Postdoctoral Fellowship
University of California San Diego

How will your research ultimately be used to change the lives of people with arthritis?
My research is focused on understanding the intracellular targets that regulate cytokine gene expression in rheumatoid arthritis. This information is likely to improve the understanding of disease etiology and can potentially lead to new therapeutic interventions.

Do you have a personal connection with arthritis that makes the disease more than a statistic to you?
As a clinical rheumatologist, I have been visiting patients with arthritis and other rheumatic diseases for several years, so most of these diseases have faces and names to me. Besides, I am always surprised that a lot of people around me start explaining their joint problems as soon as they know that I am rheumatologist. That makes me realize that these diseases are really very prevalent.

What role do you feel the Arthritis Foundation plays in the progress of arthritis research?
The AF plays a crucial role in raising money to support arthritis related research. I also think AF is very supportive of new investigators that really want to focus on rheumatologist research in the future.

What mysteries surrounding arthritis interest you most?
How all of the diseases associated with arthritis present with the same symptoms, such as pain and inflammation, yet the pathogenesis is different in each of them.  So, we should be able to find a specific treatment for each one.

When you’re not in the lab or clinic, where can you most often be found? 
I enjoy spending time with my husband and my eight and four year old kids. We love exploring San Diego, and enjoying its weather.

What hobby do you most enjoy?
Horseback riding

What non-medical book have you enjoyed lately?
The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

What is your favorite style of music and band or musician?
I love country music. I particularly like Brad Paisley

If you weren’t a medical researcher, what would you be doing now?
I would be working as a clinical rheumatologist, but honestly, I can not imagine myself not being a medical researcher.

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