The Chester Pierce Research Society (CPRS) is a quarterly speaker series named in honor of the late Professor Emeritus in Psychiatry Chester Pierce, MD, the first African-American physician-scientist and full professor at Mass General. CPRS exposes the Mass General and external community to novel basic science, clinical, translational, health services and disparities research by our talented UiM physicians and scientists.

Upcoming Speaker Series

April 2, 2024, 12pm –1pm

Single cell imaging of the beating heart


Aaron Aguirre, MD, PhD 
Cardiologist and Critical Care Physician 
Assistant Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School 

Aaron Aguirre is an attending cardiologist and critical care physician at the Massachusetts General Hospital and an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He received his medical degree from Harvard Medical School and his doctoral degree in electrical and biomedical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He trained in internal medicine, cardiology, and critical care at the Brigham and Women's Hospital.  

Dr. Aguirre's research has focused on the development of high-resolution optical imaging methods and catheter device technologies for a variety of clinical applications. Most recently, his laboratory has developed innovative molecular imaging and microscopy techniques to investigate the biology of myocardial infarction (heart attack), heart failure, and circulatory shock in animal models. In addition, the laboratory studies acute decompensated heart failure and shock in patients using machine learning applied to multidimensional data sources from the cardiac intensive care units at the MGH. 

Dr.  Aguirre's research laboratory is located at the Wellman Center for Photomedicine and the Center for Systems Biology at MGH and is closely affiliated with the MGH Cardiovascular Research Center. Dr. Aguirre is also a clinical affiliate of the MGH Healthcare Transformation Lab, where he leads projects involving the development of new digital health and medical device technologies for use in the intensive care unit. 

Previous Speaker Series

June 21, 2023

Digital Innovation and Quality Improvement in Resource-Limited Settings: Wireless Monitoring After Cesarean Delivery in Uganda


Adeline Boatin, MD, MPH
Attending at Massachusetts General Hospital, MGH
Assistant Professor in Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Biology, HMS
Co-Director of Global Health, Department OB/GYN, MGH

Adeline Boatin is an Assistant Professor in Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Biology at Harvard Medical School (HMS) and an Attending at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), Boston, USA. She received her undergraduate education at Harvard University, medical degree at Columbia University, College of Physicians and Surgeons and an MPH with a focus on international health at the Harvard T. Chan School of Public Health. She was trained in Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Harvard Integrated Obstetrics and Gynecology Residency Program. She is a researcher, clinician, and educator. Through her research, she aims to reduce global reproductive health inequities and has a focus on the use of digital technology to the improve surgical care, ranging from decision-making for surgery to post-operative recovery. Her current research portfolio explores wireless monitoring technology to overcome human resource limitations in post-operative care. She also leads a multi-site and multi-country study examining caesarean delivery use in sub-Saharan Africa. Dr. Boatin is a Ghanaian native, born in Zambia, and has lived, studied, and worked in Zambia, Ghana, Uganda, the United Kingdom and the United States.

January 25, 2023

Leveraging implementation science & community-based participatory research to bridge the science-practice gap among diverse populations

Luana MarquesLuana Marques, PhD
Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School School
Clinical Psychologist, Massachusetts General Hospital Phyllis and Jerome Lyle Rappaport MGH Research Scholar 2020-2025
Director, Community Psychiatry PRIDE

Dr. Marques is the Director of Community Psychiatry Program for Research in Implementation and Dissemination of Evidence-Based treatments (PRIDE) at Massachusetts General Hospital. She is also an Associate Professor in Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Marques completed her PhD in Clinical Psychology at the State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo and her clinical internship in the Cognitive Behavioral track (CBT) at Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard medical School in 2007.

Dr. Marques’ major clinical and research interests include the implementation and dissemination of evidence-based treatments in diverse, low-income settings. Specifically, she is interested in reducing mental health disparities for individuals in communities across Massachusetts by bridging the gap between scientific innovation and real-world clinical practice.

October 12, 2022

Bispecific T-cell Engagers for Ovarian Cancer

Oladapo O. YekuOladapo O. Yeku, MD, PhD, FACP
Assistant Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Assistant Clinical Attending, Massachusetts General Hospital
Department of Medicine, Cancer Center

Dr. Oladapo Yeku is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and a Clinical Assistant in Medicine at the Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Yeku completed his Medical Oncology fellowship training at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC). During his fellowship training, Dr. Yeku developed broad expertise in managing a broad variety of gynecologic malignancies, including rare tumors such as clear cell and sarcomas. He is a fellow of the American College of Physicians. Dr. Yeku has a Ph.D. in molecular and cellular pharmacology and has received postdoctoral training in immunotherapy and adoptive cellular therapy. While at MSKCC, he conducted preclinical, translational, and clinical research on Chimeric Antigen Receptor T-cells for ovarian cancer. His training and expertise include standard systemic treatment options, immunotherapy, targeted therapy, and clinical trials. As a member of The Henri and Belinda Termeer Center for Targeted Therapies and the Cellular Therapy Group, Dr. Yeku is actively involved as a Principal Investigator in early phase drug development and adoptive cellular therapy clinical trials. Dr. Yeku is an associate member of the Vincent Center for Reproductive Biology. His laboratory studies the immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment in Gynecologic Cancers and develops immunotherapeutic approaches to overcome these obstacles. 

