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Pediatric Surgery Research

Research Program Highlights Reproductive Endocrinology, Emergency Medical Services for Children, Necrotizing Enterocolitis

The Pediatric Surgery Research laboratory is located within the Price Institute of Surgical Research under the direction of Dr. Mary E. Fallat, Professor of Surgery and Division Chief of Pediatric Surgery. One emphasis in the laboratory is in the subject area of reproductive endocrinology. A research focus has been to interpret the relationship of high Müllerian Inhibiting Substance (MIS) levels linked to infertility in men and women. Investigation centers on the roles of Müllerian Inhibiting Substance (MIS) and androgens in (1) the development of polycystic ovary syndrome in women and (2) cryptorchidism (failure of the testes to descend into the scrotum) in a luteinizing hormone receptor knockout (LHRKO) mutant mice model. The Pediatric Surgery Research Laboratory is funded by a Norton HealthCare, Inc. grant to Dr. Fallat. The research team includes a full-time investigator, Dr. Yong Siow, who is working to answer the question of whether MIS plays a role in polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).

Dr. Fallat has been funded by HRSA on behalf of the Kentucky Board of Emergency Medical Services to support the development of children's services within the EMS system and to support trauma system development within Kentucky. Dr. Fallat is the Chief of Surgery at Norton Children'’s Hospital in Louisville, Kentucky, a 225-bed free-standing regional pediatric referral center. She has continuously been involved in the Emergency Medical Services for Children (EMSC) program in the State of Kentucky since 1992, and is the Program Director for the EMSC Partnership Grant to Kentucky.

Dr. Cynthia Downard is Assistant Professor of Surgery in the Division of Pediatric Surgery. Dr. Downard is studying the microcirculatory changes that occur in a murine model of necrotizing enterocolitis. Her collaborators are Drs. Neal Garrison and Paul Matheson. Her goal is to implement new therapies for this devastating disease. Dr. Downard has been funded by the University of Louisville School of Medicine and the American Pediatric Surgical Association Foundation.

Faculty: Fallat, Bond, Foley, Downard, Wiesenauer
Lab Investigators: Siow
Division Director: Mary E. Fallat, M.D.