Meet the Teen-LABS Primary Investigators and Research Team.
Thomas Inge, MD, PhD Surgeon-in-Chief; Chair, Department of Surgery; Lydia J. Fredrickson Board Designated Professorship in Pediatric Surgery, Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago Professor of Surgery (Pediatric Surgery), Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
Michael Helmrath, MD, MS Director of Surgical Research Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center
Stavra Xanthakos, MD, MS Director, Steatohepatitis Center Medical Director, Surgical Weight Loss Program for Teens Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center
Heidi Kalkwarf, PhD Scientific Director, Bionutrition & Body Composition Core Laboratory, CCTST Associate Director, Digestive Health Center Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center
Todd Jenkins, PhD Co-director, Data Coordinating Center Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center
Changchun Xie, PhD Co-director, Data Coordinating Center University of Cincinnati
Stephanie Sisley, MD Medical Director of the Center for Genetic Disorders of Obesity and Medical Director of the Adolescent Bariatric Surgery Program, Texas Children's Hospital Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine
Mike Chen, MD Director, Division of Pediatric Surgery Children's of Alabama
Marc Michalsky, MD Surgical director, Center for Healthy Weight and Nutrition Nationwide Children’s Hospital
Anita Courcoulas, MD Chief, Section of Minimally Invasive Bariatric and General Surgery University of Pittsburgh Physicians
Mary Brandt, MD Pediatric Surgeon, Children’s Hospital New Orleans
Mac Harmon, MD, PhD Chief, Division of Pediatric Surgery Women and Children's Hospital of Buffalo
John Gunstad, PhD Director of the Applied Psychology Center Kent State University
James Mitchell, MD Research Scientist Sanford Research
John Dixon, MBBS, PhD Monash University Swinburne University
Jenn Black, MSSA is the Central Study Coordinator for the Teen-LABS Study based at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. She works with Drs. Inge, Jenkins and Xie on all aspects of the Teen-LABS Study and oversees the sites conducting the study. She also works with the Teen-LABS Publications and Presentations Committee, the Ancillary Studies Subcommittee, and the Adjudication Committee.
Jennifer Knox, BA is the Deputy Central Study Coordinator for the Teen-LASB Study and a research coordinator at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center who works with Dr. Michael Helmrath and the bariatric surgery team. She is also responsible for cohort maintenance and retention of Teen-LABS participants at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and works with Dr. Mike Chen.
Naila Merchant is a research coordinator for Teen-LABS at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. She works with Dr. Michael Helmrath and Jennifer Knox and the bariatric surgery team.
Lynda Krol, CMA and Giovanna Febbraro, MSEd are the site coordinators for Teen-LABS at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. They work with Anita Courcoulas, MD, Chief of Minimally Invasive Bariatric and General Surgery.
Citrine Elatrash, MBBCh, CCRP is the site coordinator for the Teen-LABS study at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, TX. She works with Dr. Stephanie Sisley to facilitate research and collect necessary data to advance knowledge and improve quality of care.
Lauren Pavlechko is the site coordinator for the Teen-LABS study at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. Lauren works with Marc Michalsky, MD, on the Teen-LABS study.
Kathy Lancaster, BA is the manager of research operations and research coordinator at Sanford Research in Fargo, North Dakota.