Division of Nephrology and Hypertension

Faculty of the Division of Nephrology and Hypertension conduct research and treat people with kidney diseases of various types, such as urinary tract infections, kidney stones, diabetes, high blood pressure, and the more advanced forms of kidney disease.

To learn more about our faculty, follow the links below to access their Georgetown University faculty profiles. If a particular faculty member doesn't have a link, their profile is currently under development and will be available shortly.

Also within the division, faculty of the Center for Hypertension, Kidney & Vascular Research investigate the mechanisms that underlie high blood pressure (hypertension), kidney and vascular (blood vessel) diseases and train the next generation of leaders in these fields.

Christopher Wilcox, MD, PhD
Chief of Nephrology and Hypertension
Director of the Center for Hypertension, Kidney and Vascular Research.

George E. Schreiner Chair of Nephrology

Distinguished Professor of Medicine

Medical Degree: Oxford University, UK, 1969
Ph.D: London University, UK, 1974
Internship: London University, UK, 1970
Residency: London University, 1971
Fellowship: London University, UK, 1973
Certifications: Internal Medicine, 1986; Nephrology, 1992; Certified Hypertension Specialist, 1999

Dr.Wilcox has been the Chief of the Georgetown Nephrology Division and the George E.Schreiner Professor of Nephrology since 1994. Prior to this he held distinguished positions at University of Florida, Harvard Medical School, Yale Medical School, University of Cambridge, and London University. He holds numerous grants and leads a large group of clinical and basic scientists, who are actively and continuously publishing the latest developments in their field. He has been Chair of several NIH/NIDDK Study Sections, and is the Vice Chair and Chair Elect of the AHA Council of High Blood Pressure Research. He has received many national and international honors and distinguished lecturer positions.

He is a dedicated mentor for many faculty and fellows of the Georgetown Nephrology and Hypertension Division.

His research is focused on the interaction between blood pressure and the kidney. His basic research entails studies of genes, cells, tissues and animal models. Currently, he is investigating the hypothesis that oxidative stress is a proximate cause of most of the diseases of the second half of life. He studies this in animal models of hypertension, kidney disease, menopause and aging using a combination of methods including isolated, perfused renal afferent and mesenteric arterioles from mice, and long term whole animal studies. He has developed new catalytic long-acting drugs to combat oxidative stress and validated them in his rat and mouse models. His clinical/translated research is focused on better methods to manage the complications of chronic kidney disease and hypertension. He investigates small human arterioles dissected from a skin biopsy to study the origin of vascular disease. He is developing a new long-acting diuretic that he has taken through Phase 1 clinical trials in normal subjects. He hopes to be able to test the new antioxidant drug in patients in the future.

Robert Rubin, MD

Distinguished Professor of Medicine

Georgetown University Medical Center
Division of Nephrology and Hypertension
3800 Reservoir Road, NW, 6 PHC, Suite F 6003
Washington, DC 20007

Medical Degree: 1970 MD, Cornell University Medical College
1966 A.B., Williams College
Internship: New England Medical Center Hospitals, Boston, Intern, 1971
Residency: New England Medical Center Hospital, Boston, Jr Assistant Resident, 1972
Fellowship: New England Medical Center Hospital, Boston Fellow, Nephrology, 1976
Certifications: Internal Medicine, 1975; Nephrology, 1978
Special Interests: Outcomes Research, Pharmacoeconomics, Health Care Policy, Hypertension.

Dr. Rubin joined the Nephrology faculty in 1981 as a visiting professor while he served as an Assistant Surgeon General and an Assistant Secretary at the US Department of Health and Human Services. He currently sees patients with a wide variety of nephrology problems with an emphasis on hypertension. Dr. Rubin runs our journal club. He is an expert on pharmacoeconomics, public policy and clinical epidemiology and frequently advises medical specialty societies, government, and industry on these matters.

