Zeenat Safdar, MD

Professor of Medicine, Academic Institute
Full Clinical Member, Research Institute
Houston Methodist
Weill Cornell Medical College


Dr. Zeenat Safdar is a Professor of Medicine, Houston Methodist Academic Institute, and Director of Clinical Research and Pulmonary Hypertension Program, Houston Methodist Hospital Lung Center in Houston, Texas. She is also an Adjunct Associate Professor of Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine.

Dr. Safdar serves as a Chair of Young Council at Pulmonary Vascular Research Institute, Pulmonology Chair at the Pulmonary Hypertension Association Online University, and National Chair at PHA on the Road program. She serves as Registries and Databases Workforce leader at PH council of International Society of Heart Lung Transplantation (ISHLT).

Dr. Safdar is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians, American College of Chest Physicians (CHEST), and Pulmonary Vascular Research Institute. She is a member of the PH Council of International Society of Heart Lung Transplant, American Thoracic Society and Texas Medical Association.

She has been invited to serve as the session facilitator, presenter, and abstract reviewer and selector at the International Conference of the ATS, CHEST and ISHLT. Dr. Safdar has served as an invited reviewer for the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, Respiratory Medicine and Therapeutic Advances in Respiratory Disease and serves as a member of the editorial board of several journals.

Description of Research

Dr. Safdar’s principal area of interest is Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension (PAH), specifically translational research, clinical research and clinical trials. Her recent research has focused on the contribution of renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system to the pathophysiology of PAH. She is the principal and co-investigator of several ongoing clinical trials including

  • REATA - a phase 2 dose-ranging study of efficacy and safety of Bardoxolone Methyl in PAH
  • LIBERTY - a phase 2 study of Ubenimex in patient with PAH
  • TRANSIT-1 - a study to Assess the Tolerability and the Safety of the Transition From Inhaled Treprostinil to Oral Selexipag in PAH
  • Chronic ThromboEmbolic Pulmonary Hypertension registry
  • TRITON - The Efficacy and Safety of Initial Triple Versus Initial Dual Oral Combination Therapy in Patients With Newly Diagnosed PAH
  • RIN-PH - Safety and Efficacy of Inhaled Treprostinil in Adult PH With ILD Including CPFE

 The Houston Methodist Hospital Pulmonary Hypertension program also provides expert care for patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). As a Director of the IPF program, she serves as a lead investigator of several ongoing IPF clinical trials including 

  • RIFF study - a phase 2 randomized placebo-controlled clinical study to assess the safety and efficacy of Lebrikizumab in IPF
  • RAINIER study - a phase 2 multicenter study to assess the efficacy and safety of Simtuzamab in IPF

 She was the site investigator of several complete IPF clinical trials such as

  • ARTEMIS-IPF - ambrisentan for IPF
  • ARTEMIS-PH - ambrisentan in PH associated with IPF
  • MUSIC - macitentan for IPF

 Dr. Safdar is the recipient of a K23 grant from the National Institute of Health (NIH) and several other grants from non-profit organizations.  Her research has been published in prominent, high impact journals.

Areas Of Expertise

Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension (PAH) Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) Pulmonary disease

Pulmonary Hypertension in Women
Park, E & Safdar, Z 2024, , Methodist DeBakey cardiovascular journal, vol. 20, no. 2, pp. 70-80. https://doi.org/10.14797/mdcvj.1308

Safety of Macitentan for the Treatment of Portopulmonary Hypertension: Real-World Evidence from the Combined OPUS/OrPHeUS Studies
Kim, NH, Chin, KM, McLaughlin, VV, DuBrock, H, Restrepo-Jaramillo, R, Safdar, Z, MacDonald, G, Martin, N, Rosenberg, D, Solonets, M & Channick, R 2024, , Pulmonary Therapy, vol. 10, no. 1, pp. 85-107. https://doi.org/10.1007/s41030-023-00251-x

Integrative multi-omics analysis reveals novel idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis endotypes associated with disease progression
Ruan, P, Todd, JL, Zhao, H, Liu, Y, Vinisko, R, Soellner, JF, Schmid, R, Kaner, RJ, Luckhardt, TR, Neely, ML, Noth, I, Porteous, M, Raj, R, Safdar, Z, Strek, ME, Hesslinger, C, Palmer, SM, Leonard, TB & Salisbury, ML 2023, , Respiratory Research, vol. 24, no. 1, 141, pp. 141. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12931-023-02435-0

Effect of Antifibrotic Therapy on Survival in Patients With Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
IPF-PRO Registry investigators 2023, , Clinical Therapeutics, vol. 45, no. 4, pp. 306-315. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.clinthera.2023.03.003

Provider Perspectives on and Access to Palliative Care for Patients With Interstitial Lung Disease
Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation 2022, , CHEST, vol. 162, no. 2, pp. 375-384. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chest.2022.03.009

Disparities in Lung Transplant among Patients with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis An Analysis of the IPF-PRO Registry
The IPF-PRO Registry Investigators 2022, , Annals of the American Thoracic Society, vol. 19, no. 6, pp. 981-990. https://doi.org/10.1513/AnnalsATS.202105-589OC

