Clinical Research Spotlight

Sara Saberi
Sara Saberi, MD

The Department of Internal Medicine is excited to spotlight Sara Saberi, MD, for her ground-breaking clinical research. Dr. Saberi is a Clinical Assistant Professor for the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine.  

Dr. Saberi's research focuses on understanding environmental modifiers on the monogentic disease Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM), particularly in the role that exercise and physical activity play both in the lives of patients with HCM and the disease process itself. While there is a wide range of controversy around the safety of exercise and physical activity, there is little data. Dr. Saberi (PI) and her team devised a randomized clinical trial of moderate-intensity exercise training in patients with HCM and actually found a significant associated improvement in functional capacity (peak oxygen consumption) and improved quality of life without any adverse events or effects on the disease characteristic.

In April 2017, Dr. Saberi published her research in JAMA titled: Effect of Moderate-Intensity Exercise Training on Peak Oxygen Consumption in Patients with Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy: A Randomized Clinical Trial.

Dr. Saberi is a member of the Inherited Cardiomyopathy Program in which she provides comprehensive care to patients with genetic cardiomyopathies and their families. It is her clinical interactions with patients that really inform her research work and it keeps her focused on what's important to the patients themselves.

In the coming months, Dr. Saberi will focus on her next steps of understanding who may benefit the most and from what types of exercise regimens. She has received financial support from her Division Chief to pay for statistical support and since the trial's publication, Dr. Saberi has received more protected time in order to allow her to move forward in her research.

While research and clinical work keeps Dr. Saberi busy at the University, it is her children that keep her on her toes at home outside of her work. She also enjoys running and cooking. When asked what wish she would hope for, Dr. Saberi's response focused on people treating each other with love and kindness (specifically that the pain and suffering of the people of Syria and other oppressed humans around the globe to end).