Dr. Susan Hedayati to build the School’s research training programs
Susan Hedayati, MD, MS, a physician-scientist, nephrologist and medical educator, has been named vice dean for research in the Renaissance School of Medicine(RSOM) at Stony Brook University. Appointed by Peter Igarashi, MD, dean of the RSOM, Dr. Hedayati will oversee faculty research within the RSOM’s 25 departments, which includes investigation in many areas of medicine ranging from heart and kidney disease to cancer, pediatrics, orthopedics and infectious diseases.
She also holds the Lina Obeid Chair in Biomedical Science at the RSOM.
Dr. Hedayati comes to Stony Brook from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas. While there, she was most recently associate vice chair for Research and Faculty Development; director of Nephrology Clinical, Translational, and Population Health Research; and held the Yin Quan-Yuen Distinguished Professor in Nephrology.
“Dr. Hedayati is a highly accomplished physician-scientist whose research has focused on non-traditional cardiovascular risk factors in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD),” said Dr. Igarashi. “In addition to this expertise, she has been involved in graduate medical education and continuing medical education at national and international levels. Thus, she brings great experience with research and training for our faculty at many levels.”
Much of Dr. Hedayati’s research has been published in high-impact medical journals and supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Veterans Administration, the American Heart Association and various national foundations.
She discovered that non-traditional factors such as calcium-phosphorus product, osteoprotegerin, HS-Troponin, NT-pro-BNP and platelet aggregability improve cardiovascular prognostication in patients with CKD. She also identified major depression as a prevalent non-traditional risk factor and demonstrated that traditional antidepressant medications do not improve depression in patients with non-dialysis CKD but are superior to cognitive behavioral therapy in dialysis patients.
Dr. Hedayati has a proven track record of building successful research training programs. She has mentored more than 20 trainees, most of whom have pursued research and academic careers. At UT Southwestern, she obtained the first institutional grant to support an NIH R38 research residency program called UT-StAAR. She also led the team at UT Southwestern to obtain one of few nationwide institutional grants from the Doris Duke Foundation and American Heart Association to create the UT Southwestern‑Fund to Retain Clinical Scientists (UT‑FOCUS) affected by COVID. The UT‑FOCUS program provides supplemental support to early-career physician-scientists who faced significant caregiving responsibility as a result of the pandemic in order to retain them in research. Due to these accomplishments, she received the Leaders in Clinical Excellence Mentoring Award at UT Southwestern and the Shaul G. Massry Distinguished Award from the National Kidney Foundation.
Earlier this year, she was inducted into the Association of American Physicians, the country’s oldest honor society for physician-scientists.
“I am very grateful to be given this opportunity to humbly lead in order to serve. It is exhilarating to join the Stony Brook team and be influential via the triple threat of academic medicine: to help build the research infrastructure for our faculty, develop mentored research programs for physician-scientist trainees, and ultimately affect the healthcare of our patients at Stony Brook and greater Long Island through cutting-edge research,” said Dr. Hedayati.
Dr. Hedayati serves on the American College of Physicians’ Medical Knowledge Self-Assessment Program Nephrology Planning Committee and Faculty. She is also a fellow of the American Society of Nephrology and has been active as teaching faculty for its annual Nephrology Board Review Course as well as the ASN Nephrology Board In-Service Examination. At the international level, she is writing the KDIGO clinical practice guidelines for the management of anemia in individuals with chronic kidney disease.
As a clinician, Dr. Hedayati specializes in CKD, diabetic nephropathy and resistant hypertension.
She earned her MD at George Washington University School of Medicine and completed both her residency and internal medicine fellowship in nephrology at Duke University Medical Center. She also holds a master’s degree in clinical health sciences and biostatistics from Duke.