With the significant rise in youth and adolescent diabetes over the last four decades, Rose Gubitosi-Klug’s work has not only changed the understanding of this challenging illness—it has impacted how patients are managed.
A member of the Case Western Reserve University faculty since 1999, Gubitosi-Klug also is chief of the Division of Pediatric Endocrinology at Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital, an eminent scientist in children and teen diabetes, and a national expert in the field. Her post-graduate training began at the lab bench, investigating the role of inflammation in the development of diabetic retinopathy, the leading cause of blindness in the U.S.
Gubitosi-Klug led a critical clinical study, the Diabetes Control and Complications Trial/Epidemiology of Diabetes Interventions and Complications (DCCT/EDIC), which followed more than 1,200 participants across 27 institutions. Her leadership of this national effort substantiated that intensive diabetes therapy reduced the risk of cardiovascular disease in patients with Type 1 diabetes, and that the differences in outcome between intensive and conventional therapy persist long term.
Extending beyond these landmark studies, she has led several other multi-center study groups. The National Institutes of Health—which awarded Gubitosi-Klug and her collaborators $25.4 million for six years of study starting in 2011—recently granted up to $24.9 million for five more years.
She has led several other multi-center clinical trials, which often carry out large, complex studies that drive medical advances worldwide and translate into changes in health care. An exemplary example of team science at its best, the majority of Gubitosi-Klug’s work is focused on clinical translational research involving a large number of scientific collaborators in Cleveland and at other medical centers nationally.
“In biomedical research, it is uncommon to see an investigator’s efforts change the practice of medicine and the standard of care,” said Mukesh Jain, professor in the Cardiovascular Research Institute and Department of Physiology and Biophysics at the School of Medicine. “The fact that Dr. Gubitosi-Klug’s efforts have achieved this place her in rarified company that is simply exceptional by any metric.”