Kathryn Sandberg, PhD, FAHA

Distinguished Professor of Medicine and Vice Chair for Research
Director, Center for the Study of Sex Differences in health, aging and disease
Georgetown University

Director, TL1 Translational Biomedical Science Training Program
(for PhD students and Postdoctoral Fellows)
Associate Director, KL2 Program (for Early Career Investigators)
Georgetown-Howard Universities Center for Clinical and Translational Science

PhD Degree: Biochemistry, University of Maryland, Baltimore 1987
Postdoctoral Training: Intramural Research Training Award, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, NIH, 1987-1990

Dr. Sandberg has published extensively on the molecular physiology of the renin angiotensin system especially regarding the impact of gonadal hormones and sex chromosomes on the pathophysiology of hypertension and associated vascular and renal disease. She has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health for more than 20 years and she has been honored for her research with a Distinguished Scientist Award from the Washington Academy of Sciences, an Established Investigator Award from the American Heart Association, the Harriet Duston Award from the Council for Hypertension and the Ernest H. Starling Distinguished Lectureship Award from the American Physiological Society.  Dr. Sandberg has served in leadership roles in various scientific organizations including as the founding President of the Organization for the Study of Sex Differences, President of Women in Nephrology, and President of the Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine, DC Chapter. She chaired the American Physiological Society Awards Committee as well as peer review committees for the American Heart Association, the National Kidney Foundation and the National Institutes of Health. She was the Founding Chair of the Gordon Conference on Ligand Recognition and the elected chair of the 2012 Gordon Research Conference on Angiotensin. Dr. Sandberg served as Associate Editor for Gender Medicine and was the North American Editor for Cell Biology International and Section Editor for Sex-based biology in the Journal of Women’s Health. She currently serves on the Hypertension and the American Journal of Physiology-Renal and Physiology editorial boards among others.  

Published Work: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=Sandberg%2C%20Kathryn%5BAuthor%5D




William Welch, PhD

Distinguished Professor of Medicine

Ph.D: Physiology, University of Kentucky, 1983
Postdoctoral Training: Hypertension Endocrinology with T.A. Kotchen, MD, 1983-85

Dr. Welch directs the Renal Physiology research laboratory of the Division of Nephrology. His research focuses on the kidney’s ability to maintain fluid and electrolyte balance and how this regulates systemic blood pressure. Renal micropuncture and microperfusion of renal tubules are the main tools used to investigate single nephron function and microcirculatory blood flow. He continues to train post-doctoral fellows in this specialized technique, which historically has provided the most discrete data to identify transport and blood flow function in the kidney. His work is supported by NIH-funded grants, which focus on renal hormones, oxidative stress and oxygen metabolism.  

Michael Lipkowitz, MD

Clinical Director of the Nephrology and Hypertension Division
Program Director for the Nephrology Fellowship at Georgetown
Associate Professor of Medicine

Medical Degree: State Univerisity of NY, 1978
Internship: Internal Medicine, Carney Hospital, 1979
Residency: Internal Medicine Dorchester, Massachusetts, 1981
Fellowship: Nephrology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, NY, 1984
Certifications: Internal Medicine, 1981; Nephrology, 1984
Special Interests: Hypertension, Chronic Kidney Disease, Genetics of Chronic Kidney Disease, Hypertension and Kidney Disease in Special Populations

Dr. Lipkowitz is the Clinical Director of the Nephrology and Hypertension Division. He is also the Program Director for the Georgetown Nephrology Fellowship. He has a strong interest in clinical and translational research, particularly as related to chronic kidney disease. He was an investigator in the NIH sponsored multicenter African American Study of Kidney Disease and Hypertension (AASK) and he has published extensively on the progression and predictors of CKD. He chaired the Genetics Committee of AASK, and obtained ancillary funding to collect DNA from the AASK patients. His other NIH funded research has focused on genetics and proteomics of chronic kidney disease, and most recently has shown that the APOL1 gene is a potent predictor of progression in hypertensive nephropathy in African Americans. Research at Georgetown will look further at the role of APOL1 in kidney disease to try to understand the mechanism of action of APOL1 in the kidney.
In addition to his roles at Georgetown, Dr. Lipkowitz is on the Steering Committee of the local chapter of the National Kidney Foundation and is the President Elect of the Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the American Society of Hypertension. 

