Pathology at the Veterans Affairs Pittsburgh Healthcare System (VAPHS)

Faculty

Clinical Services

  • Full range of Anatomic Pathology (Surgical Pathology, Cytopathology and Autopsy Pathology), with a full range of immunohistochemistry and special stains
  • Fine Needle Aspiration Services
  • Bone Marrow Pathology and Lymph Node Pathology
  • Molecular Pathology of malignancy
  • Full range of Clinical Laboratory Diagnostics, including Clinical Chemistry, Hematology, Coagulation, Flowcytometry, Immunology, Microbiology, Blood Banking, Molecular Virology and Microbiology, In situ hybridization
  • Point of care testing
  • Telepathology

Research Activities

The research activities and interests of the VAPHS faculty within the division of Pathology at the VAPHS are diversified and can be summarized as follows:
  • Dr. Melhem studies oncogenes in colon cancer using laser capture microdissection, PCR, image analysis and knockout mice to study the role of E2F family of genes as they relate to p53, RB, p130 and myc genes.
  • Dr. Gutkin studies epigenetic mechanisms of chemokine expression in human prostate cancer and their role in anti-cancer immunity.
  • Dr Frye’s prior research had characterized the human Sirtuin gene family which modulates cognition, energy metabolism, and aging pathways. Currently he is studying how aging, health and longevity may be affected by prefrontal brain activity (cognition) that may regulate the pace of vagus nerve signaling which then influences systemic inflammation and health and longevity (especially in relation to susceptibility to cardiovascular disease, obesity/type2 diabetes, lung cancer, and emphysema). Also of interest is the role of diet, particularly level of fructose consumption, in influencing susceptibility to fatty liver, obesity/type2 diabetes, systemic inflammation, and cardiovascular disease.
  • Dr. Kulich studies cell signaling and oxidative modulation of signal transduction cascades in neurodegenerative disease pathogenesis, molecular mechanisms, and the role of protein kinases/phosphatases of Parkinson's disease.
  • Dr. Habib-Bein studies rapid detection and prevention of Methicillin-resistant Staph Aureus and Influenza viruses in hospitalized patients.

Teaching

The faculty at the VAPHS Pathology division are integral part in SOM teaching as well as residents’ and fellows teaching. These include heavy involvement in the Pathophysiology course, Renal Pathology, Pulmonary Pathology and neuropathology.

We also offer a Pathology Enrichment teaching sessions to medical students during their clinical rotations at the VAPHS and a Board preparation course in neuropathology to the neurology and pediatric neurology fellows.

Members of the VAPHS Pathology division are active teachers of the medical staff, including reviewing cases at the weekly tumor Board as well the Chief Medical Conferences where unusual cases with unexpected findings are discussed.

Training

The VAPHS is a well recognized site for excellent residents training. The department of Pathology at VAPHS offers core training rotations in Surgical Pathology for junior residents, as well as electives in immunopathology, hematopathology and Junior Laboratory director training for senior residents. We are also the training site for molecular pathology rotation for residents attending the Conemaugh Valley Hospital Pathology Residnecy program.