Division of Infectious Diseases

Mahalia S. Desruisseaux, M.D.

Dr. Mahalia S. Desruisseaux

Assistant Professor, Department of Pathology

Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine (Infectious Diseases)


Professional Interests




Mahalia S Desruisseaux

Assistant Professor







Queens College of the City University of New York, Queens, NY




Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, Piscataway, NJ




North Shore University Hospital, Manhasset, NY



Internal Medicine

Montefiore Medical Center/Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY



Infectious Diseases


A. Personal Statement


I have been working on a murine model of cerebral malaria since my fellowship at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. My studies have led to some interesting discoveries for example, I was first to describe an increase in all the components of the endothelin pathway in the mouse model of cerebral malaria which was associated with a decrease in cerebral blood flow. Something which is observed in pediatric cerebral malaria and has been subsequently confirmed by others investigators. For the first time my laboratory has demonstrated that just as with humans, mice successfully treated with antimalarials sustain persistent cognitive deficits, something that is also observed in pediatric malaria. My investigations in this model of murine model of cerebral malaria will continue to enable to me to examine in detail the mechanisms leading to persistent cognitive deficits with cerebral malaria such as abnormal regulation of cellular signaling pathways.


B. Positions and Honors


Positions and Employment


2007 – 2009  Instructor, Pathology and Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY

2009 – present  Assistant Professor, Pathology and Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY


Other Experience and Professional Memberships


1996 – 2000      Member, Student National Medical Association

2000 – 2003      Member, American College of Physicians

2004 – 2006      Member, American Medical Association

2002 – 2008      Member, Infectious Diseases Society of America

2006 –               Member, American Society for Microbiology

2007 –               Member, American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene

2009 -                American Reinvestment and Recovery Act RC1 Challenge grants, ad hoc reviewer

2009 -                Interdisciplinary Perspectives in Infectious Diseases, ad hoc reviewer

                          Obesity, ad hoc reviewer

2010 -                Journal of Neuroparasitology, Associate editor

                          American Journal of Pathology, ad hoc reviewer

                          Malaria Journal, ad hoc reviewer

                          Journal of Neuroimmunology, ad hoc reviewer




1993                Dr Pearl Foster Award for Outstanding Minority Women in Biology, Queens College

2003                Dr George M Jaffin Award for Research and Scholarly Activity, North Shore University Hospital

2005                IDSA ERF/NFID Colin L Powell Minority Postdoctoral Fellowship in Tropical Disease Research

2006                Department of Medicine annual research symposium award, Albert Einstein College of Medicine/ Montefiore Medical Center

2007                Burroughs-Wellcome Fund Career Awards for Medical Scientists (CAMS)

2009                AECOM Institute for Clinical and Translational Research (ICTR) career development award


C. Selected Peer-reviewed Publications


Most relevant to the current application


  1. Kennan RP, Machado FS, Lee SC, Desruisseaux MS, Wittner M, Tsuji M, Tanowitz HB.  Reduced Cerebral Blood Flow and N-Acetyl Aspartate in a Murine Model of Cerebral Malaria. Parasitology Research. 2005; 96:302-307.
  2. Machado FS, Desruisseaux MS*, Nagajyothi, Kennan RP, Hetherington HP,  Wittner M,  Weiss LM, Lee SC, Scherer PE,  Tsuji M, Tanowitz HB. Endothelin in a murine model of cerebral malaria. Experimental Biology and Medicine. 2006; 231:1176-1181. *co-first author
  3. Desruisseaux MS, Tanowitz HB, Weiss LM, Mott A, Milner DA. Human Parasitic Disease in the context of the Blood-Brain Barrier – Effects, Interactions, and Transgressions. In: Blood-Brain Interfaces – From Ontogeny to Artificial Barriers. Dermietzel R, Spray D, Nedergaard M (Eds.) Wiley VCH. Weinheim. pp 671-696, 2006.
  4. Desruisseaux MS, Gulinello M, Smith DN, Lee SC, Tsuji M, Weiss LM, Spray DC, Tanowitz HB. Cognitive dysfunction in mice infected with Plasmodium berghei ANKA. Journal of Infectious Diseases. 2008; 197:1621-1627.
  5. Desruisseaux MS, Machado FS, Weiss LM, Tanowitz HB, Golightly LM. Cerebral malaria: a vasculopathy. American Journal of Pathology. 2010; 176:1075-1078.
  6. Dai M, Reznik SE, Spray DC, Weiss LM, Tanowitz HB, Gulinello M, Desruisseaux MS. Persistent cognitive and motor deficits after successful antimalarial treatment in murine cerebral malaria. Microbes and Infection 2010; 12:1198-1207.



