Research Opportunities

Diverse research opportunities exist within the Boston Children’s Hospital Division of Endocrinology. In addition, many of our fellows undertake their 2nd/3rd year fellowship research at one of our many neighboring institutions, including:

  • Joslin Diabetes Center
  • Brigham & Women’s Hospital
  • Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
  • Massachusetts General Hospital
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Broad Institute
  • Whitehead Institute
  • Harvard School of Public Health
  • Harvard Medical School

A wide variety of projects are available at the level of population sciences, patient-oriented research, isolated genes, cells, and intact organisms that include transgenic, knock-out and knock-in mouse models of human diseases. Selected fellows may obtain an MPH from the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health or a Master of Medical Sciences from Harvard Medical School.

Research opportunities within the Boston Children’s Hospital Division of Endocrinology include:

Adrenal Development and Physiology

Preceptors: David Breault MD PhD

Basic physiology of adrenal gland development and function; animal models of adrenal dysfunction and treatment.

Bioinformatics, Medical Informatics

Preceptors: Isaac Kohane MD PhD, Kenneth Mandl MD MPH

Biomedical sciences, health care delivery, natural language processing of EMR data, and population health, involving high-dimensional modeling and understanding of patients from the molecular to the population levels.

Bone, Calcium, and Mineral Homeostasis

Preceptors: Catherine Gordon MD MMSc, Christina Jacobsen MD PhD, Melissa Putman MD, Diana Carlone PhD

Mechanisms and treatment of pediatric bone diseases including rickets, low bone density, osteoporosis, osteogenesis imperfecta, hypophosphatasia, cystic-fibrosis-related bone disease, and other skeletal disorders. Research ranges from studies in mouse models to clinical trials of novel drugs and devices.

Carbohydrate Metabolism and Diabetes Clinical Research

Preceptors: Joseph Wolfsdorf MB BCh, Katharine Garvey MD MPH, Lori Laffel MD MPH, Michael Agus MD, Amy Fleischman MD MMSc, Erinn Rhodes MD MPH, Garry Steil PhD

Transition to adult care in the type 1 diabetes population; integration of exercise with other diabetes treatment technologies; algorithms for open/closed loop management of T1D; optimal diagnosis and treatment of diabetic ketoacidosis.

Diabetes and Obesity Basic Research

Preceptors: Morris White PhD, Umut Ozcan MD, Sudha Biddinger MD PhD, Joseph Majzoub MD, Nicholas Stylopoulos MD, Nada Kalaany PhD, Sang Park PhD, Ji Miao PhD

Role of IRS proteins in insulin signaling, pancreatic beta cell biology, and etiology of type 1 and type 2 diabetes; role of endoplasmic reticulum stress in insulin action, beta cell function, and energy regulation; role of insulin resistance in the metabolic syndrome; regulation of appetite and energy expenditure; mechanism of action of bariatric surgery; role of obesity in cancer pathogenesis.

Endocrine Disorders in Critical Care

Preceptor: Michael Agus MD

Tight glycemic control in critically ill children; hypoglycemia in critically ill children; role of glucocorticoid treatment in critically ill children.

Genomic Research in Endocrinology

Preceptors: Joel Hirschhorn MD PhD, Ingrid Holm MD MPH, Yee-Ming Chan MD PhD

Genetics of obesity, puberty and growth disorders; genetics of T1D, T2D, and their complications; new methods for genomic data analysis; role of Next Gen sequencing in diagnosis of neonatal diseases; disclosure of Next Gen sequencing results to patients.

Mammalian Stress Response

Preceptor: Joseph Majzoub MD

Regulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis by corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) and vasopressin; role of CRH in fetal development and timing of parturition; physiology/pathophysiology of adrenarche.

Obesity Clinical Research

Preceptors: David Ludwig MD PhD, Cara Ebbeling PhD, Belinda Lennerz MD PhD, Amy Fleischman MD MMSc

Role of dietary composition in appetite and body weight regulation in humans; use of low glycemic index and low carbohydrate diets to prevent and treat obesity, cardiovascular disease and diabetes mellitus; obesity management using telemedicine; novel pharmacologic treatments of Prader-Willi syndrome.

Neuroendocrinology and Cancer Survivorship

Preceptor: Laurie Cohen MD

Endocrine disorders in survivors of childhood cancers; causes and treatment of hypothalamic obesity.

Quality Improvement and Patient Safety

Preceptors: Erinn Rhodes MD MPH

Outcomes in inpatient and outpatient diabetes care; development and evaluation of practice guidelines for diabetes mellitus and endocrine disorders (e.g. adrenal insufficiency, vitamin D deficiency); retention in pediatric weight management programs; telehealth for diabetes care.

Reproductive Endocrinology, Disorders of Sex Development, and Gender Medicine

Preceptors: Yee-Ming Chan MD PhD, Jeremi Carswell MD

Genetics and diagnosis of delayed puberty and disorders of sex development (DSD); outcomes and treatment of DSD; diagnosis, treatment and outcomes for transgender patients; hormone-blockers in adolescence.

Stem Cell Biology in Endocrinology

Preceptors: David Breault MD PhD, Diana Carlone PhD

Role of stem cells, induced pluripotential cells, gut-derived endocrine progenitor cells, and organoids in endocrine physiology and therapeutics, including in pancreatic islets and the adrenal.

Thyroid Pathophysiology in Children

Preceptors: Ari Wassner MD, Jessica Smith MD

Diagnosis and management of thyroid nodules and cancer in children and adolescents; management of Graves disease; pathology and treatment of autoimmune thyroiditis, congenital hypothyroidism and iodine metabolism.