September 21, 2022

CPRS Presentation title: Feasibility and Acceptability of a Digitally Enabled Community Health Worker Intervention for Patients with Heart Failure: A Single Arm Pilot Study

Jocelyn Carter

Jocelyn Carter, MD MPH
DGIM Physician-Scientist and Internal Medicine Hospitalist/ Albright Medicine
MGH Community CAre Transitions (C-CAT) Initiative, Director
Director of Research Equity, Division of General Internal Medicine
Manager of Trainee Affairs, Center for Diversity and Inclusion
MGH Executive Committee on Research, Elected Representative
Department of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital
Assistant Professor of Medicine, HMS

Jocelyn Carter, MD, MPH is an MGH Division of General Internal Medicine (DGIM) Physician-Scientist and Internal Medicine Hospitalist, Albright Medicine. As the Director of the MGH Community Care Transitions (C-CAT) Initiative and Director of Research Equity within DGIM, Dr. Carter is passionate about transformational change via scalable, evidence-based initiatives and leveraging technology to drive the redesign of patient-centered care. As an awardee of a 2017 Mass General Brigham Healthcare Center for Population Health Delivery System Innovation Implementation Grant and the 2017 Healthcare Transformation Lab Innovation Grant , Dr. Carter and her team study the impact of 30-day patient-community health worker pairings at the time of hospital discharge on health care outcomes in high-risk populations. Primary outcomes of this work include rates of readmission, outpatient appointment adherence, and patient perspectives on hospital and health care transitions. Dr. Carter was awarded a five-year, K23 award from the National Institutes of Health National Heart, Lung, Blood Institute allowing for additional research on the preliminary effectiveness of a digitally enabled community health workers intervention in reducing readmissions among heart failure patients. Dr. Carter is the Director of Research Equity for the Division of General Internal Medicine. She is also serves as an elected representative to the MGH Executive Committee on Research. As Manager of Trainee Affairs for the MGH Center for Diversity and Inclusion, Dr. Carter is dedicated to contributing to the advancement of UIM residents, fellows and faculty. She enjoys serving on an MGH Department of Medicine Internship Selection Committee and as a Professional Coach for residents and fellows within the Department of Medicine. Dr. Carter is a member of the MGH Physicians Organization Clinical Practice and Contracting Committee, the Contemporary Trials Editorial Board, the Society of General Internal Medicine Evidence-Based Medicine Sub-Committee (co-chair) and the ABIM’s American Board of Preventive Medicine Public Health Committee.

July 6, 2022

Functional Neurological Disorder: Research Insights Bridging Physical & Mental Health

David L. Perez, MD, MMScDavid L. Perez, MD, MMSc
Departments of Neurology and Psychiatry
Director, Functional Neurological Disorder Unit & Research Group 
Associate Professor in Neurology, Harvard Medical School

Dr. Perez, MD, MMSc is a neurologist, psychiatrist and neuroscientist at the Massachusetts General Hospital. He is the founding director of the Functional Neurological Disorder Unit and FND Research Program.  Dr. Perez majored in Neuroscience and Behavior and graduated cum laude from Columbia University. He subsequently graduated from New York University School of Medicine as a member of the Alpha Omega Alpha society. Dr. Perez completed the Partners Neurology Residency program in 2011 and the Harvard Longwood Psychiatry Residency Training Program in 2014. He also obtained a Master of Science in Clinical and Translational Investigation from Harvard Medical School in 2016. As a faculty member in the Departments of Neurology and Psychiatry at MGH, Dr. Perez has developed a cutting-edge interdisciplinary clinical program for the diagnostic evaluation and management of patients with Functional Neurological Disorder. In parallel, he has established a research program investigating biomarkers of symptom severity, disease-risk and prognosis in Functional Neurological Disorder. For his efforts, Dr. Perez has been recognized as a fellow of the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) and the American Neuropsychiatric Association (ANPA). Dr. Perez has published over 100 peer reviewed articles (the majority in Functional Neurological Disorder) and recently co-edited a Springer textbook on Functional Movement Disorder. Dr. Perez is a 2016 recipient of the CDI/ECOR Physician Scientist Development Award.