Additional recent publications of importance to the field (in chronological order)


  1. Desruisseaux M, Meyerhoff R, Arunabh T, Kaplan M. Diagnostic puzzlers: Chronic cough in a woman with HIV infection. The Journal of Respiratory Diseases.  2004; 25: 368-376.
  2. Nagajyothi, Desruisseaux M, Bouzahzah B, Weiss LM, Andrade DDS, Factor SM, Scherer PE, Albanese C, Lisanti MP, Tanowitz HB. Cyclin and caveolin expression in an acute model of murine chagasic myocarditis. Cell Cycle. 2006; 5:107-112.
  3. Hassan GS, Mukherjee S, Nagajyothi, Weiss LM, Petkova SB, de Almeida CJG, Huang H, Desruisseaux MS, Bouzahzah B, Pestell RG, Albanese C, Christ GJ, Lisanti MP, Tanowitz HB. Trypanosoma cruzi infection induces proliferation of vascular smooth muscle cells. Infection and Immunity. 2006; 74:152-159.
  4. Bouzahzah B, Nagajyothi F, Desruisseaux MS, Krishnamachary M, Factor SM, Cohen A, Lisanti MP, Petkova SB, Pestell RG, Wittner W, Mukherjee S, Weiss LM, Linda A Jelicks LA, Albanese C, Tanowitz HB. Cell Cycle Regulatory Proteins in the Liver in Murine Trypanosoma Cruzi Infection. Cell cycle. 2006; 5:2396-2400.
  5. Ashton AW, Mukherjee S, Nagajyothi F, Huang H, Braunstein VL, Desruisseaux MS, Factor SM, Lopez L, Berman JW, Wittner M, Scherer PE, Capra V, Coffman TM, Serhan CN, Gotlinger K, Wu KK, Weiss LM, Tanowitz HB. Thromboxane A2 is a key regulator of pathogenesis during Trypanosoma cruzi infection. Journal of Experimental Medicine. 2007; 204: 929-940.
  6. Desruisseaux MS, Nagajyothi, Truijillo ME, Tanowitz HB, Scherer PE. Adipocyte, adipose tissue, and infectious disease. Infection and immunity. 2007; 75:1066-1078.
  7. Nagajyothi F, Desruisseaux MS, Thiruvur N, Weiss LM, Braunstein VL, Albanese C, Teixeira MM, de Almeida CJ, Lisanti MP, Scherer PE, Tanowitz HB. Trypanosoma cruzi infection of cultured adipocytes results in an inflammatory phenotype. Obesity. 2008;16:1992-1997.
  8. Nagajyothi F, Desruisseaux MS, Weiss LM, Chua S, Albanese C, Machado FS, Esper L, Lisanti MP, Teixeira MM, Scherer PE, Tanowitz HB. Chagas disease, adipose tissue and the metabolic syndrome. Mem Inst Oswaldo Cruz. 2009;104 Suppl 1:219-225.
  9. Nagajyothi F, Desruisseaux M, Jelicks LA, Machado F, Chua SC, Scherer P, Tanowitz HB. Perspectives on adipose tissue, Chagas disease and implications for the metabolic syndrome. Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Infectious Diseases. 2009;2009:824324.


D. Research Support


Ongoing Research Support


Burroughs-Wellcome Fund Career Award for Medical Scientists         2007-2012

Neurological complications of cerebral malaria

Role: PI


Institute for Clinical and Translational Research (ICTR) Career Development          2009-2012

Scholarship/ Institutional start-up fund


NIH/ NINDS        2011-2016


Cerebral Malaria: Mechanisms of disease and neurological salvage

Role: PI


Completed Research Support


NIH training grant in Mechanisms of Cardiovascular Diseases (Kitsis) 2005-2006


T32 HL-07675

Investigating the potential role of Endothelin in the vasculopathy of cerebral malaria

Role: Research Fellow/Trainee


IDSA ERF/NFID Colin L Powell Minority Postdoctoral Fellowship in Tropical Disease Research     2005-2006

Investigating the potential role of Endothelin in the vasculopathy of cerebral malaria

Role: Research Fellow


Neuroscience Fellowship in the Department of Neuroscience of the Department   of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences.  Albert Einstein College of Medicine/ State of New York, Office of Mental Health, Bronx Psychiatric Center.    2006-2008

Investigating potential adjunctive therapies that may abate the encephalopathy of cerebral malaria

Role: research fellow


Material in this section is provided by individual faculty members who are solely responsible for its accuracy and content.


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Media Coverage

WCBS Radio interviews Dr. Mahalia Desruisseaux on her role in bringing Haitian teen Lovely Ajuste to Montefiore Medical Center to correct a congenital heart defect one year after the earthquakes.

More media coverage

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