Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism Research and Educational Updates – February 2024

Message from Suzanne Jan De Beur MD, Endocrinology Division Chief

Suzanne Jan de Beur MDAs the newest faculty member and the new Chief, I am thrilled to call the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism at the University of Virginia my new home. Having arrived from Johns Hopkins just a few short months ago, I am immensely impressed by the exceptional caliber of research, the internationally recognized faculty, the outstanding clinical care employing cutting-edge technology, the quality of the trainees, and the profoundly collaborative culture that defines this institution.

The dedication to cutting-edge research in endocrinology here is truly inspiring. I am excited to join such a dynamic and innovative team of researchers pushing our field’s knowledge boundaries. I look forward to contributing to and facilitating efforts that advance our understanding of endocrine disorders and translate discoveries into tangible improvements in patient care.

The clinical care provided by our dedicated clinicians is second to none. It is evident that our faculty members are experts in their respective specialties and deeply committed to delivering compassionate and patient-centered care. I am proud to be a part of a team that prioritizes excellence in clinical practice and is dedicated to improving the lives of individuals affected by endocrine disorders.

Equally impressive is the collaborative spirit that permeates every aspect of this institution. The willingness of faculty members to share expertise, collaborate across disciplines, and mentor the next generation of leaders is truly remarkable. I am eager to foster and strengthen these collaborative partnerships within our division and with colleagues across the School of Medicine and the university.

With decades of excellence and recognition as one of the premier Divisions of Endocrinology and Metabolism as our foundation, we are poised for an exciting future and new era of growth in our clinical and research enterprise.

As is the tradition started by my generous predecessor, Dr. Chris McCartney, I employ this edition of Medicine Matters to honor my fellow division members, who have significantly contributed to the core missions of UVA and live the ASPIRE values daily.

Thank you for the warm welcome and the opportunity to lead this exceptional division. I am honored to be here and excited for the journey ahead.

~ Suzanne Jan de Beur MD

Learn more about Dr. Jan de Beur

Fond Farewells

Dr. Susan Kirk UVASusan E. Kirk MD, retired from the Division of Endocrinology after a 33-year career at the University of Virginia. She is a graduate of Douglass College and Rutgers Medical School. She completed her internship and residency and was the chief resident in Internal Medicine at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. In 1991, she came to the University of Virginia to complete a fellowship in Endocrinology and Metabolism. She joined the faculty in 1994 and was jointly appointed as an associate professor in internal medicine, obstetrics, and gynecology. Her areas of expertise included diabetes, pregnancy, and transgender health. She also served as a Designated Institutional Official and Associate Dean for Graduate Medical Education at the University of Virginia Health System from 2006 to 2023. She was awarded emerita status upon her retirement.

Dr. Kirk’s accomplishments include overseeing more than 130 accredited and non-accredited graduate medical education programs, including programs in Medical and Medical specialty disciplines, Pharmacy, Chaplaincy, Dentistry and Radiation, Physics, Clinical Laboratory Medicine, and Clinical Psychology. She was a member of the Institutional Review Committee of the ACGME from 2013-2020 and was elected by her peers to serve as its chair from 2017 until her term ended. She was chair of the Endocrine Society’s Board Review and the Endocrinology Self-Assessment Program for several years. At UVA, she was elected to serve as the chair of the Faculty Senate and represented the faculty as its representative to the Board of Visitors from 2022-23. Her honors include the School of Medicine’s David A Harrison Award for Excellence in Teaching and the ACGME’s Parker Palmer Courage to Lead Award.

She and her husband are the parents of five adult children and one adorable grandson.

She is an avid birder. She is currently enrolled in graduate school, where she hopes to earn a degree in wildlife conservation and use her new skills to create new programs that enhance the well-being of physicians.

We thank Dr. Kirk for her myriad contributions to the Division of Endocrinology, the Department of Medicine, and the School of Medicine as an exceptional clinician, educator, mentor, and leader. We thank her for her courage to be a major driver in diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts in our academic community. We are grateful for the paths she has paved and how she has transformed our institution. We wish her a fulfilling, gratifying, and engaging next chapter.

Dr. McCartney, Chris

It was bittersweet to bid farewell to Christopher R. McCartney MD, who has been an integral part of the UVA Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism for almost 25 years. He earned his medical degree and completed his Internal Medicine residency training at the University of Mississippi. Arriving at the University of Virginia as a first-year endocrinology fellow in 1999, he joined the faculty in 2003. He rose through the ranks to become the Kenneth R. Crispell Professor of Internal Medicine.

