February 2020 New Member Profile

Author: [AUTHOR] Published on 2/1/2020 12:00:00 AM

Rupsa C. Boelig, MD, Assistant Professor, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Dr. Boelig learned about ASCPT during her T32 fellowship in clinical pharmacology. Her mentor, Dr. Walter Kraft, introduced her to the Society. As a maternal fetal medicine specialist and clinician researcher, she chose to delve into clinical pharmacology due to the paucity of obstetric‐specific pharmacologic research and the potential impact such research may have on improving patient care. She saw membership with ASCPT as an opportunity to connect with a network of experts who could help her build her own research career. She views her membership as a way to continue her education in clinical pharmacology.

As her T32 training concludes and her position as an assistant professor at Sidney Kimmel Medical College, Thomas Jefferson University, begins, Dr. Boelig hopes to continue her education with ASCPT. Dr. Boelig points to the webinars available from ASCPT. She also hopes to take advantage of the Networks and Communities as well as attending the Annual Meeting as she embarks on her career as a clinician investigator.

Obstetrics and gynecology as well as maternal fetal medicine largely make up Dr. Boelig’s background. She spent 4 years of residency training in obstetrics and gynecology then went on to do an additional 4 years of subspecialty training in maternal fetal medicine. Her major research interest has been in the prediction and prevention of preterm birth and preeclampsia. Her research has been exclusively clinical; however, she has found that the limited research in the pregnancy‐specific pharmacology of medications used for prevention of preterm birth and preeclampsia limit the ability to optimally utilize or even study these interventions. In order to address this deficiency in obstetric research and her own skill set, Dr. Boelig applied to the T32 Clinical Pharmacology program at Thomas Jefferson University and she was accepted. During this training she has been most excited about the prospect of optimizing the utilization of medications in obstetrics for prevention of preterm birth and preeclampsia through a better understanding of their pregnancy‐specific pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics.

Dr. Boelig observes that almost all medications used in pregnancy are not exclusive to pregnancy and their pregnancy use has been adapted from nonpregnant population studies. Preterm birth is a multifactorial process, thus it is not surprising that the same intervention will not be similarly effective in different individuals. A lack of understanding of how these medications function in pregnancy to affect outcome limits the ability to better use and target them. For example, whether aspiring for preeclampsia prevention or progesterone for preterm birth prevention, currently the recommendation is a single dose selected arbitrarily from use in a nonpregnant population for completely different indications. With Dr. Boelig’s research, she hopes to optimize and better target the use of these interventions in pregnancy. Dr. Boelig’s current research projects include pharmacology of micronized progesterone in preterm birth prevention and pharmacodynamics/pharmacogenomics of aspirin in preeclampsia prevention.

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