Notable People

April 2016

Daniel Palanker, PhD

Palanker, professor of ophthalmology, has been awarded the Bressler Prize in Vision Science by the Lighthouse Guild, a nonprofit organization that serves the blind and visually impaired. The award recognizes a scientist whose leadership, research and service have led to advances in the understanding and treatment of eye diseases. Palanker has developed several optical and electronic devices to treat ocular diseases, including a wireless implant for restoration of sight lost because of retinal degenerative diseases.


Stephen Quake, PhD

Quake was awarded the 2016 Raymond and Beverly Sackler Prize in Convergence Research by the National Academy of Sciences. The honor, which includes a $350,000 cash prize, recognizes advances in convergence research, the integration of two or more of the disciplines of mathematics, physics, chemistry, biomedicine, biology, astronomy, earth sciences, engineering and computational science. Quake was recognized for his contributions to human health, including the development of noninvasive diagnostic procedures and biological devices analogous to electronic circuits. He is the Lee Otterson Professor in the School of Engineering and professor of bioengineering and of applied physics.


Eila Skinner, MD

Skinner, professor and chair of urology and the Thomas A. Stamey Research Professor in Urology, was elected a trustee of the American Board of Urology. The board establishes and maintains standards of certification for urologists. Skinner’s six-year term began in February. A specialist in urologic oncology, she focuses on the medical and surgical treatment of bladder cancer and on urinary tract reconstruction.


Linda Yip, PhD

Yip, a senior research scientist, was given the young investigator award by the Network of Pancreatic Donors with Diabetes. The award recognizes an early-career researcher who has contributed outstanding work on Type 1 diabetes. Yip’s research focuses on the role of gene splicing in the pathogenesis of Type 1 diabetes and on identifying gene-expression biomarkers of disease risk and progression.

Charlotte Jacobs, MD

Jacobs, the Drs. Ben and A. Jess Shenson Professor of Medicine, Emerita, received the Hewlett Award in March. The award recognizes an exceptional physician with ties to Stanford and is named for Albert Walter Hewlett, professor and executive head of the Department of Medicine from 1916 to 1925. Jacobs is an oncologist whose work has had international impact on head and neck cancer treatment. She served as senior associate dean of the School of Medicine and helped establish the Stanford Cancer Center. She has also written several biographies, including Jonas Salk: A Life.


Diego Jaramillo, MD

Jaramillo was appointed professor of radiology, effective Dec. 1. He was also appointed associate chair of the Department of Radiology and chief of radiology at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System. He specializes in pediatric radiology and is working to improve the strength and effectiveness of MRI.


Katrina Karkazis, PhD

Karkazis, a senior research scholar with the Stanford Center for Biomedical Ethics, was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship. A “midcareer” award, the fellowship recognizes exceptional capacity for scholarship and provides funding for one year of work, beginning in 2017. Karkazis also received a collaborative research fellowship from the American Council of Learned Societies, which will support her writing and research in 2016-17. Her work focuses on scientific and medical beliefs about gender, sexuality and the body.

Kiran Khush, MD

Khush was promoted to associate professor of medicine, effective Oct. 1. Her research focuses on the evaluation and selection of donors for heart transplantation and the diagnosis and treatment of post-transplant complications.


Nicholas Leeper, MD

Leeper was promoted to associate professor of surgery and of medicine, effective Nov. 1. He is a vascular medicine specialist whose research focuses on the genetics of atherosclerosis.


Marlene Rabinovitch, MD

Rabinovitch, the Dwight and Vera Dunlevie Professor of Pediatric Cardiology, will give the J. Burns Amberson Lecture at the American Thoracic Society’s annual meeting in San Francisco on May 15. The annual lectureship honors a scientist who has made major contributions to pulmonary research. Rabinovitch is being recognized for her research on pulmonary arterial hypertension.


Fátima Rodriguez, MD

Rodriguez, a second-year cardiology fellow, has received an American College of Cardiology/Merck Research Fellowship in Cardiovascular Disease and Cardiometabolic Disorders. The one-year, $70,000 award will finance her research on inequities in cardiovascular care for Latinos.

Oscar Salvatierra, MD

Salvatierra, professor emeritus of surgery and of pediatrics, will receive the 2016 Pioneer Award from the American Society of Transplant Surgeons, the society’s highest honor. The award recognizes significant contributions to the field of transplantation. The only other Stanford surgeon to receive the award was the late Norman Shumway, MD, PhD, who performed the first successful human heart transplant in the United States.


