Current Environment:

Meet Our Team | Overview

The seven Pedi Lyme Net study EDs are located in hyper-endemic as well as new areas of Lyme disease transmission. Our team consists of an experienced pediatric emergency medicine collaborators. Each participating ED has well-developed research infrastructure with trained research coordinators to enroll eligible children.

Lise E. Nigrovic, MD, MPH Lise. E. Nigrovic, MD, MPH

Lise E. Nigrovic, MD, MPH, received her degree from Harvard Medical School and her MPH in clinical effectiveness from the Harvard School of Public Health. She completed her residency, chief residency and clinical fellowship in Pediatric Emergency Medicine at Boston Children's Hospital.

She joined the faculty in the Division of Emergency Medicine at Boston Children’s Hospital in 2006. She now serves as co-director for the Population Science for the Institutional Centers for Clinical and Translational Research (ICCTR) and the Boston Children’s Hospital Medical Research Office for Harvard Catalyst.

Nigrovic’s current research focuses on the appropriate initial diagnostic evaluation of children with possible Lyme disease. Her work has included derivation and validation of clinical prediction rules for children with facial palsy, meningitis and arthritis,as well as evaluation of new approaches to Lyme disease diagnosis.

Research Staff

Rachael Aresco, BS Rachael Aresco, BS

Rachael graduated from Salve Regina University in May 2020 where she received a B.S. in Biology and Biomedical Sciences. During her studies, she minored in Chemistry, Psychology, and Neuroscience, and worked on Food and Chemical Toxicology research in the lab. After graduating, she joined the Pedi Lyme Net team at Boston Children's Hospital in October 2020. She hopes to eventually pursue a career in pediatric medicine.


Mariah Elder, BS Mariah Elder, BS

Mariah graduated from Skidmore College in May 2021 with a Bachelors in Science in Health and Human Sciences and a Minor in Education. During her undergraduate career she studied blood flow restriction therapies as a rehabilitative technology, and worked in an OT center studying children. After graduating, Mariah joined the Pedi Lyme Net team at Boston Children's in July 2021. She is interested in pursuing a career in public health.


David Lewander, B.S. David Lewander, BS

David joined Pedi Lyme Net in May of 2018. He graduated George Washington University with a B.S. in Public Health in 2016, where he concentrated his studies in urban health and global health policy. After graduating, David worked as a clinical medical scribe for Brown Emergency Medicine and finished his remaining pre-medical studies. He is now attending the Brown University School of Public Health while continuing to work part-time for Pedi Lyme Net.


David Lewander, B.S. Ariella Wagner, MS

Ariella graduated from Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai with her M.S. in Clinical Research in 2019, where her research was focused on the impact of prenatal drug exposure and childhood trauma on adolescent emotion processing. Since graduating, Ariella has been working as a research coordinator in Psychiatry at ISMMS until she recently joined the Emergency Medicine research team at Boston Children’s Hospital. She will be applying to medical school in summer of 2021 in hopes of pursuing a career in medicine.

Clinical Research Network

Fran Balamuth, MD, PhD, MSCE Fran Balamuth, MD, PhD, MSCE
Children's Hospital of Philadelphia

Fran Balamuth, MD, PhD, MSCE, is an assistant professor of Pediatrics at the University of Pennsylvania, an attending physician in the Division of Emergency Medicine and a core faculty member at the Center for Pediatric Clinical Effectiveness at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). Balamuth received her degree from Yale University School of Medicine, a PhD in immunobiology from Yale, and a Master of Science and Clinical Epidemiology from the University of Pennsylvania. She completed clinical training in pediatrics and pediatric emergency medicine at CHOP. She currently serves as the associate director of research for the Division of Emergency Medicine at CHOP, as well as a co-founder and co-director of the CHOP Pediatric Sepsis Program.

Balamuth’s research interest focuses primarily on improving recognition and treatment of pediatric sepsis. Her interest in Lyme diagnostics stems from this overarching interest in honing infection-related diagnostics in the emergency setting, and she is proud to contribute to the important efforts of Pedi Lyme Net.


Jonathan Bennett, MD Jonathan Bennett, MD
Nemours/AI duPont Children's Hospital

Jonathan Bennett, MD is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the Sidney Kimmel College of Medicine, Thomas Jefferson University and attending physician in Pediatric Emergency Medicine at the Nemours/A.I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, DE. He graduated from the New York University School of Medicine and did residency training at the Children’s Hospital of New York/Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. His fellowship training was completed at St. Louis Children’s Hospital/Washington University at St. Louis. For the past 15 years Dr. Bennett’s research has focused on multi-center trials attempting to answer important questions in Pediatric Emergency Medicine.


