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Michael I. Lewis, MD

Director, Respiratory Care Services

Medical Director, Respiratory Intensive Care Unit

Professor, Medicine

Thalians Health Center, Suite C-106
8730 Gracie Allen Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90048





Michael I. Lewis, MD

Director, Respiratory Care Services

Medical Director, Respiratory Intensive Care Unit

Professor, Medicine

  • IM/Pulmonary Medicine

Lung Disorders

Neuromuscular Disorders

Paralyzed Diaphragm

Pulmonary Embolisms

Pulmonary Hypertension (PH)

Research Interests:a) Pulmonary Hypertension:I have been involved with the diagnosis and management of patients with pulmonary hypertension for >25 years. Basic science interests in this area cover the use of animal models of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). Within this domain we are evaluating the pathobiology of right ventricular (RV) responses (both adaptive and maladaptive) to the increased afterload facing the RV, due to PAH. We have also investigated the use of cardiosphere derived stem cells (CDC; cardiac stem cells) in attenuating the effects of established PAH in a rescue model with good efficacy in the animal model. We are also investigating micro-vesicle products of the stem cells, exosomes, in mirroring the effects of the stem cells themselves. Our data has prompted a pre-IND review, and to follow, an IND review by the FDA, to test CDCs in a phase 1 clinical study in patients with PAH. I am also involved in 12 clinical trials in patients with PAH. I am actively involved in patient management at our PH center and in hospitalized patients.b) Respiratory and Limb Muscle Cell Biology: Most recently looking into ameliorating the adverse effects of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) on the diaphragm and limb muscles in the mouse model of DMD with the administration of exosomes. Data to be tested includes, physiologic, morphometric, biochemical and cell biologic influences on the muscle groups. Other basic research in respiratory muscle physiology and cell biology includes: the effects of emphysema on diaphragm structure and function, undernutrition on respiratory muscles, hormonal and pharmacologic influences on respiratory muscles, diaphragm development and mechanisms responsible for these influences. Major interest in biochemical mechanisms underlying disordered muscle protein turnover and muscle fiber atrophy in cachectic states.

  • Medical School: University of Witwatersrand, 1974
  • Internship: Johannesburg General Hospital, 1975
  • Residency: Johannesburg General Hospital, 1981

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  • National Quality ForumMember of Pulmonary Technical Advisory Panel, 2009-present
  • Editorial Board, Journal of Applied Physiology, 1996-2008
  • UCLA Award for Excellence in Education, 2007
  • American Lung Association of California, Member Research Fellowship training Grant Review Committee and Chair, 1992-98
  • Fournier M, Huang ZS, Li H, Da X, Cercek B, Lewis MI. Insulin-like growth factor I prevents corticosteroid-induced diaphragm muscle atrophy in emphysematous hamsters. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol. 2003;285(1):R34-43.
  • Lewis MI, Bodine SC, Kamangar N, Xu X, Da X, Fournier M. Effect of severe short-term malnutrition on diaphragm muscle signal transduction pathways influencing protein turnover. J Appl Physiol. 2006;100(6):1799-1806.
  • Lewis MI, Fournier M, Da X, Li H, Mosenifar Z, McKenna RJ, Cohen AH: Short-term influences of lung volume reduction surgery on the diaphragm in emphysematous hamsters. Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2004;170(7):753-759.
  • Lewis MI, Fournier M, Storer TW, Bhasin S, Porszasz J, Ren SG, Da X, Casaburi R. Skeletal muscle adaptations to testosterone and resistance training in men with COPD. J Appl Physiol. 2007;103(4):1299-1310.
  • Lewis MI, Horvitz GD, Clemmons DR, Fournier M. Role of IGF-I and IGF-binding proteins within diaphragm muscle in modulating the effects of nandrolone. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2002;282(2):E483-490.
  • Lewis MI, Zhan WZ, Sieck GC. Adaptations of the diaphragm in emphysema. J Appl Physiol. 1992;72(3):934-943.
  • Lewis MI, Fournier M, Wang H, Storer TS, Casaburi R, Cohen AH, Kopple JD. Structural and biochemical skeletal muscle abnormalities in chronic hemodialysis patients. J Appl Physiol. 2012;112:72-78.

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