If you are interested in joining the Washington University School of Medicine's Digestive Diseases Research Core Centers (DDRCC), please click here for more information.
Full Members as of September 2013
Abumrad, Nada, Ph.D., Dr. Robert C. Atkins Professor of Medicine and Obesity Research, Department of Medicine
The research of Dr Abumrad’s group deals with the molecular mechanisms regulating utilization of fatty acids and how abnormalities in fatty acid metabolism can result in metabolic disease such as obesity and diabetes.
Brunt, Elizabeth, M.D., Professor, Department of Pathology and Immunology
The research of the Brunt lab investigates anatomic and Molecular Pathology – Transplant Pathology, Hepatobiliary Pathology, and Gastrointestinal Pathology.
Ciorba, Matthew, M.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine-Gastroenterology
Dr. Ciorba’s research is focused on understanding mechanisms involved in modulating intestinal inflammation and response to injury. Specific interest include applied translational research to the human inflammatory Bowel Diseases (Crohns and Ulcerative Colitis) and probiotic bacteria.
Colonna, Marco, M.D., Professor, Department of Pathology/Immunology
The research of Dr. Colonna’s laboratory studies human and murine innate responses against pathogens
Crawford, Peter, M.D., Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine-Cardiovascular Division; Department of Molecular Biology and Pharmacology
Dr. Crawford’s laboratory studies include systems biology approaches, predominantly in mouse models, to study the molecular mechanisms through which the heart adapts to variations in nutrient composition and availability.
Curiel, David, M.D., Ph.D., Professor, Radiation Oncology
Dr. Curiel's research interest is in GI cancers, gene therapy and virotherapy for a range of neoplastic disorders.
Dantas, Gautam Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Pathology/Immunology, Biomedical Engineering
Dr. Dantas' research is dedicated to developing and applying novel technologies to understand, harness and engineer the biochemical processing potential of the microbial world. We work at the interface of microbial genomics and biochemistry, synthetic biology and structural biology to study problems with biotechnological and biomedical relevance, with a specific focus on understanding microbial reservoirs of antibiotic resistance and engineering microbial catalysis of plant biomass into value chemicals.
Davidson, Nicholas, M.D., D.Sc., Professor of Medicine and Developmental Biology; Chief, Division of Gastroenterology
Dr. Davidson's major research interests are in the molecular genetics of lipid transport and in the post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression, particularly RNA editing and mRNA stability. His clinical interests are in the molecular genetics of hereditary colorectal cancer syndromes, particularly Familial Adenomatous Polyposis.
Dieckgrafe, Brian, M.D. Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Medicine-Gastroenterology; Chief of Gastroenterology, St. Louis VA Medical Centers
Dr. Dieckgraefe's major research interest is the study of the intestinal epithelial response to injury. A second area of interest has been the application of high-density DNA arrays as a new technology to study gene expression in inflammatory bowel disease.
Dubberke, Erik, M.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine-Infectious Diseases
Dr. Dubberke’s research focuses on healthcare epidemiology in transplant and oncology patients, specifically bloodstream infections and C. difficile-associated disease.
Finck, Brian, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine-Geriatrics/Nutritional Science
The research conducted in Dr. Finck’s laboratory examines the molecular control of fatty acid metabolism with special emphasis on obesity-related abnormalities in liver, heart, and skeletal muscle lipid metabolism.
Fleckenstein, James, M.D., Associate Professor, Department of Medicine-Infectious Diseases/Molecular Microbiology
Dr. Fleckenstein's research laboratory focuses on the study of molecular pathogenesis of enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC).
Gordon, Jeffrey, M.D., Dr. Robert J. Glaser Distinguished University Professor; Director, Center for Genome Sciences & Systems Biology, Department of Pathology and Immunology
Dr. Gordon’s research laboratory characterizes the genomic and metabolic foundations of mutually beneficial relationships between gut microbial communities and their human hosts.
Harris, Charles M.D., Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology
Dr. Harris' research interests involve the study of molecular mechanisms of glucocorticoid action, which are stress hormones and are used to treat a variety of conditions, including asthma, inflammatory bowel disease and rheumatoid arthritis. Although successful treatment, many of the adverse side effects result in a constellation of symptoms known as Cushing's Syndrome, which Dr. Harris' lab hopes to better understand.
