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Meet Our Team

  • Rena Yadlapati, MD, MS

    Rena Yadlapati, MD, MS

    Dr. Rena Yadlapati is currently Associate Professor of Medicine and Director of the Center for Esophageal Diseases at UC San Diego. Dr. Yadlapati completed her clinical gastrointestinal fellowship training at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine where she became passionate about esophageal diseases and patient-oriented research leading her to pursue a two-year NIH T32 research fellowship in esophageal physiology and psychology and a one-year advanced fellowship in esophageal disorders.

    As GEODE Director of Clinical Trials and Outcomes, Dr. Yadlapati aims to use biospecimens obtained from the IRB approved Foregut Biorepository to advance our understanding of the progression of esophageal motility disorders and neoplasia.

  • Shailja Shah, MD, MPH

    Shailja Shah, MD, MPH

    Dr. Shailja Shah is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at UC San Diego. Dr. Shah completed her internal medicine residency at University of California, San Francisco and a gastroenterology fellowship as well as chief year at the Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. She has given several national and international talks, is the recipient of several awards and grants, and has published over 50 peer-reviewed articles. Dr. Shah's clinical and research interests include H pylori epidemiology and associated diseases, inflammation-associated GI carcinogenesis, as well as implementation of gastric cancer prevention and early detection efforts.

    As GEODE Director of Epidemiology and Genomics, Dr. Shah aims to use biospecimens in the UCSD Foregut Biorepository to better understand the development of gastric pre-neoplasia as well as the role of microbial factors in driving disease progression.

  • Kathleen (Kit) Curtius, PhD

    Kathleen (Kit) Curtius, PhD

    Dr. Kathleen (Kit) Curtius joined UC San Diego as an Assistant Professor in the Division for Biomedical Informatics, Department of Medicine in July 2020. Additionally, she is an Associate Member of the Cancer Control Program at UCSD Moores Cancer Center. She previously held a Medical Research Council Rutherford Fellowship at Barts Cancer Institute in London UK, where she began as a postdoc in Prof Trevor Graham's Evolution and Cancer lab in 2016. Before moving to the UK, Dr. Curtius was a Gastroenterology Fellow in the University of Washington (UW) Department of Medicine. She received her PhD in Applied Mathematics from UW in 2015, working with advisor Dr. Georg Luebeck at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, and obtained a BS in Mathematics from UCLA in 2010.

    As GEODE Director of Computational Biology, Dr. Curtius incorporates the research aim of her interdisciplinary group, the Quantitative Cancer Control laboratory, of improving the ability to detect and prevent gastric and esophageal cancer at the earliest stages using mathematical reasoning.

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