The Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) at Bay Area Lyme Foundation provides strategic guidance and oversight for our research and scientific programs. These leaders represent some of the most important researchers and clinical innovators in the field of Lyme disease who have all made important contributions to the understanding, diagnosis, and treatment of the disease.
John N. Aucott, MD, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
Charles Chiu, MD, PhD, University of California, San Francisco
Monica Embers, PhD, Tulane University Health Sciences
Donna Felsenstein, MD, Massachusetts General Hospital
Christine Green, MD, Board Member, LymeDisease.org & ILADS
Nate Nieto, PhD, Northern Arizona University
Steven Phillips, MD, private practice in Danbury Connecticut
William Robinson, MD, PhD, Stanford University School of Medicine
Sunjya K. Schweig, MD, California Center for Functional Medicine
Neil Spector, MD, Duke University School of Medicine
Irving Weissman, MD, Stanford University School of Medicine
Assistant Professor, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine; Founder, Lyme Disease Research Association
Dr. Aucott is a renowned expert in clinical research on the diagnosis and epidemiology of Lyme disease. He is the founder and president of Lyme Disease Research Foundation, a public nonprofit organization founded to promote research and education in Lyme disease. Dr. Aucott was a Principal Investigator with Dr. Mark Soloski, for the landmark SLICE (Study of Lyme Disease Immunology and Clinical Events) project, a prospective cohort study examining the impact of acute Lyme disease on long-term health outcomes and immune function. Dr. Aucott is a practicing clinician at Park Medical Associates and part of the teaching faculty at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine where his focus has been on clinical translation research in Lyme disease.
Assist. Professor, UCSF (Laboratory Medicine & Infectious Diseases); Director, UCSF-Abbott Viral Diagnostics and Discovery Center (VDDC); Associate Director, UCSF Clinical Microbiology Laboratory
Dr. Chiu is an expert in the development and implementation of advanced genomic technologies for pathogen discovery and clinical diagnostics, including microarrays and next-generation sequencing, for a variety of blood-borne infections. His efforts in Lyme disease focus on the development of diagnostics for both pathogen detection and host response. He uses next-generation sequencing and has developed the “TickChip” to directly detect the RNA of Lyme bacteria and other tick-borne pathogens. He is also using RNA-sequencing technology to detect and identify a diagnostic profile of the body’s response to being infected by Lyme disease. He recently published in the highly prestigious New England Journal of Medicine, as described in a New York Times article, about the ability to uniquely and expeditiously diagnose a disease caused by a bacteria that is in the same family as Lyme disease.
Assistant Professor, Tulane University Health Sciences (Bacteriology and Parasitology)
Dr. Embers’ research program regarding Borrelia burgdorferi and Lyme disease is designed around two major foci: (1) antibiotic efficacy against Lyme disease; and (2) immunodiagnosis for B. burgdorferi infection and cure. The first research goal is to examine, using xenodiagnosis, the efficacy of antibiotic treatment during disseminated B. burgdorferi infection. The second goal is to develop a quantitative multi-antigen test that expands detection limits and helps to distinguish persistent infection from clinical cure. By studying the natural course of infection, her group hopes to facilitate a better understanding of the clinical quandaries of human Lyme disease, including effective diagnosis and treatment.
Donna Felsenstein, MD
Medical Director, GID Unit and Assistant Professor of Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital
Dr. Donna Felsenstein is an internist in Boston, Massachusetts and is affiliated with Massachusetts General Hospital. She earned her Medical Degree from Harvard Medical School and completed her Residency and Fellowship in infectious Disease at Massachusetts General Hospital. She is currently the Medical Director of the Sexually Transmitted Disease Program at Massachusetts General Hospital. Her areas of clinical focus include Lyme disease, infectious diseases, and herpes simplex virus. Dr. Felsenstein has been practicing medicine for over 30 years and is a recognized leader in the treatment of Lyme.
Director of Education for International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society; Board Member, International Lyme and Associated Disease Society (ILADS) and LymeDisease.org (formerly CALDA)
Dr. Green is a recognized leader in Lyme disease diagnosis and treatment who practices complementary, integrative, and othomolecular medicine from her private family practice, Green Oaks Medical, in northern California. She serves on the board of ILADS (International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society) and lymedisease.org and has helped to bring greater awareness to the medical community through patient research and advocacy. She currently serves as the Director of Education for ILADS. Dr. Green has a true passion for her profession and patients, demonstrated by her commitment to constant collaboration and ongoing research within the patient and medical community and she possesses a unique ability to problem solve patient issues, seeking out unconventional uses of therapy, based on Western Medicine research and clinical studies.
