At UPMC, we seek to attract and train the future leaders in craniofacial and pediatric plastic surgery, as well as craniofacial biology research. Our fellowship includes the in-depth study of disorders of the soft and hard tissues of the face and cranium, such as congenital anomalies, post-traumatic, and other acquired deformities. Fellows trained in craniofacial and pediatric plastic surgery at our institution will be able to manage any craniofacial or pediatric plastic surgery problem and have the training to pursue an academic surgical career of their choice.
While at least one clinical research project leading to presentation and publication is expected during the fellowship year, significant clinical, translational, basic and applied basic science research opportunities are available and highly encouraged. For those interested, research experience can be obtained in one of several nationally known laboratories.
The Plastic Surgery Adipose Stem Cell Research Laboratory is directed by Kacey G. Marra, PhD, Associate Professor of Plastic Surgery and Bioengineering and Faculty of McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine and J Peter Rubin, MD, Professor of Plastic Surgery, Chairman Department of Plastic Surgery. This laboratory conducts scientific investigation in multiple interdisciplinary areas. The scope of projects revolves around the two future avenues of tissue reconstruction: transplantation and tissue engineering. Modalities are investigated to manipulate the immune system in order to achieve transplantation of composite tissue allografts. Novel biomaterials are being designed for skin, bone, and nerve regeneration, with a strong focus on polymeric materials, both native and synthetic. This laboratory isolates preadipocytes from human adipose tissue, and is exploring applications of these adult stem cells in soft tissue reconstruction. Of recent interest is the differentiation of preadipocytes into adipocytes, neural progenitor cells, and osteoblasts for tissue engineering applications.
The Pediatric Craniofacial Biology Laboratory is directed by Greg Cooper PhD, Associate Professor of Plastic Surgery and Joseph E. Losee, MD, Professor of Plastic Surgery, Vice Chairman Department of Plastic Surgery. The Experimental Animal Surgery Laboratory and the Posvar Hall Animal Care Facility is directed by Mark P. Mooney, PhD, Professor in the Departments of Oral Medicine and Pathology, Anthropology, Plastic Surgery, and Orthodontics. Dr. Mooney and Dr. Cooper are craniofacial biologists who study craniofacial growth and development as well as wound healing following surgical manipulation and device implantation - using comparative animal models. Their interests include the etiopathogenesis of craniofacial anomalies. Ongoing projects in this laboratory involve the development of cytokine and gene therapies to rescue craniosynostotic sutures and prevent postoperative resynostosis in a congenital rabbit model of craniosynostosis; the use of guided tissue regeneration with growth factors and osteogenic cells to prevent postoperative fibrous nonunions in craniofacial surgery; and, the facilitation of osseous wound healing in critical sized craniofacial defects using tissue engineered bone scaffolds.
The Vascularized Composite Allotransplantation Laboratory is directed by Dr. Mario Solari, Associate Professor of Plastic Surgery.The VCA Laboratory engages in basic and translational research to advance the broader understanding of VCA immunobiology and to develop strategies that facilitate reduction of systemic immunosuppression, prevent acute and chronic rejection, promote allograft survival, and maximize functional outcome. The lab focuses on studies in small and large animal (mechanistic and pre-clinical) models of limb, face and abdominal wall allotransplantation related to basic immunologic mechanisms, drug and cell-based therapy, tolerance induction, nerve regeneration, and functional outcomes. The ultimate goal is translating new research findings into novel strategies that will improve the care and quality of life after clinical VCA such as hand and facial tissue allotransplantation. The laboratory is located within the Thomas E. Starzl Transplantation Institute. The research faculty has diverse backgrounds and expertise that facilitate the execution of high-level multidisciplinary science in collaboration with leading institutional, national and international centers of research, academia and industry partners with the support of funding from federal (NIH, DOD), private, industry or intramural entities.
If you have not done so already, please register with the San Francisco Fellowship Match for Craniofacial Surgery (http://www.sfmatch.org).
Applications are now being coordinated through the American Society of Craniofacial Surgeons common craniofacial fellowship application. (http://ascfs.org/fellowships.cgi).
We will still accept paper applications. Please include the following:
You may mail your completed Craniofacial Fellowship Application materials to:
Craniofacial Fellowship Coordinator
4401 Penn Avenue
Faculty Pavilion, 7th Floor, Suite 7104
Pittsburgh, PA 15224
If you have any questions or require additional information regarding the Fellowship or Match, please do not hesitate to contact us.