Faculty and Research

Arnold B. Rabson, MD

Director 

Laura Gallagher Endowed Chair of Developmental Biology and

Professor of Pediatrics, Pharmacology, Pathology and Laboratory Medicine 

Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

 

Child Health Institute of New Jersey

89 French Street, Room 3210

Phone: (732) 235-9523

Fax: (732) 235-9333

Email: rabsonab@rwjms.rutgers.edu

 

Laboratory
The Rabson laboratory studies the pathogenesis of human retroviral infections including the human T cell leukemia virus type 1-an important cause of human leukemias and inflammatory diseases, and the human immunodeficiency virus.  He also studies the roles of the NF-kB transcription regulators in the genetic basis of normal and malignant T cells, and the molecular basis of hematopoiesis and childhood leukemias. More Information

 

 

Davide Comoletti, DVM, PhD
Assistant Professor

Division of Neuroscience and Cell Biology

Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

 

Child Health Institute of New Jersey
89 French Street, Room 3275
Phone: (732) 235-9466
Fax: (732) 235-9333
Email: comoleda@rwjms.rutgers.edu

 

Biography

Dr. Davide Comoletti earned his PhD degree from the Mario Negri Institute for Pharmacological Research in Milan, Italy, and did his postdoctoral work at the University of California San Diego.  He joined the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in 2011 and works on the structure and function of synaptic cell adhesion proteins linked to autism.

Laboratory
The Comoletti laboratory studies the structural and molecular basis of synapse formation and connectivity. We focus on the atomic structure and cellular functions of trans-synaptic adhesion molecules such as neuroligins, neurexins, LRRTMs, and their complexes. We use structural biology and molecular neuroscience tools to gain insights into how mutations of these proteins associate with autism and other common neurodevelopmental disorders.     

Lab Web site

 

 

Lisa Denzin, PhD
Associate Professor

Division of Child Health Sciences

Department of Pediatrics      

Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School


Child Health Institute of New Jersey
89 French Street, Room 4272
Phone: (732) 235-9604
Fax: (732) 235-9333
Email: lisa.denzin@rutgers.edu

 

Biography

Dr. Lisa Denzin is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the Child Health Institute of NJ, Rutgers-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.  She received a B.S. degree in Medical Microbiology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1987 and a Ph.D. in Microbiology from the University of Illinois-Urbana in 1992.  After 5 years of post-doctoral studies in Immunology under the tutelage of Dr. Peter Cresswell at Yale University, she was an Assistant Professor of Immunology at Duke University.  In 1998 she moved her research laboratory to the Sloan-Kettering Institute, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in Manhattan where she was an Assistant and then an Associate Member.  She also held a joint appointment at the Weill Graduate School of Medical Sciences of Cornell University in Manhattan.  Dr. Denzin joined the faculty of the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in September 2011.  Her research interests include the control of immunity and autoimmunity and also in the molecular control of hematopoiesis.  

Laboratory
The Denzin laboratory studies antigen presentation and regulation of the immune response.  Her studies have shown the roles of variant MHC molecules in the regulation of autoimmune disorders including type 1 diabetes.  Her laboratory also studies the role of novel cell cycle regulatory proteins in leukemias. Lab Web site

 

Andy V. Babwah, PhD
Associate Professor
Division of Pediatric Endocrinology

Department of Pediatrics
Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

 

Child Health Institute of New Jersey

89 French Street, Room 3275
Phone: (732) 235-3306
Fax: (732) 235-9333
Email: avb58@rwjms.rutgers.edu

 

Biography

Dr. Andy Babwah is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics and studies mechanisms underlying the attainment and maintenance of fertility. Dr. Babwah is committed to the training of highly qualified personnel through research mentorship and teaching, particularly in the area of continuing medical education.

 

Laboratory

Dr. Babwah's studies have led to an in-depth understanding of how the kisspeptin receptor regulates fertility, centrally at the level of the hypothalamus and peripherally at the level of the uterus and placenta. Through his studies, he aims to better understand the pathogenesis of pubertal disorders, female infertility and early pregnancy loss and thereby advance the clinical treatment and care of women and children. He conducts his studies on novel genetically-modified mouse models of human infertility and biopsies from the reproductive tract of fertile and infertile women.

 

Chi Wei Lu, PhD

Assistant Professor

Division of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences

Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

 

Child Health Institute of New Jersey

89 French Street, Room 3276

Phone: (732) 235-2870

Fax: (732) 235-9333

Email: luch@rwjms.rutgers.edu

 

Laboratory

The Lu laboratory studies stem cell regulation and function and is focused particularly on placental stem cells that determine the growth, differentiation and sufficiency of placental and therefore fetal development.  Her laboratory also studies genes and regulatory pathways that play a role in the development of pediatric malignancies.

