent work has focused on a metabolomics approach to understanding pathophysiologic change in response to stress. Dr. Raines also collaborates with colleagues at MIT using large medical databases to explore clinical management of common kidney disorders in ICU populations, including sodium and acid-base derangements and acute kidney injury. He serves as board chairperson of La Isla Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to addressing the CKDnt epidemic, and of the Consortium for the Epidemic of Nephropathy in Central America and Mexico (CENCAM), the international society of CKDnt researchers.
Cristian Riella, MD, is a physician-scientist and educator at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Instructor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He completed his Internal Medicine residency at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center, Tufts School of Medicine, and his Nephrology fellowship at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Dr. Riella’s research focuses on genetic causes of kidney diseases, particularly polycystic kidney disease and Apolipoprotein L1 nephropathy. He is also investigating how RNA editing modulates gene expression in kidney disease via innate immune activation. He is involved in clinical trials testing novel therapies for autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease. Dr. Riella is an active educator teaching at the Practice of Medicine course for Harvard Medical School and point-of-care ultrasound for residents and fellows at BIDMC. Dr. Riella has published numerous papers, chapters including a textbook in PKD aimed at scientists and physicians. He is currently funded by the National Kidney Foundation.
Theodore I. Steinman, MD, Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School (HMS) and Senior Physician, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, obtained his BS degree from Penn State University and his MD from Georgetown University School of Medicine. Medical internship and first year of residency (incomplete) was at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, interrupted by the Vietnam War – with combat service as a Marine battalion surgeon. Second year medical residency was at Beth Israel Hospital (BIH), Boston, followed by nephrology fellowship at Tufts New England Medical Center. In 1971 Dr. Steinman returned to BIH and became the founding Director of the hospital’s Dialysis and Kidney Transplantation Program. His 50 continuous years as a clinical investigator began during his fellowship training, with the last 35 years highlighted by a commitment to research in polycystic kidney disease. Academic productivity is noted by 215 peer-reviewed publications, 55 book chapters/monographs/editorials, 142 proceedings, and 153 abstracts. Leadership positions include: President, National Kidney Foundation of MA, RI, NH, VT and then Chairman, Board of Trustees for the same conglomerate; Board of Trustees, National Kidney Foundation (NKF); President, Renal Physicians Association; Chairman, Scientific Advisory Committee and Board of Trustees (12 years), Polycystic Kidney Disease Foundation.
Over his professional career Dr. Steinman has received numerous awards and honors. Highlights include: awards from the NKF – Physician of the Year, Gift of Life, Distinguished Service, Chairman’s Award, 60th Anniversary National Honoree for Lifetime Commitment and Achievement in Nephrology. Other awards include Best Doctors in America (every year from 1992 -2021); Alumni Fellow of the Year, Penn State University; Founders Award, Georgetown University School of Medicine; Jared J. Grantham Distinguished Achievement Award, PKD Foundation; Intellectuals of the 21st Century; S. Robert Stone Award for Excellence in Teaching, HMS; Lifetime Achievement Award in Nephrology Education, International Society of Nephrology; Medal of Excellence Award, American Association of Kidney Patients; Excellence in Mentoring Award, HMS; Nominee, Belding Scribner Award, American Society of Nephrology; Lifetime Achievement Award, Albert Nelson/Marquis. One of his highest honors was being the Commencement Speaker (2015) at the Penn State University graduation.
Joshua Waitzman, MD, PhD, Instructor of Medicine at BIDMC/HMS, received his MD/PhD from Northwestern University in Chicago. His graduate work used biochemistry and biophysics approaches to determine the mechanism of a molecular motor protein involved in mitosis, and was recognized with a Hertz Fellowship. He completed his Internal Medicine training at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago and his Nephrology training at BIDMC. He pursued postdoctoral research with Dr. Martin Pollak, supported by a Ben Lipps Fellowship from the American Society of Nephrology. He joined the staff of the Division of Nephrology at BIDMC in 2021
Dr. Waitzman spends most of his time on basic research, using structural biology and biochemistry techniques to determine how the high-risk variant APOL1 proteins cause disease. He attends on the BIDMC inpatient nephrology consult service, as well as at BIDMC-Needham and BIDMC-Milton. His outpatient clinic is based at BIDMC-Lexington. In addition to his teaching role on the inpatient consult service, Dr. Waitzman is a discussant on the renal physiology podcast Channel Your Enthusiasm, and a regular contributor to the Nephrology Journal Club podcast Freely Filtered.
