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Designing Solutions for Maternal and Infant Health

2016 Conference Speakers

Conception and Early Development

  • Christopher Contag, PhD


    Christopher Contag, PhD

    Stanford Medicine/Pediatrics/Radiology/Bioengineering/Microbiology & Immunology

    Dr. Contag, is a Professor in the Departments of Pediatrics, Radiology, Bioengineering and Microbiology & Immunology at Stanford University, and a member of the BioX Faculty for interdisciplinary sciences and the Immunology Faculty. He develops and uses noninvasive imaging tools that can simultaneously reveal the nuances of biological processes and provide an overall picture of health and disease. These tools are sensitive and image over a range of scales from micro- to macroscopic, and are well- suited for the (read more...)

  • Barry Behr

    Barry Behr, MD

    Stanford Medicine/Obstetrics & Gynecology/Reproductive Endocrinology & Infertility

    He is a nationally and internationally renowned clinical and scientific leader in the research and advances of human reproduction. As a world-renown scientist and lecturer, he is highly sought after to chair scientific programs and conferences, is the first non MD President of the Pacific Coast Reproductive Society and has been appointed as program chairman of several professional meetings. Dr. Behr is also the current President of the American Association for Bioanalysts for 2015-2016. He is the director of the IVF (read more...)

  • Renee A Reijo Pera, PhD

    Renee A Reijo Pera, PhD

    Montana State University/Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience/Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

    Dr Reijo Pera is the Vice President of Research and Economic Development and a Professor in the Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience and the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Montana State University. Prior to joining Montana State University, she was the George D Smith Professor of Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine and directed the Center for Reproductive and Stem Cell Biology in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, as well as the Stanford University Doctoral Graduate Program in (read more...)

  • Magdalena Zernicka-Goetz

    Magdalena Zernicka-Goetz, MSc, PhD

    University of Cambridge/Mammalian Development and Stem Cell Biology

    Magdalena was educated in Poland at the University of Warsaw and in the United Kingdom at the University of Oxford before becoming a group leader at the University of Cambridge in 1997. She is now Professor of Mammalian Development and Stem Cell Biology at the University of Cambridge. She studies the development of the mammalian embryo – mouse and human - from the time of fertilisation until gastrulation, when the body shape and pattern first emerges. Her group discovered the earliest known events that change (read more...)

Development to Term

  • Dr. Yasser El-Sayed


    Yasser El-Sayed, MD

    Stanford Medicine/Pediatrics & Surgery/Neonatology

    Dr. El-Sayed is Charles B. and Ann L. Johnson Professor and Director of the Division of Maternal-Fetal Medicine and Obstetrics. He is also the Co-Director of the Johnson Pregnancy and Newborn Service, Obstetrician-in-Chief Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital and Associate Dean Maternal and Child Health. As such he oversees the many dimensions of obstetrical services – research, clinical, educational and administrative - across the hospital and medical school. His academic focus has been on randomized controlled (read more...)

  • Gary Shaw, PhD

    Gary M. Shaw, PhD

    Stanford Medicine/Pediatrics/Neonatology

    Dr. Shaw is Professor & Associate Chair of Pediatrics, Stanford University, where he has conducted epidemiologic research for 25 years. He is Co-PI of March of Dimes Prematurity Research Center, PI of California Center Finding Causes and Preventives of Birth Defects, and a PI for UC Berkeley/Stanford Children’s Environmental Health Center. Research interests include epidemiology of birth defects and gene-environment approaches to perinatal outcomes. He has published around 350 scientific papers.

    (read more...)

  • Brice Gaudilliere

    Brice Gaudilliere, MD, PhD

    Stanford Medicine/Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain Medicine

    Deep Immune profiling of normal and preterm pregnancy:
    The advent of high dimensional flow cytometry has revolutionized our ability to study and visualize the human immune system. Our group combines high parameter mass cytometry (a.k.a Cytometry by Time of Flight Mass Spectrometry, CyTOF), with advanced bio-computational methods to study how the maternal immune system behaves in the context of normal pregnancy and identify immune mechanisms predictive of preterm delivery.

