Aria Olumi MDJanet & William DeWolf Professor of Surgery/Urology, Harvard Medical School; Chief of Urologic Surgery, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts
As Chief of Urologic Surgery at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center & Harvard Medical School, Dr. Aria Olumi focuses his clinical practice on urologic oncology and surgical management of kidney, bladder and prostate cancer. Previously, he served as the Chair of Research Council for the American Urological Association (2015-2021) and strived to improve patient care by advocacy, increasing the workforce of educated urologic researchers, and promoting novel grant funding mechanism for our community.
As a surgeon-scientist, Dr. Olumi strives to close the gap between clinical practice and research, in order to improve the care for his patients. His NIH-funded laboratory evaluates strategies for personalized care in prostatic diseases. They have learned that the 5-alpha reductase 2 gene, an important gene that is responsible for normal prostatic development and growth, and a target of the commonly used 5-alpha reductase inhibitors (finasteride or dutasteride), is not expressed in 30% of adult men. They have defined the epigenetic mechanisms that lead to variable expression of the gene in adult prostates. Their findings have broad implications that can explain the variable growth patterns of the prostate gland, resistance to the therapeutic effects of 5-alpha reductase inhibitors, and alternate paths of prostatic growth and differentiation in prostate.