Faculty: 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 glomerular diseases, chronic kidney disease, kidney stones, diabetes,  high blood pressure, and other kidney diseases.

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 kidney and vascular (blood vessel) diseases, high blood pressure (hypertension), and train the next generation of leaders in these fields.

Clinical FacultyGUH Research FacultyVA Research Faculty

Michael James Choi, MD

Chief of Nephrology and Hypertension

  • Medical Degree: Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, 1987
  • Internship: Johns Hopkins Hospital, 1987
  • Residency: Johns Hopkins Hospital, 1988-90
  • Fellowship: University of Pennsylvania, 1990-94
  • Certifications: Internal Medicine, 1990; Nephrology, 1992

Dr. Choi is the Chief of the Georgetown Nephrology and Hypertension Division He is the immediate Past-President of the National Kidney Foundation (NKF). He is the initial Chair and member of the NKF Education Committee. He is on the American Board of Internal Medicine Nephrology Test Writing Committee. He is presently an editorial board of the American Journal of Kidney Diseases. He is Co-Chair of the Mid-Atlantic Nephrology Young Investigators Forum.

He has won the Garabed Eknoyan Award for his outstanding contributions to the NKF. He was the Chair of the NKF Spring Clinical Meeting in 2011. He has served on the American Society of Nephrology (ASN) Post-Graduate Education Committee and has spoken for ASN Highlights in Clinical Nephrology.

Dr. Choi also served as the ASN Co-editor of its leading educational project, Nephrology Self-Assessment Program (NephSAP) Chronic Kidney Disease and Progression. He was the Deputy Editor of Advances in Chronic Kidney Disease and previously served on the editorial board for the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

Previously, he was the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine Nephrology Division Clinical Director and Fellowship Program Director where he was won multiple awards (W. Barry Wood Jr. Award, Osler Housestaff Teaching Award, Professor’s Award, Miller-Coulson Academy Award for Clinical Excellence).

His clinical and research interests include glomerular diseases, chronic kidney disease, kidney stones and medical education.

Dr. Wilcox is also the Director of the Center for Hypertension Research

Christopher Wilcox, MD

Professor of Nephrology

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

Dr. Wilcox is the former Chief of the Georgetown Nephrology Division and the George E. Schreiner Professor of Nephrology. He previously held professional positions at University of Florida, Harvard Medical School, Yale Medical School, University of Cambridge, and London University. He holds an NIH individual investigator RO-1 grant and an NIH Small Business Investigator Research and Development Grant. He has been Chair of several NIH/NIDDK Study Sections, and was the Chair of the AHA Council of High Blood Pressure Research. He has received many national and international honors and distinguished lecturer positions. He is a mentor for many faculty and fellows of the Georgetown Nephrology and Hypertension Division. He has been elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine (UK), a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians (UK), a Master of the American College of Physicians, a Fellow of the American Society of Nephrology and a Fellow of the American Heart Association Councils on Hypertension and the Kidney in Cardiovascular Disease.

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, mesenteric and intracerebral 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 has developed a non-invasive vascular function laboratory with state-of-the-art equipment to study small and large vessel function in human subjects. His present research includes enhancement of host-defense against COVID-19 by mineralocorticosteroid receptor antagonists and the underlying cause of microvascular dysfunction in COVID-19 survivors. He is developing a new extended release formulation of a diuretic that he has taken through Phase 1 clinical trials in normal subjects. He has published over 350 papers and two books.

