The Rockefeller University Hospital

Center Information

Rhonda Kost
The Rockefeller University Hospital
1230 York Avenue
New York, NY 10065

Video Presentations

Currently Enrolling Trials

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Therapeutic Areas

Cardiology/Vascular Diseases
Hepatology (Liver, Pancreatic, Gall Bladder)
Infections and Infectious Diseases
Nutrition and Weight Loss


In 1910, Rockefeller scientists founded the nation’s first hospital devoted exclusively to experimental medicine. The Rockefeller University Hospital’s only patients are participants in clinical research studies building on basic research findings from the Rockefeller University laboratories. Unburdened by constraints of standard patient care, the hospital is a vital component of Rockefeller’s commitment to accelerating basic research findings on their route from bench to bedside for the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disease. Some of the conditions currently being studied are: Addiction, Blood Disorders, Cancer, Hepatitis, HIV/AIDS, Kidney Disease, Obesity and Psoriasis.

From 1963 until 2006, the Hospital was partially supported by the General Clinical Research Center (GCRC) Program of the National Center for Research Resources (NCRR) branch of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The GCRC program supports a national network of centers that provide the clinical research infrastructure for investigators receiving primary research support from the NIH.

In September 2006, the University was awarded a Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) from the NIH National Center for Research Resources. The award, the successor to the GCRC Program, led to the establishment of the Rockefeller University Center for Clinical and Translational Science, and provided additional resources to complement those coming from the University for the support of the University's human subjects research.


Over the Hospital's history, interactions between clinical and non-clinical scientists have taken many productive forms that have greatly advanced the life sciences. Some major contributions include the development of the oxygen chamber, influenza immunization, treatment for African sleeping sickness, the Van Slyke manometric apparatus, methods for blood transfusion and blood storage, diagnostic tests for lead poisoning, and the detailed characterization of numerous diseases including poliomyelitis, Wilson's disease, and most recently, epidermolysis bullosa. Rockefeller University Professor David Ho, Scientific Director of the Aaron Diamond AIDS Research Center, helped develop effective multi-drug therapies for HIV infection and the prevention of progression to AIDS.

Rockefeller University researchers achieved many of the last century’s seminal advances in the biomedical sciences, including:

  • Discovering that DNA is the basic material of heredity (1944)
  • Determining that cancer can be caused by a virus (1911)
  • Confirming the connection between cholesterol and heart disease (1950s)
  • Developing methadone maintenance for people addicted to heroin (1960s)
  • Developing the AIDS “cocktail” drug therapy (1990s)


The specialized personnel and other resources available at the Rockefeller University Hospital facilitate clinical research for both the investigator and the research participant. The Hospital's 20 bed inpatient unit operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. All patient rooms are single-occupancy, private accommodations.

Specialized facilities include: a four-room procedure suite, suitable for endoscopy and biopsy procedures; 2 hardwired cardiac monitored beds and 2 telemetry cardiac monitoring units; and a broad-band/narrow-band ultraviolet light box for psoriasis treatment.

The Robert & Harriet Heilbrunn Outpatient Research Center opened in January 2003 and includes 9 exam rooms, 2 consultation rooms, and 2 phlebotomy rooms, as well as other patient and staff facilities. The Outpatient Research Center is open weekdays from 7AM to 5PM.

A new, state-of-the-art digital radiology suite opened in spring 2003.

The Rockefeller University Hospital and Center for Clinical and Translational Science is particularly suitable to conducting studies involving moderate and low acuity patients, as well as high-intensity, high-complexity protocols such as pharmacokinetics and metabolic studies. The Hospital's strengths include: a specialized Research Bionutrition Department, an on-site Research Pharmacy, and facilities to support long-stay inpatient studies, including an Art & Recreation Department, which offers participants pleasant and rewarding craft, video and computer activities in a safe and comfortable environment.

The Hospital is accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) and licensed by the State of New York.


Arleen D. Auerbach, Ph. D. Area of Expertise: Fanconi Anemia

Jan L. Breslow, M.D. Area of Expertise: Atherosclerotic Disease.

Jon D. Blumenfeld, M.D. Area of Experstise: Polycystic Kidney Disease and Hypertension

Barry Coller, M.D. Area of Expertise: Molecular interactions between blood cells and blood vessels.