Dr. Lipkowitz’ clinical interests include CKD, hypertension, polycystic kidney disease, and onconephrology. 

Ji Hong, MD

Associate Professor of Medicine

Medical Degree: West China University of Medical Sciences, 1984
Residency: Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Peking Union Medical College Hospital, Beijing, P.R. China, 1988

Dr. Hong Ji has a longstanding interest in the molecular physiology started that at the NIH , after which she joined Georgetown Department of Medicine in 1996. Her interest includes the renin angiotensin aldosterone system in animal models of hypertension and associated vascular and kidney disease, and more recent sex differences in immune modulation of hypertension. Dr Ji's research expertise lies in cloning, site-directed mutagenesis, mRNA and protein expression, translational regulation, signal transduction, radiotelemetry, renal hemodynamics and mouse breeding and recently with T cell purification and cytokine expression.  

Enyin Lai, MD, PhD

Associate Professor of Medicine

Medical Degree: Gannan Medical College, Jiangxi, China, 1983

Specialist: Cardiologist, Eleventh Hospital of Wuhan, China, 1990
PhD: Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden, 1990

Postdoctorate Training: Georgetown University, 2007

Assistant Professor of Medicine: Georgetown University, 2008

Associate Professor of Medicine: Georgetown University. 2012

Distinguished Professor of Medicine: Zhejiang University, China, 2012

Dr. Enyin Lai is an associate professor in the Nephrology and Hypertension division at Georgetown Hospital. His research is focused on measurements of kindey blood flow and glomerular filtration rate (GFR) and the adaptations of the kidney's microvessels in models of hypertension, chronic kidney disease (CKD), diabetes, cardiovascular disease (CVD), and stroke. He studies directly the afferent and efferent arterioles from mouse kidneys to assess their roles in microvascular remodeling, renal blood flow, autoregulation, vascular reactivity and myogenic responses. He dissects the resistance vessels from the kidneys and the vessels supplying single islets in the pacreas and the vessesl in the brain. These are the vessels that determine the function of these three vital organs. He combines these with fluorescence microscopy whose special fluorescent probes to study the generation of key microvascular mediators. These include nitric oxide (NO) and reactive oxygen species (ROS) and intracellular calcium. Some of this studies have focused on the role of an endogenous substance generated in blood vessels termed adenosine. He has defined the receptors on which it acts and its interaction with angiotensin II and nitric oxide. He has shown that this myogenic response of the afferent artiriole is severely impaired in CKD due to generation of hydrogen peroxide. This work is uncovering new therapeutic targets for prevention of kidney damage. Current work entails the isolation and perfusion of micro-cerebral arterioles from the mouse brain and will illuminate the cuases and potential solutions to the stroke and neurodegenerative diseases. He has conducted both basic research and translational research with 50 original papers publishes in peer-reviewed journals such as Circulation Research, Hypertension, Diabetes and Kidney International. He is an expert in the renal/cerebral vascular physiology, and molecular cell physiology of vascular endothelial and smooth muscle cells in chronic kidney disease and hypertension.

Vasilios Papademetriou, MD, DSc, FACC

Director of Hypertension and Interventional Cardiology at the Washington DC VA Medical Center
Associate Professor of Medicine

Medical Degree: Athens University Medical School, 1974
Internship: Hellenic Anticancer Institute Athens, Greece, 1975
Residency: General State Hospital Athens, Greece, 1978
International Kidney Unit Athens, Greece, 1979
Dept. of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Washington, D.C., 1983
Fellowship: Laboratory of Chemical Pharmacology National Institute of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, 1980
Fellow in Hypertension, Georgetown University School of Medicine, Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Washington, DC, 1982
Certifications: Internal Medicine, 1985 ; Cardiology, 1987

Vasilios Papademetriou, MD, is a professor of medicine at Georgetown University School of Medicine, and staff cardiologist at Veterans Affairs Medican Centre in Washington, D.C. He is the director of cardiovascular research, hypertension, interventional hypertension and co-director of the Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory at the Veterans Affairs Medical Centre.