  • Shah, S., Pitt, B., Brater, D.C, Feig, P.U., Shen, W., Khwaja, F.S. Wilcox, C.S.: Sodium and fluid excretion with torsemide in healthy subjects is limited by the short duration of diuretic action. J Am Heart Assoc, Oct 5, 6 pii:e006135 doi: 10.1161/jJAHA 117.006135, 2017 (PMCID: PMC5721837), 
  • Wilcox, C.S.: Antihypertensive and Renal Mechanisms of SGLT2 (Sodium-Glucose Linked Transporter 2) Inhibitors. Hypertension, 2020 Apr 75(4):894-901 (PMID: 32114848). 
  • Wilcox, C.S., Pathogenesis of Hypertension. In Gilbert, S.J. and Weiner, D.E. (eds): “National Kidney Foundation Primer on Kidney Disease, 7th Edition. Elsevier, Philadelphia PA, Chapter 64, 2017. 
  • Lipkowitz M.S., Wilcox C.S.: Dietary salt intake for patients with hypertension or kidney disease. In Ikizler T.A. and Mitch W.E. (eds): “Handbook of Nutrition and the Kidney”, 7th Edition. Wolters Kluwer, Philadelphia PA, Chapter 17, 2018. 
  • Hoorn, E.J., Wilcox, C.S., Ellison, D.H., Diuretics. In Brenner, B.M., Rector, F.C. (eds): “Brenner & Rector’s The Kidney”, 11th edition. Elsevier, Philadelphia PA, in press, 2018.

Clinical Faculty

Serban Dragoi, MD, PhD

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

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, 2005-2006
  • Residency: Temple University School of Medicine, Philadelphia PA, 2006-2008
  • Fellowship: Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 2009-2011
  • 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 in 2012. 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, management of chronic kidney disease, hypertension, nephrolithiasis, glomerular diseases and pregnancy related hypertension and renal disease.  She is Medical Director of the Georgetown Home Dialysis Unit, and is an avid supporter of home dialysis modalities.  She is the physician representative for Peritoneal Dialysis at Medstar Georgetown University Hospital.

  • Judit Gordon-Cappitelli and Michael J Choi. Prophylactic Anticoagulation in Adult Patients with Nephrotic Syndrome. CJASN 2019. 15 (1) 123-125. 
  • Tian Li, Christopher S. Wilcox, Michael S. Lipkowitz, Judit Gordon-Cappitelli, Serban Dragoi. Rationale and Strategies for Preserving Residual Kidney Function in Dialysis Patients. American Journal of Nephrology. 2019; 50: 411-421.
  • Gordon J, Kopp JB. Off the beaten renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system pathway: new perspectives on antiproteinuric therapy. Adv Chronic Kidney Dis. 2011 Jul;18(4):300-11.

Dr. Nilubol

Chanigan Nilubol, MD

Assistant Professor of Medicine

  • Medical Degree: Chulalongkorn University Faculty of Medicine, Bangkok, Thailand 1999
  • Internship: St Elizabeth Health Center, Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine (NEOUCOM) 2002
  • Residency: St Elizabeth Health Center, Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine (NEOUCOM) 2004
  • Fellowship: University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, Madison, WI 2007
  • Fellowship: Columbia University Medical Center, New York, NY 2009 (Transplant Nephrology)

Dr. Nilubol is currently an Assistant Professor of Medicine. She has been on our faculty since 2010. Prior to joining our faculty, she was on faculty at Columbia University Medical Center and SUNY Downstate Medical Center in New York. Since joining our faculty, she has had many active roles in fellowship education as well as medical student education. She has directed fellows’ Clinical Conference Series incorporating weekly board review questions. She also co-directs he Nephrology Transplant lecture series where fellows as well as the rest of transplant team members attend. She is a Nephrology Elective Course Director for 4th year medical students and has worked to enhance their experience and exposure in the field of kidney disease. She has given didactic lectures to Georgetown medical students. She was accepted into the Leadership Education and Development (LEAD) program which is part of the nationwide educational leadership development program administered through the collaboration of Association of American Medical College (AAMC), Georgetown University Medical Center andMedStar Health. She serves on the National Kidney Foundation (National Capital Area & Virginia) Medical Advisory Board and is a Chair of a research subcommittee. She is a member of the Georgetown-MedStar Institutional Review Board (IRB).