Herrman L. Blumgart Professor of Medicine
Physician-in-Chief, Department of Medicine
Mark L. Zeidel, MD, works on research focusing on homeostasis and its control. He defined the role of atrial peptides and other natriuretic substances in renal salt excretion, characterized the biophysical function of water channels and barrier membranes, and advanced urothelial cell biology. His current work focuses on neural control of somatic function, focusing on the control of bladder filling and voiding and, ultimately, of renal function. His innovations in physiology teaching include an animated textbook, highly novel and nationally prominent week-long courses at the Mount Desert Island Biology Laboratories and a series of review articles in his field’s major clinical journal. He has pioneered the provision of highly reliable, cost-effective care, both at the University of Pittsburgh and BIDMC and has helped make quality care a major priority of national organizations in academic medicine.
Kambiz Zandi-Nejad, MD, is a graduate of Tehran University of Medical Sciences. He completed his residency in Internal Medicine at Detroit Medical Center/Wayne State University in 2001 and fellowship in Nephrology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Massachusetts General Hospital Combined Nephrology program in 2005. An Assistant Professor of Medicine (Part Time) at HMS, he has authored/co-authored 9 book chapters, more than 20 peer-reviewed manuscripts, 7 reviews and monographs, and several abstracts. His clinical interest is in fluid and electrolyte disorders particularly disorders of potassium balance and has authored/co-authored several chapters on the subject. In his current research interest, Dr. Zandi-Nejad is in studying the role and biology of HCA2 receptor and its ligands in immune response and regulation in sepsis and its associated AKI.
Amtul Aala, MD, graduated from Rawalpindi Medical College. She completed her residency at Mount Sinai- Englewood Program. After completing her Nephrology fellowship at Brown University, she did a one-year fellowship in Transplant Nephrology at the Johns Hopkins and joined BIDMC as a Transplant Nephrologist in 2018. She is directly involved in clinical care of transplant patients, which includes ambulatory activity and inpatient attending clinical work. She has keen interest in helping increase the interest of young trainees in the field of Nephrology and Transplant. She is involved with teaching and direct supervision of the American Society of Transplantation fellow, renal fellows and internal medicine residents during inpatient rotations and outpatient clinics. One of her areas of interest is to look for biomarkers of kidney transplant rejection. She is currently serving as the principal investigator of an IRB study to investigate the role of ddCF-DNA as a non-invasive marker of rejection. Her other area of interest is quality improvement in live donation, and she is the physician lead for the Live Donor Task Force at BIDMC Transplant Institute. She is also active in the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) and New England BK consortium.
Bhavna Chopra, MD, completed her medical school training at BJ Medical College, Pune, India and did her Internal Medicine residency at Allegheny Health Network (AHN), Pittsburgh, where she also served as a Chief resident. Thereafter, she completed Nephrology fellowship at University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia followed by Transplant fellowship training at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester. Since 2013, Dr. Chopra has served as a Medical Director of the Living Kidney Donor program at AHN where she played an instrumental role in the overall growth of this program and significant improvement of the transplant related outcomes such that the AHN Transplant program was ranked first in Pennsylvania by SRTR in 2021.
Dr. Chopra has earned several clinical and academic accolades including the Top Nephrologist award (Pittsburgh), Fellow of American Society of Nephrology in 2019, Poster of Distinction at American Transplant Congress, and several awards during her training period. She has served in the ASN fellowship In-service exam question writing committee for seven years and now serves in the ABIM Nephrology board exam question writing committee. She continues to serve in Kidney Pancreas community of Practice educational committee, where she participates in organizing educational activities for the community nephrologists. She has continued to be a researcher and an academician whose key research interests include long term transplant outcomes, minimization of organ discard, and living kidney donation. Dr. Chopra has published more than 25 peer-reviewed original research articles and has participated in over 60 national and international presentations. She now joins BIDMC as a Medical Director of the Living Kidney Donor Program, and as clinical faculty under the Division of Nephrology.