Dr. McCarthey’s passion for mentorship and education paved the way for his appointment as Endocrinology and Metabolism Fellowship Program Director (2011-2020) and Associate Program Director (2020-2023). Chris’s influence and leadership as a program director were recognized with his election as president of the Association of Program Directors in Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism’s (APDEM) in 2018. His selfless investment in his students and trainees garnered numerous teaching and mentoring awards (eight in total) at both the Department of Medicine and the School of Medicine. As a stand-out mentor, educator, and researcher, Chris was tapped to serve as Vice Chair for Faculty Affairs for the Department of Medicine.

Dr. McCartney pursues reproductive neuroendocrinology research, especially as it relates to polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), and he has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health since 2000. He also served as the Center for Research in Reproduction Director from 2022-2023.

Dr. McCartney is a leader within and beyond the walls of UVA. He is the immediate Past Chair of the Endocrine Society’s Clinical Guidelines Committee (2018-2021); he currently serves as an Endocrine Society Guideline Methodologist; and he was the Clinical Science Chair for the Endocrine Society’s 2023 Annual Meeting. A champion for the Society’s guidelines, Chris has been passionate about improving guideline development methodology and making guideline content more accessible to international readers.

Most recently and significantly, Dr. McCartney served as the Interim Chief of the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism. Chris’s steadfast leadership guided the Division through challenging times. Dr. McCartney was the Interim Division Chief who helped the team navigate reduced clinical capacity, a surge of new faculty hires, and a complete revamp of the administrative team. Chris orchestrated the transition of leadership of the Division with generosity, grace, and genuine kindness.

As we reflect on Chris’s impact as an educator, researcher, clinician, and leader, it is impossible not to appreciate the dedication, commitment, and selflessness that Chris displayed every day.

Chris’ commitment to excellence has elevated the field of Endocrinology and inspired his colleagues and peers.

At the end of January, Dr. McCartney will become the Vice Chair for Research for the Department of Medicine at the West Virginia University School of Medicine. As Chris embarks on this new chapter of his professional journey, we extend our heartfelt wishes for success and fulfillment in all his future endeavors. May the Force be with him!

Dr. Robert Carey UVARobert M. Carey MD MACP, The David A. Harrison III Distinguished Professor of Medicine, Dean Emeritus, and University Professor, retired in December 2023 after an extraordinary physician, scientist, and leader career. Dr. Carey has been a part of the fabric of the University of Virginia for over 50 years, and his tireless work has profoundly impacted each of us.

Dr. Carey was born in Lexington, Kentucky, and received his medical degree from Vanderbilt University in 1965. He completed his residency in medicine at the New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center and fellowships in endocrinology with Dr. Grant W. Liddle at Vanderbilt and in hypertension with Professor Sir Stanley Peart at St. Mary’s Hospital Medical School (now Imperial College) in London, England.

Dr. Carey served as Dean of the University of Virginia School of Medicine from 1986 to 2002. During his tenure as Dean, Dr. Carey founded departments of public health sciences, emergency medicine, radiation oncology, physical medicine, and rehabilitation. He initiated the clinical trials center, the biomedical ethics center, the humanities in medicine program, the generalist medicine program, the global health program, the digestive health center of excellence, and the clinical cancer center. He developed new research centers in cell signaling, structural biology, retrovirology, reproduction, immunology, and cardiovascular sciences. Dr. Carey constructed four new research buildings and a conference center and developed architectural plans and funding for a fifth research building for the School of Medicine. During his 16 years as Dean, National Institutes of Health (NIH) funds to the School of Medicine quintupled, private fundraising increased 12-fold, and 60 endowed professorships were established. During his deanship, the School of Medicine strengthened its basic medical sciences, interdisciplinary research centers and programs, and university-wide collaboration in research and teaching.

As Director of the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism from 1978-1986, Dr. Carey developed the Division into one of the best in the country (highest ranking #5 by U.S. News).

An internationally recognized leader in endocrinology, Dr. Carey focused his clinical interest on cardiovascular endocrinology, adrenal disorders, and hypertension and his research on the hormonal control of blood pressure and hypertension. Dr. Carey authored over 400 scientific articles and three books during his highly productive career. He has maintained a productive NIH-funded research program since 1973 and has strongly advocated biomedical research nationally.

Dr. Carey has held significant leadership roles in national organizations, including (but not limited to) the President of The Endocrine Society and The American Clinical and Climatological Association. Dr. Carey is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine, the Association of American Physicians, and the American Society for Clinical Investigation.

