Nicholas J. Shaheen, MD, MPH
Chief, Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Professor of Medicine and Epidemiology
Director of the Center for Esophageal Diseases and Swallowing
Dr. Shaheen attended college at Harvard University, and earned his medical degree at the University of Chicago, Pritzker School of Medicine, where he fulfilled his internship and residency requirements. He completed his clinical fellowship training at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, earned his masters degree at the UNC School of Public Health, and completed a National Institutes of Health fellowship in Epidemiology. For the last 12 years, he has been a faculty member at UNC.
Dr. Shaheen's research interest is in the epidemiology and management of esophageal diseases. He is the author of numerous journal articles and book chapters related to reflux disease, motility disorders, Barrett’s esophagus, and esophageal cancer. He is currently on the editorial board of Gastroenterology and Clinical Gastroenterology & Hepatology, and is a reviewer for numerous journals including Gut, Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics, Gastroenterology and Hepatology, American Journal of Medicine, JAMA, and American Journal of Gastroenterology.
Dr. Shaheen receives research funding from the National Institutes of Health, multiple private foundations, and corporations to pursue clinical and translational research in esophageal diseases. Dr. Shaheen is a member of several professional societies, including the American Gastroenterological Association, the American Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy, the American Medical Society, and the North Carolina Medical Society. He is a Fellow of the American College of Gastroenterology, the American Gastroenterological Association, and the American College of Physicians. He is the President of the North Carolina Society of Gastroenterology, and the Vice-Chair of the Clinical Practice section of the AGA.
Evan S. Dellon, MD, MPH
Associate Professor of Medicine and Epidemiology
Dr. Dellon received his undergraduate degree from Brown University and his medical degree from Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. He completed internship and residency in Internal Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital. After residency, he remained at Massachusetts General for two years working as a Hospitalist and Assistant in Medicine as well as an Instructor at Harvard Medical School. He subsequently moved to Chapel Hill and completed both a clinical and a research fellowship in Gastroenterology at UNC, during which he received a master’s degree in Epidemiology from the UNC School of Public Health. His clinical training has also included experience with endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography and endoscopic ultrasound.
Dr. Dellon has been at the Center for Esophageal Diseases and Swallowing since 2008. Dr. Dellon’s main research interest is in the epidemiology, pathogenesis, diagnosis, and treatment of eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE). He also has research interests in advanced endoscopic techniques. He is a member of several professional societies, including the American Gastroenterological Association, the American College of Gastroenterology, the American Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy, and the North Carolina Society of Gastroenterology. Dr. Dellon receives research funding from an American College of Gastroenterology Junior Faculty Development Award as well as an intramural NIH KL2 Career Development Award.
Ryan D. Madanick, MD
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Director, Gastroenterology & Hepatology Fellowship Program
Dr. Madanick attended the University of Miami in the Honors Program in Medicine, where he earned both his undergraduate and medical degrees. He completed his residency in Internal Medicine at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where he was awarded Intern of the Year and Outstanding Teaching Resident. He returned to Miami for his subspecialty fellowship in gastroenterology at Jackson Memorial Hospital/University of Miami Medical Center. After completing his fellowship, he stayed on the faculty at the University of Miami until he moved to UNC in November 2006. He is board certified in Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology. His main clinical and research interests include refractory gastroesophageal reflux disease, extraesophageal reflux disease, Barrett’s esophagus, and esophageal motility disorders, with a prime focus on diagnosis and treatment strategies of patients with GERD who do not respond to therapy.
Roy C. Orlando, MD
Mary Kay & Eugene Bozymski and Linda & William Heizer Distinguished Professor of Medicine
Adjunct Professor of Cell and Molecular Physiology
Dr. Orlando attended Georgetown University Medical School in Washington, D.C., was elected to AOA and graduated Cum Laude with an M.D. degree. He did his GI Fellowship at UNC and, after 2 years of military service, joined the UNC faculty. He rose to the rank of Professor of Medicine and left UNC in 1992 to assume the position of Chief of Gastroenterology & Hepatology at Tulane University in New Orleans. During his tenure at Tulane, he was also Director of the Center for Esophageal & Swallowing Disorders. In July 2007, Dr. Orlando, an internationally-recognized expert in esophageal disease, returned to UNC as full time faculty member. He is also an outstanding clinician, having been listed continuously among the ‘Best Doctors In America: Southeast Region’ from 1996 -2007.
Melissa Spacek, NP, BSN, CGRN
Adult Nurse Practitioner
Melissa Spacek received her BSN at Gannon University in Erie, PA. Prior to coming to Chapel Hill, she worked in Neurology at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston. She joined the UNC team in March of 1996. Melissa initially worked as a staff nurse in general medicine when coming to UNC. She proceeded to specializing in Gastroenterology and Hepatology in 1997, where she joined the endoscopy staff, initially as a procedural nurse and then moving to management of UNC’s Endoscopy department. She received her certification in Gastroenterology in 2001. Melissa joined UNC’s Center for Esophageal Diseases and Swallowing in April of 2004. She is involved in both research and clinical, specializing in esophageal disorders. She is presently enrolled in UNC’s Adult Nurse Practitioner Program.
