2023 Award Recipients

Congratulations to the 2023 Thoracic Surgery Award Recipients! These awards have been made possible by generous donors including surgeons, societies, industry partners, grateful patients, and friends who have invested in the future of the specialty.

– RESEARCH –

Shin Yajima, MD, PhD – Stanford University

Stromal cell-derived factor 1α- encapsulated nanoparticles specifically target in the ischemic myocardium and attenuate ischemia myocardial injury.

STS Research Award

Constantine D. Mavroudis, MD, MSc, MTR – Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

The effect of preoperative cyanosis on cerebral mitochondrial function following cardiopulmonary bypass and neuroprotective perfusion strategies in neonatal swine.

TSF Research Award

Caitlin T. Demarest, MD, PhD – Vanderbilt University Medical Center

Testing a novel Pulmonary Assist Device in a sheep model of chronic pulmonary hypertension and right heart failure to evaluate exercise physiology and right ventricular recovery.

Nina Starr Braunwald Research Award

Selena S. Li, MD – Massachusetts General Hospital

Proteomic Predictors of Cardiac Recovery

Nina Starr Braunwald Research Fellowship Award (Resident)

Danny Wang, MD – Massachusetts General Hospital

The Role of the Gut and Lung Microbiome in Postoperative Recovery and Complications Following Oncologic Lung Resection.

TSF Resident Research Fellowship Award

Jimmy Kang, MD – University of Alberta

Attenuation of Xenoreactive Immune Response with Allogeneic Recellularized Tissue Engineered Heart Valves.

TSF Resident Research Fellowship Award

Krish C. Dewan, MD, MS – Duke University

Improving Cardiac Transplant Outcomes Through PD-L1 Overexpression Gene Therapy.

Southern Thoracic Surgical Association (STSA) Resident Research Award

Kei Suzuki , MD, MS – Inova

Single-cell RNA sequence profiling of tumor-immune microenvironment for precision therapy in resectable lung cancer.

AstraZeneca Lung Cancer Research Award

Jeffrey B. Velotta, MD – UCSF School of Medicine and Kaiser Permanente Northern California

Identifying novel patient outreach strategies to increase Lung Cancer Screening (LCS) in Asian Americans in an integrated healthcare system.

AstraZeneca Reversing Health Disparities in Lung Cancer Research Award



– EDUCATION –

David Zapata, MD – University of Maryland School of Medicine

Travel to Brussels to study aortic and mitral valve repair.

Thoracic Surgery Foundation/Francis Fontan Fund International Traveling Fellowship

Valentina Mescola, MD, MEBCTS – University of Navarra, Pamplona, Spain

Travel to 2 sites to learn about setting up a viable OPCAB program — 4-6 weeks at The Valley Hospital

Thoracic Surgery Foundation/Francis Fontan Fund International Traveling Fellowship

Laura A. Torrico Davila, MD – Ignacio Chavez National Institute of Cardiology, Mexico City, Mexico

Travel to Boston Children’s Hospital to study assessment, management, and intraoperative techniques for cardiac reconstruction in neonates.

Thoracic Surgery Foundation/Francis Fontan Fund International Traveling Fellowship in Partnership with LACES

Marcio Rufino Barbosa Jr., MD – Santa Casa de Misericordia de Vitoria, Espirito Santo, Brazil

Travel to Brussels to learn advanced repair techniques for the treatment of aortic and valvular heart disease.

Thoracic Surgery Foundation/Francis Fontan Fund International Traveling Fellowship in Partnership with LACES

Ali M. Alakhtar, MD, MSc – McGill University

Structural Heart Fellowship

Michael J. Davidson Structural Heart Fellowship Award

Derrick Tam, MD, PhD – University of Toronto

Advanced cardiac fellowship in minimally invasive and structural mitral valve interventions.

Every Heartbeat Matters Structural Heart Diversity Fellowship

Scott C. DeRoo, MD – University of Washington

Advanced aortic valve repair: strategies for both the bicuspid and trileaflet valve.

Nicholas Kouchoukos Award

Madhuri V. Rao, MD – University of Minnesota

Robotic Complex Segementectomy

Carolyn E. Reed Traveling Fellowship

Simran K. Randhawa, MBBS – University of Colorado

Developing a Robotic assisted foregut surgery practice.

Carolyn E. Reed Traveling Fellowship Award

Dmitry O. Bobylev, MD – Hannover Medical School

Clinical protocols, hybrid cardiac surgery, Ozaki procedure, Ross operation.

Robert L. Replogle Traveling Fellowship Award

Mr. Ariyo Lookman Idowu – Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Nigeria

Complex pediatric perfusion and device implant surgery.

Sarns Terumo Perfusion Education Fellowship Award

Yazan N. AlJamal, MD – Mayo Clinic

Robotic esophageal surgery – esophagectomy and benign foregut procedures.

Advanced Robotic Cardiac Surgery Fellowship

Mian Mustafa Kamal, MBBS – Aga Khan University Hospital Karachi, Pakistan

TAVI: Break the Barriers

The Levi Watkins Innovation and Leadership Development Scholarship

Nicolas Contreras, MD – University of Utah

Robotic esophageal surgery – esophagectomy and benign foregut procedures.

Underrepresented Robotic General Thoracic (URGT) Surgeon Development Award

Aditya Sengupta, MD

TSF Saha Scholarship


– SURGICAL OUTREACH TRIPS & VOLUNTEER SCHOLARHIPS –

Pranava Sinha, MD – University of Minnesota

Underserved Region: Uganda

TSF Every Heartbeat Matters Award

Jay D. Pal, MD, PhD – University of Washington

Underserved Region: Nepal

TSF Every Heartbeat Matters Award

Emily A. Farkas, MD, FACS – Indiana University

Underserved Region: Kenya

TSF Every Heartbeat Matters Award

Aldo Elmer Rafael, MD – Baylor University Medical Center

Underserved Region: Lima, Peru

TSF Every Heartbeat Matters Award

Carmelo A. Milano, MD – Duke University

Underserved Region: Honduras

TSF Every Heartbeat Matters Award

Robert C. Neely, MD – Cardiothoracic and Vascular Surgeons, Austin, TX

Underserved Region: Kenya

TSF Every Heartbeat Matters Award

Zachary O. Enumah, MD – Cardiac Surgery Intersociety Alliance

Underserved Region: Rwanda

TSF Every Heartbeat Matters Award