Awards & Recognitions: June 2019

Honors received by HMS faculty, staff and students

Di Carli
Marcelo Di Carli

Marcelo Di Carli, HMS professor of radiology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, received the Georg Charles de Hevesy Nuclear Pioneer Award for his contributions to nuclear medicine at the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging annual meeting, June 22-25.

Recognized as an outstanding clinician-scientist, teacher and mentor and noted for his pioneering work in cardiovascular radionuclide imaging and services, Di Carli is executive medical director of the Cardiovascular Imaging Program and chief of the Division of Nuclear Medicine at Brigham and Women’s. His research interests have focused on the study of cardiovascular pathophysiology, with an emphasis on coronary heart disease, heart failure, myocardial ischemia and cardiac function.

Di Carli's work has contributed to the understanding of the pathophysiology of ischemic cardiac dysfunction and of the use of positron emission tomography for guiding management of patients with end-stage heart failure. He pioneered the application of quantitative PET for assessing risk and guiding management of patients with ischemic heart disease. His work demonstrated that the presence of coronary vascular dysfunction is a key marker of clinical risk, which is independent of clinical and other traditional risk markers and provides a link between coronary epicardial and microcirculatory dysfunction and increased clinical risk. This work is opening new opportunities for improved diagnosis and targeted management of patients with coronary artery disease. His most recent work centers on using PET to improve diagnosis and management of patients with cardiac inflammation.


Twenty-seven Harvard Medical School scientists have been selected as part of 38 collaborative science teams to launch the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative Seed Networks for the Human Cell Atlas projects. These collaborative groups will support the continued development of the Human Cell Atlas, an international effort to map all cells in the human body. Participants in the three-year Seed Networks projects will focus on mapping specific tissues in the healthy human body.

Each of the collaborative Seed Networks groups consists of at least three principal investigators, including at least one computational biologist or software engineer, together with additional computational biologists, engineers, experimental biologists or physicians.

The HMS researchers on 12 of the Human Cell Atlas teams are as follows:

A Comprehensive Single Cell Atlas of the Human Kidney

This network will develop a comprehensive, validated atlas of the human kidney at single cell resolution open to the entire scientific and clinical community.

Co-Principal Investigator

Anna Greka, HMS associate professor of medicine at Brigham and Women’s

A Reference Cell Atlas of Human Liver Diversity Over a Lifespan

This team will analyze single cells and develop computational tools to build a single cell map of the human liver, combining transcriptomics, spatial organization, and cell-cell interactions across diverse individuals and developmental stages.

Co-Principal Investigators

Georg Lauer, HMS associate professor of medicine at Mass General

Alan Mullen, HMS assistant professor of medicine at Mass General

Ramnik Xavier, the Kurt J. Isselbacher Professor of Medicine in the Field of Gastroenterology at Mass General

A Spatial and Lineage Atlas of Bone Marrow Hematopoiesis

This project helps build the hematopoietic human cell atlas with single cell transcriptomics, multiplexed spatial imaging data, and a pilot lineage-tracing map in vitro, presented via a portal for exploration and data analysis in the context of the Human Cell Atlas.

Co-Principal Investigators

Sahand Hormoz, HMS assistant professor of systems biology at Dana-Farber

Allon Klein, assistant professor of systems biology at HMS

Debora Marks, associate professor of systems biology at HMS

Ann Mullally, HMS assistant professor of medicine at Brigham and Women’s

Chris Sander, professor in residence of cell biology at Dana-Farber

Peng Yin, professor of systems biology at HMS

A Spatial Cell Type Reference Atlas of the Adult Human Heart

The goal of this project is to build a spatially resolved single-cell reference map of the adult human heart.

Co-Principal Investigators

Jonathan Seidman, the Henrietta B. and Frederick H. Bugher Foundation Professor of Genetics

Christine Seidman, the Thomas W. Smith Professor of Medicine at Brigham and Women’s

Benchmarking Developing and Adult Kidney with Organoids at Single Cell Resolution

This network will define the normal developing and adult human kidney transcriptome and epigenome at cellular resolution, across ages and sex, and benchmark human kidney organoid cell types against this dataset.

Co-Principal Investigators

Steven Chang, HMS assistant professor of surgery at Brigham and Women’s

Stefan Tullius, professor of surgery at Brigham and Women’s

Sushrut Waikar, HMS associate professor of medicine at Brigham and Women’s

Cell Atlas of the Human Eye from Birth to Old Age

This team will use single cell and single nucleus RNA-sequencing, computational inference, and histological analysis to generate a comprehensive reference atlas of cell types in the human eye, incorporating data across the natural lifespan.