David K. Stevenson, MD

Stevenson, the Harold K. Faber Professor of Pediatrics and senior associate dean for maternal and child health, will receive the Joseph W. St. Geme Jr. Leadership Award from the Federation of Pediatric Organizations. The award, which will be given April 30 at the Pediatric Academic Societies’ annual meeting in Baltimore, honors a pediatrician who has made broad and sustained contributions to the field of child health. Stevenson’s accomplishments include his research on neonatal jaundice, which has changed how the condition is managed around the world.


Megan Troxell, MD, PhD

Troxell was appointed professor of pathology, effective Dec. 1. Her research focuses on breast pathology, renal pathology and immunohistochemistry.


March 2016

Aida Habtezion, MD

Hatbtezion, assistant professor of medicine, has been appointed the Ballinger-Swindells Faculty Scholar. The endowed position supports a junior faculty member in the field of inflammatory bowel disease and related research. Habtezion investigates immune responses associated with gastrointestinal diseases.


Steven Howard, MD

Howard was promoted to professor of anesthesiology, perioperative and pain medicine, effective Sept. 1. His research focuses on the effects of fatigue in health-care personnel and on medical education, including crisis-management training and performance assessment.


Deirdre Lyell, MD

Lyell was promoted to professor of obstetrics and gynecology, effective Sept. 1. She specializes in preterm labor prevention, high-risk pregnancy management and the diagnoses and management of placenta accreta. Her research focuses on identifying the causes of spontaneous preterm birth and of placenta accreta. She is the founding director of the Program in Placental Disorders at Stanford.


Kari Nadeau, MD, PhD

Nadeau was promoted to professor of medicine and of pediatrics, effective Oct. 1. She directs the Sean N. Parker Center for Allergy and Asthma Research. Her research focuses on the mechanisms of immune dysfunction in primary immune disease, allergy and asthma.


Jonathan Pollack, MD, PhD

Pollack was promoted to professor of pathology, effective Aug. 1. His research focuses on translational genomics, using genomics to better understand, diagnose and treat human diseases, with an emphasis on cancer.


Judith Prochaska, PhD

Prochaska, associate professor of medicine, was named president-elect 2016-17 of the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco, an international scientific organization that supports the generation and dissemination of new information about nicotine. She will become president at the 2017 meeting in Florence, Italy. She is a faculty member at the Stanford Prevention Research Center and a member of Stanford Research Into the Impact of Advertising. Her research focuses on the use of technology innovations to reach diverse and underserved populations of smokers. 


Carolyn Rodriguez, MD, PhD

Rodriguez, assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences, has been named a scholar in the Harold Amos Medical Faculty Development Program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The program was created to increase the number of medical and dental faculty from historically disadvantaged backgrounds. The four-year award includes a $75,000 annual stipend plus a $30,000 annual research grant and provides scholars with mentors. She is working to discover new treatments for obsessive-compulsive and hoarding disorders by understanding these behaviors at multiple levels of analysis, from molecule to behavior.


Jessica Rose, PhD

Rose was promoted to professor of orthopaedic surgery, effective Oct. 1. She directs the Motion and Gait Analysis Lab at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford. Her research focuses on brain and motor development in children born preterm and the neuromuscular mechanisms that cause motor defects in children with cerebral palsy.


Irving Weissman, MD

Weissman received the Pioneer Award at the Personalized Medicine World Conference in January. He is the Virginia and D.K. Ludwig Professor in Clinical Investigation in Cancer Research, professor of pathology and of developmental biology, and director of the Institute of Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine and of the Ludwig Center for Cancer Stem Cell Research at Stanford. The award honors individuals who made early, major advances in the personalized medicine field.


Alice Whittemore, PhD

Whittemore, professor of health research and policy and of biomedical data science, will present the R.A. Fisher Lecture at the American Statistical Association meeting on Aug. 3 in Chicago. The lectureship was established by the Committee of Presidents of Statistical Societies to honor Sir Ronald Aylmer Fisher, an English statistician and biologist, and to recognize meritorious achievement and scholarship in statistical science. Whittemore uses mathematical techniques to study the genetics and epidemiology of cancer.


Kirkham Wood, MD

Wood was appointed professor of orthopaedic surgery, effective Nov. 1. He specializes in surgery of the spine, with a focus on adults with spinal deformity such as scoliosis and kyphosis.


Lei Xing, PhD

Xing, the Jacob Haimson Professor and professor of radiation oncology, received a Google Faculty Research Award. He plans to apply deep learning algorithms to improve medical-image processing and segmentation.


