Best Practices in Treating Polyposis Conditions

Presenter Bios

Elena Stoffel

MD, MPH - University of Michicagn

Dr. Stoffel is Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine and Director of the Cancer Genetics Clinic at the University of Michigan.  After earning her MD at Harvard Medical School she completed  training in Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, where she was on staff until her move to University of Michigan in 2011. Dr. Stoffel’s clinical and research work focuses on diagnosis and management of hereditary cancer syndromes, as well as early detection and prevention of gastrointestinal cancers.  She is the principal investigator of studies which examine the effect of epidemiologic, genetic and behavioral factors on cancer risk.

Paul Wise

MD - Washington University - St. Louis

Dr. Paul Wise completed his general surgery residency and research residency at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville in 2003 after completing medical school at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in 1996 and undergraduate studies at Georgetown University in 1992 where he graduated magna cum laude. He completed his colon and rectal surgery fellowship at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis/Barnes Jewish Hospital in 2004. He served on the faculty of Vanderbilt University Medical Center from 2004-2012 and thereafter accepted a faculty position at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis where he currently serves as Associate Professor of Surgery as well as Program Director for the General Surgery Residency Training Program and Director of the Inherited Colorectal Cancer and Polyposis Registry. Dr. Wise has a particular interest in hereditary colorectal cancer which lead to his election to the Council and eventually the Presidency (2010-2011) of the Collaborative Group of the Americas on Inherited Colorectal Cancer where he currently serves on the CGA Fund Board. He was a founding member of the Lynch Syndrome Screening Network, a group dedicated to increasing the identification of patients and their family members who are at risk for Lynch syndrome. He is certified by the American Board of Surgery and the American Board of Colon and Rectal Surgery and is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons.

Douglas Riegert-Johnson

MD - Mayo Clinic, FL


Douglas Riegert-Johnson lives in Ponte Vedra Beach Florida and works at Mayo Clinic Florida in Jacksonville. He is an associate professor of medicine and genetics.  His family is originally from the Birmingham area of Alabama and he attended the University of Alabama School of Medicine. Dr. Riegert-Johnson then completed a residency and chief residency in medicine and fellowship in gastroenterology at Mayo Clinic Rochester. He also completed a residency in medical genetics at Johns Hopkins. His mentor is Dr. Lisa Boardman at Mayo Clinic Rochester. 


For the past 6 years Dr. Riegert-Johnson has been at Mayo Clinic Florida leading a cancer genetics program.  He has been very fortunate to work with a group of truly talented physicians, nurses and genetic counselors. The cancer genetics group has been active in researching many cancer syndromes including familial adenomatous polyposis, Peutz-Jeghers syndrome, Lynch syndrome, Muir-Tore syndrome and Cowden syndrome. Notable projects include working with Dr. Lynch to describe the EPCAM mutation from of Lynch syndrome and the largest study of Cowden syndrome at the time it was published.


His current project is to develop an open access web-based platform for education and caring for FAP patients called Other completed projects include a cancer genetics ebook for called

James Church

MD - Cleveland Clinic

James Church is a native New Zealander who attended medical school at the University of Auckland. His surgical training was also in Auckland, New Zealand.  Following this he spent 2 years doing research before taking up a colorectal surgical fellowship at the Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland Ohio. In 1989 he joined the Staff of the Colorectal department in Cleveland. Dr. Church’s interests include hereditary colorectal cancer syndromes, colonoscopy and polypectomy, the clinical care and molecular biology of colon and rectal cancer, anal fistulas, fecal incontinence and inflammatory bowel disease. He is the Director of the Sanford R. Weiss Center for Hereditary Colorectal Neoplasia, holds the Victor W. Fazio Chair of Colorectal Surgery and is the sole author of 2 textbooks, over 50 chapters and over 295 peer reviewed articles, and for 10 years was co-editor of Diseases of the Colon and Rectum. He is regularly listed among the top doctors in America, is a fellow of the American Surgical Society and became a Distinguished Alumnus of the University of Auckland in 2008.