April 14, 2022

Democratizing Cancer Diagnostic and Profiling Tools Through Nanotechnologies

Cesar CastroCesar Castro, MD, MMSc
Director, Gynecologic Oncology Program, MGH Cancer Center
Director, Cancer Program, MGH Center for Systems Biology
Faculty Co-Director for Research, MGH Center for Diversity and Inclusion
Chair, MGB Phase I Cancer Clinical Trials
Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

Dr. Castro, MD, MMSc is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Director of the Gynecologic Oncology Program at the MGH Cancer Center. Dr. Castro is a translational oncologist with experience leveraging nanotechnology and molecular imaging for solid tumor detection and serial profiling. He also directs the Cancer Program within the MGH Center for Systems Biology. He serves on the steering committee for the National Cancer Institute Liquid Biopsy Consortium. Dr. Castro graduated from the University of California, Berkeley and received his medical degree from the UCSF School of Medicine where he also completed his Internal Medicine residency training. Dr. Castro completed an adult oncology fellowship from the Dana-Farber/Mass General Brigham Cancer Care program. During this period, he also received a MMSc from Harvard Medical School. Dr. Castro has received funding from the National Institutes of Health, Department of Defense, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and Ovarian Cancer Research Fund, among various other sources. He has also been the recipient of the CDI/ECOR Physician Scientist Development Award.

January 28, 2022

The Evolving Role of Neuroimaging in Alzheimer's Disease: From Symptoms to In Vivo Biology  

Julie PriceJulie Price, PhD
Director, PET Pharmacokinetic Modeling, Athinoula A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging Investigator, Department of Radiology
Professor of Radiology, Harvard Medical School
Faculty Co-Director for Research, MGH Center for Diversity and Inclusion

Julie Price, PhD is an Investigator and Professor in the Department of Radiology at Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School and Director of PET Pharmacokinetic Modeling at the Athinoula A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging. Her expertise is in PET imaging methodology for translational imaging of protein targets in aging, neurodegeneration, and neuropsychiatric disorders. Her primary PET research is focused on in vivo quantification of amyloid-beta and tau deposits in neurodegeneration. She completed physics (BS) and medical physics (MS) degrees at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, doctoral training (specializing in radiation health sciences) at Johns Hopkins University (PhD), and postdoctoral training at the NIH PET/Nuclear Medicine Department. She served as Chair of the NIH Clinical Neuroscience and Neurodegeneration study section (2013-2015) and on the Advisory Council to the Director of NIH Center for Scientific Review (2017-2021). She is a 2021 Fellow of the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging (SNMMI), 2021 SNMMI Brain Imaging Council Kuhl-Lassen awardee, and a recipient of the MGH Department of Radiology Thrall mentoring award.

October 22, 2021

Obesity in Pediatrics: Our Understanding and Consideration of Pharmacologic and Surgical Treatment Approaches

Fatima Cody StanfordFatima Cody Stanford, MD, MPH, MPA, MBA, FAAP, FACP, FAHA, FAMWA, FTOS
Obesity Medicine Physician for Adults, Adolescents, and Children, MGH Weight Center
Director of Equity, MGH Medicine – Endocrine Division
Director of Diversity, Nutrition Obesity Research Center at Harvard (NORCH)
CoreFaculty, MGH Mongan Institute of Health Policy
Leadership Team, MGH Midlife Women’s Health Center
Assistant Professor – Medicine & Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School

Dr. Stanford is an obesity medicine physician at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH)/Harvard Medical School (HMS). She completed her Obesity Medicine & Nutrition Fellowship at MGH/HMS. Dr. Stanford received her BS and MPH from Emory University as an MLK Scholar, her MD from the Medical College of Georgia School of Medicine as a Stoney Scholar, and her MPA from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government as a Zuckerman Fellow in the Harvard Center for Public Leadership. Dr. Stanford completed her internal medicine and pediatrics residency at the University of South Carolina School of Medicine/Palmetto Health where she served as chief resident. She has served as a health communications fellow at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and as a behavioral sciences intern at the American Cancer Society. Upon completion of her MPH, she received the Gold Congressional Award, the highest honor that Congress bestows upon America’s youth. Dr. Stanford has completed a medicine and media internship at the Discovery Channel. An American Medical Association (AMA) Foundation Leadership Award recipient in 2005, an AMA Paul Ambrose Award for national leadership among resident physicians in 2009, she was selected for the AMA Inspirational Physician Award in 2015. The American College of Physicians (ACP) selected her as the 2013 recipient of the Joseph E. Johnson Leadership Award and the Massachusetts ACP selected her for the Young Leadership Award in 2015. She is the 2017 recipient of the Harvard Medical School Amos Diversity Award and Massachusetts Medical Society Award for Women’s Health. In 2019, she was selected for the Massachusetts Medical Society Suffolk Community Clinician of the Year and Reducing Health Disparities award. In 2020, she was elected as the American Medical Association Chair of the Minority Affairs Section, and she was selected as one of the inaugural recipients of the MGH Anne Klibanski Visiting Scholar Award. She was selected for The Obesity Society Clinician of the Year in 2020. In 2021, she has been awarded the MMS Grant Rodkey Award for her dedication to medical students and the AMA Dr. Edmond and Rima Cabbabe Dedication to the Profession Award which recognizes a physician who demonstrates active and productive improvement to the profession of medicine through community service, advocacy, leadership, teaching, or philanthropy. She is the 2021 Recipient of the Emory Rollins School of Public Health Distinguished Alumni Award.

