Meet the Team

The members of the Jewish Genetics Disease Center team conduct direct clinical and research activities to develop improved diagnosis, treatment, and prevention for the diseases that primarily affect Ashkenazi Jews and those with those genetic lines. We work the many patients who seek our services in order to manage the conditions for which they may be carriers.

Center Director

Robert J. Desnick, PhD, MD

Program Directors/Co-Directors

Medical Evaluation and Genetic Counseling

Judith P. Willner, MD

Carrier Screening and Prenatal Diagnosis

Robert J. Desnick, PhD, MD
Randi Zinberg, MS

Comprehensive Gaucher Disease Diagnosis and Treatment Program

Ainu Prakash-Cheng, MD, PhD
Robert J. Desnick, PhD, MD

International Center for Types A and B Niemann-Pick Disease

Margaret McGovern, PhD, MD
Edward Schuchman, PhD

Clinical Geneticists

Maryam Banikazemi, MD
George Diaz, MD, PhD
Robert J. Desnick, PhD, MD
Ainu Prakash-Cheng, MD, PhD
Nataline B. Kardon, MD
Margaret McGovern, PhD, MD
Melissa P. Wasserstein, MD
Judith P. Willner, MD 

Genetic Counselors

Karen L. Brown, MS
Dana Doheny, MS
Sayeh Farivar, MS
Yara Kharbutli, MS
Julie McGlynn, MS
Jessica Rispoli, MS
Jane Robinowitz, MS
Erica Wahl, MS
Randi Zinberg, MS

Nurse Practitioners/Program Coordinators

Coraleen Fosella, MA, ANP
Mary Keogh, MS, ANP
Marevick Fojas, BSN, RN 

Enzyme and DNA Diagnostic Laboratory

Ruth Kornreich, PhD

Research Specialists

Kenneth H. Astrin, PhD
Lisa Edelmann, PhD
Xinghuan He, MD
Calogera Simonaro, PhD