CYNTHIA ST. HILAIRE, PhD, FAHA

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR

ASSISTANT PROFESSOR OF MEDICINE & BIOENGINEERING

UNIVERSITY OF PITTSBURGH, DEPARTMENT OF MEDICINE, DIVISION OF CARDIOLOGY, PITTSBURGH HEART, LUNG, AND BLOOD VASCULAR MEDICINE INSTITUTE

Dr. St. Hilaire obtained a BS in Molecular Genetics from the University of Vermont and completed her PhD training in Biochemistry at Boston University School of Medicine in the laboratory of Dr. Katya Ravid. She joined the Center for Molecular Medicine at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute at the NIH, under the mentorship of Dr. Manfred Boehm. At the NHLBI Dr. St. Hilaire and colleagues discovered the genetic cause of the rare disease, Arterial Calcification due to Deficiency of CD73, which identified the novel role for the enzyme CD73 and adenosine signaling in vascular calcification. In 2015 she established her research group at the University of Pittsburgh in the Department of Medicine and the Pittsburgh Heart, Lung, and Blood Vascular Medicine Institute to study the molecular mechanisms driving vessel and valve calcification and remodeling pathologies. She is an Associate Editorial at Circulation Research and is host of the monthly podcast, Discover CircRes, and has held leadership positions within the AHA Council on Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology, the International Society of Applied Cardiovascular Biology, and the North American Vascular Biology Organization. Outside the lab, Cindy enjoys creating art, is a voracious reader, and loves travel, baking, and family walks with the dog in the East Liberty neighborhood of Pittsburgh.

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ROLANDO CUEVAS, PhD

POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW

Dr. Cuevas obtained his BS/MS in Biochemistry from Catholic University of Chile, where he conducted his research in the laboratory of Dr. Katya Gysling, studying mRNA regulation during drug addiction and stress. After graduating, he moved to Pittsburgh, where he worked as a Scholar Researcher in the laboratories of Dr. Stefan Duensing and Dr. Saumendra Sarkar at the University of Pittsburgh. His research during this time was focused on cancer biology, cell cycle, chromosome segregation and genomic instability, and cancer virology. Dr. Cuevas obtained his PhD in Biological Sciences from Carnegie Mellon University under the mentorship of Dr. N. Luisa Hiller, studying the molecular signaling leading to virulence in pneumococcal-associated diseases.

PARYA BEHZADI, PhD

POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW

Dr. Behzadi received her master’s in molecular genetics from the University of Azad in Iran, studying the possible role of cfs-mRNA as a biomarker in male infertility. She pursued a PhD in clinical research under the mentorship of Dr. Daniel Gagnon at the Montreal Heart Institute. Their her research focused on the therapeutic potential of heat exposure for cardiometabolic health of people with coronary artery disease and type 2 diabetes. During her PhD at Université de Montréal, she developed a particular interest in understanding the molecular mechanism that induce cardiovascular diseases.

Michael Bashline, MD

PHYSICIAN & FELLOW

Michael grew up in Pittsburgh and attended University of Pittsburgh where he earned his Bachelor of Science in Bioengineering. He completed his medical training at Temple University in Philadelphia before returning to UPMC for his Internal Medicine Residency. He is currently a second year cardiology fellow at UPMC, and will be completing an Interventional Cardiology fellowship here at UPMC following his general cardiology training. His clinical interests include structural heart disease and is conducting research in mechanisms of native and bioprosthetic valve calcification. Outside of work, he is a father to two children and enjoys traveling, running, and spending time with his family.

ANGELINA PARISE, BS

LABORATORY TECHNICIAN

Angelina graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a B.S. in chemistry. During her undergraduate education she worked in the Hillman Cancer Center utilizing LC-MS/MS to test chemotherapy drugs. She grew up in Pittsburgh, PA and during her free time she enjoys lifting, hiking, and baking.

ALEX CRANE

UNDERGRADUATE STUDENT, CHEMISTRY & COMPUTATIONAL BIOLOGY, CLASS OF 2023

Alex is an undergraduate majoring in Computational Biology and Chemistry at the University of Pittsburgh. He has conducted prior research in a clinical setting, examining physiological response to traumatic injuries. Alex is from Rochester NY and is pursuing a career as a physician scientist. In his free time Alex enjoys skiing, running and being outdoors.

ANEESHA PARWAL

UNDERGRADUATE STUDENT, BIOCHEMISTRY, CLASS OF 2024

Aneesha is an undergraduate student at the University of Pittsburgh, majoring in Biochemistry with minors in Chemistry and Studio Arts. Aneesha grew up in New Jersey just outside of Princeton and aspires to work in healthcare in the future. Outside of the lab, Aneesha loves to listen to music, go on boba runs with her friends, cook, and sketch

ANNA MARIE ROMPALA

ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT

UNIVERSITY OF PITTSBURGH, DIVISION OF CARDIOLOGY & PITTSBURGH HEART, LUNG, AND BLOOD VASCULAR MEDICINE INSTITUTE

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ALUMNI

CLAIRE CHU, BPhil

LAB MANAGER & RESEARCH TECHNICIAN

REKHA RAMANATHAN

UNDERGRADUATE STUDENT, BIOENGINEERING, CLASS OF 2024

RYAN WONG, BS

RESEARCH TECHNICIAN

CAILYN REGAN

UNDERGRADUATE STUDENT, BIOLOGY, CLASS OF 2020

JACK CALLAHAN

UNDERGRADUATE STUDENT, MOLECULAR BIOLOGY, CLASS OF 2020

WILLIAM MOORHEAD III, BS

LAB MANAGER & RESEARCH TECHNICIAN

ANGELA LE

UNDERGRADUATE STUDENT, CHEMISTRY, CLASS OF 2023

POUYA JOOLHARZADEH, BM

MEDICAL STUDENT, CLASS OF 2019

CAMILLE BOUFFORD, BS

RESEARCH TECHNICIAN

LUIS HORTELLS, DVM, PHD

POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW

RACHEL WOLFE, BS

MEDICAL STUDENT

SWASTIKA SUR, PHD

POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW

SREYA ADDANKI

UNDERGRADUATE STUDENT, BIOLOGY & PRE-MED, CLASS OF 2019

LAURA GARCIA, BS

PITTSBURGH UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH DIVERSITY PROGRAM (PURDiP)

HANNA VALLI, PHD

POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW


Many thanks to Kristen Bagwell for helping us get this site up and running.

Kristen Bagwell | Website Administrator, VMI/Cardiology/PACCM