Derek Boeldt, PhD
|B.S.||University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI|
|PhD||University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI|
Member – Integrated Program in Endocrinology (IPEnd)
Full Member – Society for Reproductive Investigation
Research in the Boeldt Lab is focused on development of new therapies for preeclampsia, a pregnancy-related disorder characterized by high blood pressure, kidney and liver dysfunction, and often small and premature babies. Preeclampsia affects 3-5% of pregnancies in the United States and to date, there is no effective treatment.
Our research is primarily interested in how to target endothelial cells with new or existing drugs to combat the symptoms of preeclampsia. Endothelial cells are the single cell layer that lines the inside of blood vessels and largely dictates blood vessel function and are widely known to behave abnormally in preeclamptic pregnancies. There are a number of ways that endothelial cells may be driven to behave abnormally in preeclampsia.
We are investigating how an over-activated immune system may be 1) directly interacting with the endothelial cells to cause inflammation and endothelial dysfunction, or 2) indirectly through increased cytokine release, causing endothelial cell confusion and abnormal function. Understanding how these processes are occurring during preeclamptic pregnancies will help us design drugs to precisely target the cause of and progression of preeclampsia.
OBS&GYN 710 - Reproductive Endocrine Physiology
Fundamental Endocrinology I & II, Lactation, Barker Hypothesis I & II, Pathophysiology of Preeclampsia, Endocrine Disruptors, Case Studies
OBS&GYN 711 - Advanced Reproductive Endocrine Physiology
Spring - Odd years
Comparative Placentation and Placental Endocrinology
After a highly successful visit from Preeclampsia Foundation CEO Eleni Tsigas in the summer of 2022, the Department of Ob-Gyn was named a Preeclampsia Center of Excellence!
In June 2022, Kara Hoppe, DO, MS, associate professor of Maternal-Fetal Medicine, Ian Bird, PhD, professor of Reproductive Sciences, and Derek Boeldt, PhD, assistant professor of Reproductive Sciences, presented their respective clinical and foundational preeclampsia research to Tsigas. The visit also included a roundtable lunch with patients and nurses and a site visit to EPIC, where Hoppe served as the physician representative.
The visit was a tremendous effort from all involved and this Preeclampsia Center of Excellence designation is well-deserved!
Exciting news from Derek Boeldt, PhD, assistant professor in the UW Ob-Gyn Division of Reproductive Sciences: he received a UnityPoint Health-Meriter Foundation grant for the project “Developing a Novel Diagnostic Test for the Early Detection of Preeclampsia”!
The grant will support a research project that will investigate a novel approach to develop specific biomarkers for early and efficient detection of preeclampsia. Preeclampsia is a major disorder of pregnancy that has severe health effects on mother and baby. Currently, there are no effective cures for this disorder or biomarkers that can be used for early clinical diagnosis.
Congratulations, Dr. Boeldt!
On May 13, 2021, the UW Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology hosted Department Research Day, featuring exceptional presentations on fundamental, clinical, and quality improvement research. Recorded presentations from Department Research Day are available now.
To start the morning, Kimberly Gregory, MD, MPH of Cedars-Sinai Obstetrics and Gynecology Department presented the keynote lecture “Patient Reported Outcomes in Ob/Gyn: What are they? Who Cares? And Why?”.
In the lecture, Gregory differentiated between three measures of patient outcomes, outlined types of patient-reported outcomes used in ob-gyn clinical care, and described how these measures can drive quality improvement efforts.
Other presentations at Department Research Day included:
“Bone Loss and Osteoporosis Risk in Younger Gynecologic Cancer Patients”, presented by graduating gynecologic oncology fellow Janelle Sobecki, MD, MA
“Connecting the Dots: The Role of Endothelial-Immune Interaction in the Pathophysiology of Preeclampsia”, presented by Derek Boeldt, PhD, of the Division of Reproductive Sciences
“Post-Cesarean Pain”, presented by Katie Antony, MD, of the Division of Maternal-Fetal Medicine
You can watch the lectures from Department Research Day here.