Dr. Carey is recipient of numerous awards for his outstanding achievements including the Distinguished Alumnus Award from Vanderbilt University, the Distinguished Achievement Award of the New York Hospital/Cornell Medical Alumni Council, the Walter Reed Distinguished Achievement Award of the University of Virginia Medical Alumni Association, the Lifetime Achievement Award of the Consortium of Southeast Hypertension Centers and the Irving Page/Alva Bradley Lifetime Achievement Award of the AHA Hypertension Council. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland and a Master of the American College of Physicians (ACP). Dr. Carey has received an Honorary Citation from Governor Mark R. Warner (2002) and a Joint Resolution commending him from the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Virginia (2004). He received the Laureate Award of the Virginia Chapter of the ACP (2004), the Distinguished Physician Award of the Endocrine Society (2005), the AHA Scientific Councils Distinguished Achievement Award (2008), the Robert Tigerstedt Distinguished Scientist Award of the American Society of Hypertension (2009), the Edward H. Ahrens, Jr., Distinguished Scientist Award of the Association for Clinical and Translational Research (2012), the Research Excellence Award of the AHA Hypertension Council (2012; highest AHA award for hypertension research), the Outstanding Leadership in Endocrinology Award of the Endocrine Society (2015), American Heart Association Distinguished Scientist Award for (2020).

Dr. Carey’s work has been recognized at the University of Virginia by the Thomas Jefferson Award, the highest honor bestowed by the University of Virginia, for transforming academic medicine at the University. The Dean Robert M. Carey Award, initiated in 2003 by University of Virginia medical students, honors a second-year class member who exhibits leadership and scholarship qualities and builds a sense of community during the first two years of medical school. The Carey, Marshall, Thorner Scholars Research Day of the Department of Medicine was initiated in 2007. He mentored numerous students, fellows, and junior faculty members, many of whom have had highly successful careers and become excellent mentors.

Dr. Carey represents the highest example of a compassionate clinician, brilliant scientist, transformative leader, generous mentor, and inspiring educator. Dr. Carey’s presence and work have influenced all who have had the privilege to call the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism at the University of Virginia our academic home. With utmost gratitude, we thank him for his transformative impact and wish him fulfillment in this next phase of life.

Dr. Eugene Barrett UVAOn Friday, January 26th, the Endocrinology Division, along with friends and family celebrated the retirement of Eugene Barrett, MD, PhD at the beautiful Morven Farms. Dr. Barrett joined the Endocrinology Division in 1991 as the Director of the UVA.

Diabetes Center. Since that time, Dr. Barrett has remained deeply committed to the UVA School of Medicine, demonstrating profound excellence in research, clinical care, education, and mentorship throughout his 31 years at UVA.

Updates on Faculty Activities


Samina Afreen, MD,  Dr. Afreen graduated from Calcutta Medical College of Medicine (India) in 2009. She completed her internship and residency at Howard University and her endocrinology fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. From 2019 to 2022, she worked as an endocrinologist at the Center for Diabetes and Endocrine Health, Allegheny Clinic, in Erie, PA; she was also an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Drexel College of Medicine. Dr. Afreen is a general endocrinologist interested in metabolic bone disease, obesity, and diabetes technology. She is certified by both ABIM and the American Board of Obesity Medicine. Dr. Afreen is a member of the Obesity Medicine Association’s Adult Obesity Algorithm Committee, CME Overview Committee, and the American Association of Clinical Endocrinology’s Diabetes, Cardiometabolic, and Lipid Disease State Network Committee.

Dr. Sue Brown UVA

Sue Brown, MD, is a clinician who directs clinical trials primarily related to automated insulin delivery (artificial pancreas) systems. Dr. Brown’s research was supported by 3 R01 as a Co-PI and anticipates a new R01 in 2024 as a Co-PI on inpatient glycemia management and industry grants in managing Type 2 Diabetes and Cystic Fibrosis-Related Disease. Her current R01s include R01 DK085623, “Bio-behavioral Human Machine Co-Adaptation of the Artificial Pancreas,” R01 DK129553, “Advanced Artificial Pancreas Systems to Enable Fully Automated Glycemic Control in Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus”, R01 DK133148 “Adaptive Motif-Based Control: A Fundamentally New Approach to Automated Treatment Optimization for Type 1 Diabetes. Dr. Brown has continued her track record of publishing papers related to this work. Clinically, Dr. Brown is a general endocrinologist interested in metabolic bone disease and diabetes. In 2023, Dr. Brown was honored with a Patient Experience Award for the fourth year. Dr. Brown is also a core faculty member of our fellowship program and is the division’s Gerald D. Aurbach Professor of Endocrinology.

Margaret Crook MD UVAMargaret Crook, MD, is a general endocrinologist interested in metabolic bone disease and calcium disorders. She co-founded Blue Ridge Endocrinology in 2010 but has practiced at the University of Virginia Endocrinology in the Charlottesville Pantops area since 2015. Her patient survey results are outstanding, and Dr. Crook was honored with the 2022 and 2023 Patient Experience Awards. Dr. Crook was featured in Virginia Business magazine’s 2024 Top Doctors list for the state. She has joined an Endocrine Society task force for physician burnout and recently has taken on an internal leadership role at the main Endocrinology clinic at Fontaine. She is excited to start seeing patients at the Fontaine Bone Clinic in March and learning more from her new division chief.

