Pamela Lucchesi, PhD, FAHA, is a professor of physiology at Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine. She brings to Geisinger Commonwealth an extensive background in research, education and curriculum development. Dr. Lucchesi is involved in developing opportunities for translational research programs that will result in improved patient care in our community. Prior to arriving at Geisinger Commonwealth, Dr. Lucchesi served for seven years as center director and professor of pediatrics at Nationwide Children’s Hospital and Ohio State University. Before that, she was professor of pharmacology at Louisiana State University. Dr. Lucchesi has had 30 years of NIH-funded research in cardiovascular disease and 25 years of experience as a medical student educator. She is an expert in coronary artery disease and heart failure and is a fellow of the American Heart Association. Dr. Lucchesi is the author of 90 scholarly publications and five book chapters. She has chaired several study peer review panels at the NIH and is an associate editor of Physiology. She earned a BA in biology from Assumption College and a PhD in biomedical sciences from the University of Massachusetts Medical School, both in Worcester, MA.
It’s very common for physicians and surgeons working in operating rooms, ICUs and clinics to make observations that prompt questions. Dr. Lucchesi’s research focuses on translating these questions into hypothesis-driven research projects performed in the laboratory. Her lab focuses on mechanisms that underlie the causes and progression of cardiovascular diseases, the leading cause of death in the U.S. There are many mechanisms that control cardiovascular function, including mechanical forces, hormones and growth factors, which in turn are influenced by obesity, diabetes and stress. The interaction between these mechanisms ultimately controls how heart and blood vessel structure and function change during disease. She uses cellular biology techniques, proteomics and single-cell functional analyses to identify early changes in cells of the cardiovascular system. Studies in animal models that mimic human cardiovascular disease are then used to link the cellular changes with disease onset. The goal is to better diagnosis early onset of disease and develop new targets for therapeutic intervention to limit and even reverse disease progression. Current projects include valvular heart disease, diabetes-induced microvascular remodeling and the impact of maternal obesity on the development of cardiac and liver disease in offspring.
BA in Biology - Assumption College
PhD in Biomedical Sciences - University of Massachusetts Medical School