Laura Chapman, MD Laura Chapman, MD
Hasbro Children's Hospital

Laura Chapman, MD trained at Dartmouth Medical School, followed by her residency at Massachusetts General Hospital and her fellowship in Pediatric Emergency Medicine at Hasbro Children’s Hospital. She joined the faculty at Brown University and Hasbro Children’s Hospital in 2009 where she currently is an associate professor of Pediatrics and Emergency Medicine. She has been the associate medical director and the director of the clinical decision unit since 2016 and the director of advanced practice practitioners since 2017. Her research interests include emergency department operations, quality improvement, creation and implementation of clinical pathways and pediatric sepsis.


Aris C. Garro, MD, MPH Aris C. Garro, MD, MPH
Hasbro Children's Hospital (site PI emeritus)

Aris Garro, MD, trained at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, followed by his residency at Cincinnati Children's Hospital and his fellowship at Hasbro Children's Hospital. During his fellowship, he completed his Masters in Public Health at Brown University. He joined the faculty at Brown University and Rhode Island Hospital in 2007 where he was appointed professor of Pediatrics and Emergency Medicine. He is the medical supervisor for the community asthma programs of Rhode Island and a researcher focusing on pediatric asthma and Lyme disease.


Anupam Kharbanda, MD Anupam Kharbanda, MD
Children's Minnesota

Anupam Kharbanda, MD, is the chief of Critical Care Services and a pediatric emergency medicine physician. Kharbanda attended medical school at the University of Iowa and completed his residency training in pediatrics and served as Chief Resident at Columbia University. Kharbanda completed a fellowship in Pediatric Emergency Medicine at Boston Children's Hospital, Harvard Medical School. He also received a Masters in Biostatistics at Columbia University. Kharbanda was an attending physician at Columbia University for five years before relocating to Minneapolis in 2010.

Dr. Kharbanda has published numerous articles in the field of pediatric appendicitis. He is nationally recognized for his work on clinical pathways for the management of children in the emergency department setting. He currently leads a multi-center study to implement appendicitis care pathways into the HealthPartners and Kaiser Northern California Healthcare systems. He has written several textbook chapters on abdominal pain, pediatric appendicitis and pediatric trauma. His current research interests include developing and implementing evidenced-based care pathways in order to enhance patient experience, improve quality of care, and to minimize healthcare expenditures.


Michael N. Levas, MD, MS Michael N. Levas, MD, MS
Children's Hospital of Wisconsin

Michael Levas has been with the Medical College of Wisconsin's Section of Pediatric Emergency Medicine since 2011. He is a native of the south side of Milwaukee and completed his undergraduate work at Saint Norbert College in De Pere, Wisconsin. Following graduation from the Medical College of Wisconsin, he completed his residency and fellowship training in Kansas City, Missouri. He completed his Masters in Clinical and Translational at the Medical College of Wisconsin.

Since joining the faculty at the Medical College, Levas has been intimately involved with health care disparities, youth violence, and injury prevention policy and research. He is the assistant medical director of Project Ujima, the premier hospital-based youth violence prevention/intervention program in the U.S. He currently serves as co-chair of the Injury Reduction Initiative at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin.


Desiree N. Neville, MD Desiree N. Neville, MD
Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh

Desiree Neville, MD, received her degree from the University of Virginia School of Medicine. She completed her residency and fellowship in Pediatric Emergency Medicine at the Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh. She joined the faculty in the Division of Pediatric Emergency Medicine at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh in 2016.

Neville's current research includes serving as the site PI in Pittsburgh for Pedi Lyme Net for the current multi-center study to biobank specimens from patients with suspected Lyme disease. Prior research involved research into optimizing anxiolysis for laceration repairs in the emergency department. Her primary academic involvement is currently focused on point-of-care ultrasound use in pediatric emergency medicine, including education of faculty and trainees and quality assurance.


Amy Thompson, MD Amy Thompson, MD
Nemours/AI duPont Children's Hospital

Amy Thompson, MD, is a Clinical Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the Sidney Kimmel College of Medicine, Thomas Jefferson University and attending physician in Pediatric Emergency Medicine at the Nemours/A.I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, DE. She graduated from Eastern Virginia Medical School and did residency training at Children’s National Medical Center of Washington, DC. She completed fellowship training at Children’s Hospital Boston where she developed a research interest in Lyme arthritis. In 2009, she joined the faculty in the Division of Pediatric Emergency Medicine at A.I. duPont Hospital for Children and is currently the associate fellowship director. She has served as the site PI for multiple multi-center studies over the last 10 years and has specific research interests in Lyme disease, child maltreatment and bronchiolitis