Hawkins, William, M.D., Associate Professor, Department of Surgery-General Surgery, Hepatobiliary Pancreatic and Gastrointestinal
Dr. Hawkin’s research interest are complex cancer surgery for primary and metastatic lesions of the liver, pancreas and stomach. Surgical management of soft-tissue sarcomas of the abdomen and extremities.
Hotchkiss, Richard, M.D., Professor, Department of Anesthesiology
The focus of the Hotchkiss Lab is defining new methods for the treatment of sepsis, a highly lethal disorder which occurs during severe overwhelming infection.
Hruz, Paul, M.D., Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Pediatrics
Dr. Hruz's research interests are directed toward understanding facilitative glucose transport as it relates to normal and disordered glucose homeostasis.
Hsieh, Chyi-Song, M.D., Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine; Adjunct Assistant Professor, Department of Pathology/Immunology
The major aims of Dr. Hsieh’s research is to study naturally arising T cell receptor repertoires developing in normal environments compared with genetically altered environments predisposed to autoimmune disease.
Hunstad, David, M.D., Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Molecular Microbiology; Director, Infectious Diseases Fellowship Program, Division of Infectious Diseases
Pathobiology Research Unit
Dr. Hunstad’s studies include the interactions of Gram-negative bacteria with their hosts. He is particularly interested in mechanisms by which Gram-negative pathogens interfere with host immune responses in order to establish infection.
Jain, Sanjay, M.D., Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Medicine-Renal Division
Dr. Jain's main objective is to delineate molecular and genetic events underlying organogenesis, injury, repair, and regeneration. The major focus is on development and disease of the urogenital and nervous system.
Klein, Samuel, M.D., William H. Danforth Professor of Medicine and Nutritional Science; Director, Center for Human Nutrition;
Chief, Division of Geriatrics and Nutritional Science; Director, Center for Applied Research Sciences; Medical Director, Weight Management Program
Dr. Klein’s research activities involve the use of stable isotope tracers to study the regulation of substrate metabolism in humans in vivo. His laboratory is particularly interested in the pathophysiology of lipid metabolism in obesity.
Linehan, David, M.D., Chief, Section of Hepatobiliary-Pancreatic and Gastrointestinal Surgery; Professor, Surgery, Division of General Surgery
Dr. Linehan’s research interest is mechanisms of immunosuppression and inflammation in the tumor microenvironment, specifically, the biology of bone marrow derived myeloid cells that infiltrate primary tumors and metastatic sites promoting tumor growth and dissemination.
Longmore, Gregory, M.D., Professor, Department of Medicine-Hematology; Department of Cell Biology & Physiology
In general, Dr. Longmore research interests are in understanding how extracellular signals, including cell adhesive events, are transduced inside cells to influence the cellular cytoskeleton so as to effect cell motility.
Micchelli, Craig, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Developmental Biology
Dr. Micchelli is a second-year Pilot & Feasibility Awardee. His research lab is focused on understanding the role of adult stem cells in the processes of development, homeostasis and disease.
Miller, Mark, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Pathology/Immunology
With recent advances in multi-photon microscopy, Dr. Miller is interested in complex cellular interactions can now be studied directly in native tissues. Our approach is to use single-cell imaging to assess T reg impact on antigen presentation, T cell activation and effector function. We are currently developing two complementary mouse models for this purpose.
Mills, Jason, M.D., Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Medicine-Gastroenterology; Departments of Pathology/Immunology and Developmental Biology
Dr. Mills’s laboratory studies developmental, molecular, and cellular biology of gastrointestinal epithelial stem cells and cancer.
Miner, Jeffrey, Ph.D., Professor, Department of Medicine-Cell Biology and Physiology
Dr. Miner’s research focuses on the roles of basement membrances, a specialized extracellular matrix, in embryonic development, organ function, and disease, to define the mechanism whereby the mouse discs large homolog 1, a PDZ scaffolding protein, mediates normal development and function of the ureter, and role of fatty acid transport protein 4 (FATP4) in skin and hair development. We discovered that mutation of FATP4 results in “wrinkle free” mice.
Newberry, Rodney, M.D., Associate Professor, Department of Medicine-Gastroenterology
Dr. Newberry's major research interest is the function of the mucosal immune system in health and disease. Dr. Newberry's clinical interests include intestinal inflammatory diseases, including inflammatory bowel disease and celiac disease.
Ornitz, David, M.D., Ph.D., Professor, Department of Developmental Biology
The Ornitz laboratory is using molecular, genetic and biochemical approaches to study the regulation of cell growth and development in the mouse, focusing on the FGF family of ligands and receptors and on model systems involving skeletal, pulmonary, central nervous system and inner ear development.