Her special interests are in renal replacement modality education, long-term care for kidney transplant recipients and home dialysis patients. With her broad expertise across different modalities, her active goal currently is towards founding Kidney Disease Patient Education Program.

  • Smavatkul C [Nilubol C], Pascual J, Desai AG, Samaniego M, Becker BN, Djamali A. Disease progression and outcomes in type 1 diabetic kidney transplant recipients based on posttransplantation CKD staging. Am J Kidney Dis. 2007 Oct;50(4):631-40. PMID 17900463 
  • Djamali A, Sadowski EA, Muehrer RJ, Reese S, Smavatkul C [Nilubol C], Vidyasagar A, Fain SB, Lipscomb RC, Hullett DH, Samaniego-Picota M, Grist TM, Becker BN. BOLD-MRI assessment of intrarenal oxygenation and oxidative stress in patients with chronic kidney allograft dysfunction. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2007 Feb;292(2): F513-22. Epub 2006 Oct 24. PMID: 17062846
  • Longstreth KL, Robbins SD, Smavatkul C [Nilubol C], Doe NS. Cephalexin-induced acute tubular necrosis. Pharmacotherapy. 2004 Jun;24(6):808-11. PMID: 15222673

Dr. Shen

Wen Shen, MD, PhD

Associate Professor of Medicine

  • Medical Degree: MD and PhD, Fudan University Shanghai Medical College, 2001
  • Internship: Yale University Bridgeport Hospital, 2007
  • Residency: Yale University Bridgeport Hospital, 2009
  • Fellowship: Harvard University Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, 2012

Dr. Shen joined Georgetown as a faculty member in 2012 after she completed her nephrology fellowship training. Currently she is an associate professor and the medical director of Davita Rivertowne Dialysis Unit. During her fellowship, she was chosen to be one of the tutorial leaders for the Harvard Medical School Renal Pathophysiology Tutorial in two consecutive years. She received wonderful feedback from the HMS students for her teaching. 

She is interested in clinical and translational research. Her interest in understanding the mechanisms of proteinuria and developing new therapies for patients with proteinuric CKD has led her to involve in a clinical trial and a translational research project. She is also the principle investigator of an epidemiology study to compare the AKI incidence between different coronary revascularization interventions by using a national database. She has received the grants from the Center for Hypertension, Kidney and Vascular Research and Department of Medicine for her epidemiology study and clinical trial.

Dr. Shen has mentored multiple medical residents, nephrology fellows and medical students to conduct clinical research at Georgetown. The research results have been published in peer-reviewed journals, presented at national and regional conferences by the trainees. Two of the residents she mentored have won American Society of Nephrology Kidney Stars Award. 

She served as a grant reviewer for D-CFAR Research Award Program, and National Kidney Foundation Joseph M. Krainin, M.D. Memorial Young Investigator Award. She also has served as a reviewer for several nephrology or medicine journals. She served as a committee member for Georgetown University Biomedical Institutional Review Board.  She also oversaw medical student’s scholarly activities by serving as a member of Independent Scholarly Project Oversight Committee.

  • Wilcox CS, Shen W, Liu X, Kasichayanula S, Bui A, Boulton DW, Leslie BR, Griffen SC. Interaction between the SGL2 inhibitor dapagliflozin and the loop diuretic bumetanide in normal human subjects. J Am Heart Assoc. 2018;7: e007046. doi: 10.1161/JAHA.117.007046
  • Shen W, Campos RA, Montero AR, Fernandez SJ, Taylor AJ, Wilcox CS, Lipkowitz MS, Umans JG. Acute kidney injury and in-hospital mortality after coronary artery bypass graft versus percutaneous coronary intervention—experience from the National Inpatient Sample. Am J Nephrol 2017;45:217-225. DOI:10.1159/000455906
  • Nader MA, Aguilar CR, Sharma P, Krishnamoorthy P, Serban D, Gordon-Cappitelli J, Shen W, Nilubol C, Li P, Lipkowitz M. In-hospital Mortality in Cirrhotic patients with End Stage Renal disease treated with Hemodialysis versus Peritoneal dialysis: A Nationwide Study. Perit Dial Int 2017;  Mar 27. DOI: 10.3747/pdi.2016.00131
  • Shah S, Pitt B, Brater C, Feig, P, Shen W, Wilcox C.S. An extended release formulation of torsemide enhances sodium and fluid loss in healthy subjects. J Am Heart Assoc. 2017; 6:e006135
  • Shen W, Brown N, Finn PA, Dice JF, and Franch HA. Akt and Mammalian Target of Rapamycin Regulate Separate Systems of Proteolysis in Renal Tubular Cells. Journal of American Society of Nephrology. 2006 Sep;17(9):2414-23. DOI:10.1681/ASN.2005111157. PMID:16885413

