Following his residency in Anatomic and Clinical Pathology and his clinical and research training in Pediatric Pathology, Oncology, and Medical Genetics, Dr. Urano studied Molecular Endocrinology and Endoplasmic Reticulum (ER) biology at the New York University Medical Center with David Ron, MD. Dr. Urano’s current main focus is to find a cure for juvenile diabetes and genetic forms of diabetes including Type 1 diabetes and Wolfram syndrome using stem cell-based therapeutics and gene-based diagnostics. Dr. Urano was elected to the American Society for Clinical Investigation in 2011.
Dr. Urano’s research is focused on developing personalized medicine for juvenile diabetes and genetic forms of diabetes, especially Wolfram syndrome characterized by juvenile diabetes, optic nerve atrophy, and neurodegeneration. Urano’s team has been establishing gene-based diagnostics for Wolfram syndrome and other forms of diabetes, and is currently developing novel therapeutics for juvenile diabetes and genetic forms of diabetes including Wolfram syndrome using induced-pluripotent stem cells (iPS cells) derived from patients’ skin cells. His team is also developing a method for the regeneration of insulin-producing cells using a trophic factor. Urano’s team has established the Wolfram syndrome patient registry to identify disease-progression biomarkers and drug targets for designing therapeutic trials (http://wolframsyndrome.dom.wustl.edu/).