 

Zhiping Pang, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor

Division of Neuroscience and Cell Biology 

Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

 

Child Health Institute of New Jersey

89 French Street, Room 3277

Phone: (732) 235-8074

Fax: (732) 235-9333

Email: pangzh@rwjms.rutgers.edu

 

Biography

Dr. Pang is an Assistant Professor of Neuroscience and Cell Biology at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and researcher with a broad background in neurobiology and stem cell biology.  Both his graduate and postdoctoral trainings were under the supervision of Dr. Tom Südhof at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center and Stanford University, where he mainly focused on elucidating the molecular mechanism of Ca2+-triggered synaptic vesicle release. From 2006, he began to work on projects related to understanding the synaptic regulation in human neuronal cells derived from various sources as well as using mouse models. In 2011, he developed a novel technique to enable the direct conversion of human skin fibroblasts into functional neurons. He joined Child Health Institute of New Jersey at the end of 2011 as a resident member. 

 

Dr. Pang's current research focus is on regulation of synaptic transmission and he utilizes both mouse and human neurons as model system to study neuropsychiatric disorders.  The research activity in the Pang Laboratory is funded by the NIH, Brain and Behavior Research Foundation, Governor’s Council for Medical Research and Treatment of Autism of New Jersey, US-Israel Binational Foundation, Sinsheimer Foundation and the Jérôme Lejeune Foundation. He is also a recipient of the Daniel X. Freedman Prize from Brain and Behavior Research Foundation in 2012.

 

Laboratory
Dr. Pang’s laboratory studies the neural basis of the regulation of feeding, satiety, metabolism and obesity.  His studies may provide insights into the neural causes and consequences of childhood obesity.  He has also developed novel techniques for deriving neuronal cells from primary skin cells providing novel opportunities to study the pathogenesis of neurological disorders, including pediatric developmental disorders and autism.http://panglab.rwjms.rutgers.edu

 

 

Sally Radovick, MD

Professor, Department of Pediatrics

Senior Associate Dean for Clinical and Translational Research 

Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School 

Chancellor's Scholar Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences

 

Child Health Institute of New Jersey

89 French Street, Room 4212

Phone: (732) 235-9524

Fax: (732) 235-9333

Email: s.radovick@rutgers.edu

 

Biography

Dr. Sally Radovick is a specialist in growth and development and pubertal disorders in children. Her research has focused on the developmental regulation of hypothalamic-pituitary functionShe has been NIH funded in conducting biomedical research and mentoring students and fellows for over 25 years, mentoring over 50 graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and junior faculty.

 

Laboratory

Dr. Radovick's laboratory has elucidated some of the factors that control Gonadotropic Releasing Hormone (GnRH) gene expression and the intracellular signaling pathways within the GnRH neuron. The laboratory uses neuronal cell cultures and genetically engineered mice as models for human disease. Dr. Radovick's laboratory has demonstrated that the GnRH gene is the target of growth factor and nuclear hormone signaling pathways, which link nutrition and growth with pubertal development and reproduction.  Another major area of her research has been to characterize the transcription factors important for normal pituitary development.  Her initial studies provided the first descrtiption in man of the genetic mechanism for combined pituitary hormone deficiency.
Lab Web Site

 

Derek B. Sant'Angelo, PhD 

Harold L. Paz, M.D. Endowed Professor of Developmental Biology

Associate Director of Basic Science, Child Health Institute of NJ

Professor, Department of Pediatrics

Chief, Division of Child Health Sciences

Rutgers-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

 

Child Health Institute of New Jersey

89 French Street, Room 4273

Phone: (732) 235-9394

Fax: (732) 235-9333

Email: santandb@rwjms.rutgers.edu

 

Biography

Dr. Derek Sant’Angelo received his B.S. from the University of Michigan, and his Ph.D. from Rutgers University.  Derek was an HHMI Postdoctoral Fellow at the Yale under the mentorship of Dr. Charles A. Janeway, Jr. As a faculty member at Memorial Sloan-Kettering, Derek initiated studies that led to the discovery that the BTB-ZF transcription factor, PLZF, is essential for NKT cell effector functions. In 2011, Derek moved to Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. In 2015 he was appointed Associate Director for Basic Science of the Child Health Institute. 

 

Dr. Sant'Angelo has continued to work on identifying key transcription factors that define and maintain the functional identity of lymphocytes. Current interests include TCR mediated control of adipose resident iNKT cells and how alteration of PLZF expression impacts the onset of obesity and related metabolic disorders

 

Laboratory

The Sant'Angelo laboratory studies the functions of the PLZF family of transcription factors in the immune system. Of particular interest is how these genes control the effector functions of innate T cells in the pathogenesis of numerous pediatric diseases including asthma, autoimmune diseases, obesity and cancer.

