Frank Schembri, M.D.

Faculty and Fellows


Assistant Professor of Medicine

Medical School: University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey/ Robert Wood Johnson Medical School
Internship: Boston University Medical Center
Residency: Boston University Medical Center
Fellowship: Boston University Medical Center

Board Certifications:

  • Internal Medicine
  • Pulmonary Diseases
  • Critical Care Medicine

Special Interests:

Research:

  • Early diagnosis of lung cancer using airway gene expression patterns
  • MicroRNA changes in the airway with smoking and lung cancer

Clinical:

  • Thoracic oncology clinic
  • Ultrasound use in the ICU
  • Endobronchial ultrasound (EBUS)

Dr. Schembri’s research focuses on using airway gene expression as a diagnostic tool for lung cancer. He has previously been involved in Pulmonary Center research examining the mRNA response to smoking in airway epithelial cells obtained at the time of bronchoscopy. In the past year he has explored whether changes in messenger RNA in smokers can be explained by microRNA. This small class of regulatory molecules has been implicated as playing roles in development, response to cellular stress, and cancer. With some encouraging data showing that large numbers of microRNA change with smoking, he is currently exploring the downstream target effects of these microRNA.
Consistent with his research on lung cancer, he sees patients in Thoracic Oncology Clinic. This multidisciplinary clinic involves pulmonology, thoracic surgery, oncology and radiation oncology. He also acts as Director of the Pulmonary Interventional Service , which ultilizes 3 department-owned ultrasound machines to perform most of the bedside procedures in the ICU and on the medical wards. He has also done some additional training in transthoracic and endobronchial ultrasound use.

Selected Publications:

  1. Schembri F , Sridhar S , Perdomo C , Gustafson A , Zhang X , Ergun A, Lu J , Liu G , Zhang X , Bowers J, Sensinger K, Collins J, Brody J, Getts R, Lenburg M, Spira A. MicroRNAs as modulators of smoking-induced gene expression changes in human airway epithelium. Submitted July 2008.
  2. Schembri F , Sridhar S, Liu G, Dumas M, Yang X, Zhang N, Brody J, Spira A. Smoking-induced gene expression changes in the bronchial airway are reflected in nasal and buccal epithelium. BMC Genomics. 2008 May 30; 9(1) 259.
  3. Schembri F , Sridhar S, Liu G, Zhang S, Brody J, and Spira A. The impact of smoking on airway epithelial microRNA expression. Pulmonary Center, Boston University School of Medicine, Pathology Program, Graduate Medical Sciences, Boston University[American Thoracic 2007 oral presentation]
  4. Spira A, Beane J, Shah V, Steiling K, Liu G, Schembri F , Gilman S, Dumas Y, Calner P, Sebastiani P, Sridhar S, Beamis J, Lamb C, Anderson C, Gerry N, Keane J, Lenburg M, Brody J, Airway Epithelial Gene Expression in the Diagnostic Evaluation of Smokers with Suspect Lung Cancer. Nature Medicine. 13, 361 – 366 (2007)
  5. Spira, A., Beane, J., Shah, V., Liu, G., Schembri, F., Yang, X., Palma , J., Brody, J. Effects of cigarette smoke on the human airway epithelial cell transcriptome. PNAS, 101(27)10143-10148.(2004)

Links:

Dr. Schembri sees patients at in Boston Medical Center ‘s Tuberculosis Clinic as well as in Boston Medical Center ‘s Thoracic Oncology Center (617-638-5600)