Amit Jhaveri.

Amit Jhaveri plans to focus on research aimed at preventing chronic cardiac disease during his yearlong fellowship at the Sarnoff Cardiovascular Research Foundation.

UB Student Among Prestigious Group of 2017-2018 Sarnoff Fellows

Published April 28, 2017

Third-year medical student Amit Jhaveri has been selected as a 2017–2018 Sarnoff fellow to partake in a yearlong program of intensive cardiovascular medicine research.

“I am particularly interested in understanding the underlying mechanisms of debilitating heart and vascular conditions, such as aortic stenosis and atherosclerosis, and elucidating ways we might be able to inhibit them. ”
Amit Jhaveri
2017–2018 Sarnoff fellow

One of Only 11 Recipients Nationwide

Jhaveri was one of 11 students chosen nationwide to receive the honor from the Sarnoff Cardiovascular Research Foundation.

He was selected for his intellectual and academic achievements as well as his leadership abilities, and he will receive a $32,000 stipend for a mentored research experience with preeminent cardiovascular scientists of his choosing.

The Massena, New York, native earned dual undergraduate degrees in biology and religion from the University of Rochester in 2013.

“My interests are varied, however, I hope to be involved in a project that is aimed at preventing chronic cardiac disease,” he says. “I am particularly interested in understanding the underlying mechanisms of debilitating heart and vascular conditions, such as aortic stenosis and atherosclerosis, and elucidating ways we might be able to inhibit them.”  

Research Involves Treatment of Aortic Stenosis

During the summer between his first and second year of medical school, Jhaveri conducted research on the use of balloon aortic valvuloplasty in older adults at the NYU Langone Medical Center with John Dodson, MD, in the Department of Medicine.

The opportunity allowed him to learn a lot about clinical research, and the work eventually culminated in a paper titled “Indications and Utility of Percutaneous Balloon Aortic Valvuloplasty in Older Adults” in Current Geriatrics Reports. Jhaveri was first author on the paper.

When he returned to UB, Jhaveri began conducting research with Brian J. Page, MD, associate professor of medicine in the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine on the use of transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) in patients with aortic stenosis.

Seeking Skills to Conduct Research Autonomously

Sarnoff fellows are provided with an allowance for travel expenses related to finding a preceptor and laboratory — a process that Jhaveri is currently undertaking.

“A unique aspect of the Sarnoff program is that it offers me the opportunity to visit labs of interest in order to find a preceptor that fits my interests,” he notes.

“I hope to be able to find and work with a mentor who is interested in investing in me and guiding me through the research process while helping me gain the skills needed to conduct research autonomously in the future,” Jhaveri says.

Emphasis on Lifelong Mentorship Key Attribute

After completing their year of research, fellows have opportunities to remain involved in the Sarnoff community.

They are encouraged to participate in annual scientific meetings and other Sarnoff-sponsored gatherings, where they can receive career development advice from Sarnoff alumni and reconnect with colleagues.

“What I find most appealing is the fact that the Sarnoff fellowship places a great amount of emphasis on mentorship, not solely for one year, but throughout your career,” Jhaveri says.

“I don't think this mentorship can be overstated. Almost immediately it feels as though you are part of a tight-knit community that is dedicated to advancing the field of cardiology and medicine in general,” he adds.

UB’s Leadership, Faculty, Former Fellows Aid Process

Jhaveri’s Sarnoff application was sponsored by Michael E. Cain, MD, vice president for health sciences and dean of the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.

“Dean Cain first introduced me to the Sarnoff Fellowship, and he was very encouraging and receptive from the start,” he says. “He guided me throughout the process and continues to do so. He sat down with me personally a few times to discuss my application and where it needed improvement.”

Jhaveri also names faculty members Page and Michael J. Morales, PhD, research assistant professor of physiology and biophysics, and former UB Sarnoff fellows Caressa Chen, Tim Thayer and Vinny Polsinelli, as being of great help to him throughout the application process.

Jhaveri and the other 2017–18 fellows were introduced at the Sarnoff Foundation’s 37th Annual Scientific Meeting April 27–29 in Cambridge, Massachusetts.