Nephrology Faculty


 

David J. Salant MD Norman Levinsky Professor of Medicine Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine Vice Chair for Research, Department of Medicine Chief of the Section
David J. Salant MD
Norman Levinsky Professor of Medicine
Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Vice Chair for Research, Department of Medicine
Chief of the Section

Dr. Salant received his medical degree from University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa. He completed his clinical training at Johannesburg General Hospital. He received his research training at Boston University with Dr. William G. Couser and joined BU’s nephrology section as a faculty in 1979. Dr. Salant is an internationally renowned physician-scientist and an acclaimed educator. His research primarily explores the immune basis for glomerular diseases and the mechanisms of podocyte injury. He was among the first to identify podocytes as the primary target of injury in antibody-mediated glomerular diseases. Dr. Salant is a past chairman of the ABIM Sub-specialty Board of Examiners in Nephrology, and is a recipient of numerous national and international awards for his scientific contributions, including  election to the American Society of Clinical Investigation and the Association of American Physicians, an Established Investigator Award from the American Heart Association, the John P. Peters Award from the American Society of Nephrology, and the Jean Hamburger Award from the International Society of Nephrology.


Edward A. Alexander MD Professor of Medicine Research Professor of Physiology and Biophysics
Edward A. Alexander MD
Professor of Medicine
Research Professor of Physiology and Biophysics

Dr. Alexander obtained his medical degree from Northwestern University. He completed his medicine training at Kings County Hospital in Brooklyn and Boston City Hospital, nephrology training at Boston University, and physiology training at Yale University. He joined BU’s nephrology section as a faculty member in 1969 and was the Chief of Nephrology at Boston City Hospital for 25 years. His research has included kidney function in aging, pregnancy, and adrenal disorders. His recent work has focused on the mechanisms of acid handling by the collecting duct, including models of renal tubular acidosis. In addition, he has published articles and book chapters in clinical nephrology. Dr. Alexander has received numerous awards for his academic and clinical contributions, including election to the American Society of Clinical Investigation, the Jerome Klein Award for Physician Excellence at Boston Medical Center, the Department of Medicine’s Outstanding Teaching Award, and the Evan’s Outstanding Clinician Award.


Rivka Ayalon MD Assistant Professor of Medicine
Rivka Ayalon MD
Assistant Professor of Medicine

Dr. Ayalon graduated from Faculty of Health Sciences of Ben Gurion University of the Negev in Israel. After completing her initial clinical training in Israel, she moved to the US and received further training in clinical and research nephrology at Boston University. She conducted research in the Beck / Salant laboratory and made important scientific contributions in understanding the clinical implications of anti-PLA2R (phospholipase A2 receptor) antibodies in membranous nephropathy. She is a recipient of the Nephrotic Syndrome Study Network’s Career Development Fellowship Grant.


Laurence H. Beck Jr MD, PhD Associate Professor of Medicine
Laurence H. Beck Jr MD, PhD
Associate Professor of Medicine

Dr. Beck received his MD and PhD degrees from Harvard University, and completed both medicine and nephrology training at Boston University. He is an internationally known basic and translational physician-scientist with a research focus on auto-immune glomerular and interstitial diseases. His pioneering work with Dr. David Salant led to the identification of PLA2R (phospholipase A2 receptor) as the major target antigen in membranous nephropathy in 2009 and THSD7A (thrombospondin type-1 domain-containing 7A) as a minor target antigen in membranous nephropathy in 2014. These landmark discoveries have led to a new era in the diagnosis, disease monitoring, and clinical management of membranous nephropathy. Their work has now made it possible to follow the immunologic course of membranous nephropathy which has been shown to correlate with treatment response and clinical outcomes.


Jasvinder S. Bhatia MD Assistant Professor of Medicine Director of Clinical Services Medical Director of DaVita Boston
Jasvinder S. Bhatia MD
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Director of Clinical Services
Medical Director of DaVita Boston

Dr. Bhatia obtained his medical degree from University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. He completed both his medicine and nephrology training at Boston University. Recognized as one of Boston’s top nephrologists by the Boston Magazine, Dr. Bhatia has overseen the clinical nephrology services at Boston Medical Center (BMC) since 2006. He is a member of the Medical Advisory Board of the National Kidney Foundation of New England and serves on the ESRD Divisional Board of the ESRD Network of New England. He is a Co-Chair of the ESRD Task Force at BMC. The ESRD Task Force strives to improve the transition of care from CKD to ESRD.