Silas Culver, MDSilas Culver MD, is a recent iTHRIV scholar graduate pursuing basic science research related to obesity-associated kidney dysfunction and renal lipotoxicity; and the role of the (pro)renin receptor in obesity-associated hypertension, aging, and cellular senescence. Of great importance, Dr. Culver was recently awarded an NIH K08 career-development grant (project entitled “Role of Atp6ap2 in renal proximal tubule lipotoxicity”). Clinically, Dr. Culver is a general endocrinologist interested in adrenal disease, endocrine hypertension, and obesity. In addition to staffing inpatient consults and seeing outpatients at our main endocrinology clinic, Dr. Culver served the division (and Virginians) by staffing clinics in Fishersville. Dr. Culver was Co-System Leader for the NexGen Endocrine-Reproduction System (Pre-Clerkship) block for second-year medical students.

Christine Eagleson MDChristine Eagleson, MD, is a general endocrinologist who has contributed exceedingly valuable contributions to the division’s clinical mission, including our regional outreach program. In addition to seeing patients in our main endocrinology clinic at Fontaine, she serves the division (and Virginians) in the Culpeper Specialty Care clinic. Dr. Eagleson is also the primary adult endocrinologist member for UVA Health’s Gender Health program, thus contributing to a critically crucial institutional mission. These activities highlight Dr. Eagleson’s unending devotion to the underserved. Dr. Eagleson is a highly valued preceptor for the fellows’ continuity clinic and serves on our Clinical Competency and Program Effectiveness Committees. She has been promoted to Associate Professor and co-leader for the Endocrinology Clinic. She has been elected to Virginia Business Magazine’s Top Endocrinologist of Virginia.

Leon Farhy, PhDLeon Farhi, PhD, is a biomathematician whose primary role relates to research. In 2022, Dr. Farhi’s work was supported by UVA Strategic Investment Funding (PrIMeD) (Farhy PI – “The Biochip project”), and he obtained a two-year, $600K JDRF grant entitled “Improving prediction of T1D risk by establishing a self-administered CGM-based technology and whole genome-based polygenic risk scores in diverse populations.” In addition, Dr. Farhi served as an essential Co-Investigator for additional grants, including R01 DK085516, a Helmsley Charitable Trust grant, a UVA Strategic Investment grant, and at least one industry-funded project. Dr. Farhi published at least two peer-reviewed manuscripts and two scientific abstracts in 2022. Dr. Farhi continued to serve as the Associate Director of Education for UVA’s Center for Diabetes Technology and participated in a TrialNet Steering Committee Meeting in May 2022.

Heather Ferris MD PhDHeather Ferris, MD, PhD, is a basic scientist whose interest concerns brain insulin and IGF-1 action and interactions among diabetes, cholesterol, and Alzheimer’s disease. Her 2023 research was supported by The Rick Sharp Foundation and an NIH R01 grant (Ferris PI – “Mevalonate Pathway Regulation of Astrocyte ApoE”). She was also a co-investigator for two NIH R01 grants and a Coulter Foundation grant. Dr. Ferris is an advisor for the American Diabetes Association’s (ADA) Diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease Interest Group. Clinically, Dr. Ferris is a general endocrinologist interested in diabetes in older patients. In 2023, Dr. Ferris was honored with a Patient Experience Award. She serves the division as our Endocrinology Grand Rounds Course Director.

Daniel Haisenleder, PhDDaniel Haisenleder, PhD, is a reproductive neuroendocrinologist with a long history of crucial basic science research on regulating gonadotropin synthesis. Dr. Haisenleder is the Director of the Ligand Assay and Analysis Core Laboratory in the Center for Research in Reproduction, a busy research laboratory supported by NIH R24 HD102061. This role includes the development and refinement of hormone assays. Recently, Dr. Haisenleder co-authored manuscripts validating a multiple-marker test panel for early pregnancy outcome prediction, as well as the NIH-supported FIT-PLESE Project, a large multicenter randomized trial to compare the effects of two preconception lifestyle interventions in infertile women with obesity. Dr. Haisenleder continues to serve as a UVA Animal Care and Use Committee member and an External Advisory Board Member for the Wisconsin National Primate Center.

Gregory Hong, MDGregory Hong, MD, PhD, is a general endocrinologist interested in neuroendocrinology and pituitary disease: he is an integral part of our multidisciplinary pituitary program. In addition to being a highly skilled clinician, Dr. Hong is an outstanding educator and continues to do an exceptional job as our fellowship program director. Dr. Hong serves as one of five preceptors in our endocrinology fellows’ continuity clinic, and he Chairs our Clinical Competency and Program Effectiveness Committees. Nationally, Dr. Hong serves as the governing Council member for the Association of Program Directors in Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism (APDEM), where he oversees national recruitment policies. He is also a member of the Endocrine Society’s Clinical Endocrine Education Committee, where he chairs the Endocrine Educators Forum working group.

