Department of Medicine

University of Pittsburgh

Roger A. Alvarez, DO, MPH, MS

Fellow, Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine
UPMC Montefiore Hospital - NW628
3459 Fifth Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213

Phone: 412-692-2134
Fax: 412-692-2260
Fellowship Coordinator: Stacie Truszkowski

Education & Training

2003 - University of Miami - BS, Biology
2004 - Georgetown University - MS, Physiology & Biophysics
2009 - Nova Southeastern University - MPH

2009 - Nova Southeastern University - DO
2010 - Emory University - Internship, Internal Medicine
2012 - Emory University - Residency
2013 - Emory University - Chief Resident, Internal Medicine


Upon graduating from the University of Miami with a B.S. in Biology and minors in Biochemistry and Philosophy in 2003, Dr. Alvarez pursued a M.S. at Georgetown University, graduating in 2004 with specializations in Physiology and Biophysics. Dr. Alvarez then returned to Florida where he received his D.O. and M.P.H. degrees with honors from Nova Southeastern University College of Osteopathic Medicine in 2009. Dr. Alvarez then trained in Internal Medicine at Emory University, during which time he was named “Outstanding Resident” for two of his three years, and graduated with Distinctions in Teaching and Social Medicine. He then served as Emory’s Chief Resident at the Atlanta VA Medical Center prior to moving to Pittsburgh for his Fellowship in Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine. As a first year fellow he was given an award for Outstanding Teaching by the Department of Medicine in 2014.

Dr. Alvarez is interested in translating cutting edge pulmonary vascular biology to the diagnosis and management of patients living with pulmonary artery hypertension (PAH). In the lab, under the mentorship of Drs. Mark Gladwin and Adam Straub, he has discovered that that pulmonary artery endothelial cells from humans with PAH express hemoglobin alpha as well as its reductase, NADH-cytochrome b5 reductase 3 (CYB5R3). He is currently researching the mechanisms and consequences of that finding on nitric oxide signaling in PAH. In the catheterization laboratory, together with Interventional Cardiologist Dr. Catalin Toma, Dr. Alvarez is developing intravascular optical coherence tomography as a tool to learn more about the structure and function of the pulmonary vasculature in humans with different forms of PH.

Research Interests

Pulmonary artery hypertension
Pulmonary vascular physiology
Physiological Phenotyping
Endothelial function
Heterocellular communication

Key Publications

Alvarez, R. A., Nguyen, A. T., Goncharov, D, Isenberg, J. S., Goncharova, E. A., Straub, A. C. (2015). Pulmonary artery endothelial cells upregulate alpha globin in pulmonary arterial hypertension. American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine 191; 2015:A5274. doi: 10.13140/RG.2.1.3887.3765.  

Rahaman MM, Reinders FG, Koes D, Nguyen AT, Mutchler SM, Sparacino-Watkins C, Alvarez RA, Miller MP, Cheng D, Chen BB, Jackson EK, Camacho CJ, Straub AC. (2015). Structure Guided Chemical Modifications of Propylthiouracil Reveal Novel Small Molecule Inhibitors of Cytochrome b5 Reductase 3 that Increase Nitric Oxide Bioavailability. Journal of Biological Chemistry. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M114.629964.

Alvarez RA, Barbash IJ, Rose JJ. (2014). Bosentan for Sarcoidosis-associated Pulmonary Hypertension, Age-adjusted D-Dimer Levels in Pulmonary Embolism, and Mean Arterial Blood Pressure Targets in Septic Shock. American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, 190(8), 948-949. Cited in PubMed; PMID: 25317464. doi: 10.1164/rccm.201407-1305RR

Alvarez RA, Venado A (co-first authors).  Miliary Tuberculosis Presenting With GI Bleed From Hepatic Artery Pseudoaneurysm Rupture in an HIV Infected Patient. Chest. 2012; 142(4)

Alvarez RA, Vasquez E, Mayorga CC, Feaster DJ, Mitrani VB.  Increasing minority research participation through community organization outreach.  West J Nurs Res. 2006 Aug; 28(5): 541-60; discussion 561-3. doi: 10.1177/0193945906287215


PubMed Link


Research Support

6/15/15 – 6/15/16 (PI).                   
“Alpha globin expression in pulmonary artery endothelial cells modulates nitric oxide signaling in chronic hypoxia and pulmonary hypertension”
Warfield Garson Lung Disease Research Developmental Grant, Breathe Pennsylvania