Ramon GB. Bonegio MD, PhD Assistant Professor of Medicine Chief of Clinical Nephrology at Boston VA
Ramon GB. Bonegio MD, PhD
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Chief of Clinical Nephrology at Boston VA

Dr. Bonegio received his medical degree from University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa. He completed his initial training in medicine and nephrology in South Africa before moving to the US to complete nephrology fellowship and PhD in molecular medicine at Boston University. His basic research work focuses on investigating the pathobiology of immune-complex glomerulonephritis. He is also active in conducting clinical trials on lupus nephritis, and, with Dr. Menn, has established an auto-immune disease registry for clinical studies at Boston Medical Center. In addition to research, Dr. Bonegio is a recognized educator who has won awards and commendations for teaching and mentorship from all levels of trainees.


Steven C. Borkan MD Associate Professor of Medicine
Steven C. Borkan MD
Associate Professor of Medicine

Dr. Borkan received his medical degree from University of Cincinnati. He completed his initial clinical and research training in nephrology at University of Chicago. He continued his nephrology research training at Boston University and joined BU’s nephrology section as a faculty in 1989. Dr. Borkan’s laboratory, which has been funded by the NIH for more than 15 years, examines the cellular mechanisms of ischemic acute kidney injury. He is also a noted medical educator who has been recognized with several awards for excellence in teaching from medical students, residents, fellows, and faculty at Boston University. Most recently, he was the finalist for the Metcalf Teaching Award (one of the highest awards given to a BU faculty) and received the Grant V. Rodkey Award from the Massachusetts Medical Society for significant contributions to medical education and mentoring activities. Currently, Dr. Borkan serves as a Co-Director of BU’s MD PhD Program.


Vipul C. Chitalia MD, PhD Associate Professor of Medicine
Vipul C. Chitalia MD, PhD
Associate Professor of Medicine

Dr. Chitalia obtained his medical degree from University of Bombay. He completed his initial training in medicine and nephrology in India. After moving to the US, he completed medicine residency at St. Vincent’s Medical Center, nephrology fellowship and PhD in molecular medicine at Boston University, and post-doctoral training in the laboratory of Elazer Edelman at Harvard-MIT Division of Science and Technology. Dr. Chitalia is an accomplished physician-scientist whose NIH-funded laboratory focuses on understanding the post-translational modifications of proteins and their role in kidney failure and cancer-related vascular pathologies.  Dr. Chitalia has received multiple awards for his research and mentorship, including the 2016 Outstanding Mentor Award from Boston University. Dr. Chitalia serves as a Co-Director of BU’s Thrombosis to Hemostasis Affinity Research Collaborative.


Herbert T. Cohen MD Associate Professor of Medicine, Pathology, Laboratory Medicine, Pharmacology, and Experimental Therapeutics
Herbert T. Cohen MD
Associate Professor of Medicine, Pathology, Laboratory Medicine, Pharmacology, and Experimental Therapeutics

Dr. Cohen graduated from Jefferson Medical College and received his clinical and research training in nephrology at University of Chicago. In addition, he received advanced training in molecular biology and protein chemistry at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School in the laboratory of Dr. Vikas P. Sukhatme. Dr. Cohen’s research interests are in the molecular basis of kidney cancer, cystic kidney disease and kidney development. His laboratory has identified a new family of transcription factor and ubiquitin ligase proteins called the Jade family of proteins that play an important role in kidney cancer and cyst formation. Dr. Cohen’s scientific contributions have been recognized by election to the American Society of Clinical Investigation.  


