“The SC CTSI KL2 program has introduced me to the whole language of clinical research,” said SC CTSI KL2 Scholar Gabriel Zada, MD, neurosurgeon and assistant professor of clinical neurological surgery, Keck School of Medicine of USC. “So much of what we do is translational and multidisciplinary, and the more you can share that language with people from other specialties, the better your research will be.”
Zada sees research as a way to answer questions that come up in the operating room. “As surgeons, we interact with the body in a unique way and have the opportunity to see disease, such as tumors, in the body and to develop a grasp of the clinical barriers and issues,” he said.
His research focuses on pituitary adenomas, a tumor of the pituitary gland, and on the genetic factors that determine tumor invasiveness. Recently named co-director of the USC Pituitary Center at Keck Medicine of USC, Zada published pilot data from DNA methylation analyses and plans to leverage the data to secure future NIH funding.