• Jonathan Levinsohn, MD, PhD

    2023 Ben J. Lipps Fellowship Award
    Jonathan Levinsohn, MD, PhD

    Jonathan Levinsohn, MD, PhD

    2023 Ben J. Lipps Fellowship Award

    Institution: Children's Hospital of Philadelphia/University of Pennsylvania

    Project Title: Genomics of Human Kidney Development and Early Maturation

    How would you sum up your research in one sentence?

    I am trying to describe how babies' kidneys are different than adult kidneys and understand the consequences of those differences.

    Provide a brief overview of the research you will conduct with help from the grant.

    Using human kidney tissue, I hope to employ cutting-edge genomic technology to describe the kidney at a molecular level, identifying genes and enhancers that appear to be specifically active in babies, but not in adults. Upon identifying which genetics elements are specific to babies, I want to map these to cell types and biologic processes. I ultimately hope to see if any of these changes might be related to semi-permanent changes within the kidney that could affect disease risk later in life.

    What impact do you hope your research will have on patients?

    While there is a lot of data that suggests that things like birthweight and being born early affect your kidney health much later in life, how this happens is unclear. My hope is if we can better understand what underlies these risks, we can help mitigate them.

    What inspired you to focus your research in this area?

    I have been interested in genomics and development for years. When I started to learn more about neonatal nephrology, it seemed like these new tools might be able to investigate some of these mysteries that have been known for decades but have been somewhat intractable to previous methods of analysis.

    What are the major challenges to beginning a career in nephrology research today?

    For those people who want to have research and clinical roles, I think managing the two is very difficult.

    In one sentence, please describe the importance of having grant funding available through KidneyCure.

    This is a chance for me to learn from an amazing mentor and get a chance to focus on building some foundational research.

    Something you may not know about me is…

    In college, I worked as a firefighter as a side job.

    In my free time I like to…

    Run, play soccer and spend time with my family.