Eliyahu Khankin, MD, FASN, is a member of the Transplant Nephrology team and an NIH-funded physician-scientist investigating the influence of anti-angiogenic proteins elevated in preeclampsia on endothelial function and damage of the target organs associated with it. In particular, his efforts are focused on exploring the long-term influence of sFlt1 and sEng on vascular endothelial compartment and evaluation of the injury patterns induced along with an exploration of mechanisms of the injury and possible ways of treating and preventing this toxic effect. An additional focus of research is the elucidation of mechanisms of insulin resistance in preeclampsia and hypercholesterolemia associated with it. His laboratory uses robust animal modeling including targeted vector delivery systems and advance intravital imaging techniques. He also uses human sample collection and banking for exploratory and confirmational studies.
Aditya Pawar, MD, is a transplant nephrologist at BIDMC. He grew up in Jammu, India and moved to the United States to pursue further medical training. He completed his Internal Medicine residency at Mercy Catholic Medical Center in Pennsylvania, followed by his fellowship in Nephrology and Hypertension at Mayo Clinic in Rochester. He further pursued a fellowship in Transplant Nephrology and joined as faculty in at BIDMC.
Dr. Pawar's areas of interest are quality improvement and decision making for our patients with kidney disease and organ transplants. He has had more than 17 peer-reviewed publications and 30 abstracts presented at national and international meetings.
Sylvia E. Rosas, MD, MSCE, is a nephrologist and epidemiologist at the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston, Massachusetts. She is the Director of the Latino Kidney Clinic and an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. She also is a nephrologist at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.
Dr. Rosas went to medical school at University of Rosario in Bogota, Colombia. She completed Internal Medicine training at Michael Reese Hospital/University of Illinois at Chicago. She obtained Clinical Nephrology training and a Master’s in Clinical Epidemiology from the University of Pennsylvania. She also completed the Wharton Management Program.
Dr. Rosas’s primary research focus is on the epidemiology of metabolic and cardiovascular disease complications in patients with chronic kidney disease particularly diabetic kidney disease. She has also evaluated health disparities in individuals with CKD particularly in those of Hispanic/Latino background. She is the clinical center PI in the NIDDK-funded multicenter APOL1 Long-term Kidney Transplantation Outcomes Network (APOLLO) that evaluates the role of the APOL1 gene in kidney transplant outcomes. She is also the PI for the Kidney Precision Medicine Program (KPMP) Chronic Kidney Disease recruitment site at Joslin Diabetes Center. KPMP aims to ethically obtain and evaluate human kidney biopsies in order to create a kidney tissue atlas, define disease subgroups, and identify critical cells, pathways, and targets for novel therapies. She is a member of the Editorial Board of the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology and the Advances of Chronic Kidney Disease Journal. Dr. Rosas served as the Chair of the Minority Affairs Committee of the Organ Procurement and Transplant Network/United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS). Dr. Rosas has been the secretary for Women in Nephrology as well as Program Committee and Oversight Committee Chair for the NIDDK Network for Minority Health Research Investigators. She has received numerous awards including the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) of New England Physician of the Year in 2017 and National Hispanic Medical Association Fellow of the Year Award. She is the President Elect of the National Kidney Foundation 2021-2022.
Associate Professor of Medicine
Chief, Kidney and Hypertension Section, Joslin Diabetes Center
Robert C. Stanton, MD, did his undergraduate studies at Harvard College, Medical School at Drexel University, Internal Medicine Residency and Chief Residency at Oregon Health Sciences University, and Nephrology Fellowship at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Dr. Stanton also did postdoctoral fellowship work with Professor Lewis Cantley at the Tufts University Physiology Department. Dr. Stanton has been involved with research, teaching, clinical work, and administration. Dr. Stanton has been the Chief of the Kidney and Hypertension Section since 1995 and is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He has served on multiple committees at Joslin Diabetes Center and Harvard Medical School including being the current Chair of the Institutional Review Board at Joslin Diabetes Center. From a research perspective, Dr. Stanton’s research has focused on antioxidant and oxidant pathways. Many studies have shown that alterations in these pathways play central roles in the development and progression of many diseases including diabetes, diabetic complications, hypertension, cardiac disease, vascular disease, neurologic diseases, cancer, and many more. Dr. Stanton’s work has focused on an essential enzyme that plays a major role in regulating multiple cellular functions in these antioxidant/oxidant pathways, glucose 6-phosphate dehydrogenase(G6PD) and its principal product, NADPH. His research has determined that G6PD is essential for normal cell growth and in preventing cell death. Work from his lab has shown that changes in this enzyme play a central role in the development of diabetes, diabetic kidney disease, and cardiovascular disease.