Paul Bollyky, MD, DPhil

Bollyky, assistant professor of medicine, received a Catalyst Award from the Dr. Ralph and Marian Falk Medical Research Trust. The $485,000 award will fund his effort to develop a new therapy for Pseudomonas aeruginosa antibiotic-resistant infections, which can cause pneumonia, wound infections or hospital-acquired infections.


David Fiorentino, MD, PhD

Fiorentino was promoted to professor of dermatology and of medicine, effective Oct. 1. He is the associate program director for the dermatology residency and specializes in autoimmunity-related skin disease. He is co-director of a multidisciplinary dermatology-rheumatology clinic that treats patients with scleroderma, myositis, psoriasis and lupus. His research focuses on the role of auto-antigens and cancer in the pathogenesis of dermatomyositis.


Jeremy Goldhaber-Fiebert, PhD

Goldhaber-Fiebert was promoted to associate professor of medicine, effective Sept. 1. He uses computer simulation modeling, cost-effectiveness analyses and econometric techniques to examine policies related to the prevention and management of chronic diseases, including hepatitis C, tuberculosis and Type 2 diabetes.


Steven Howard, MD

Howard was promoted to professor of anesthesiology, perioperative and pain medicine, effective Sept. 1. His research focuses on the effects of fatigue in health-care personnel and on medical education, including crisis-management training and performance assessment.


Hanlee Ji, MD

Ji was promoted to associate professor of medicine, effective Dec. 1. His research focuses on using new genomic sequencing technologies to understand cancer metastasis and on developing genetic-based markers for precision cancer medicine.


Aya Kamaya, MD

Kamaya was promoted to associate professor of radiology, effective Sept. 1. Her research focuses on abdominal and pelvic imaging, including hepatobiliary cancer and hepatocellular carcinoma imaging, perfusion CT of abdominal tumors, gynecologic and urologic imaging, ultrasound innovations and thyroid cancer ultrasound imaging. She serves as the associate program director for the Body Imaging Fellowship at Stanford.


John Oghalai, MD

Oghalai was promoted to professor of otolaryngology-head and neck surgery, effective Aug. 1. He directs the Stanford Children’s Hearing Center and its pediatric cochlear implant team. He specializes in managing adult skull base tumors and in the evaluation and management of children with hearing loss.


February 2016

Timothy Durazzo, PhD 

Durazzo was appointed associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences, effective Nov. 1. His clinical work emphasizes the neuropsychological assessment of traumatic brain injury, Gulf War illness and neurodegenerative diseases. His research focuses on the neurological consequences of traumatic brain injury, cigarette smoking and alcohol and substance-use disorders. 


Michael Khodadoust, MD, PhD    

Khodadoust, an instructor in medicine, received a 2015 Young Investigator Award from the Conquer Cancer Foundation of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. The one-year grant provides $50,000. Khodadoust’s research focuses on the identification of tumor antigens, with an emphasis on mantle-cell lymphoma. 


Kim Rhoads, MD    

Rhoads was promoted to associate professor of surgery, effective Sept. 1. She specializes in colon and rectal surgery, and her research focuses on the connection between hospital quality and racial or ethnic disparities in cancer survival. She is the founding director of the Stanford Cancer Institute’s Community Partnerships Program. 


Brendan Visser, MD    

Visser was promoted to associate professor of surgery, effective Sept. 1. He specializes in hepatobiliary and pancreatic surgery. He is the medical director of the Gastrointestinal Cancers Clinical Care Program in the Stanford Cancer Center and director of the Hepatobiliary and Pancreatic Surgery Clinical Fellowship. His research focuses on treating hepatocellular carcinoma, improving technical aspects of pancreatic and liver surgery and on socioeconomic and institutional barriers to the management of hepatobiliary cancers. 


Tara Chang, MD

Chang was appointed assistant professor of medicine, effective Oct. 1. Her research focuses on the treatment of cardiovascular disease in patients with chronic kidney disease. 


Mary Chen, MS, MBA

Chen was appointed assistant dean of maternal and child health research. She helped launch the Child Health Research Program to support clinical and translational research, now known as Spectrum Child Health. In her new role, she will develop and administer programs to support maternal and child health researchers at Stanford.

Stanley Cohen, MD, and Peter Marinkovich, MD

Cohen, professor of medicine and of genetics, and Marinkovich, associate professor of dermatology, have received 2016 Harrington Scholar-Innovator Awards from the Harrington Discovery Institute at University Hospitals in Ohio. Each award includes up to $700,000 in financial support and mentoring from pharmaceutical industry leaders to facilitate drug development. Cohen, who is the Kwoh-Ting Li Professor, aims to develop a treatment for Huntington’s disease and mechanistically related inherited neurodegenerative or neuromuscular disorders. Marinkovich studies the extracellular matrix, composed of molecules outside a cell that support surrounding cells, in epithelial tissues for applications in the treatment of blistering diseases such as epidermolysis bullosa. He also examines the pathogenesis and therapy of human psoriasis.