 

     

Fredric E. Wondisford, MD

Professor and Chairman

Department of Medicine

Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

Chancellor's Scholar Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences

 

Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

One Robert Wood Johnson Place

New Brunswick, NJ  08901

Phone:  (732) 235-7739

Email:  few11@rwjms.rutgers.edu

 

Biography

Prior to this appointment, Dr. Frederic Wondisford was Professor of Medicine, Pediatrics and Physiology and Director of the Metabolism Division and Diabetes Institute at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Dr. Wondisford has been continuously funded by the NIH since 1990 and has scientifically mentored 64 trainees, and 41 have gone on to independent academic research careers.

Laboratory                                                                                                           Dr. Wondisford’s laboratory has two main research interests: regulation of gene expression by nuclear thyroid hormone receptors and control of hepatic glucose production (HGP) in health and disease.
Lab Web Site

 

Nancy E. Reichman, PhD

Professor

Department of Pediatircs

Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

 

Child Health Institute of New Jersey
89 French Street, Room 3272
Phone: (732) 235-7977
Fax: (732) 235-7102
Email: reichmne@rwjms.rutgers.edu

 

Biography

Dr. Nancy E. Reichman is a health economist with a broad portfolio of research focusing on linkages between socioeconomic status and health, including studies of determinants of infant and child health, effects of child health on family resources, socioeconomic disadvantage and health accross the lifecourse, and health in an international comparative context.

 

Yufang Shi, DVM, PhD
Professor

Department of Pharmacology

Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School


Child Health Institute of New Jersey
89 French Street, Room 4271
Phone: (732) 235-4501
Fax: (732) 235-9333
Email: shiyu@rwjms.rutgers.edu


Biography

Dr. Yufang Shi is a University Professor of Immunology.  He studies the interactions between stem cells and inflammation in the tissue microenvironment during regeneration and pathogenesis.  Dr. Shi is committed to develop stem cell-based strategies for the treatment of autoimmune and degenerative diseases.

 

Laboratory
The Shi laboratory studies the mechanisms and roles of cell death pathways in the regulation of the immune response.  His work probes the roles of apoptosis in the development of autoimmune and inflammatory diseases including asthma.  His laboratory also studies the roles of mesenchymal stem cells in the regulation of the immune response and is investigating the therapeutic potential of these cells for the treatment of inflammatory diseases of childhood. More information

 

Abdelfattah El Ouaamari, PhD
Assistant Professor

Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism and Nutrition

Department of Medicine

Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School


Child Health Institute of New Jersey
89 French Street, Room 3270
Phone: (732) 235-8460
Fax: (732) 235-9333
Email: ae353@rwjms.rutgers.edu

 

Biography

Dr. Abdelfattah El Ouaamari completed his undergraduate and graduate school at the University of Nice Sophia Antipolis in Nice, France. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry in 2003, a master’s degree in Life Sciences and Health in 2005 and a doctoral degree in Aspects of Molecular and Cellular Biology in 2009. Abdelfattah trained at the School of Medicine in Nice, where he studied the role of microRNAs in the regulation of insulin signaling in the pancreatic β cells. After completion of his doctoral studies, he moved to Boston in 2010 and joined the Joslin Diabetes Center and Harvard Medical School for his postdoctoral training. During his fellowship, Abdelfattah had major interest in the role of organ cross-talk in adaptive islet β cell regeneration in pre-diabetic states. His studies culminate in the identification of serpinB1 as a novel growth factor that promotes selective replication of insulin-producing cells. In March of 2017, Abdelfattah became an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism and Nutrition at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. He continues to study the role of inter-organ communications in glucose metabolism with an emphasis on the identification of molecular and cellular mechanisms promoting regeneration and function of islet insulin-producing β cells.

 

Laboratory

The El Ouaamari Lab employs a multidisciplinary approach to identify elements of organ cross-talks relevant to maintaining systemic glucose homeostasis. We are particularly interested in understanding how long-distanced organs communicate with the pancreas and modulate regeneration, survival and function of insulin-producing β cells—in health and diabetes. 

 

Lab Website http://elouaamari.org 

 

      

Manuel Jimenez, MD, MS, FAAP
Assistant Professor and Chancellor's Scholar

Department of Pediatrics & Family and Community Health

Director of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics Education

The Boggs Center on Developmental Disabilities

Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

Attending Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrician

Children's Specialized Hospital


Child Health Institute of New Jersey
89 French Street, Room 3271
Phone: (732) 235-6188
Fax: (732) 235-9333
Email: jimenema@rwjms.rutgers.edu

 

Biography

Dr. Jimenez is an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics & Family Medicine and Community Health and an Attending Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrician at Children's Specialized Hospital.  Dr. Jimenez's interests focus on making the health system more responsive to the needs of vulnerable populations.  His research has focused on understanding the relationship between early adversity and child development, improving access to developmental services and therapies for young children, and promoting optimal child development in the medical home.