Robert Rubin, MD

Distinguished Professor of Medicine

  • Medical Degree: Cornell University Medical College, 1970 
  • Internship: New England Medical Center Hospital, Boston, Intern, 1971
  • Residency: New England Medical Center Hospital, Boston, 1972
  • Fellowship: New England Medical Center Hospital, Boston, 1974-1976

Dr. Rubin is currently Distinguished Professor of Medicine. He has been on our faculty since 1981. Prior to joining our faculty, he founded the Hypertension Clinic at the New England Medical Center and served as Chief of Nephrology at the Lemuel Shattuck Hospital in Boston. From 1981-1984 he was appointed by President Reagan as Assistant Secretary of Planning and Evaluation at the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) as well as an Assistant Surgeon General. He has been the President and CEO of an international health care consulting company (The Lewin Group) and medical director of a pharmacy benefits management company. Dr. Rubin was the founding editor of the Public Policy section of the Clinal Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

In addition, he has served on several committees of the Nation Academy of Medicine (formerly the Institute of Medicine). Most recently on the Committee on Strategies to Reduce Sodium Intake. Dr. Rubin was a trustee of the American Kidney Fund for 17 years and currently serves on their Clinical Scientist in Nephrology grant selection committee. He was co-chair of the DHHS committee that designed the ESRD prospective payment system .He has served on numerous public and non-profit advisory boards including the Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy Fellowships (13 years), the Leonard Davis Institute, the John F. Kennedy School of Government, the Institute of Health Technology Studies (chair of research committee)

His special interests include Outcomes Research, Pharmacoeconomics, Health Care Policy and Hypertension. He chairs our bi-monthly journal club meetings and curates our weekly Article of the Week series for faculty and Fellows. 

  • Rubin RJ. A Tribute to George E. Schreiner. Clin J Am Soc Nephrol 7: 1353-1354, 2012.
  • Rubin RJ. Effect of the 2012 Election on Health Policy Issues for the Nephrologist. Clin J Am Soc Nephrol 8: 336-338, 2013.
  • Brunelli SM, Monda KL, Burkhart JM, Gitlin M, Neumann PJ, Park GS, Symonian-Silver M, Yue S, Bradbury BD, Rubin RJ. Early Trends From the Study to Evaluate the Prospective payment System Impact on Small Dialysis Organizations (STEPPS). Am J Kidney Dis 61(6):947-956, 2013.
  • Rubin, RJ. Understanding Washington: A Nephrologist’s Perspective From Inside the Beltway. Am J Kidney Dis 62 (6):1042–1045, 2013.
  • Monda KL, Joseph P, Neumann PJ, Bradbury BD, Rubin RJ. Comparative changes in treatment practices and clinical outcomes following implementation of a prospective payment system: the STEPPS study. BMC Nephrology, 16:67 (01 May) 2015.
  • Wish JB, Charytan C, Chertow GM, Kalantar-Zadeh K, Kliger AS, Rubin RJ, Yee J, Fishbane S.  Introduction of Biosimilar Therapeutics Into Nephrology Practice in the United States: Report of a Scientific Workshop Sponsored by the National Kidney Foundation. Am J Kidney Dis. 68(6):843-852, 2016
  • Campbell, JD, Belozeroff, V, Wittington, MD, Rubin, RJ, Raggi, P, Briggs, AH Prices for common cardiovascular drugs in the US are not aligned with value. Health Affairs, 37 1298-1305 2018, DOI: 10.1377/hlthaff.2018.0221
  • Fuller, DS, Xing, S, Belozeroff, V, Yehoshua, A, Morgenstern, H, Robinson, BM, Rubin, RJ, Bhatt, N, Pisoni, RL, Variability in Cinacalcet Prescription across US Hemodialysis Facilities, CJASN, 14 (2) 241-249 2019; DOI: https://doi.org/10.2215/CJN.09550818