Robert Ohgami, MD, PhD

Ohgami was appointed assistant professor of pathology, effective Oct. 1. His clinical work focuses on the diagnosis of hematopoietic diseases. His research uses sequencing technologies to understand the molecular pathogenesis of leukemias and lymphomas.


Jochen Profit, MD

Profit, assistant professor of pediatrics, has received two R01 grants from the National Institutes of Health. He received $2.2 million to test a program at six hospitals that is intended to reduce burnout among health workers in the high-stress environment of the neonatal intensive care unit. He also received $3.1 million to track racial and ethnic disparities in care provided to very-low-birth-weight infants at 700 NICUs across the country, with the goal of providing feedback that could be used to eliminate such disparities.


Derrick Wan, MD

Wan was promoted to associate professor of surgery, effective Sept. 1. He focuses on pediatric craniofacial and adult reconstructive surgery. His research interests include using adipose-derived stromal cells for soft-tissue reconstruction.


Gerlinde Wernig, MD

Wernig was appointed assistant professor of pathology, effective Oct. 1. Her research focuses on discovering drivers of fibrotic diseases, including primary myelofibrosis and preleukemia, in patients and mouse models. 


Fan Yang, PhD

Yang, assistant professor of orthopaedic surgery and of bioengineering, has received the 2016 Young Investigator Award from the Society for Biomaterials. The award will be presented at the World Biomaterials Conference in Montreal. Yang’s research focuses on developing biomaterials to enhance tissue regeneration and on deciphering how extracellular cues regulate cell fate during normal development or disease progression. 


January 2016

Michele Berk, PhD

Berk was appointed assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences, effective Sept. 1. She specializes in researching and preventing adolescent suicide. Her most recent project investigates the effectiveness of dialectical behavior therapy on decreasing repeat suicide attempts among at-risk adolescents.


Helen Blau, PhD

Blau was elected to the council of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences for a four-year term. The council oversees the academy’s membership selection process and provides oversight of its academic efforts. She is the Donald E. and Delia B. Baxter Foundation Professor, director of the Baxter Laboratory for Stem Cell Biology and professor of microbiology and immunology.


Sanjiv Sam Gambhir, MD, PhD, and Brian Kobilka, MD

Gambhir and Kobilka were named 2015 fellows of the National Academy of Inventors. Gambhir, the Virginia and D.K. Ludwig Professor for Clinical Investigation in Cancer Research and professor and chair of radiology, develops strategies for integrated diagnostics and molecular imaging of living subjects. Kobilka, a professor of molecular and cellular physiology who holds the Hélène Irwin Fagan Chair in Cardiology and who won the 2012 Nobel Prize in chemistry, investigates G-protein-coupled receptors.

Sigurdis Haraldsdottir, MD

Haraldsdottir was appointed assistant professor of medicine, effective Oct. 1. She specializes in gastrointestinal cancers with a clinical focus on colorectal cancer. Her research focuses on mismatch repair deficiency and the inherited cancer disorder Lynch syndrome. She is characterizing drivers of colorectal cancer by analyzing population-based cohorts, with the goal of identifying new drug targets.


Anne Muehe, MD

Muehe, a postdoctoral fellow in radiology, received a $1,000 research trainee prize for her studies on the safety of ferumoxytol nanoparticles as an MRI contrast agent in children at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America in December. She studies clinical imaging technologies for cancer staging in children and young adults.


Zara Patel, MD

Patel was appointed assistant professor of otolaryngology-head and neck surgery, effective Sept. 1. She specializes in endoscopic sinus and skull-base surgery. Her research interests include treatment of refractory sinusitis, racial disparities in sinonasal cancer survival and curing olfactory loss.


Dolores Gallagher Thompson, PhD

Thompson, professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences, was awarded an honorary doctorate in education by the Hong Kong Institute of Education in November. She directs the Stanford Geriatric Education Center and outreach, recruitment and education for the School of Medicine’s new Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center.


Joseph Wu, MD, PhD

Wu, director of the Stanford Cardiovascular Institute, received the inaugural Joseph A. Vita Award at the 2015 American Heart Association meeting in Orlando, Florida. This award is given to an investigator whose published work in the past five years has had a transformative impact on cardiovascular research. Wu is the Simon H. Stertzer Professor and professor of medicine and of radiology.


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