Co-Principal Investigators

Dejan Juric, HMS instructor in medicine at Mass General

Ayellet Segre, HMS assistant professor of ophthalmology at Mass. Eye and Ear

Tavé van Zyl, HMS instructor in ophthalmology at Mass. Eye and Ear

Deciphering Intra- and Inter-Individual Variation at Single Cell Resolution

With a goal of understanding how non-coding genetic variation in humans functionally impacts disease traits, this network proposes a framework to map and interpret intra- and inter-individual variation in complex tissues using single cell approaches.

Co-Principal Investigators

Rajat Gupta, HMS instructor in medicine at Brigham and Women’s

Collaborators

Jason Buenrostro, assistant professor of stem cell and regenerative biology

Developing Tools and Standards for Integration of Multidimensional Human Cell Atlas Data

This network proposes a benchmarking framework to generate guidelines, technologies, quality metrics, and new computational tools that will serve as a compass for the Human Cell Atlas’s generation of reproducible and high-quality tissue atlases

Collaborator

Anna Greka, HMS associate professor of medicine at Brigham and Women’s

Human Lung Cell Atlas 1.0

This network will develop the first version of the Human Lung Cell Atlas by integrating single cell and spatial genomics, microscopy, anatomic, and computational methods.

Co-Principal Investigators

Jayaraj Rajagopal, HMS professor of medicine at Mass General

Inferring Cell Interactions: Spatial Organization of Human Lymph Nodes

This project aims to combine spatially resolved and single cell transcriptional profiling to develop a systematic method for inferring cell-cell interactions, and to apply that method to create a high-resolution spatial atlas of healthy human lymph nodes.

Co-Principal Investigators

Peter Kharchenko, the Gilbert S. Omenn, MD '65, PhD Associate Professor of Biomedical Informatics

Jeffrey Moffitt, HMS assistant professor of microbiology at Boston Children’s

Catherine Wu, HMS professor of medicine at Dana-Farber

Mapping Human Adipose Tissue Heterogeneity

This project’s goal is to map adipose tissue heterogeneity in healthy humans by integrating chemical imaging, single cell, and single nucleus RNA sequencing from adipocytes and adipocyte precursors with distinct anatomical origins and metabolic function.

Co-Principal Investigators

Mary-Elizabeth Patti, HMS associate professor of medicine at Joslin

Yu-Hua Tseng, HMS associate professor of medicine at Joslin Diabetes Center

Single Cell Resolution of Cell Lineages and States Based on Chromatin Accessibility Combined with CellTagging or Somatic Mutations

This project will provide the Human Cell Atlas community with datasets, technological advancement, and computational methods for a high-resolution reconstruction of cell lineages and states combining chromatin accessibility and barcoding techniques.

Co-Principal Investigators

Luca Pinello, HMS assistant professor of pathology at Massachusetts General Hospital

Jason Buenrostro, assistant professor of stem cell and regenerative biology


Three HMS scientists were among 22 early-career researchers selected by the Pew Charitable Trusts to join the Pew Scholars Program in Biomedical Sciences. The scholars will receive four years of funding to invest in exploratory research to advance human health and tackle some of biomedicine’s most challenging questions.

The members of the 2019 Pew Scholars program in Biomedical Sciences from HMS are:

Alan Brown, assistant professor of biological chemistry and molecular pharmacology in the Blavatnik Institute at HMS, will receive funding to examine the transport system that established the pathway needed to transmit light signals to the eye.

Philip Kranzusch, HMS assistant professor of microbiology at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, will investigate how small RNA molecules can activate an immune response to pathogens or cancer.

Jeffrey Moffitt, HMS assistant professor of microbiology at Boston Children’s Hospital, will develop imaging methods to map interactions between intestinal microbes and their hosts.


Two HMS research fellows are among 10 postdoctoral fellows from six Latin American countries chosen as members of the 2019 class of the Pew Latin American Fellows Program in the Biomedical Sciences by the Pew Charitable Trusts. They will receive two years of funding to conduct research in laboratories in the United States, where they will work under the mentorship of biomedical scientists.

The members of the 2019 Pew Latin American Scholars program in Biomedical Sciences from HMS are:

Esteban Orellana Vinueza, HMS research fellow in biological chemistry and molecular pharmacology at Boston Children’s Hospital
Mentor: Richard Gregory, HMS professor of biological chemistry and molecular pharmacology at Boston Children’s Hospital
Project: Orellana Vinueza will investigate whether changes in the chemical modification of RNA molecules play a role in the development of human cancers.

