Edward Nardell, MD.

Dr. Nardell, Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, and Associate Physician in the Division of Global Health Equity at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH), is a pulmonologist with a special interest in tuberculosis.  He trained in pulmonary medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital with additional research training at Boston University School of Medicine.  While at Boston City Hospital, Dr. Nardell became director of tuberculosis control for the City of Boston. In the early 1980’s, Dr Nardell was also appointed medical director of tuberculosis control for the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, a position he held for 18 years.  In 1981 he became chief of pulmonary medicine and director of tuberculosis control for the city of Cambridge, positions he held until 2005.

While at Cambridge Hospital, Dr. Nardell hired a medical student by the name of Paul Farmer as a Creole-speaking outreach worker for the TB program.  Although informally involved with Dr. Farmers’ NGO, Partners In Health (PIH) since its inception, in 2002 he officially joined PIH with a focus on TB research. In 2005 he left Cambridge Hospital to assume his full-time research position in the Division of Global Health Equity at BWH. He has additional academic appointments in the HMS Department of Global Health and Social Medicine, and also at Harvard School of Public Health.  His research interests include the control of multidrug resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) in Peru, Russia, and other high-burden countries, with a special research interest in airborne TB transmission and control.

Dylan Tierney, MD, MPH.

Dr. Tierney is anAssociate Physician in the Division of Global Health Equity at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and a tuberculosis specialist at Partners In Health. He additionally serves as a clinician with the Division of Infectious Disease at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Dr. Tierney earned his medical degree from Virginia Commonwealth University and a Masters in Public Health degree from the University of California, Berkeley. He completed internal medicine residency and infectious disease fellowship training at Massachusetts General Hospital.

Dr. Tierney’s research focuses on improving the diagnosis and management of tuberculosis (TB) in resource-limited settings.  He has developed a specific interest in the use of rapid TB diagnosis and initiation of effective treatment as a form of infection control. This approach, known as FAST (Find cases Actively, Separate temporarily and Treat effectively) is currently being implemented at a large general hospital in Lima, Peru.  As a co-investigator in the study, Dr. Tierney will evaluate the impact of FAST on time to TB diagnosis and treatment in patients with unsuspected pulmonary TB and whether this intervention reduces transmission of tuberculosis infection to healthcare workers.

Ruvandhi Nathavitharana, MBBS, MPH.

Dr. Nathavitharana is a Research Fellow in Infectious Diseases at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC).  Her research interests center around optimizing strategies to decrease tuberculosis (TB) transmission using active case finding, early isolation and appropriate treatment initiation, and improving the clinical effectiveness of new diagnostic tests in the field.   Dr. Nathavitharana’s past work in Peru and KwaZulu Natal have given her first hand knowledge of the lack of adequate TB infection control practices and diagnostic challenges resulting in late presentation and worse outcomes in a resource-limited setting.   As an Infectious Diseases fellow at BIDMC, she is currently working on projects evaluating the prevalence and risk factors of complex TB infections in a Peruvian cohort of pulmonary TB patients, a non-inferiority analysis comparing several new rapid TB line probe assays (LPAs) and a systematic review evaluating the diagnostic accuracy of LPAs which provided evidence for a WHO expert meeting on molecular diagnostics.  Dr. Nathavitharana has published editorials on diagnostics for extra-pulmonary TB and on the comparison between TB and other emerging diseases such as Ebola. 

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Philip Lederer, MD

Dr. Lederer is an infectious diseases physician at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH).  His career has focused on clinical care, medical education, and research in the field of global public health and infectious diseases, particularly HIV and tuberculosis (TB).  As an Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) Officer at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), he worked in Sub-Saharan Africa, focused on HIV/TB co-infection and reducing transmission of TB in low-resource settings.  His research involves TB control in resource-limited conditions with a focus on drug-resistant TB, airborne transmission, and control in hospitals. Dr. Lederer’s work is aimed at evaluating novel approaches to hospital-based TB infection control, for example the efficacy of upper room germicidal ultraviolet fixtures.  

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Barbara Foot, MS

Ms. Foot provides overall management for the team’s projects.  A French major in college with an interest in global health, she completed her MS in Maternal and Child Health at the Harvard School of Public Health.    Following that, she was based in Washington DC working on evaluations of large scale public health programs for underserved women and children.  Barbara manages all aspects of the team’s grants and coordination with global partners.