From a teaching perspective, Dr. Stanton has been the director of the second-year renal pathophysiology course at Harvard Medical School as well as overseeing the second-year courses at the medical school. Dr. Stanton continues to teach medical students, residents, fellows, and colleagues. From a clinical perspective, Dr. Stanton maintains an active clinic as well as he routinely attends on the consult and dialysis services at the hospital.
Dr. Stanton has given and continues to give many invited lectures in the USA and all over the world. He has written many original articles, review articles, abstracts, chapters, and other educational materials (over 150). He has received three Honorary Professorships from Universities in China and in 2016 he received a major lifetime-achievement teaching award for “Sustained Excellence in Teaching” from Harvard Medical School. He is also routinely listed in the “Best of Boston” editions of Boston Magazine for top nephrologists in Boston.
Mark E. Williams, MD, FACP, FASN, is a Harvard-trained, double board-certified (Internal Medicine, Nephrology) full-time practicing academic nephrologist. He is Director of Dialysis at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, a Senior Staff Physician at the Joslin Diabetes Center, and an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Williams is a nationally and Internationally-recognized leader in the field of end-stage renal disease, diabetes complications, and all forms of renal replacement therapy, including acute and chronic dialysis and therapeutic plasma exchange. He is a Fellow of the American Society of Nephrology, where he has served on numerous committees and given multiple invited lectures, and a Fellow of the American College of Physicians. He has been recognized for his leadership as board chairman of the National Kidney Foundation affiliate for New England, as chairman of the NKF national Scientific Council for Diabetic Kidney Disease, and chairman of the national NKF Public Policy Committee. He has served on Editorial Boards of several leading kidney journals, including the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology. Dr. Williams’ research has been presented at numerous National and International nephrology meetings. He currently serves on the board of directors of the ESRD Network of New England. He has been cited as one of America’s Top Physicians by the National Consumer Advisory Board, and listed among Boston Magazine’s Top Doctors on multiple occasions. A major current focus of Dr. Williams’ academic activity is on the technical aspects of renal replacement therapy and on the barriers to quality care in acute and chronic dialysis.
Seymour Rosen, MD, attended medical school and did his pathology residency at the University of Illinois, working with the Pirani/Kark group that was instrumental in the development and application of the renal biopsy. He then spent three years at the Walter Reed Army Institute of research and subsequently came to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. His initial studies here were with Philip Steinmetz analyzing cellular mechanisms of proton transport. A few years later, his collaborators included Frank Epstein, Mayer Brezis and Samuel Heyman and resulted in numerous publications in the field of AKI using multiple models particularly related to medullary hypoxic injury. His work in this area continued with collaborators in Berlin relating to a hypoxia inducible factor1 alpha. His other interests relate to renal growth and development. He was appointed Professor of Pathology Harvard Medical School 1994.
Isaac Ely Stillman, MD, is a staff pathologist in the Department of Pathology, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA, where he serves as Medical Director of the Immunofluorescence and Diagnostic Electron Microscopy Laboratories. Isaac also maintains an appointment in the Renal Division of the Department of Medicine, and serves as a consultant in nephropathology at Children’s Hospital, Boston. A graduate of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University, he is currently an Associate Professor of Pathology at Harvard Medical School. Following an internship in internal medicine he arrived at the then Beth Israel Hospital, Boston, where he completed a residency/chief residency, and fellowship in Anatomic and Surgical Pathology. He is an enthusiastic teacher in both medical undergraduate and graduate settings. His clinical and research interests include thrombotic microangiopathy (especially preeclampsia), diabetes, lupus, acute kidney injury, nephrotoxins, angiogenesis and the endothelium and mitochondrial dysfunction. His laboratory maintains avid collaborations in both experimental and translational research, which have culminated in more than 80 print publications. He is also excited about the potential of electronic communication, and blogs in particular, to contribute to teaching, learning and the advancement of medical knowledge.