Dr. Papademetriou's clinical interests include cardiac catheterization, PCI/STENTS, myocardial biopsies, pericardiocentesis, stress and transesophageal echocardiography, and revascularization of high risk patients. He also runs a large clinic of patients with resistant hypertension and dyslipidemia. His research is focused on hypertension and vascular biology, dyslipidemia, atherosclerosis, acute coronary syndromes/acute MI, and cardiovascular complications of diabetes. He has special interest in device-based treatment of patients with resistant hypertension and he is one of the principle investigators of the Renal Denervation projects. He has been a prinicple investigator for many "investigator initiated" and multicenter clinical trials and received numerous research grants from both public funding and industrial sponsors. Dr. Papademetriou has lectured nationally and internationally for 20 years.

He has published over 280 peer-reviewed research papers, review articles, editorials, and book chapters and presented over 400 abstracts at national and international meetings. He serves as a reviewer of several prestigious journals such as Circulation, JAMA, American Journal of Cardiology, American Heart Journal, American Journal of Hypertension, and the New England Journal of Medicine.

He is a member of many professional societies, and serves as a member of the Joint Natioanl Committee on Detection Diagnosis and Treatment of Hypertension and he is a member of the Cardiorenal panel of the Food and Drug Adminstration and he is one of the pioneers of renal denervation.

Dr. Papademetriou received his medical degree from the Athens University School of Medicine and completed his training at the NIH, Georgetown University and the Department of Veterans Affairs in Washington, D.C. Dr. Papademetriou is board-certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine and the American Board of Cardiovascular Disease.

Dan Wang, MD, PhD

Associate Professor of Medicine

Medical Education: MD, Sun Yat-Sen University of Medical Sciences, Guangzhou, P.R.China, 1983.
Ph.D: Sun Yat-Sen University of Medical Sciences, Guangzhou, P.R.China, Nephrology, 1994

Dr. Wang has been an integral part of the Basic and Clinical Translational Research at Georgetown. She has supported her research through multiple grants. Her fields of interest includes microvascular physiology: reactivity, endothelial function and remodeling of resistance vessels in hypertension, chronic renal disease and HIV. Her most recent major research projects include: a) Mechanisms of endothelial dysfunction of resistance vessels in patients with HIV/AIDS and chronic renal disease; b). Mechanisms of oxidative stress on afferent arteriole and systemic resistance vessels; c). Translational vascular research program.

Serban Dragoi, MD, PhD

Associate Professor of Medicine

Medical Degree: Carol Davila University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Romania, 1997
Residency: Internal Medicine, Yale University, 2001-2004
Fellowship: Nephrology, Columbia University,  2004-2006
Certifications: Internal Medicine, 2004; Nephrology, 2006 / 2016; Hypertension Specialist, 2009

Dr. Dragoi joined University of Missouri - Columbia Nephrology faculty as an Assistant Professor of Medicine after he completed his fellowship training.  In 2008 he joined Georgetown University - Division of Nephrology and Hypertension.  He is an Associate Professor of Medicine, actively involved in patient care, teaching, administration and research.  His special clinical interests include: all aspects of home dialysis, nephrolithiasis and glomerulonephritis.  He plays an active role in the education and training of medical students and young physicians.  Dr. Dragoi's special training and expertise was instrumental in creation of Washington DC’s first Home-Only Dialysis Program.  He currently serves as Medical Director of DaVita Grant Park Dialysis Center in Washington, DC.  His current research is focused on a novel oral C5aR inhibitor (avacopan) which could effectively and safely replace the use of high-dose glucocorticoids in patients with ANCA-associated vasculitis.