Delphi consensus recommendation for optimization of pulmonary hypertension therapy focusing on switching from a phosphodiesterase 5 inhibitor to riociguat
Rahaghi, FF, Balasubramanian, VP, Bourge, RC, Burger, CD, Chakinala, MM, Eggert, MS, Elwing, JM, Feldman, J, King, C, Klinger, JR, Mathai, SC, McConnell, JW, Palevsky, HI, Restrepo-Jaramillo, R, Safdar, Z, Sager, JS, Sood, N, Sulica, R, White, RJ & Hill, NS 2022, , Pulmonary Circulation, vol. 12, no. 2, e12055, pp. e12055. https://doi.org/10.1002/pul2.12055

Associations between resources and practices of ILD centers and outcomes in patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis: data from the IPF-PRO Registry
The IPF-PRO Registry Investigators 2022, , Respiratory Research, vol. 23, no. 1, 3, pp. 3. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12931-021-01921-7

Real-world dosing characteristics and utilization of parenteral treprostinil in the outpatient setting
Balasubramanian, VP, Safdar, Z, Sketch, MR, Broderick, M, Nelsen, AC, Lee, D & Melendres-Groves, L 2022, , Pulmonary Circulation, vol. 12, no. 1, e12016, pp. e12016. https://doi.org/10.1002/pul2.12016

Screening Strategies for Pulmonary Hypertension in Patients With Interstitial Lung Disease: A Multidisciplinary Delphi Study
Rahaghi, FF, Kolaitis, NA, Adegunsoye, A, de Andrade, JA, Flaherty, KR, Lancaster, LH, Lee, JS, Levine, DJ, Preston, IR, Safdar, Z, Saggar, R, Sahay, S, Scholand, MB, Shlobin, OA, Zisman, DA & Nathan, SD 2022, , CHEST, vol. 162, no. 1, pp. 145-155. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chest.2022.02.012

Rare variant analysis of 4241 pulmonary arterial hypertension cases from an international consortium implicates FBLN2, PDGFD, and rare de novo variants in PAH
PAH Biobank Enrolling Centers’ Investigators, NIHR BioResource for Translational Research - Rare Diseases, National Cohort Study of Idiopathic and Heritable PAH & Regeneron Genetics Center 2021, , Genome Medicine, vol. 13, no. 1, 80. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13073-021-00891-1

Effect of spironolactone use in pulmonary arterial hypertension – analysis from pivotal trial databases
Safdar, Z & Cho, E 2021, , Pulmonary Circulation, vol. 11, no. 4, pp. 20458940211045618. https://doi.org/10.1177/20458940211045618

Hospitalizations in patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis
The IPF-PRO Registry Investigators 2021, , Respiratory Research, vol. 22, no. 1, 257, pp. 257. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12931-021-01851-4

An expert panel delphi consensus statement on patient selection and management for transitioning between oral and inhaled treprostinil
Rahaghi, FF, Allen, RP, Balasubramanian, VP, Chakinala, MM, Elwing, JM, Feldman, J, Leary, PJ, Rischard, F, Safdar, Z, Sood, N & Oudiz, RJ 2021, , Pulmonary Pharmacology and Therapeutics, vol. 66, 101979, pp. 101979. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pupt.2020.101979

United States Pulmonary Hypertension Scientific Registry: Baseline Characteristics
USPHSR Investigators 2021, , CHEST, vol. 159, no. 1, pp. 311-327. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chest.2020.07.088

Chronic Thromboembolic Pulmonary Hypertension Medical Management
Logue, R & Safdar, Z 2021, , Methodist DeBakey cardiovascular journal, vol. 17, no. 2, pp. e29-e33. https://doi.org/10.14797/ICHN7633

A survey-based estimate of COVID-19 incidence and outcomes among patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension or chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension and impact on the process of care
Lee, JD, Burger, CD, Delossantos, GB, Grinnan, D, Ralph, DD, Rayner, SG, Ryan, JJ, Safdar, Z, Ventetuolo, CE, Zamanian, RT & Leary, PJ 2020, , Annals of the American Thoracic Society, vol. 17, no. 12, pp. 1576-1582. https://doi.org/10.1513/AnnalsATS.202005-521OC

Expert consensus on the management of adverse events and prescribing practices associated with the treatment of patients taking pirfenidone for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis: A Delphi consensus study
Rahaghi, FF, Safdar, Z, Brown, AW, De Andrade, JA, Flaherty, KR, Kaner, RJ, King, CS, Padilla, ML, Noth, I, Scholand, MB, Shifren, A & Nathan, SD 2020, , BMC Pulmonary Medicine, vol. 20, no. 1, 191, pp. 191. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12890-020-01209-4

Associations between patient-reported outcomes and death or lung transplant in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis data from the idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis prospective outcomes registry
IPF-PRO Registry investigators 2020, , Annals of the American Thoracic Society, vol. 17, no. 6, pp. 699-705. https://doi.org/10.1513/AnnalsATS.201906-437OC

Spironolactone in pulmonary arterial hypertension: results of a cross-over study
Safdar, Z, Frost, AE, Basant, A, Deswal, A, O’Brian Smith, E & Entman, M 2020, , Pulmonary Circulation, vol. 10, no. 2. https://doi.org/10.1177/2045894019898030