Keiko Greenberg, MD

Assistant Professor of Medicine

  • Medical Degree: University of Virginia School of Medicine, 2009
  • Internship: Johns Hopkins Hospital, 2010
  • Residency: Johns Hopkins Hospital, 2012
  • Fellowship: Johns Hopkins Hospital, 2015
  • Certifications: Internal Medicine 2012; Nephrology 2015

Dr. Greenberg completed her clinical training at Johns Hopkins.  She also received a Master of Health Science degree in Clinical Epidemiology from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in 2015.  She subsequently joined the nephrology faculty at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.  There, she was the medical director for home hemodialysis and was involved in research in end-stage kidney disease.  She joined the Georgetown faculty in 2020.  She sees patients with hypertension, electrolyte disorders and wide range of kidney diseases, but has a particular interest in chronic kidney disease, end-stage kidney disease, home dialysis, nephrolithiasis, and patient education. 

Transplant Nephrology Faculty

Thomas Beje, MD

Associate Professor of Medicine

  • Medical Degree: University of Debrecen Medical School, 2002
  • Internship: Michael Reese Hospital, 2003-2004
  • Residency: University of Connecticut Primary Care Program, 2004-2007
  • Chief Medical Resident: University of Connecticut Primary Care Program, 20007-2008
  • Nephrology Fellowship: University of Connecticut, 2008-2010
  • Transplant Nephrology Fellowship: Medical University of South Carolina 2010-2011

Dr. Thomas is an Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine.  He joined the faculty in 2018 and his primary clinical duties are with the MedStar Georgetown Transplant Institute.  After he completed his transplant nephrology fellowship at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) he would remain on as faculty. While at MUSC he was the transplant fellowship director and the interim medical director of the kidney transplant program.  He would move onto the University of Maryland Medical Center where he received the Nephrology Teacher of the Year award in his first year there and subsequently would be the associate nephrology fellowship director.

His interests in transplantation includes living donor donation, the use of hepatitis C positive organs, the management of post-transplant complications, use of telemedicine, and increasing access to transplantation.  He has written several papers and chapters pertaining to transplantation.  Dr. Thomas is passionate about medical education and the use of social media to educate and garner interest in nephrology.  To this end he completed the Nephrology Social Media Collaborative (NSMC) Internship and is currently a faculty member.  He has written blog posts, produced visual abstracts, moderated the Twitter Nephrology Journal Club (NephJC), and more locally has done several events using social media for patient education.  He is also an Associate member of the GUMC Teaching Academy.  Dr. Thomas is involved with the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) as he is a presenter at the annual Mid-Atlantic NKF First Year Fellows Symposium, member of the NKF CME Committee, and on the District of Columbia NKF Board. 

Dr. Thomas is a staunch supporter of mentorship and diversity in medicine. He completed the Cura Personalis fellowship at the Georgetown Medical School and is the mentor for group of medical students throughout their four years of medical school.  He also works with medical students as a volunteer for the Hoya Clinic which provides free medical care for the underserved population in the District of Columbia.  In regards to diversity, he is involved with the Department of Medicine’s efforts on diversity and is a Bias Reduction and Improvement Coach presenting on issues such as implicit bias and microaggressions in the workplace.

