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Cardiovascular Research Laboratory
Harrison Department of Surgical Research
Y. Joseph Woo, M.D.

Lab Members

Dr. Joseph Woo   Y. Joseph Woo's, M.D. clinical practice involves all aspects of adult cardiothoracic surgery, including off-pump coronary artery bypass grafting (beating heart surgery) minimally invasive cardiac surgery, mitral valve repair, reconstruction of the aortic root, arch, and thoracoabdominal aorta for aneurysms and dissections, mechanical circulatory assistance, and heart and lung transplantation. Dr. Woo is the Director of the Minimally Invasive and Robotic Cardiac Surgery Program, and is the Associate Director of Thoracic Transplantation. His research interest is in the development of novel molecular and genetic approaches to treating myocardial ischemia and heart failure. In particular, Dr. Woo is interested in basic science research that has promise for translation into clinical therapies for heart failure. Clinical Office: 215-662-2956, Lab: 215-898-8074, Email:
Dr. Pavan Atluri   Dr. Pavan Atluri, M.D., is a graduate of the general surgery residency and cardiovascular fellowhip at PENN. He is currently Assistant Professor of Surgery at the University of Pennsylvania, and is the Director of the Mechanical Circulatory Support Program at Penn Presbyterian Hospital.   His research focus is in the areas of myocardial neovascularization and myocardial regeneration. Dr. Atluri is studying novel vasculogenic methods of enhancing perfusion to ischemic myocardium and myocardial regenerative schemes for cardiomyopathy. His research is supported by individually obtained funding from the NIH and the AATS.
Dr. John Frederick   John Frederick, M.D., is a cardiovascular fellow at PENN, where he completed a general surgery residency. His interests are in academic cardiothoracic and vascular surgery.
Dr. Raymond Fitzpatrick   J. Raymond Fitzpatrick III, M.D., is a cardiovascular fellow at PENN, where he completed a general surgery residency. His research interests are in novel reparative and regenerative strategies in the treatment of heart failure. His clinical interests are in cardiothoracic surgery and he plans to pursue a career in academic cardiac surgery upon completion of his fellowship.
Dr. William Hiesinger   William Hiesinger, M.D., is currently a PGY4 in general surgery. His primary research focus is myocardial bioengineering and tissue mechanics. After completing his general surgery training, Will plans to pursue a career in academic cardiothoracic surgery.
Dr. John MacArthur  

John W. MacArthur, M.D., completed his undergraduate training at Fordham University and received his medical degree from Columbia University, College of Physicians and Surgeons. He is currently a second year surgical research fellow in the Y. Joseph Woo Cardiovascular Research Laboratory. His primary research interest involves mechanisms of angiogenesis after MI and investigating the biomechanical inefficiencies of post-infarction ventricular myoctes, work which is funded by the American Heart Association Post-Doctoral Fellowship Grant.  He plans on pursuing a career in academic cardiac surgery.

Dr. Jeffrey Cohen   Jeffrey E. Cohen, M.D., completed his undergraduate and medical school training at the University of Pennsylvania.  He has completed 3 clinical years of general surgery, and is currently a first year surgical research fellow in the laboratory of Dr. Joseph Woo.  His research is focused on cardiac tissue engineering and myocardial regeneration as a means of treating heart failure. His career interest is in cardiovascular surgery.
Alen Trubelja  

Alen Trubelja, BS, graduated from Columbia University in May 2011 with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and has been a member of the Woo Lab since July 2011, working as a Research Specialist. His main interest is myocardial biomechanics and he is investigating tissue engineering-based approaches to restoring myocardial elasticity following a myocardial infarction. He plans to pursue a career in academic medicine and research, continuing to investigate and develop methods to restore heart function in patients progressing to heart failure.

Alex Fairman  

Alex Fairman, BA, graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelors of Arts in Political Science with an additional concentration in History. As an undergraduate, Alex was a starting defender for the nationally-ranked Division I soccer team at Penn.  Currently, he is completing his studies as a Harrison Surgical Research Scholar, experimenting with small animal models of peripheral vascular disease and exploring the benefits of mechanical circulatory support devices in patients with heart failure.  Alex will be attending medical school in 2013, with an interest in academic surgery.

Jat Patel  

Jay Patel, BS, graduated from Rutgers University with a Bachelors of Science in Biomedical Engineering. He has been a technician in the Woo Lab since June 2012. His research interests include applications of cellular engineering and nanoparticle drug delivery systems for therapies in myocardial regeneration. He plans on pursuing graduate studies in bioengineering following his research experience in the lab.

Bryan Edwards  

Bryan Edwards, BS, is a Post-Baccalaureate Pre-Health student at the University of Pennsylvania and is currently working in the Woo Lab.  After earning a Bachelor of Engineering Degree from Vanderbilt University in 2010 he moved to Philadelphia to work at a software company.  He recently decided to pursue his passion for medicine, and plans to establish a career in academic surgery. His current research interest presides in the biomechanical analysis of ischemic myocardium.

Jessica Howard   Jessica L. Howard recently received her B.S. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and Biology and is currently in her first year as a research coordinator in cardiothoracic surgery. She is currently pursuing a two year position in research in Dr. Woo’s laboratory. Her clinical interests are in cardiothoracic surgery and she plans to attend medical school following completion of her research experience.
Dionee Beadle   Dionne Beadle is a surgical technician who assists in the intraoperative phase of Dr. Woo’s cases. She is especially valuable to our team as she has the most experience with minimally invasive approaches to cardiac surgery, including robotic cardiac surgery. She also coordinates the intraoperative phase of ongoing clinical trials.


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