Robert B. Darnell, M.D., Ph.D. Area of Expertise: the paraneoplastic neurologic disorders (PND), a group of rare brain diseases, which arise in conjunction with immune responses to cancer.

Madhav Dhodapkar, M.D. Area of Expertise: The interactions between tumor and immune system in patients with multiple myeloma.

Jeffrey M. Friedman, M.D., Ph.D. Area of Expertise: The genes and neural circuits that control food intake and body weight, and leptin’s mechanism of action and its relevance to the development of obesity.

Charles D. Gilbert, M.D., Ph.D. Area of Expertise: The mechanisms underlying visual perception

David Ho, M.D. Area of Expertise: The pathogenesis of HIV.

Peter Holt, M.D. Area of Expertise: Colon Cancer Prevention.

Lisa Cooper Hudgins, M.D. Area of Expertise: Kidney Disease

Mary Jeanne Kreek, M.D. Area of Expertise: The biological basis of addictive diseases.

James Krueger, M.D., Ph.D. Area of Expertise: The study of cutaneous inflammation and autoimmune mechanisms in human skin.

Martin M. Markowitz, M.D. Area of Expertise: Acute HIV Infection.

Christian Münz, Ph.D. Area of Expertise: the immune control of persistent viral infections, with a focus on the immunobiology of the - Herpesvirus Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)

Lisa M. Neff, M.D. Area of Expertise: The metabolic effects of different weight loss diets in individuals with the metabolic syndrome and the biologic, environmental, and behavioral predictors of long-term success with conventional weight loss treatments.

Manish Ponda, M.D. Area of Expertise: Chronic Kidney Disease.

Charles M. Rice, Ph.D. Area of Expertise: Hepatitis C

Ralph M. Steinman, M.D. Area of Expertise: Specialized antigen-presenting cells,

Markus Stoffel, M.D, Ph.D./Allegra Grossman, M.D. Area of Expertise: Genetics of Type II Diabetes and Metabolism

Leslie B. Vosshall, Ph.D. Area of Expertise: Olfaction


The Department of Nursing and Patient Care Services provides best practice for research participants enrolled in the multiple research studies at the Rockefeller University Hospital. The care of research participants is served by the diversity of clinical skills and support services of:

  • Nursing
  • Pharmacy
  • Social Work
  • Arts and Recreation

An environment of community is fostered with protection of human subjects and adherence to protocol as prime concerns.

The research setting is an environment that brings the health care team and the research design together in an attempt to understand the novel relationships that will ultimately benefit mankind. The process is both provocative and exciting, supporting the philosophy that the knowledge that bridges science and medicine is built on objectively sound data.

Clinical Research nurses provide specialized support to clinical investigators. They are members of an interdisciplinary research team dedicated to conducting clinical translational research. They are expert at performing on-going informed consent assessments and provide assurance to the entire research team that protection of human subject participants is being adhered to throughout the implementation of the study, and develop and implement cutting edge techniques in data and specimen collection. They are also expert at processing and storing data and specimens.1

A staff of Clinical Research Nurses and skilled nursing assistants provides expert care. Unit secretaries, messengers and various contracted services provide supportive services. Education includes research training and clinical reviews. All professional staff is Advance Cardiac Life Support certified. Nursing Assistants are Basic Life Support certified.


1. McClary, K. & Offenhartz, M. Clinical research nurses give new meaning to "protect and serve". NY/NJ Nursing Spectrum (April 24, 2006). 22-23.

The Bionutrition Department, under the direction of two Registered Dietitians and a dietetic technician, handles the calculations, preparation, and serving of all meals for Hospital patients, including scientifically designed therapeutic, metabolic and formula diets. A metabolic or research diet is used for studies by several Hospital laboratory groups. In essence, a metabolic diet is a controlled natural dietary regime that is designed to meet exact specifications for such macronutrients as protein, fat, carbohydrate, cholesterol and fiber.

A Certified Social Worker assists research volunteers with their concerns, locates resources as needed and does discharge planning.

The Recreation Coordinator contributes to the environment for inpatients by providing diversion through pleasant and rewarding activities in a safe and comfortable atmosphere.


The Rockefeller University Hospital is located in New York City. Most research volunteers come from the New York metropolitan area. The racial and cultural background of the patients is diverse.

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