  • Jahoty, A., Madariaga, HM, Thomas, B, Lerma EV.  Hepatitis C in Chronic Kidney Disease.  Accepted for publication by Disease-a-Month 5/25/20
  • Ramaswamy K, Madariaga HM, Thomas B, Lerma EV.  Kidney Transplantation for the Primary Care Provider.  Dis Mon. 2019 Aug 13 doi: 10.1016/j.disamonth.2019.07.002 PMID: 31420084
  • Thomas B, Madariaga H, Lerma Edgar. Kindey-Pancreas Transplantation. Medscape. 2018 May 16
  • Thomas B, Lerma Edgar. Proteinuria. Medscape. 2018 April 28
  • Thomas B, Weir M. The Evaluation and Therapeutic Management of Hypertension in the Transplant Patient. Curr Cardiol Rep. 2015 Nov;17(11):95. doi: 10.1007/s11886-015-0647-z. Review. PMID: 26362301
  • Thomas B, Weir M. “Epidemiology and Outcomes in Kidney Transplantation.” Nephrology Secrets 4th Edition Rockville: Elsevier, 2018: 393-398
  • Thomas B, Weir M. “Donor and Recipient Evaluation.” Nephrology Secrets 4th Edition Rockville: Elsevier, 2018: 399-404
  • Thomas B, Weir M. “Immunosuppression.” Nephrology Secrets 4th Edition Rockville: Elsevier, 2018: 405-409
  • Thomas B, Weir M. “Rejection of Renal Transplant.” Nephrology Secrets 4th Edition Rockville: Elsevier, 2018: 410-414
  • Thomas B, Weir M. “Post-Transplantation Malignancies.” Nephrology Secrets 4th Edition Rockville: Elsevier, 2018: 415-417
  • Thomas B, Weir M. “Post-Transplantation Infections.” Nephrology Secrets 4th Edition Rockville: Elsevier, 2018: 418-423
  • Thomas B, Weir M. “Primary Care of the Renal Transplant Recipient.” Nephrology Secrets 4th Edition. Rockville: Elsevier, 2018: 424-428
  • Thomas B, Weir M. “The Kidney in Rheumatologic Diseases”, Rheumatology 7th Edition. Rockville: Elsevier, 2018:305-316
  • Patel A. Thomas B. “Choosing the Best Dialysis Option in the Patient with Acute Kidney Injury and in the Intensive Care Unit.” In: Henrich’s Principles and Practice of Dialysis Fifth Edition. Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer, 2017: 663-684.

Alexander Gilbert, MD

Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine

  • Medical Degree: New York University School of Medicine, 1998
  • Internship: Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, 1999
  • Residency: Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, 2001
  • Nephrology Fellowship: Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, 2003
  • Transplant Fellowship: Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, 2004

Dr. Gilbert is a transplant nephrologist working in the Medstar Georgetown Transplant Institute and serves as the director of the Transplant Nephrology Fellowship Program. He also developed and now supervises the Transplant Lecture Series for the general nephrology fellows.  He has been awarded teacher of the year three times by the division of nephrology and once by the department of medicine.  He has been on faculty at Georgetown since 2013 and before that was an attending physician and transplant nephrologist at NYU Langone Medical Center.  His clinical work encompasses all phases of transplantation including pre-transplant evaluation, peri-operative management, and post-operative care of transplant patients as well as evaluation of living kidney donors. 

He has a special interest and primary role in the use of HIV positive donors as well as cross-blood group transplants from A donors into B or O recipients and is the local P.I. for the HOPE in Action study to more widely use organs from HIV positive donors.  He also has an interest in emerging technologies for management of transplant patients including the use of molecular diagnostics to diagnose rejection and using cell-free DNA testing to detect early allograft injury.  He regularly mentors fellows and students on research projects in these areas.