Ben Horton MDWilliam (Ben) Horton, MD, is an assistant professor investigating the effects of glycemic variability on oxidative stress, inflammation, and myocardial microvascular function in people with type 1 diabetes. Dr. Horton also pursues clinical research related to heart failure in patients with type 1 diabetes. His work is currently supported by an American Heart Association career-development grant (project entitled “A Comprehensive Approach to Reducing Glycemic Variability and Improving Cardiovascular Health in Type 1 Diabetes”) and a large JDRF (formerly Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) grant entitled “Reducing Glycemic Variability to Improve Cardiovascular Health in Type 1 Diabetes.” Clinically, Dr. Horton is a general endocrinologist interested in cardiovascular diabetology. In addition to staffing inpatient consults, Dr. Horton serves the division (and Virginians) by staffing our clinic at Zions Crossroads.

Suzanne Jan de BeurSuzanne Jan de Beur MD graduated from Cornell University and Cornell Weill Medical College. She completed the Osler Medical Residency at the Johns Hopkins Hospital and her fellowship in Endocrinology and Metabolism at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Before joining UVA, she served in the faculty at Johns Hopkins for 25 years. She held numerous institutional leadership roles, including Director of Endocrinology and Metabolism at Johns Hopkins Bayview and Deputy Director of the Johns Hopkins Institute of Clinical and Translational Research.

As a Physician-Scientist and a practicing Endocrinologist, her clinical and research work focuses on understanding rare and metabolic bone diseases at the basic level and translating these observations to the bedside. She identified and characterized the molecular basis of several disorders of mineral metabolism, including pseudohypoparathyroidism, progressive osseous heteroplasia, and tumor-induced osteomalacia. Her work has led to significant new treatments for X-linked hypophosphatemia, tumor-induced osteomalacia, and osteogenesis imperfecta.

She is an internationally recognized expert in osteoporosis and rare bone diseases and has contributed to many clinical guidelines for caring for patients with these disorders.

Dr. Jan de Beur is a member of several professional and honorific societies, including the Endocrine Society, the American Society of Bone and Mineral Research (ASBMR), and the Association of Osteobiology. She is a Past President of the American Society of Bone and Mineral Research and a Fellow of the ASBMR. Dr. Jan de Beur received the Shirley Hohl and Boy Frame Award from the American Society of Bone and Mineral Research.

Susanna Keller, MDSusanna Keller MD, is a basic research scientist whose areas of research interest include insulin signaling, regulation of metabolism/energy homeostasis, insulin-regulated membrane trafficking, and nutrigenomics. Dr. Keller was Co-PI for a UVA Engineering in Medicine Seed Award (“Nutrigenomics for Precision Health”), and she was an essential Co-Investigator on several grants (NIH R01 HL135018; NIH R01 DK118287; NIH R01 HL155165; NIH R01 HL128189; American Diabetes Association 1-19-IBS-105 Research Award; and Commonwealth Health Research Board award CHRB 207-06-22). Dr. Keller continued to serve as a UVA Animal Care and Use Committee member and was a valuable contributor to several SOM educational efforts.

Jennifer Kirby MDJennifer Kirby MD PhD, is a general endocrinologist interested in diabetes and obesity. In addition to staffing inpatient consults and seeing outpatients at our main endocrinology clinic, Dr. Kirby served the division (and Virginians) by staffing clinics in Fishersville. Dr. Kirby is our division’s Associate Chief for Clinical Affairs, the Medical Lead for our Endocrinology and Metabolism clinic, the Director of our Cardiovascular Diabetes Consult Service, and the Co-Medical Lead for Inpatient Glycemic Management. These activities and awards highlight Dr. Kirby’s clinical and leadership skills and sempiternal devotion to her patients and colleagues. Dr. Kirby is also an outstanding educator and mentor.

Zhenqi Liu MDZhenqi Liu, MD, is a clinician-investigator whose primary interests relate to regulating insulin action in the vasculature and the cardiovascular complications of diabetes. Dr. Liu’s 2023 research was supported by R01 DK125330 (PI Liu – “Effects of Exercise and GLP-1R Agonism on Muscle Microvascular Perfusion and Insulin Action”), R01 DK124344 (Co-PI Liu – “Role of Microvascular Insulin Resistance and Cardiorespiratory Fitness in Diabetes”) and a LaunchPad grant (Targeting endothelial AMPK and Nrf2 to attenuate microvascular insulin resistance and improve muscle function in diabetes). Dr. Liu was an essential Co-Investigator for four additional R01s (HL142250, HL130296, DK116768, HL129510) and served as program director of the NIH training grant in neuroendocrinology and metabolism (2T32DK007646) and the primary mentor for a K23 award (DK131327). In 2023, Dr. Liu published seven peer-reviewed manuscripts; he served on the Endocrine Society and American Diabetes Association committees (described elsewhere in this newsletter), as an Associate Editor for the Journal of the Endocrine Society, and as a Chair-elect of the Nutrition Science and Metabolism interest group of the American Diabetes Association. Clinically, Dr. Liu is a general endocrinologist interested in diabetes and thyroid diseases.