Jean M. Francis MD Associate Professor of Medicine Medical Director of Kidney Transplantation
Jean M. Francis MD
Associate Professor of Medicine
Medical Director of Kidney Transplantation

Dr. Francis obtained his medical degree from Lebanese University. He completed his medicine residency and nephrology fellowship at Hospital of Saint Raphael and Yale University. He subsequently did kidney and pancreas transplantation fellowship at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School. Dr. Francis conducts clinical research in kidney transplantation, and has a special interest in thrombotic microangiopathy and complement-mediated diseases. He is also an accomplished educator who has won several excellence in teaching awards from the Department of Medicine. Dr. Francis serves as a Co-Director of BU’s Thrombosis and Microangiopathy Collaborative.


Sandeep Ghai MD Assistant Professor of Medicine Medical Director of the Acute Dialysis Program
Sandeep Ghai MD
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Medical Director of the Acute Dialysis Program

Dr. Ghai received his medical degree from Wayne State University School of Medicine. He completed both his medicine and nephrology training at Boston University. Dr. Ghai is an active transplant nephrologist with a special interest in health system improvements within the inpatient setting. He is active in medical education at all levels, and directs nephrology clinical conferences and Boston Medical Center’s acute dialysis program.


Andrea Havasi MD Assistant Professor of Medicine Director of Quality Improvement
Andrea Havasi MD
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Director of Quality Improvement

Dr. Havasi graduated from Semmelweis University School of Medicine in Hungary and completed nephrology training at Boston University. As a recipient of the National Kidney Foundation Research Fellow Award, she undertook research training at BU investigating the cytoprotective mechanisms of Hsp27 in ischemic renal cell injury and apoptosis. She joined BU’s nephrology section as a faculty in 2008, and continues basic and translational research in the area of renal cell injury and proteinuric kidney diseases using cell culture and animal models. She is the recipient of the American Heart Association Scientist Development Grant and the NIH K08 award. She also has a special clinical and research interest in onco-nephrology and amyloidosis, and is a faculty in BU’s Amyloidosis Center. Dr. Havasi is a Co-Director of BU’s Mitochondria Affinity Research Collaborative, and Director of Nephrology Fellowship Program’s Onco-nephrology / Amyloidosis Pathway.


Weining Lu MD, MSc Associate Professor of Medicine Associate Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Weining Lu MD, MSc
Associate Professor of Medicine
Associate Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine

Dr. Lu obtained his medical degree from Zhejiang University in China and his Masters in Science degree from Northeastern University. He completed his post-doctoral training in the Renal Division and Genetics Division at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School. Dr. Lu works exclusively as a medical scientist and a mentor to post-doctoral fellows and graduate students. His laboratory focuses on basic science and translational research of kidney development, congenital anomalies of the kidney and urinary tract (CAKUT), podocyte biology and injury, pericyte biology and injury, and discovery of novel drug targets for patients with chronic kidney disease. Dr. Lu is a fellow of the American Society of Nephrology and a member of NIH grant review study sections.


Hanni Menn-Josephy MD Assistant Professor of Medicine
Hanni Menn-Josephy MD
Assistant Professor of Medicine

Dr. Menn obtained her medical degree from Technion – Israel Institute of Technology. She completed her initial clinical training in Israel before moving to the US to complete nephrology clinical and research fellowship at Boston University. She has a special interest in auto-immune kidney diseases in general and lupus nephritis in particular. As a nephrology fellow, she studied interferon regulating pathways in both lupus mice models and human cells. Dr. Menn is also active in conducting clinical trials on lupus nephritis and co-directs a multidisciplinary lupus and autoimmune clinic at Boston Medical Center. With Dr. Bonegio, she has established an auto-immune disease registry for clinical studies at Boston Medical Center. She is a faculty in BU’s Amyloidosis Center, and is a Director of Nephrology Fellowship Program’s Lupus Nephritis / Auto-immune Disease Pathway. She is also a recipient of the NKF’s Young Investigators Grant.


Ian R. Rifkin MD, PhD Associate Professor of Medicine Chief of Nephrology at Boston VA Director of NIH’s T32 Research Training Program
Ian R. Rifkin MD, PhD
Associate Professor of Medicine
Chief of Nephrology at Boston VA
Director of NIH’s T32 Research Training Program

Dr. Rifkin obtained his medical degree from University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa. He received his initial clinical training in South Africa and the United Kingdom, obtained PhD in Immunology from University of Cambridge, and completed clinical and research nephrology fellowship at Boston University. Dr. Rifkin is an accomplished physician-scientist with a research focus on immunology and lupus nephritis. His scientific works have been funded by the NIH, a number of national and international foundations, and leading pharmaceutical industries. Dr. Rifkin is one of the founders of BU’s Center for Immunobiology. He is also an active mentor for students, clinical and post-doctoral fellows, and faculty.