  • Virginia Winn

    Virginia Winn, MD

    Stanford Medicine/Obsetrics and Gynecology/Reproductive and Stem Cell Biology

    Academic Appointments

    Associate Professor - Med Center Line, Obstetrics & Gynecology - Reproductive Biology

    Member, Child Health Research Institute

  • Anne M. Lynch, MB, BCH, BAO, MSPH

    Anne M. Lynch, MB, BCH, BAO, MSPH

    University of Colorado School of Medicine/Division of Ophthalmic Epidemiology/Department of Ophthalmology

    Dr. Lynch is the Director of the Division of Ophthalmic Epidemiology, Department of Ophthalmology, University of Colorado School of Medicine. She is an Associate Professor of Ophthalmology, Obstetrics and Gynecology and Epidemiology. Her research involves using a multiplexed aptamer–based proteomic technology for protein biomarker discovery in Preterm Birth and Retinopathy of Prematurity.

Born too Soon

  • David Stevenson, MD, PhD


    David Stevenson, MD

    Stanford Medicine/Pediatrics

    Dr. David K. Stevenson serves as the Principal Investigator for the March of Dimes Research Center at Stanford University.  He is the Harold K. Faber Professor of Pediatrics and has held numerous leadership roles at Stanford University School of Medicine.  He is currently the Senior Associate Dean for Maternal & Child Health, the Director of the Charles B. and Ann L. Johnson Center for Pregnancy and Newborn Services, the Co-Director of the Stanford Child Health Research Institute, and the Leader of Spectrum (read more...)

  • Heidi Feldman, MD PhD

    Heidi Feldman, MD, PhD

    Stanford Medicine/Pediatrics/Development & Behavior

    Dr. Feldman is the Ballinger-Swindells Endowed Professor of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics at Stanford University School of Medicine and the Medical Director of the Mary L Johnson Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics Clinical Programs at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital. Her transdisciplinary research program has focused on the neurodevelopmental outcomes of children born preterm, integrating traditional and novel behavioral assessments with advanced neuroimaging studies. She is the author of a book (read more...)

  • Hugh O'Brodovich, MD, FRCP(C)

    Hugh O’Brodovich, MD, FRCP(C)

    Stanford Medicine/Pediatrics

    Dr. O’Brodovich assumed the positions of Chair of the Department of Pediatrics at Stanford University School of Medicine and the Adalyn Jay Physician in Chief at Lucile Packard Children's Hospital in January 2008. In 2010 he was appointed as the inaugural Director of the Stanford Child Health Research Institute. His current research involves population-based studies to discover the genetic influences on the development of Bronchopulmonary dysplasia and the long term outcomes of neonatal lung disease. He currently (read more...)

  • Karl Sylvester, MD

    Karl Sylvester, MD

    Stanford Medicine/Pediatrics/Pediatric Surgery

    Prior to joining the faculty and staff of Stanford University School of Medicine and Stanford Children’s Health, Dr. Sylvester completed his Pediatric Surgical training at the Yale New Haven Children’s Hospital, New Haven, Connecticut. Additional post-doctoral training included General Surgery residency at Pennsylvania Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and a post- doctoral translational research fellowship in fetal medicine and surgery at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

    In his clinical (read more...)

Advancements in Perinatal Care

  • Dennis P. Wall, PhD


    Dennis P. Wall, PhD

    Stanford Medicine/Pediatrics

    Dr. Wall is Associate Professor in the Department of Pediatrics and Division of Systems Medicine at Stanford University, where his lab is developing novel approaches in systems biology to decipher the molecular pathology of autism spectrum disorder and related neurological conditions. Dr. Wall has acted as science advisor to several biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, has created and advised on cutting-edge approaches to cloud computing, and has received numerous awards, including the Harvard Medical School (read more...)

  • Alan W Flake, MD

    Alan W Flake, MD

    Children's Hospital of Philadelphia/University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine

    Alan Flake, MD is the Ruth and Tristram C. Colket, Jr. Chair in Pediatric Surgery, and Director of the Children's Center for Fetal Research, at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. He is a Professor of Surgery and Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He received his medical degree from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock. He subsequently completed a General Surgery residency program and Research Fellowship in Fetal Biology and Therapy in the (read more...)

  • Thomas R. Insel, MD

    Thomas R. Insel, MD


    Thomas R. lnsel, M.D., a neuroscientist and psychiatrist, who joined Verily (formerly known as the Life Sciences Team at Google) in December, 2015. Previously he was Director of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), the component of the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) committed to research on mental disorders. Dr. Insel served as Director of this $1.5B agency from 2002 until 2015. During his tenure, Dr. Insel focused on the genetics and neurobiology of mental disorders as well as transforming (read more...)