Ponder, Katherine, M.D., Professor, Department of Medicine-Hematology; Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biophysics; Department of Genetics
The focus of Dr. Ponder’s laboratory is to use hepatic gene therapy to treat genetic deficiencies such as hemophilia or mucopolysaccharidosis VII (MPS VII).
Randolph, Gwendalyn, Ph.D., Professor, Pathology and Immunology
Dr. Randolph’s research interests focus on the transit of molecules and cells, including dendritic cells and macrophages, through the lymphatic vasculature in chronic inflammatory diseases.
Rubin, Deborah, M.D., Professor, Department of Medicine-Gastroenterology
Dr. Rubin’s research laboratory is presently interested in examining molecular mechanisms underlying the regulation of intestinal epithelial cell proliferation, differentiation and carcinogenesis
Rudnick, David, M. D., Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Pediatrics-Gastroenterology, Nutrition, Developmental Biology and Genetics
Dr. Rudnick’s research laboratory focuses on the rodent partial hepatectomy model system to investigate liver regeneration in genetically- and pharmacologically-manipulated mice.
Sayuk, Gregory, M.D., M.P.H., Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine-Gastroenterology; Department of Psychiatry
IBS represents a condition whose pathogenesis remains incompletely understood. Dr. Sayuk collaborates with Washington University colleagues in Neuroradiology and Psychiatry to perform neuroimaging research using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) technology to identify central symptom amplification mechanisms and defective pain inhibitory pathways that may be relevant to IBS pathophysiology.
Schaffer, Jean, M.D., Virginia Minnich Distinguished Professor of Medicine; Director, Interdisciplinary Center for the Study of Diabetic Cardiovascular Disease
; Associate Director, Medical Scientist Training Program
The goals of studies in the Schaffer ‘s research laboratory are to characterize the fundamental cellular mechanisms of lipotoxicity, and to understand how these processes contribute to organ dysfunction in rodent models of metabolic disease.
Schnadower, David, M.D., M.P.H., Assistant Professor, Pediatrics, Division of Pediatric Emergency Medicine; Program Director, Pediatric Emergency Medicine Fellowship
Dr. Schnadower’s research interests are to investigate the effectiveness of LGG, a probiotic agent, in the management of acute gastroenteritis in children and to explore biomarkers and clinical risk factors for the hemolytic uremic syndrome in children with bloody diarrhea presenting to the emergency department.
Semenkovich, Clay, M.D., Herbert S. Gasser Professor; Department of Medicine; Chief, Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism & Lipid Research; Department of Cell Biology and Physiology
Dr. Semenkovich research interests are in lipid metabolism and how it promotes atherosclerosis in the setting of obesity, insulin resistance and diabetes. Our work is translational, spanning cultured cells, animal models and humans.
Stappenbeck, Thaddeus, M.D., Ph.D., Associate Professor, Pathology and Immunology
Dr. Stappenbeck’s research studies the role and regulation of intestinal epithelial stem cells in health and disease.
Stenson, William, M.D., Professor, Department of Medicine-Gastroenterology
The major focus of Dr. Stenson's current research is the role of inflammation in intestinal injury and wound repair. This work has included studies of lipid mediators in inflammatory bowel disease, in radiation injury and enteric infections. Epithelial injury induces the expression of cyclooxygenase-1 and cyclooxygenase-2, the enzymes responsible for the synthesis of prostaglandins.
Sullivan, Shelby M.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine - Gastroenterology
Dr. Sullivan is a graduate of Washington University School of Medicine, having completed her residency and training in Gastroenterology in 2007. Her primary research interests are in obesity and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Dr. Sullivan was recently awarded her first NIH-funded grant to pursue her research interests.
Tarr, Philip, M.D., Melvin E. Carnahan Professor of Pediatrics; Unit Leader, Pathobiology
; Director, Division of Pediatric Gastroenterology/Nutrition
The theme of Dr. Tarr’s laboratory work pertains to specific enteric pathogens, as well as the interaction between bacteria.
Tripathy, Sandeep, M.D., Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine–Gastroenterology
Dr. Tripathy’s research centers on the regulation of natural killer (NK) cell activation and the role of these cells in controlling viral infections.
Turmelle, Yumirle, M.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics
Dr. Turmell's research interests are in liver disease, liver transplantation, outcomes after liver transplantation and immune tolerance following transplantation.