Katie Love MDKaitlin Love, MD, is a clinical researcher investigating micro- and macrovascular insulin resistance in type 1 diabetes and response to GLP-1-receptor agonism and exercise treatment. She was awarded an NIH K23 career-development grant (project entitled “Therapeutic Strategies for Microvascular Dysfunction in Type 1 Diabetes”). She is also a Co-Investigator for NIH grants R01 DK124344 and R01 DK129510. In 2023, Dr. Love published two peer-reviewed manuscripts, including one in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism (JCEM), and gave an invited talk to the American Diabetes Association’s Diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease Interest Group. She was selected as an Early Stage Investigator Reviewer and served on an NIH study section. She received the Department of Medicine’s Excellence in Research Award. Clinically, Dr. Love is a general endocrinologist interested in diabetes and obesity.

Ralf Nass, MDRalf Nass, MD, is a general endocrinologist who has contributed exceedingly valuable to the division’s clinical mission, including our regional outreach. In addition to seeing patients in our main endocrinology clinic, he served the division (and Virginians) by staffing clinics in Culpeper. He also contributed significantly to our Cardiovascular Diabetes Consult Service consult efforts. Dr. Nass has also been an exceptional divisional citizen, routinely volunteering to cover unanticipated clinical needs. In 2022, Dr. Nass performed research in partnership with the Center for Diabetes Technology; he published two research manuscripts and a chapter for Yen and Jaffe’s Reproductive Endocrinology (widely considered the premier reproductive endocrinology textbook).

Helmy Siragy, MDHelmy Siragy, MD, is a clinician-scientist whose primary interests relate to the endocrine/paracrine control of blood pressure and renal function. In 2023, he spoke at the European Society of Hypertension in Athens, Greece, the University of Budapest, Budapest, Hungary; and the Egyptian Association of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Atherosclerosis, Alexandria,
Egypt. In January 2024, the University of Virginia School of Medicine awarded the renewal of his en-dowed Harrison Chair of Excellence in Medical Education for the next five years. Dr. Siragy is a reviewer for the National Institutes of Health, an Endocrine Society’s International Mentor for Young Physicians, and an Editorial Board of the Nature Research Group member. Additionally, he is a guest editor for Scientific Reports (Nature publication) on the Cardio-renal axis and guest editor for the International Journal of Molecular Sciences on the Renin-Angiotensin System in Health and Disease. In collaboration with Michigan University and Harvard Medical School, his research team studies novel biomarkers for diagnosing primary aldosterone.

Richard Santen MD UVARichard Santen, MD, Emeritus Professor of Medicine, is organizing a program to enlistUVA Endocrinology retired endocrinologists to care for patients with diabetes mellitus in rural, underserved areas via telemedicine. The program involves the US’s 1400 Federally Qualified Health Centers, which receive $5.7 billion in federal support ( figure below). Over the past six years, he has been caring for patients at the Tri-Area Clinics in Laurel Fork and Floyd, Virginia, and has established a template that facilitates the process. The level of glucose control in the patients seen has improved substantially. Patients are returned to the care of their primary care physicians when they are well-versed in self-management, usually after less than six months. The plan is to enlist 20 retired endocrinologists nationally to participate in the program. A navigator has been identified to assist in the startup process. The theme of the project is “ practicing medicine without the hassles.” Details of the program are available on the website and can be accessed via this URL:

Dr. Meaghan Strumpf UVAMeaghan Stumpf, MD, is a general endocrinologist specializing in diabetes and transplant endocrinology. Dr. Stumpf is the director of our Transplant Endocrinology Program, which treats endocrine pathologies in recipients of solid organ transplants. She also uses diabetes technologies such as insulin pumps and continuous glucose monitors. She enjoys a strong partnership with UVA’s Charles O. Strickler Transplant Center and aims to continue growing endocrine services for this patient population. In 2023, Dr. Stumpf was honored with a Patient Experience Award for the fourth year. Dr. Stumpf is Communications Director for the American Diabetes Association (ADA) interest group on Immunology and Transplantation, and she is a member of several American Society of Transplantation (AST)’s community of practice work groups focused on pancreas and islet transplantation, as well as the Obesity in Kidney Transplant work group. Dr. Stumpf also serves as a preceptor for the Endocrinology fellows’ clinic and attends the general endocrinology inpatient service.