  • Mark Juravic, MS

    Mark Juravic, MS

    Materna Medical

    Mark Juravic is the CEO of Materna Medical, a medical device company developing devices to prevent and treat pelvic floor disorders in women. Materna's first device intends to prevent pelvic muscle injuries that commonly occur during childbirth, and their second device is used to treat patients suffering from pelvic pain. Mark has a Masters degree in Bioengineering from UCSD, and over 15 years of experience in the medical device industry. He began his career in device design, pre-clinical and project management (read more...)

  • Paul Yock, MD

    Paul Yock, MD

    Stanford Medicine/Bioengineering

    Dr. Yock began his faculty career as an interventional cardiologist at UC San Francisco and then moved to Stanford in 1994. Yock is known for his work in inventing, developing and testing new devices, including the Rapid Exchange angioplasty and stenting system, which is the primary approach used worldwide. Yock also authored the fundamental patents for intravascular ultrasound imaging, conducted the initial clinical trials and established the Stanford Center for Research in Cardiovascular Interventions as a core (read more...)

  • James Wall, MD

    James Wall, MD

    Stanford Medicine/Pediatrics & Surgery/Bioengineering

    Dr. James Wall is a practicing Pediatric Surgeon at Stanford University. He is an alumnus of the Stanford Biodesign program and holds a Masters degree in Bioengineering. He founded InSite Medical Technologies in 2007 to develop new approaches to regional anesthesia that resulted in a novel device for epidural access. His current research interest is in the design, development and analysis of medical technology as well as the emerging field of surgical endoscopy. James currently leads the surgical endoscopy program (read more...)

Microbes and Pregnancy

  • Yvonne Maldonado


    Yvonne Maldonado, MD

    Stanford Medicine/Global Child Health/Lucile Salter Children's Hospital

    Yvonne (Bonnie) A. Maldonado, MD, is Professor, Director of Global Child Health, and Chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Pediatrics at Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California. Dr. Maldonado attended Stanford University School of Medicine, completed a pediatric residency program and pediatric infectious diseases fellowship at the Department of Pediatrics at Johns Hopkins University. She was an Epidemic Intelligence Service Officer at the Centers for Disease Control and (read more...)

  • Desiree LaBeaud

    Desiree LaBeaud, MD

    Stanford Medicine/Pediatrics/Infectious Diseases

    Since the early 2000s, I have devoted my efforts to better understanding the risk factors and long-term health consequences of arboviral infections, including Rift Valley fever, chikungunya, and dengue viruses. Currently, I have two large field projects ongoing in Kenya. As a physician-scientist, I split my time between research (75%) and clinical practice (25%), including travel clinic experience. In my current position, I balance a productive research career, a stimulating hospital-based clinical practice, and a (read more...)

  • David Relman, MD

    David A. Relman, MD

    Stanford Medicine/Microbiology & Immunology

    David A. Relman, MD is the Thomas C. and Joan M. Merigan Professor in Medicine, and Microbiology & Immunology, and Co-Director of the Center for International Security and Cooperation at Stanford University. He is also Chief of Infectious Diseases at the Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System in Palo Alto, California. Dr. Relman’s research focus is the human indigenous microbiota, and the identification of previously-unrecognized microbial agents of disease. He has advised the U.S. Government on emerging (read more...)

  • Phillip Tarr, MD

    Phillip Tarr, MD

    Washington University in St. Louis/Pediatrics/Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition/Molecular Microbiology

    Phil Tarr is the Melvin E. Carnahan Professor and Director of the Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition in the Department of Pediatrics, and Professor of Molecular Microbiology, at Washington University in St. Louis. He received his MD from Yale, and completed further training in pediatrics, gastroenterology, infectious diseases, and molecular microbiology at the University of Washington in Seattle. He has had an enduring interest in gut pathogens, most particularly E. coli O157:H7, and his current (read more...)

Thriving in a Changing Environment

  • Gary Darmstadt, MD, PhD


    Gary Darmstadt, MD, PhD

    Stanford Medicine/Pediatrics/Neonatology

    Dr. Gary Darmstadt is Associate Dean for Maternal and Child Health, and Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Neonatal and Developmental Pediatrics at the Stanford University School of Medicine. Previously Dr. Darmstadt was Senior Fellow at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, where he developed initiatives to address gender inequalities, empower women and girls, and improve health and development outcomes. Prior to this role, he served as the Gates Foundation Director of Family Health, leading strategy (read more...)