Lucas Vattino, HMS research fellow in otolaryngology at Massachusetts Eye and Ear
Mentor: Anne Takesian, HMS assistant professor of otolaryngology, head and neck surgery at Massachusetts Eye and Ear
Project: Vattino will explore the neural circuitry that allows the brain to interpret and respond appropriately to sound.


Three HMS faculty and staff members were recognized with 2019 Dean’s Leadership Awards, which are co-sponsored by the Joint Committee on the Status of Women at HMS and HSDM and the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine.

Hope Ricciotti, HMS associate professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive biology and chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, received the Joseph B. Martin Dean's Leadership Award for the Advancement of Women Faculty, which recognizes faculty members committed to the recruitment, retention and advancement of women at HMS and HSDM.

Jo Shapiro, HMS associate professor of otolaryngology head and neck surgery and chief of otolaryngology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, received the Shirley Driscoll Dean's Leadership Award for the Enhancement of Women's Careers, which recognizes faculty members committed to the advancement of women at HMS and HSDM but may not be in a position in their career to promote and retain women faculty. 

Jane Barrow, associate dean for global and community health and executive director of the HSDM Initiative to Integrate Oral Health and Medicine, received the Joseph B. Martin Dean's Leadership Award for the Advancement of Women Staff, which recognizesstaff members committed to the recruitment, retention and advancement of women at HMS and HSDM.


Winer and Hodi
Eric P. Winer (left) and F. Stephen Hodi

The 2019 Giants of Cancer Care award winners from HMS are:

Eric P. Winer, HMS professor of medicine at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute received the award in the category for breast cancer

Winer has designed and conducted clinical trials that have changed clinical practice and paved the way toward more personalized treatment of patients with breast cancer. He is chief of the Division of Women’s Cancers at Dana-Farber.

F. Stephen Hodi, HMS professor of medicine at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute received the award in the category for melanoma and other skin cancers.

Director of the Center for Immuno-Oncology and the Melanoma Center at Dana-Farber, Hodi is a trailblazer in the development of immunotherapy and melanoma therapeutics, particularly checkpoint inhibitors.


Fremonta Meyer, HMS assistant professor of psychiatry at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Michael Mufson, HMS assistant professor of psychiatry at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, are the recipients of the 2019 Cynthia N. Kettyle Teaching Award for Medical Student Education in Psychiatry. This award is presented annually to HMS faculty members who have inspired medical students by their warmth, character and dedication to medical student teaching in psychiatry and have exemplified for students the vitality and relevance of psychiatry to medical practice.

Justin Chen, HMS assistant professor of psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital, and Christine Wittmann, HMS instructor in psychiatry, part-time, at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, are the recipients of the 2019 Jonathan F. Borus Outstanding Early Career Educator Award in Medical Student Education in Psychiatry.This award is presented annually to junior HMS faculty members at Harvard Medical School who have demonstrated exceptional promise, initiative and commitment in the area of psychiatric education.


Fourteen Harvard Medical School faculty, staff, trainees and students were honored at the 2019 Dean’s Community Service Award ceremony on June 5, which recognize individuals whose dedication and commitment to improving the lives of others have made a positive impact on local, national or international communities. As part of the award program, HMS donates $1,000 to each community organization represented by the awardees, with 130 donations to date.

The 2019 HMS Dean’s Community Service Award Recipients are:

Lifetime Achievement

Miles G. Cunningham, assistant professor of psychiatry, McLean Hospital

Asniya, Inc.

Faculty

Katherine Peeler, instructor in pediatrics, Boston Children’s Hospital

Physicians for Human Rights

Jennifer K. Tan, instructor in dermatology, Massachusetts General Hospital

Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program

Trainees

Mohamed M. Aburawi, research fellow in surgery, Massachusetts General Hospital

Speetar

Jeremy A. Goss, research fellow in surgery, Boston Children’s Hospital

The Link Market

Charles G. Rickert, clinical fellow in surgery, Massachusetts General Hospital

Community Health Team, Mass General Department of Surgery

Students

Jonathon Florance, HMS 2020

Brookline American Legion

Abra Shen, HMS 2020

Longwood Chorus

Logan Briggs, Chase Marso, Michael W. Seward and Derek Soled, HMS 2021

Medicine in Motion

Staff

Ellen Levine, administrative coordinator, Armenise-Harvard Foundation

International Pemphigus and Pemphigoid Foundation

Philip Trevvett, content curator, Harvard Catalyst | Harvard Clinical and Translational Science Center

Urban Greens Food Co-op


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