Mary Lee Vance MDMary Lee Vance, MD, is a medical neuroendocrinologist who forms the backbone of our multidisciplinary pituitary program. She is a world-renowned pituitary disease expert routinely included in America’s Top/Best Doctors lists. Dr. Vance is a former President of the Pituitary Society, and in 2019, she received a Pituitary Society Lifetime Achievement Award. Dr. Vance continues collaborating with pituitary neurosurgeons to analyze and report clinical outcomes of various treatments in patients with pituitary disorders.

Clinical Updates

The division continues to recruit both faculty and advanced practice providers.

In September 2023, Dr. Sarah Chhabra joined our division as an Assistant Professor of Medicine. She is a full-time general endocrinologist who is seeing patients in the Specialty Care Clinic, Fishersville. She completed her medicine residency training at Mount Sinai Medical Center and Endocrinology fellowship training at the University of Massachusetts Memorial Medical Center. We are thrilled to be able to provide full-time endocrine care for patients in the Shenandoah Valley. Please check out her faculty profile elsewhere in the newsletter.

In February 2024, the inpatient APP diabetes team will be joined by Alex Bond, NP. He completed his AGACNP at the University of Virginia in 2022. In the last year, he has been completing a fellowship in hospitalist medicine. Before his NP training, Alex spent several years as a critical care nurse in our TCV-ICU. We are excited to continue to grow our team to provide excellent care to patients with diabetes in the hospital.

Once again, several faculty members were honored with Patient Experience Awards in 2023, including Drs:

Sue Brown, MD
Alan Dalkin, MD
Jennifer Kirby, MD
Meaghan Strumph, MD
Margaret Crook, MD
Heather Ferris, MD
Zhenqi Liu, MD
Mary Lee Vance, MD

In January 2024, Drs. Meg Crook and Christine Eagleson took over as co-Medical Leads for the division’s main clinic at Fontaine. Through their leadership, the clinic will shift its structure to focus on subspecialty areas with clinical excellence, including bone health and diabetes technology. Dr. Crook will focus on day-to-day operations, while Dr. Eagleson will oversee referrals. Both bring significant clinical and leadership experience to their roles, and we know the clinic will flourish under their care.

Educational Updates


2023 UVA Endocrinology FELLOWS

We graduated three outstanding fellows in 2023 From left: Dr. Woderyelesh Kassa, who is now practicing at Wellstar Endocrinology in Georgia; Dr. Lado Bakhutashvili who practices at Jefferson Health (associated with Sidney Kimmel Medical College), and Dr. Nawar Suleman who practices at MedStar Health in Maryland.


UVA 2023 Endocrinology Fellows

From left: Dr. Katherine Mustafa attended medical school at DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine and her IM residency at Virginia Tech Carilion; Dr. Angela Vuong attended medical school at East Carolina University and her IM residency at Wake Forest University; Dr. Maria Sanchez Valenzuela attended medical school at Universidad ICESI Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud Colombia and IM residency at St. Barnabas Hospital; Dr. Rosalind Basil attended medical school at St. John’s Medical College and IM residency at Morehouse; Dr. Lisette Rodriguez attended medical school at Instituto Tecnologico de Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic) and her IM residency at Florida State University; Dr. Nicolas Reyes attended medical school at Florida International University and IM residency at HCA Healthcare/USF Morsani College of Medicine.

UVA 2023 Endocrinology Fellows















Angela Vuong MD, served as an instructor for the 2nd year medical school endocrinology/reproduction course in November of this year. She led an excellent session on transgender medicine and hormonal therapy in collaboration with Dr. Christine Eagleson.

Katherine Mustafa DO, submitted a case report regarding a patient with a rare dopamine-secreting skull base paraganglioma in the setting of an SDHB mutation to AACE case reports, which is currently in review.

Lisette Rodriguez MD, was accepted into the ExCEL (Excellence in Clinical Endocrinology Leadership) Program of the Endocrine Society. She had an oral presentation at the American Thyroid Association annual meeting in September 2023.

Faculty Grants

UVA Endocrinology

Lab Updates

UVA Heather Ferris Lab

Two PhD students in the Ferris Lab graduated this past year through the Neuroscience Graduate Program: Thaddeus Weigel (in the green tie) and Lisa Post. Their first-author papers are listed below. Dr. Weigel is now a post-doc in Dr. Coutinho-Budd’s lab here at the University of Virginia. Dr. Lisa Post is an Assistant Professor and Director of Clinical Academics and Research in the US Army Graduate Program in Anesthesia Nursing. (Pictured: Ferris lab members: Mohsen Hosseini-Barkooie, Heather Ferris, Josh Milstein, Yasir Mahboba, Aria Kamal, Thadeus, An Lo, and Kayal Sankar-Sabari in front)

Admin Team Updates

The Admin Team enjoyed spending several events together recently. They collaborated on a photo shoot and created a fabulous Division calendar for 2024!

