Dr. Michael Laposata is the Professor and Chair of the Department of Pathology at the University of Texas Medical Branch-Galveston and holder of the 1955 School of Medicine Teaching Profession Endowment. He received his M.D. and Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and completed a postdoctoral research fellowship and residency in Laboratory Medicine (Clinical Pathology) at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. He took his first faculty position at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine in Philadelphia in 1985, where he was an Assistant Professor and Director of the hospital’s coagulation laboratory. In 1989, he became Director of Clinical Laboratories at the Massachusetts General Hospital and was appointed to faculty in the Department of Pathology at Harvard Medical School, where he became a tenured full Professor of Pathology. In 2005 and 2006 during his time in Boston, he was named to the prestigious list of Best of Boston Doctors by Boston Magazine. Dr. Laposata joined Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in 2008 where he was the Edward and Nancy Fody Professor of Pathology, Professor of Medicine, and the Pathologist-in-Chief.
With more than 200 publications to his credit, Dr. Laposata’s basic research program has focused upon a fatty acid metabolite that produces organ damage in patients who abuse ethanol and since 1997, he has investigated the fatty acid alterations in cystic fibrosis patients. His clinical research addresses innovations in diagnostic coagulation and laboratory medicine consultation. The impact of all of his research, calculated by ResearchGate.com, is greater than 97 percent of the thousands of investigators registered on the website. He is the editor or author of six books.
Dr. Laposata is the recipient of 14 major teaching prizes at Harvard, the Massachusetts General Hospital, and the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. In a peer nominated survey performed by The Pathologist, an international journal reporting on the practice of pathology, the November 2015 issue identified Dr. Laposata as the most influential pathologist in the United States, and the third most influential pathologist in the world.
Heather Stevenson-Lerner is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pathology, Division of Surgical Pathology at the University of Texas Medical Branch. Prior to becoming faculty at UTMB, she completed a fellowship in the Transplant Pathology Division at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. Dr. Stevenson-Lerner leads the Liver Diseases Diagnostic Management Team at UTMB which is well attended by hepatologists, transplant coordinators, fellows, and residents. Her research interests include studying the role of the hepatic immune response in fibrosis and hepatocellular carcinoma development.
Chris Zahner is a third year resident in the Department of Pathology, at the University of Texas Medical Branch. Prior to medical school, he was a mechanical engineer for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) for the International Space Station (ISS) specializing in Environmental Control and Life Support (ECLS) systems, and was lead engineer for the Waste and Hygiene Compartment (WHC). Dr. Zahner plans to continue his career at UTMB in coagulation, laboratory informatics, and the diagnostic management team (DMT) upon graduation.