Kathleen Ferrell, PA-C, MPAS
Kathleen A. Ferrell is a certified Physician Assistant for the CEDAS group at UNC. Kathleen graduated from the Physician Assistant program at Jefferson College of Health Sciences in Roanoke, Virginia in 2007. She then completed her Masters of Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS) degree from the University of Nebraska. Kathleen worked for a private practice gastroenterology group in Christiansburg, VA for several years, before relocating to Chapel Hill, NC to work with the Center for Esophageal Diseases and Swallowing in June, 2010. She works directly with Drs. Madanick, Shaheen, Dellon, and Orlando to diagnose and treat patients with a multitude of esophageal diseases including Barrett’s esophagus, eosinophilic esophagitis, functional esophageal disorders and gastroesophageal reflux.
Xiaoxin (Luke) Chen, MD, PhD
Associate Professor of Biology at the Cancer Research Program, Julius L. Chambers Biomedical/Biotechnology Research Institute, North Carolina Central University (NCCU).
Dr. Chen is a member of the Center for Esophageal Diseases and Swallowing (CEDAS) at the University of North Carolina. Dr. Chen earned his medical degree at the Peking University Health Science Center (formerly Beijing Medical University), where he fulfilled his internship and continued as a resident (Orthopedic Surgery) for three years. He then went to Rutgers University, where he earned his PhD degree (Biochemistry) at the Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy. Next, he became a faculty member of the Susan Lehman Cullman Laboratory of Medicine, Department of Chemical Biology, Rutgers University. In 2005, he became a faculty member at NCCU, and joined CEDAS.
His research interest is molecular mechanism and prevention of Barrett's esophagus and esophageal adenocarcinoma. His lab also works on how inflammation may contribute to oral cancer and prostate cancer. He has authored numerous journal articles and book chapters related to oral and esophageal diseases. He is currently a reviewer for numerous journals. Dr. Chen receives research funding from the National Institutes of Health, Department of Defense, private foundations and corporations to pursue basic and translational research in Barrett's esophagus and esophageal adenocarcinoma. Dr. Chen is a member of several professional societies, including the American Association for Cancer Research.
Susan E. Moist, MPH
Susie Moist is a Project Director for the CEDAS group. Graduating from the Pennsylvania State University in 2006 with a BS in Psychology and minor in Business, Susie’s research career began in Florida focusing on substance abuse and mental health. Other research experience includes pediatric epidemiology and type 1 diabetes. In 2010 Susie relocated to North Carolina and joined the CEDAS group where she currently manages multiple research projects. Susie completed her MPH in Health Policy and Management at UNC in 2013.
Sarah McGee, CCRC
Clinical Research Coordinator/Research Specialist
Sarah McGee joined CEDAS in 2014 as a Clinical Research Coordinator and Research Specialist. She graduated from UNC Chapel Hill with a degree in Public Policy in 2001 and in 2008 began working in research in the UNC Department of Pulmonary and Critical Care, specializing in Pulmonary Hypertension clinical trials. She currently manages multiple drug trials treating Barrett’s Esophagus, Eosinophilic Esophagitis, and other esophageal diseases.
Leana LeFrapper Higgins
Clinical Research Assistant
RoseMary Ann Beitia, MA, LPA
Clinical Research Assistant
RoseMary began her research career as a Social/Clinical Research Assistant with UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center recruiting participants and managing data for a large hospital-based biorepository. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of North Florida in Jacksonville, FL and a Master of Arts degree in Clinical Health Psychology at Appalachian State University. Her research interests include, promoting understanding of disease process and prevention as well as improving overall physical, psychological, and emotional patient wellness through interdisciplinary collaboration. RoseMary joined the CEDAS group in March 2014 and currently manages multiple tissue procurement studies related to esophageal and swallowing disorders.
Jacquelyn Q. Covington
Clinical Research Assistant
Jacquelyn Covington is a Clinical Research Coordinator for the CEDAS group. She graduated from NC State University in 2011 with a BS in Biological Sciences. She has a research background at Duke University recruiting research participants and working as a lab technician in the various genetic studies associated with the Center for Human Genome Variation at Duke University. Jacquelyn recently joined the CEDAS group in 2014 and manages multiple research projects related to esophageal and swallowing disorders.
Clinical Research Assistant
Jessica Hores Gebhart, MSHS
Jessica Gebhart currently works part-time for the Center for Esophageal Diseases and Swallowing as a research specialist. She graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2007 with a BA in Exercise and Sport Science and minor in Chemistry and completed her MSHS in Clinical Research Administration through George Washington University in December 2012. She began working in the GI division in colon cancer research and joined CEDAS in 2010 as a Clinical Research Coordinator/Research Specialist. She managed numerous research projects related to esophageal and swallowing conditions and currently works with the group part-time remotely on various projects.
Administrative Support Specialist
Administrative Support Specialist