  • Alan Guttmacher, MD

    Alan E. Guttmacher, MD

    Permanent Fund for Vermont's Children

    Alan E. Guttmacher, M.D. is a pediatrician and medical geneticist who is Senior Advisor at the Permanent Fund for Vermont’s Children. From 2009-2015, he served as director of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, the focal point at the National Institutes of Health for research in pediatric health and development, maternal health, reproductive health, intellectual and developmental disabilities, and rehabilitation medicine, among other areas. Dr. Guttmacher came to NIH (read more...)

  • Christina Bethell

    Christina D. Bethell, PhD, MBA, MPH

    Johns Hopkins University/Bloomberg School of Public Health

    Dr. Bethell is a Professor in the Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University, where she serves as the founding director of the Child and Adolescent Health Measurement Initiative (CAHMI) within the Department of Population, Family and Reproductive Health. Since 1996, the CAHMI has been a visionary research, policy and translational resource, leading all phases in the collaborative design and implementation of innovative, family-centered measurement approaches to shape and drive systems improvement (read more...)

  • Dr. Vishwajeet Kumar

    Vishwajeet Kumar, MD

    Community Empowerment Lab

    Dr. Kumar is a physician from India with advanced public health training from the Johns Hopkins University where he subsequently served on its faculty and began his early work on community based solutions for advancing the survival and well being of mothers, newborns and children in resource constrained settings of rural India. Dr. Kumar has remained embedded within rural communities for more than a decade in his quest to better his understanding of behaviour, culture and its interaction with innovation, science and (read more...)

Special Presentations

  • Michael C. Lu

    Keynote Speaker

    Michael C. Lu, MD, MS, MPH

    U.S. Department of Health and Human Services/Maternal and Child Health

    Michael C. Lu, M.D., M.S., M.P.H., was named associate administrator of maternal and child health of the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) on November 3, 2011. HRSA is an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

    Dr. Lu joined HRSA from the University of California, Los Angeles Schools of Medicine and Public Health, where he was associate professor of obstetrics, gynecology and public health.

    Dr. Lu brings years of experience in MCH research, practice, and policy to (read more...)

  • Peter A. Singer, OC, MD, MPH, FRSC

    Keynote Speaker

    Peter A. Singer, OC, MD, MPH, FRSC

    Grand Challenges Canada

    Peter Singer has dedicated the last decade to bringing innovation to tackling the health challenges of the world’s poorest people. He is well known around the world for his creative solutions to some of the most pressing global health challenges. Dr. Singer is Chief Executive Officer of Grand Challenges Canada. He is also Professor of Medicine at University of Toronto, Director at the Sandra Rotman Centre at University Health Network, and Foreign Secretary of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences. In 2007, Dr. (read more...)

  • Christopher G. Dawes

    Christopher G. Dawes, MBA

    Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford

    Mr. Dawes joined Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford in 1991 and became its President and Chief Executive Officer in 1999. Mr. Dawes previously served as Chief Operating Officer of the hospital from 1995 to 1997, and Chief Operating Officer for pediatric and obstetric services for UCSF Stanford Health Care (1997 to 2000). Prior to joining Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital, Mr. Dawes held senior management positions at SHC (1987 to 1991); Pacific Presbyterian Medical Center, San Francisco (1981 to 1987); and (read more...)

  • Mary Leonard, MD, MS

    Mary Leonard, MD, MS

    Stanford Medicine/Pediatrics & Medicine/Nephrology

    Dr. Leonard is a Professor of Pediatrics and Medicine and Co-Leader of Spectrum Child Health at Stanford. Her multidisciplinary research program is focused on the impact of childhood chronic diseases on bone quality and muscle function across the life course, with an emphasis on the effects of glucocorticoid therapy, inflammation and chronic kidney diseases. She has served in leadership roles on international committees to develop clinical practice guidelines for the assessment of bone health in children, and the (read more...)

  • Dean Lloyd Minor, MD

    Lloyd B. Minor, MD

    Stanford Medicine

    Lloyd B. Minor, MD, is a scientist, surgeon, and academic leader. He is the Carl and Elizabeth Naumann Dean of the Stanford University School of Medicine, a position he has held since December 1, 2012. He is also a professor of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery and a professor of Bioengineering and of Neurobiology, by courtesy, at Stanford University.

    As dean, Dr. Minor plays an integral role in setting strategy for the clinical enterprise of Stanford Medicine, an academic medical center that includes the (read more...)