July 27, 2021

Clinical Translation of Genetic Predictors for Type 2 Diabetes

Jose Florez, MDJose Florez, MD
Department of Medicine, Diabetes Unit
Chief, Endocrine Division and Diabetes Unit
Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Institute Member, Broad Institute

Dr. Florez is the Chief of the Endocrine Division and the Diabetes Unit at the MGH, where he holds the John T. Potts Jr., MD Endowed Chair in Medicine. He is also Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, and an Institute Member at the Broad Institute. He and his group have contributed to the performance and analysis of high-throughput genomic studies in type 2 diabetes and related traits, in international consortia such as MAGIC, GENIE, DIAGRAM, T2D-GENES, AMP-T2D, SIGMA and RADIANT, where he plays management roles. He leads the genetics initiatives of the Diabetes Prevention Program and the GRADE clinical trial, where the effects of genetic variants on specific behavioral and pharmacological preventive interventions can be assessed. He is the Principal Investigator of the Study to Understand the Genetics of the Acute Response to Metformin and Glipizide in Humans (SUGAR-MGH), and also conducts other pharmacogenetic studies at MGH. He is an author on 200+ original publications and 50+ reviews/book chapters. In addition to his research and teaching duties, he is clinically active in the MGH Diabetes Center, the Endocrine inpatient consult service, and the MGH Down Syndrome Program. In 2007 he received an MGH Physician-Scientist Development Award (PSDA) and he is a recipient of the 2010 Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the highest honor bestowed by the United States government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. In 2019 he received the Father of the Year award from the American Diabetes Association.

2019 Lecture: Why Do So Many Black People Have Kidney Disease? Insights from Human Stem Cell-Derived Podocytes

Opeyemi Olabisi, MD, PhD
2019 Speaker Opeyemi Olabisi, MD, PhD

2019 speaker Opeyemi Olabisi, MD, PhD, is a physician in the Nephrology Division of the Mass General Department of Medicine and Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Olabisi graduated in 2001 from The City College of New York with a bachelor’s degree in Biology and received his MD, PhD degree in 2009 from Albert Einstein College of Medicine, where he studied the regulation of the NFAT transcription factor. He came to Mass General in 2009, completed a residency in internal medicine, and subsequently completed a fellowship in the combined Mass General-Brigham & Women's nephrology fellowship program. Dr. Olabisi recognizes that an effective approach to reducing the mortality associated with chronic kidney disease (CKD) is to reduce the rate of progression of CKD to end stage kidney disease (ESKD). This passion motivates his ongoing research of the mechanism by which mutations in ApoL1 gene accelerate progression of CKD to ESKD. Early in 2015, he joined the Faculty of Renal Division in Mass General Department of Medicine. In support of his work, Dr. Olabisi recently received the 2015 Harold Amos Medical Faculty Development Award from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

2017 Lecture: Overcoming Immunosuppression to Treat Malignant Brain Tumors

William T. Curry, Jr., MD
2017 Speaker William T. Curry, Jr., MD

On July 6, 2017, William T. Curry, Jr., MD delivered the CPRS lecture titled “Overcoming Immunosuppression to Treat Malignant Brain Tumors.” Dr. Curry conducts translational research in immunotherapy for malignant brain tumors. One current focus is on achieving representative ethnic diversity in cancer clinical trials and understanding ethnic variations in biological responses to therapies. Early in his career, he was awarded the 2006 Physician/Scientist Development Award, which helped support his translational research focus. Dr. Curry is the first African American full professor in Neurosurgery at Mass General. He is the director of Neurosurgical Oncology with a clinical practice that focuses on caring for patients with benign and malignant tumors of the brain and cranial base.