Judit Gordon-Cappitelli MD

Assistant Professor of Medicine

Medical Degree: Temple University School of Medicine, Philadelphia PA, 2005
Internship: Temple University School of Medicine, Philadelphia PA,2006
Residency: Temple University School of Medicine, Philadelphia PA, 2008
Fellowship: Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 2011
Certification: Internal Medicine 2008, Nephrology 2011

Dr.Gordon-Cappitelli completed her fellowship at Johns Hopkins University, where she was an instructor prior to joining Georgetown Nephrology. She enjoys patient care, teaching fellows, residents and students. She has taken a passionate interest in improving and revising the Georgetown Nephrology Fellowship curriculum and serves as Associate Fellowship Director. Her clinical interests include home dialysis modalities, CKD and hypertension management, glomerular diseases and pregnancy related hypertension and renal disease.

Lingli Li, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor of Medicine 

Medical Degree: Wuhan University School of Medicine, Wuhan, China, 1983
PhD:  Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden, 2006

Postdoctoral IRTA Fellow: NIDDK, NIH, 2010

Dr. Li is an assistant professor in the Department of Medicine. She joined Georgetown University in 2011 after extensive training and experience in biomedicine. Her work has been contributed primarily to the multiple completed and ongoing NIH grants. Her special interests include physiology of renal microcirculation, redox regulation of renal arteriolar contractility by using microperfusion techniques, and is currently focising on the translational research in acute kidney injury and chronic kidney disease.


Chanigan Nilubol, MD

Assistant Professor of Medicine

Medical Degree: Chalalongkorn University, Thailand, 1999
Internship: Queen Sawangwattana Memorial Hospital, 20001
Residency: Internal Medicine, St Elizabeth Health Center, Youngstown, OH, 2004
Fellowship: Nephrology, University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics, WI 2007; Columbia University Medical Center, NY, 2009
Certifications: Internal Medicine, 2004; Nephrology, 2007

Dr Nilubol received her nephrology fellowship training at University of Wisconsin in Madison, where she developed her interest and passion in kidney transplantation. She then completed her transplant nephrology fellowship at Columbia University and became a faculty member at SUNY Downstate Medical Center before joining Georgetown Nephrology faculty as an Assistant Professor of Medicine in 2010. Her clinical expertise and research interests include living kidney donor evaluation and their outcomes, medically complex kidney donors, disease progression and long term management of kidney transplant recipients. She has also developed growing interest in genetic predisposing factors for kidney disease in high-risk population and the implications of becoming a kidney donor.  

Wen Shen, MD, PhD

Associate Professor of Medicine

Medical Eduction: MD/PhD, Fudan University Shanghai Medical College Shanghai, China, 2001
Postdoctoral Training: Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA
Internship: Internal Medicine, Yale University Bridgeport Hospital, CT 2006
Residency: Internal Medicine, Yale University Bridgeport Hospital, CT 2009
Fellowship: Nephrology, Harvard University Beth Israel Deaconness Medical Center, Boston MA, 2012 

Dr. Shen joined Georgetown University Division of Nephrology after she completed her training at Harvard. She is actively involved in patient care, teaching medical trainees and research. Her clinical work focuses on patients with hypertension, chronic kidney disease, primary and secondary glomerulonephritis, polycystic kidney disease, congenital kidney disease, kidney stones, and electrolyte disorders.

Her interest in understanding the mechanisms of proteinuria and developing new therapies for patients with proteinuric CKD has led her to involvement in several clinical and translational research projects. Currently, she is leading a clinical trial that investigates a new approach to treat proteinuric kidney disease by inhibiting the urokinase-type plasminogen activator receptor and renal tubular epithelial sodium channel. She is also the principle investigator of a clinical study examing if proteinuria independently predicts post-operative acute kidney injury by using big database. In addition, she is involved in a translational research project to study the cross talk between brain and kidney. She serves as a member of the Internal Review Board at Georgetown. She also oversees medical student's scholarly activities by serrving as a member of Independent Scholarly Project Oversight Committee.