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Deb Neklason

PhD - University of Utah Huntsman Cancer Institute

Deborah Neklason, PhD is an Associate Professor of Genetic Epidemiology in the Department of Internal Medicine at the University of Utah. She obtained her bachelor’s degree in microbiology from University of Washington and her PhD in Human Genetics from University of Utah. She has been an investigator at Huntsman Cancer Institute for the past 13 years where her research is focused on the genetic basis of gastrointestinal cancers. Current projects involve identification of inherited genetic variants that are important in cancer risk, developing diagnostics to identify individuals at risk of developing colon cancer, and clinical trials to prevent cancer. Dr. Neklason is also the Program Director of the Utah Genome Project, where she is able to bring together clinicians and researchers to solve the genetic basis of many important medical conditions.

Michael Hall

MD - Fox Chase Cancer Center

Dr. Hall is a health services researcher and clinical cancer geneticist at Fox Chase Cancer Center here in Philadelphia. He received his undergraduate and medical degrees from Columbia University in New York City. He completed an internal medicine residency at Harvard’s Brigham and Women’s hospital and a fellowship in Hematology/Oncology at the University of Chicago where he established a clinical and research focus in GI cancers and genetic risk. His current research examines novel methods to identify patients for hereditary cancer risk and communicate high risk information within families. He is the recipient of research funding from the Chemotherapy Foundation, the Greenwall Foundation, the American Cancer Society, and the National Cancer Institute.

Carol Burke

MD - Cleveland Clinic

Dr. Carol A. Burke, MD, FACG, FASGE, FACP is the Director of the Center for Colon Polyp and Cancer Prevention and the section head of polyposis in the Sanford R. Weiss MD Center for Hereditary Colorectal Neoplasia at the Cleveland Clinic. She has been a staff member in the Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at the Cleveland Clinic since graduating from her fellowship there in 1993. She holds a joint appointment in the Taussig Cancer Center and the Department of Colorectal Surgery at the Cleveland Clinic. She is internationally known for her expertise in the inherited colon cancer syndromes and the prevention of colorectal neoplasia and invited lecturer at national and international meetings. Her area of clinical and research interests include the prevention of colorectal neoplasia both in sporadic individuals and those with the inherited colorectal cancer syndromes. She has funding for her research through the NCI, NIH, USDA and industry. She has been involved in the education of medical students, residents and fellows since 1991 and has developed and coordinated the digestive disease curriculum for trainees in the in and out patient setting in the Department. She is the author of “Colonoscopy for Dummies” and has authored or co-authored over 80 publications. She is a visiting professor, and invited speaker at national and international conferences on the prevention of colorectal neoplasia and the inherited colon cancer syndromes. She serves on the Board of Trustees for the American College of Gastroenterology, the Board of the Ohio Gastroenterology Society and is a past president of the Collaborative Group of the Americas on Inherited Colorectal Cancer. She has been an associate editor for the American Journal of Gastroenterology and is a reviewer for many journals including Gut, Endoscopy, Diseases of the Colon and Rectum, Gastroenterology, Gastrointestinal Endoscopy, and the American Journal of Gastroenterology to name a few.


MS, LGC - Cleveland Clinic

Brandie Heald Leach, MS, is a certified genetic counselor at the Cleveland Clinic. She has been practicing there since 2006 upon graduating from the University of Cincinnati Graduate Program in Genetic Counseling. Ms. Leach counsels patients with or at risk for hereditary cancer syndromes, especially hereditary colon cancer conditions. In 2007 she established genetic counseling services within the Digestive Disease Institute at the Cleveland Clinic. She also coordinates the Cleveland Clinic institution-wide MSI testing program, and conducts research on the hamartomatous polyposis syndromes and Barrett's esophagus. She has served in various leadership positions within the National Society of Genetic Counselors and is on the Collaborative Group of the Americas on Inherited Colorectal Cancer Council. Ms. Leach is a member of the Cleveland Clinic Commission on Cancer Committee. 


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We would like to thank 

Ambry Genetics


Cancer Prevention Pharmaceuticals


Myriad Genetics

for their generous grant support of this educational activity.

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