Orhun H Kantarci, M.D. a nationally recognized multiple sclerosis expert. He received the distinguished NATO science fellowship award (1998) and the National Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Society Advanced Fellowship award (1999) to complete his post-graduate training and extend his work on genetic determinants of the natural history of MS.
Dr. Kantarci's research before and during this time resulted in further establishing the direction of genetic epidemiology studies in MS towards understanding the genetic determinants of long-term outcome in MS as opposed to studying the determinants of susceptibility in MS. This body of work was awarded the Department of Neurology Research Award in clinical neurology as a fellow of the Mayo Graduate School of Medicine, Mayo Clinic and Foundation in 2002.
His further research on inheritance of MS in multigenerational families with MS at Mayo Clinic in collaboration with colleagues in UCSF has pointed out the significant epigenetic component of inheritance in MS. This original study was awarded the prestigious Founders Award by the American Academy of Neurology (2005). This study has since provoked multiple publications by others in this area in high impact journals leading to an invited editorial by Dr. Kantarci in the journal "Neurology" (2008).
To further his work in this area, Dr. Kantarci was awarded a CR20 award (2008-active) by the Center for Translational Science Activities (CTSA) to study "gender dependent epigenetic regulation of IFNG in multiple sclerosis". Results from this study has for the first time shown an interaction of gender and age in determining methylation-based regulation of IFNG. The results are going to be first presented in the upcoming meeting of the American Neurological Society in San Francisco (2010) and the manuscript is under preparation.
He currently serves in the administrative committee of the newly established "Center for Multiple Sclerosis and Central Nervous System Demyelinating Diseases for Research and Therapeutics at the Mayo Clinic" (2009). His work is in complete alignment with the goals of the "Center" led by Dr. Moses Rodriguez, research priorities of the Department of Neurology and the institutional mission of the Mayo Clinic. His goals of understanding the gender dependent genetic and epigenetic determinants of outcome phenotypes of progression in MS is a core individualized medicine concept.
Dr, Kantarci currently is actively interested in translational research to synergize his clinical, genetic, epigenetic epidemiology work in MS with the genetic determinants of outcome of progressive neurological decline in a viral model of MS. This model in mice using TheilerÃ¢'s Murine Encephalitis virus (TMEV) has been pioneered by Dr. Moses Rodriguez and Dr. Allan Bieber.
See my publications