The team held a Halloween costume contest and trick-or-treating for the littles, which was a huge hit. It went so well that it will become an annual tradition.

The holiday season was filled with laughter and sweet goodies. The Admin Team had a cookie exchange dressed in festive attire. A holiday party at Morven Farm was especially lovely; having the whole team together was wonderful.



Endocrinology UVA

From left front: Javanov Barksdale, Jane Blum, Martha Burner
From left back: Amanda Powell, Heather Franklin, Christina Hamill, Jessica Profitt, Ruth Aldridge

UVA Endocrinology

From left: Javanov Barksdale, Heather Franklin, Tracy Mullins, Jessica Profitt, Jane Blum, Christopher McCartney, Christina Hamill, Ruth Aldridge, Martha Burner, Anne Wolf, Danielle Richardson

UVA Endocrinology

From left: Jessica Profitt, Christopher McCartney, Amy McCartney, Jane Blum, Christina Hamill, Suzanne Jan de Blum, Heather Ferris, Amanda Powell


  • Post LA, Kulas JA, Milstein JL, Sebastian SVL, Hosseini-Barkooie S, Stevenson ME, Ferris HA. “Inceptor as a Regulator of Brain
    Insulin Sensitivity.” Scientific Reports. 2023 DOI: 10.1038/s41598-023-36248-4.
  • Weigel TK, Guo CL, Guler AD, Ferris HA. “Altered circadian behavior and light sensing in mouse models of Alzheimer’s disease.”
    Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience. 2023. DOI: 10.3389/fnagi.2023.1218193.
  • “Intensive, telemedicine-based, self-management program for rural, underserved patients with diabetes mellitus: Re-entry of retired
    endocrinologists into practice.” Santen R J, Nass R, Cunningham C, Horton C, Yue W Journal of Telemedicine & Telecare. 29(2):153-
    161, 2023 Feb
  • “Meal Replacement in Conjunction with an Integrated, Technology-Driven Strategy for Treatment of Patients with Diabetes in Rural,
    Underserved Areas: A Pilot Study” Richard J Santen, Cindy Cunningham, Carla Horton, Ralf Ness and Wei Yue. Trends Telemed
    E-Health 4(1):1-8, 2023
  • “Need for navigators for care of patients with diabetes in rural, underserved areas” Richard J Santen, Trends Telemed E-Health
    3(3) 1-3, 2022
  • “Back to work: a solution to the shortfall in diabetes care in the USA” Richard J Santen, Health and Medicine, Research
  • “Challenges to care of patients with diabetes in rural, underserved areas” Richard J Santen, Open Access Government October 5, 2023
  • “Re-booting’ after retirement: novel approach using telemedicine to solve the work – force gap in diabetes management”
    Richard J Santen, Maturitas 133:68-69, 2023
  • “Short-term Outcomes of Hypertensive Crises in Patients with Orthostatic Hypotension.” Elzanaty AM, Saeyeldin A, Royfman R, Maraey
    A, Khalil M, Aboul-Nour H, Elsheikh E, Meenakshisundaram C, Siragy HM, Grubb B. Curr Probl Cardiol. 2023 Feb;48(2):101455.
  • “Plasma corticosteroid-binding globulin levels in cirrhosis.” Wentworth BJ, Schliep M, Siragy HM, Henry ZH. Liver Int. 2023
    Mar;43(3):742-743. Decoding Angiotensin Receptors: TOMAHAQ-Based Detection and Quantification of Angiotensin Type-1 and
  • “Receptors.” Cosarderelioglu C, Kreimer S, Plaza-Rodriguez AI, Iglesias PA, Talbot CC Jr, Siragy HM, Carey RM, Ubaida-Mohien
    C, O’Rourke B, Ferrucci L, Bennett DA, Walston J, Abadir P. J Am Heart Assoc. 2023 Sep
  • “Relative adrenal insufficiency in the non-critically ill patient with cirrhosis: A systematic review and meta-analysis.” Wentworth BJ,
    Schliep M, Novicoff W, Siragy HM, Geng CX, Henry ZH. Liver Int. 2023 Mar;43(3):660-672.
  • “Basal cortisol levels do not predict adrenal responsiveness in acute decompensated cirrhosis.” Wentworth BJ, Schliep M, Novicoff WM,
    Henry ZH, Siragy HM. Eur J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2024 Feb 1;36(2):238-244.

Full Issue of February 2024 Medicine Matters

Filed Under: Basic Research, Clinical Research, Education, In the Know, News and Notes, Notable Achievements, Publications, Research, Top News

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