Lauren Stern MD Assistant Professor of Medicine Medical Director of the Home Dialysis Program
Lauren Stern MD
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Medical Director of the Home Dialysis Program

Dr. Stern obtained her medical degree from Rutgers-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. She completed her medicine residency, chief residency, and nephrology fellowship at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City. Dr. Stern has a special clinical interest in expanding home dialysis services within the underserved communities. She also participates in clinical research activities on amyloidosis and is a faculty in BU’s Amyloidosis Center. At BU, Dr. Stern serves as an Associate Director of the third year medicine clerkship and directs the second year renal pathophysiology course. Outside of BU, Dr. Stern has served on the American Society of Nephrology’s Workforce and the Public Policy and Advocacy Committees, and is part of the Home Dialysis University faculty.


Ashish Upadhyay MD Associate Professor of Medicine Director of the Fellowship Training Program
Ashish Upadhyay MD
Associate Professor of Medicine
Director of the Fellowship Training Program

Dr. Upadhyay obtained his medical degree from Tribhuvan University Institute of Medicine in Nepal and completed nephrology training at Boston University. He has academic interests in examining mechanisms of cardiovascular diseases in CKD. He has conducted epidemiologic research in the Framingham Heart Study, led the evidence review team for the Kidney Disease Improving Global Outcomes (KDIGO) clinical practice guidelines on lipid management, and participated in the evidence review teams for the KDIGO clinical practice guidelines on blood pressure and anemia management. At BU, in addition to directing the nephrology fellowship program, Dr. Upadhyay oversees research and EBM curriculum of the medicine residency program. He also has a special interest in hemodialysis systems and serves as a voting member of the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation’s Renal Disease and Detoxification Committee, the primary source of national and international consensus standards for hemodialysis technology and dialysis water sterilization processes.


Transplant Surgery Faculty


Matthew G. Nuhn MD Assistant Professor of Surgery Chief of the Section
Matthew G. Nuhn MD
Assistant Professor of Surgery
Chief of the Section

Dr. Nuhn received his medical degree from University of Missouri-Kansas City. He completed general surgery residency at University of Missouri-Kansas City and transplant surgery fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. In addition to kidney transplantation, Dr. Nuhn has a special interest in dialysis access surgery and liver transplantation. He also participates in clinical research on kidney transplantation and has experience in health policy, particularly in areas of medication safety and quality control. Dr. Nuhn is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons.


Amitabh Gautam MD Assistant Professor of Surgery
Amitabh Gautam MD
Assistant Professor of Surgery

Dr. Gautam obtained his medical degree from Maulana Azad Medical College in New Delhi. He received his initial clinical training in India and the United Kingdom, and completed kidney and pancreas transplantation fellowship from University of Liverpool and University of Pittsburgh. In addition to kidney transplantation, Dr. Gautam has a special interest in dialysis access surgery and pancreas transplantation. He has participated in clinical and translational research in transplantation, and has served on various United Network for Organ Sharing, ESRD Network of New England and American Society of Transplant Surgeons committees. Currently, he is a member of the medical review board of ESRD Network of New England. Dr. Gautam is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh.


Kidney Pathology Faculty


Joel M. Henderson MD, PhD Assistant Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Joel M. Henderson MD, PhD
Assistant Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine

Dr. Henderson obtained his MD and PhD degrees from Ohio State University. He completed his clinical and research training at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School. Dr. Henderson’s research focuses on elucidating the role of podocytes in mechanically-mediated glomerular damage using both mouse models and human tissues. He is also interested in the biology of renal inflammation. Dr. Henderson is the Program Director of BU’s pathology residency and a faculty in BU’s multidisciplinary training program in inflammatory disorder. He is also one of the primary investigators in the Framingham Heart Study.