In addition to his roles on the transplant candidate selection committee and the living donor selection committee, he served a term as member of the UNOS Kidney Committee developing policy for national kidney allocation.  He is a frequent lecturer and has given invited talks at the American Transplant Congress meetings as well as on behalf of the UNOS Minority Affairs Committee and at UNOS regional meetings.

  • Gilbert A. Kidney Transplantation across minor ABO incompatibility: the use of A2 to B transplants. Current Opin Organ Transplant 2019 Aug. 24(4): 365-369. PMID 31219841.
  • Gilbert A, Grafals M, Timofeeva O, Zaheer M, Karabala A, Rosen-Bronson S, Li D, Awwad M, Abrams P, Moore J, Javaid B, Verbesey J, Ghasemian S, Cooper M. Pre-empting Antibody Mediated Rejection: A Program of DSA Monitoring and Treatment Can Effectively Prevent Antibody Mediated Rejection. Clin Transplant 2016 p.93.
  • Yang M, Miller PJ, Case BC, Gilbert AJ, Widell JK, Rogers T, Satler LF, Waksman R, Ben-Dor I. Pre-operative cardiovascular testing and post-renal transplant clinical outcomes. Cardiovasc Revasc Med. 2019 Apr 17. PMID 31097384
  • Konkel B, Lavin C, Wu TT, Anderson E, Iwamoto A, Rashid H, Gaitian B, Boone J, Cooper M, Abrams P, Gilbert A, Tang Q, Levi M, Fujimoto JG, Andrews P, Chen Y. Fully automated analysis of OCT imaging of human kidneys for prediction of post-transplant function. Biomed Opt Express 2019 Mar 13; 10(4):1794-1821. PMID: 31086705

Javaid Basit, MD

Gayle Vranic, MD

Georgetown Research Faculty

Dr. Hong

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.

Dr. Enyin Lai

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 kidney 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 pancreas and the vessels 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 arteriole 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 causes and potential solutions to the stroke and neurodegenerative diseases. He has conducted both basic research and translational research with 63 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.

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 focusing on the translational research in acute kidney injury and chronic kidney disease.

Dr. Sandberg

Kathryn Sandberg, PhD, FAHA

Professor and Vice Chair for Research, Department of Medicine

Director, Medical CenterDirector, Center for the Study of Sex Differences

Professor, Department of Nephrology & Hypertension

Director, Predoc and Postdoc Training Program in Translational Biomedical 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. Kathryn Sandberg is Director of the NIH TL1-funded training program in Translational Biomedical Science for predoctoral students and postdoctoral fellows at Georgetown-Howard Universities Center for Clinical and Translational Science. She is also Professor and Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Medicine and Director of the Center for the Study of Sex Differences in health, aging and disease at Georgetown University. Dr. Sandberg’s laboratory focuses on mechanisms underlying the pathological consequences of blood pressure dysregulation in hypertension, renal disease, anorexia nervosa, aging and in cognitive impairment and dementia. Her laboratory is particularly interested in the role of gonadal steroids, physical activity and the immune and renin angiotensin systems in these pathological mechanisms. Multi-disciplinary approaches to address these questions include studies of angiotensin II metabolism and angiotensin receptor translation, signaling and trafficking using biochemical and molecular techniques and confocal microscopy. The immune system is investigated by flow cytometry in bone marrow transplant and adoptive transfer experiments. Cognitive function is assessed in behavioral studies of rodents and computer tests in humans. Physical activity is measured in rodents using free running wheels and by commercial activity trackers in human participants.

