Maria F. Lopes-Virella, MD, PhD, is Professor of Medicine and Pathology, Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Medical Genetics, Department of Medicine at the Medical University of South Carolina. She is also a Professor at the Departments of Immunology and Microbiology and Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the Medical University of South Carolina (joint appointments). She is a Staff Physician, Director of the Nutrition Support Team and Chief of the Clinical Chemistry and Microbiology Sections of Laboratory Services, at the Ralph H. Johnson Veterans Affairs Medical Center VAMC. She holds also joint appointments in the Oral and Community Health Sciences Division, Department of Stomatology, College of Dental Medicine, MUSC and in the Department of Bioengineering at Clemson University.
Dr Lopes-Virella received a degree in Medicine and a PhD in Medicine/Biochemistry from the School of Medicine, University of Lisbon, Portugal. She completed residencies in Internal Medicine and Clinical Pathology at the University Hospital, Lisbon and a fellowship in Endocrinology at Department of Medicine as well as a fellowship in Pathology at the Department of Pathology, both at MUSC. She was a visiting researcher at the University of Birmingham Medical School, England and at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Massachusetts.
Dr Lopes-Virella is a fellow of American Heart Association and a member of the American Diabetes Association, Endocrine Society and Southern Society for Clinical Investigation. She serves on the boards of the National Lipid Association and American Board of Clinical Lipidology. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including a Special Emphasis Research Career Award from the NHLBI and the NIAMDD and a VA Clinical Investigator award. In 2006 she received the Vision 7 Henry Middleton Award for Excellence in Research. She has served on editorial boards and peer-reviews for several journals and recently she became one of the Associate Editors for the Journal of Clinical Lipidology.
Ongoing research includes a NIH/NHLBI-funded study on Markers and Mechanisms of Macrovascular Disease in Diabetes Mellitus, in which she is studying the role of immune responses to modified lipoproteins and of inflammation in the development of micro and macrovascular complications in large cohorts of type 1 and type 2 diabetes; a VA Merit Review-funded research on Lipoprotein Metabolism and Cell-Lipoprotein Interactions in Diabetes Mellitus and a JDF-funded grant to study biomarkers and mechanisms of nephropathy in type 1 diabetes.