About Us

Benjamin Levi, M.D.

Principal Investigator

Lee-Hudson Professor and Division Chief of General Surgery
Director, Center for Organogenesis, Regeneration, and Trauma
Associate Professor in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and General Surgery
Member, Children's Research Institute and Center for Mineral Metabolism Research
University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
Phone: 214-533-7680

Dr. Levi completed his undergraduate education at Washington University, medical school at Northwestern University and Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery residency at the University of Michigan. During this time he completed a 2 year post-doctoral research fellowship at Stanford University. He  completed a fellowship in Burn Surgery and Surgical Critical Care at Massachusetts General Hospital. Benjamin has been involved in Burn research since High School when given the opportunity to work in the Burn Laboratory of Richard Gamelli MD and Luisa DiPietro DDS, PhD. Subsequently, and for three consecutive summers, he worked in the Burn and Shock Trauma laboratory of Dr. Gamelli and Dr. Luisa DiPietro with a focus on wound healing and inflammation.

Inspired by this experience, he remained active in research throughout medical school and residency and he dedicated two years of additional training to do a basic science research fellowship in stem cell biology and bone tissue engineering at Stanford University under Dr. Michael Longaker. During this time, he focused on basic stem cell biology, mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) osteogenesis, and bone tissue engineering.

Upon returning to the University of Michigan, Dr. Levi  developed the Burn/Wound and Regenerative Medicine Laboratory with the guidance of Dr. Stewart Wang. This lab has focused on the significant clinical problem of heterotopic ossification. Porting this work to UTSW, Dr. Levi has developed new animal models to study this complex process and is working to improve early diagnostic and treatment modalities.

The Levi Lab Team

The BWR Laboratory is grounded on a foundation of teamwork, bringing together doctors, professional scientists, medical students, graduate students, and undergraduates from a variety of backgrounds.

Lab Members

deb carlson

Deborah Carlson, PhD

Assistant Professor

Nicole Edwards, PhD

Heeseog Kang, PhD

Senior Research Scientist

Nicole Edwards, PhD

Tao Yue, PhD

Assistant Professor

Ryan Huebinger, PhD

Lab Manager

Yuxiao Sun, PhD

Research Scientist

Nicole Edwards, PhD

Neda Vishlaghi

Post-Doc Researcher

Meriam Elahmad, MD

Clinical Fellow

Chase Pagani

Graduate Student Researcher

Nicole Edwards, PhD

Rachael Hansen

Program coodinator

Nicole Edwards, PhD

Sneha Korlakunta

Data Scientist

Nicole Edwards, PhD

Xiao Yao

Lab Manager

Nicole Edwards, PhD

Ji Hae (Lauren) Choi

Research Assistant

Nicole Edwards, PhD

Reid Olson

Lab Tech Assistant

Nicole Edwards, PhD

Madysen Hunter

Medical Student

Michael Woodard

Research Assistant

Nicole Edwards, PhD

Conan Juan

Medical Student

Nicole Edwards, PhD

Monisha Mittal

Computational Biologist


Amanda Huber, PhD

Research Investigator

Nicole Edwards, PhD

Janna Crossley

Research Assistant

Simone Marini, PhD

Research Assistant Professor - UFlorida

Charles Hwang, BS

Charles Hwang, MD

Plastic Surgery Resident - Harvard

Robert Tower, PhD

Assistant Professor


Sara De La Rosa, MD

Ophthalmologist at Southeast Iowa Regional Medical Center

Casey Kraft, MD

Plastic Surgeon at Cosmetic and Plastic Surgery of Columbus

Jim Drake, MD

General Surgery Chief Resident at UIC Peoria

Michael Sorkin, MD

Plastic Surgeon at Ohio State University

David Stepien, MD, PhD

Plastic Surgery Aesthetic Fellow at Calvert Beverly Hills Plastic Surgery

Geoffrey Hespe, MD

Plastic Surgery Resident at University of Michigan

Jessica Medrano

Veterinarian at the Mississippi State University-College of Veterinary Medicine

Ashish Chowdary

Medical Student at UT Southwestern

Jake Rinkinen, MD

Plastic Surgeon at Florida Plastic Surgery Group

Shawn Loder, MD

Plastic Surgery Resident at University of Pittsburgh Medical Center

Oluwatobi Eboda, MA

PhD Candidate in University of Otago (New Zealand)

Serra Ucer, PhD

Post doctoral fellow, University of Texas Austin

Noelle Visser, MS

PhD Candidate at University of Louisville

Amy Strong, MD, PhD

Plastic Surgery Resident at University of Michigan

Matthew Kovoor

Medical Student at Brown University

Spencer Barnes

Bioinformatics Programmer at Monoceros Biosystems

Trisha Ghotra

Medical Student at University of Texas

Jeffrey Lisiecki, MD

Plastic Surgeon, NYC Private Practice

Cameron Brownley, BA

Chiropracter at Shine Family Chiropractic

David Fireman

Clinical Specialist at Abbott Labs

Keiko Kaneko, PhD

Researcher, Tokyo University of Science in Japan

Wesley Huang, BS

MD PhD student at University of Michigan

Kaetlin Merriman, MS

Assistant Director Institutional Animal Care and Use at U. Florida

Nicole Edwards, PhD

Senior Scientist at Evotec Biologics

Sonya Ostashevskaya-Gohstand

Senior Researcher

Jonathan Hong

Medical Student

Meng-Lun Hsieh

Radiation Oncology Resident at UT Southwestern

Kay Shigemori

DPhil student at Oxford University

Shailesh Agarwal, MD

Plastic Surgeon at Brigham and Women’s Hospital

Shuli Li, MD, PhD

Senior Scientist

Charles Hwang, MD

Plastic Surgery Resident at Harvard University

Nicole Patel, MD

General Surgery Resident at the University of Michigan

Chase Pagani, BS

MD/PhD student at UTSW Medical School

Cori Booker, PhD

Scientist at Colossal Biosciences

Nicholas Livingston

Medical Student at Wayne State University

Johanna Nunez

General Surgery Resident at UT Southwestern

Support Our Research

Burn/trauma and regenerative medicine researchers in plastic surgery seek to prevent the formation of bones in abnormal locations. Gifts help alleviate this condition affecting burn, auto accident, orthopaedic surgery and blast injury patients by providing additional resources to employ state of the art technologies, recruit talented researchers, and disseminate our scientific findings widely.


Post-Doctoral Fellow Position Available Immediately Learn more