Nate Nieto, PhD
Assist. Professor, Northern Arizona University
Dr. Nieto is an assistant professor in the department of biological sciences at Northern Arizona University. His research focus is on infectious diseases, vector biology, and the ecological evolution and transmission of disease from wildlife to humans and domestic animals. Recently this work has examined the Lyme-causing pathogen <i>Borrelia burdgorferi. </i>He is a co-author, with <a title=”Daniel Salkeld, PhD” href=”http://www.bayarealyme.org/our-research/our-scientists/daniel-salkeld/”>Dan Salkeld</a>, of the highly publicized <a title=”Bay Area Tick Study” href=”http://www.bayarealyme.org/our-research/ecology-lyme-disease/bay-area-tick-study/”>Bay Area Tick Study</a>, documenting<i> Borrelia </i>bacteria prevalence in the greater Bay Area.
Steven Phillips, MD
Zoonotic Disease Expert Internist, Danbury Connecticut; Past President of ILADS
Steven E. Phillips, MD is a Yale-educated, world-renowned expert on zoonotic infections who has treated over 20,000 patients from over 20 countries. He is well-published in the peer-reviewed medical literature, acclaimed for his work in linking chronic diseases to occult infections, and successfully treating some of medicine’s most complex cases. He specializes in the management of stealth pathogens, which include Lyme disease, bartonellosis, babesiosis and other vector-borne diseases. With over two decades of experience in successfully treating patients with zoonotic infection, he discovered that inflammatory and rheumatic conditions were associated with bartonellosis. He is currently involved in drug development to bring public a durable and effective treatment for this infection and change the face of rheumatology forever.
Assoc. Professor, Stanford University Dept. of Medicine (Immunology & Rheumatology)
Dr. Robinson is a board certified rheumatologist on the teaching faculty at Stanford’s School of Medicine and has clinical practices affiliated with Stanford Hospital and the VA Hospital in Palo Alto. He is also a member of the Stanford Lyme Working Group (SLWG). His laboratory studies the molecular mechanisms of autoimmune and rheumatic diseases, and develops therapies to treat rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, and osteoarthritis. The lab is a part of the Division of Immunology and Rheumatology in the Department of Medicine, the Program in Immunology, and the Center for Clinical Immunology at Stanford (CCIS) at Stanford University School of Medicine. It is also part of the Institute for Immunity Transplantation and Infection (ITI) at Stanford.
Sunjya K. Schweig, MD
CEO and Co-Director of the California Center for Functional Medicine
Sunjya K. Schweig, MD is an expert in complex chronic illnesses, which require rigorous investigation and management. Dr. Schweig utilizes cutting edge diagnostic and treatment modalities that respect the complex interconnectedness of the body and the environment. He has been studying, teaching, and practicing integrative and functional medicine for over 20 years. Dr. Schweig recently partnered with Chris Kresser, Lac., to form the California Center for Functional Medicine (CCFM).
Neil Spector, MD
Associate Professor of Medicine, Duke University; Sandra Coates Associate Professor; Associate Professor of Pharmacology & Cancer Biology; Member of the Duke Cancer Institute
Neil Spector, MD is the Sandra P. Coates chair in breast cancer research and an associate professor of medicine as well as pharmacology and cancer at Duke University School of Medicine. He co-directs the experimental therapeutics program for the Duke Cancer Institute, and is a Komen scholar. His book: Gone in a Heartbeat, a Physicians Search for True Healing was inspired by his personal story with Lyme disease.
Professor, Stanford University (Developmental Biology & Cancer Research); Director, Stanford Institute of Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine; Director, Ludwig Center for Cancer Stem Cell Research at Stanford University
Dr. Weissman is a Professor of Pathology and Developmental Biology at Stanford and the Director of the Stanford Institute of Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine and the Ludwig Center for Cancer Stem Cell Research. His research encompasses the phylogeny and developmental biology of the cells that make up the blood-forming and immune systems and he was the first to discover and isolate the mammalian and hematopoietic (or blood-forming) stem cells. He is also a leading expert in the field of cancer stem cell biology, pioneering the the study of genes and proteins involved in cell adhesion events (both as normal function and as events involved in malignant leukemic metastases). This work highlights the role of phagocytic cells such as macrophages with important implications for the development of new therapies, including a cancer treatment current in development that enlists the immune system to help attack persistent residual malignancies that linger and hide after traditional treatments.