Dr. Wang

Dan Wang, MD, PhD

Associate Professor of Medicine

  • Medical Degree (M.D): Sun Yat-Sen University of Medical Science, China, 1978-1983,
  • Ph.D: Sun Yat-Sen University of Medical Science, China, 1991-1994,
  • Postdoctoral Training: Herlev Hospital, Copenhagen University, Copenhagen, Denmark. 1996-2000
  • Special Interests:  Microvascular physiology in hypertension, chronic kidney disease, aging, HIV-related cardiovascular comorbidity for both basic and clinical/translation research

Dr. Dan Wang serves as an associate professor in the Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, Department of Medicine and leads the Human Hypertension Research Laboratory, which specializes for translational clinical vascular researches. With a longstanding interest in research of microvascular physiology, her current researches focuses on the mechanisms of systemic hypertension and HIV-associated cardiovascular comorbidity. The basic research portion entails studies of oxidative stress related genes, microvascular (mesenteric arterioles) function and therapeutic strategies using rodent models of systemic hypertension and chronic kidney disease.  The clinical/translational portion is focused on functional evaluation of living microvessels both ex vivo and in vivo. Approaches include the examination of small human arterioles dissected from a skin biopsy to study the pathogenesis of vascular diseases. In order to better understand mechanisms and be able to follow up the progress of vascular function/remodeling in vascular related diseases, she has established a series of invasive and non-invasive human vascular assessment technologies, including Myography, fluorescent microscopy for ex vivo microvessels;  Laser Doppler Flowmetry, iontophresis of vasodilators for in vivo skin blood flow measurement; EndoPAT and capillary digital scope for finger microvascular function and capillary remodeling; Cardio-ankle vascular index and carotid to femoral pulse wave velocity for Conduit arterial function, etc.  She is also developing intradermal microdialysis coupled with Laser Doppler flowmetry to further investigate mechanism and therapeutic targets selection of microvascular function in human.  Dr. Wang is the principle investigator of an active NIH-RO1 grant titled as “Accelerated aging of microvessels, perivascular adipose tissue in people living with HIV”.  She is developing additional research projects, such as “The effect of Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) on microvascular function in HIV”, “Clinical transnational vascular research program in vascular relation disease” and “Placenta microvascular function in HIV”.

Dr. Welch

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.

VA Research Faculty

Ping Li, MD

Dr. Papademetriou

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 Medical Centre in Washington, DC. He is the director of cardiovascular research,  interventional hypertension and vascular medicine program,  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 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 principal investigators of the Renal Denervation projects. He has been a principal 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 over 20 years.

He has published over 340 peer-reviewed research papers, review articles, editorials, and book chapters and presented over 600 abstracts at national and international meetings . He serves as a reviewer of several prestigious journals  such as  Circulation, circulation research, 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 National Committee on Detection Diagnosis and Treatment of Hypertension and he is a member of the Cardio renal panel of the Food and Drug Administration. He is one of the pioneers of renal denervation

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

Dr. Samir Patel

Samir Patel, MD

Associate Professor of Medicine at GWU with an interest in Clinical Nephrology and Medical Education.  He served as the Training Program Director for the Nephrology Fellowship at GWU from 2006 to 2016 and was elected to the Alpha Omega Alpha chapter at GWU as a faculty member in 2008.

  • Northwestern University, Evanston IL    B.S.  06/1991 Biology
  • Upstate Medical University, Syracuse NY  M.D.  06/1995  Medicine
  • George Washington University, Washington DC    06/1998  Internal Medicine Residency
  • George Washington University, Washington DC      06/2001    Nephrology Fellowship

Before moving to the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in 2016, Dr. Patel served as Co-Director, Continuous Renal Replacement, Director of the Therapeutic Apheresis service at GWU Hospital, founding Director of Renal Ultrasonography for Division of Renal Diseases and Hypertension, and Medical Director for Hemodialysis at the DaVita-GWU  K Street dialysis unit in Washington D.C.

Dr. Patel’s initial scholarly and research efforts encompassed psychosocial issues in chronic kidney disease including medical adherence.  In recent years, his work has moved to management of risk factors for chronic kidney disease such as hypertension and acute kidney injury.  Dr. Patel has a particular interest in the identification and management of progressive kidney loss.

Sharon Bennett, MD

Sholey Argani, MD