hla fellowship

Houston Methodist Hospital, an affiliate of Weill Cornell Medical College, offers an ACGME-accredited (selective pathology) histocompatibility and transplant immunology (HLA) fellowship training program for physicians who have completed pathology specialty training. Also, the Department of Pathology and Genomic Medicine at Houston Methodist offers this HLA fellowship training through the department for PhD Allied Health Professionals. This two-year training program is offered to qualified MDs and/or PhDs who are interested in pursuing a career in HLA laboratory management and related research. Located in the heart of the Texas Medical Center, Houston Methodist is a 950-bed private adult, acute care referral, and teaching hospital with a 1.6 million square foot outpatient center that registers over 310,000 annual outpatient visits. The hospital offers a full range of services from primary to tertiary care, including a multi-organ transplant center and cancer center.   

The teaching faculty in the Department of Pathology and Genomic Medicine internationally renowned with expertise in major subspecialty areas of both anatomic and clinical pathology. The program is supervised by an ABHI-certified immunologist and at least five pathologists with certification in subspecialty areas including molecular genetic pathology, transfusion medicine, and hematopathology.

HLA Fellowship Overview and Objectives

Two two-year fellowship positions are available each academic year under the co-directorship of Todd Eagar, PhD, HCLD, and David Bernard, MD, PhD. The JC Walter Jr. Transplant Center at Houston Methodist is one of the nation’s largest, performing 419 transplants in 2014, including heart, lung, liver, kidney, pancreas, and multi-organ. Fellows will study proper testing procedures (component collection and processing) of HLA gene products, donor screening, methodology, and clinical correlation of testing. Tests include ABO grouping, HLA typing, antibody screen, lymphocyte crossmatch (compatibility), and PRA determination. Major equipment in the HLA laboratory includes two Luminex xMAP systems. The program includes rotations in transfusion medicine, hematopathology/flow cytometry, and immunology/ serology. In addition the program also offers a rotation at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center (MDACC) HLA Laboratory that focuses on bone marrow/stem cell transplantation, allele and haplotype frequency determinations, and molecular testing.

Training in laboratory management and information systems is included in all rotations of the program. Scholarly activity in the form of a research project to be completed under faculty supervision for publication is a requirement. Fellows are responsible for the HLA case conference and HLA journal club/research conference at Houston Methodist Hospital and MDACC, and have the opportunity to attend other various pathology conferences throughout the program. Fellows are expected to successfully pass the ABHI board examination for histocompatibility directors after completion of the two-year fellowship program.

MD candidates must be board certified or board eligible in Clinical Pathology, Anatomic Pathology or Anatomic/Clinical Pathology. MD candidates must be eligible for a Texas Physician-In-Training permit or hold a full physician Texas licensure. PhD candidates must have received degree prior to starting the program in an immunology-related field. 

Stipend is commensurate with level of post-graduate training.

Application deadline is December 31 of the year prior to the intended fellowship year which begins July 1.

Direct application inquiries to:
Todd Eagar, PhD
Medical Director, Histocompatibility and Transplant Immunology
  c/o Rachel Heap, Fellowship Coordinator
Department of Pathology and Genomic Medicine 
Houston Methodist Hospital
6565 Fannin, B490
Houston, TX 77030
Phone: 713-441-9027
Fax: 713-441-3489
E-mail: rheap@houstonmethodist.org