Director, Sinai Center for Thrombosis
Associate Chief for Research,
Department of Medicine,
Sinai Hospital of Baltimore
Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
Adjunct Professor of Medicine,
Duke University School of Medicine
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As the director of the Center for Thrombosis Research at Sinai Hospital of Baltimore (SCTR), Paul A. Gurbel, M.D.’s research has sparked a much needed debate in the cardiology community surrounding the under-recognized role that platelets play in coronary thrombosis and the efficacy of conventional antiplatelet treatment. His translational research has influenced treatment guidelines and the design of prospective large scale clinical trials.
A major focus of his laboratory is new drug development, for which his Center has received NIH funding. Within the Center is a dedicated phase I facility, where first-in-human and early phase studies are conducted. His Center has worked closely with private industry to develop new antiplatelet agents, and has played a pivotal role in the development of two recently approved antiplatelet agents (prasugrel and ticagrelor) indicated for the treatment of ACS. Dr. Gurbel’s current research is focused on further understanding how genotype and various aspects of platelet function should be used to optimally identify the patient with high cardiovascular risk.
Over the past decade, numerous advances in the treatment of patients with coronary artery disease have been made that were influenced by the discoveries made by Dr. Gurbel and his research team. Dr. Gurbel instituted the field of personalized antiplatelet therapy in the era of dual antiplatelet therapy (DAPT) by demonstrating:
- The presence of antiplatelet response variability to clopidogrel.
- The role that clopidogrel and aspirin dose have on pharmacodynamics.
- The key link between high platelet reactivity to adenosine diphosphate and post-stenting ischemic risk in patients on DAPT.
- The key link between a threshold of platelet reactivity to ischemic event occurrence.
- The relation that gender, ethnicity and age have with platelet reactivity.
- The effect that genetic polymorphisms and drug-drug interactions have on antiplatelet pharmacodynamics and clinical outcomes in patients with cardiovascular disease.
- The relation between heightened platelet reactivity, hypercoagulability, inflammation, and clinical disease state acuity.
Dr. Gurbel earned his medical degree at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and completed an internship and residency in Internal Medicine at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, North Carolina. Dr. Gurbel then completed a fellowship in Pulmonary and Critical Care at Johns Hopkins University, followed by fellowships in Cardiovascular Disease and Interventional Cardiology, as well as a chief residency in Internal Medicine at Duke. He is board-certified in internal medicine, cardiovascular disease, and interventional cardiology by the American Board of Internal Medicine. In addition to prolific research, Dr. Gurbel remains one of the busiest cardiac interventionalist’s on the east coast. In 2011, Dr. Gurbel was recognized by the US News World Report, The Washington Post Magazine, Best Doctors, and other agencies as being one of the “best physicians” in America.
Dr. Gurbel serves on the editorial boards for several journals, including the Journal of the American College of Cardiology and the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine Cardiovascular Disease and on the Scientific Session Committee for Transcatheter Cardiovascular Therapeutics and the International Scientific Advisory Board, International Society of Thrombosis and Haemostasis. In addition to book chapters and monographs, he has authored nearly 300 articles in peer-reviewed journals, most recently including JAMA, Circulation, Journal of the American College of Cardiology, Diabetes, American Journal of Cardiology, American Heart Journal, Thrombosis and Haemostasis, Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis, Platelets, and Journal of Interventional Cardiology. In 2012 he authored 30 manuscripts in the peer-reviewed literature. In 2012, three peer reviewed papers developed by Dr. Gurbel and his team were named “Most Important Papers in Antiplatelet Therapy” by Circulation.