Vig, Monika, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Pathology/Immunology
Dr. Vig's laboratory research studies signaling mechanisms in developing and mature lymphocytes, in particular the origin and outcome of calcium fluxes within cells.
Virgin, Herbert, M.D., Ph.D., Edward Mallinckrodt Professor and Chairman, Pathology/Immunology;
Director and Principal Investigator, Midwest Regional Center of Excellence for Biodefense and Emerging Infectious Diseases Research
; Professor of Molecular Microbiology; Professor of Medicine
Dr. Virgin studies issues at the interface between virology and immunology, working from the hypothesis that viruses manipulate the immune response using immunoevasive gene products as the immune response attempts to eradicate the virus.
Wang, David, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Departments of Molecular Microbiology and Pathology/Immunology
Dr. Wang’s research focuses on the integrated application of genomics, bioinformatics, molecular and cellular virology and epidemiology to address questions in infectious diseases.
Warner, Brad, M.D., Professor, Department of Surgery; Pediatric Surgeon-in-Chief, St. Louis Children's Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine
Dr. Warner's areas of clinical interest include remedial surgical procedures for short gut syndrome as well as ileal pouch procedures for children with familial polyposis and ulcerative colitis.
Weinstock, George Ph.D., Professor, Department of Genetics and Molecular Microbiology, Associate Director, The Genome Institute
Dr. Weinstock's research applies high-throughput DNA sequencing, genome-wide analysis, bioinformatics, and other genetic methods to the study the human, model organisms and microbial genomes.
Wice, Burton, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Medicine-Endocrinology, Metabolism & Lipid Research
Dr. Wice studies the role of intestinal incretin secretion in the neural modulation of myenteric neuronal function.
P&F Recipients (5)
DeBosch, Brian, M.D., Ph.D., Clinical Fellow, Pediatric Gastroenterology
Dr. DeBosch is a first-year Pilot & Feasibility Awardee. His primary research interests are in understanding the role of enterocyte transporters (GLUTs) in maintaining global metabolic homeostasis.
Mysorekar, Indira, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Obstetrics and Gynecology
Dr. Mysorekar is a first-year Pilot & Feasibility Awardee. Her primary research interests are focused on studies of mechanisms underlying host-pathogen interactions in the bladder mucosa.
Tran, David, M.D., Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine
Dr. Tran is a second-year Pilot & Feasibility Awardee. His primary research interests are focused on understanding the mechanism of how EMT contributes to carcinogenesis and cancer metastasis.
Wang, Ting, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Genetics
Dr. Wang is a second-year Pilot & Feasibility Awardee. His primary research interests are focused on the development of computational and systems methods for understanding genetic and epigenetic regulatory networks.
Wei, Xiaochao, Ph.D., Research Instructor, Department of Medicine-Endocrinology, Metabolism & Lipid Research
Dr. Wei is a first-year Pilot & Feasibility Awardee working in the laboratory of Dr. Clay Semenkovich. His research interest focuses on the function of protein trafficking by lipid related regulation in metabolic diseases.
Adjunct Members (4)
DiPaolo, Richard, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Molecular Microbiology & Immunology, St. Louis University School of Medicine
Dr. DiPaolo is a first-year Pilot & Feasibility Awardee, as well as a Full Member within the DDRCC. His research is focused on understanding how to regulate inflammation as a means of reduction in the risk of gastritis and gastric cancer.
Hawiger, Daniel M.D., Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Molecular Microbiology & Immunology, St. Louis School of Medicine
The research in Dr. Hawiger's laboratory, located at St. Louis University School of Medicine, is focused on the physiological interactions between dendritic cells and T cells that dictate induction of immune tolerance and immunity.
Ray, Ranjit, Ph.D., Professor, Departments of Medicine and Molecular Microbiology & Immunology, St. Louis University School of Medicine
The laboratory of Dr. Ranjit Ray, at St. Louis University School of Medicine, primarily focuses on the understanding of molecular mechanisms of HCV entry, induction of immune responses, vaccine development and virus mediated pathogenesis.
Schootman, Mario, Ph.D., James R. Kimmey Endowed Chair in Public Health; Professor of Epidemiology and of Health Services Research and of Medicine
Dr. Schootman’s research is focused on investigating disparities in breast cancer, including income and geographic disparities across the cancer care continuum ranging from prevention through quality of life and mortality.
DDRCC Associate Members (11)
Sibley, L. David