UPenn Research Team

Frederick S. Kaplan, M.D.


Frederick S. Kaplan, M.D. is The Isaac & Rose Nassau Professor of Orthopaedic Molecular Medicine and Chief of the Division of Molecular Orthopaedic Medicine at the University of  Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He is an alumnus of The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

In 1989, Kaplan, an orthopaedic surgeon, met a child with fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva (FOP), a rare and disabling disorder in which the body forms a second skeleton of heterotopic bone. Motivated to know and do more, Kaplan began a pioneering second career in FOP research, work that led to the discovery of the FOP gene, the seminal target for all therapeutic efforts for this condition.

Kaplan co-directs the only center in the world devoted entirely to this work, has organized the medical and scientific communities worldwide on this rare condition, and is recognized as the world’s leading expert on FOP. In 1997, Kaplan was awarded the first endowed chair in the nation for orthopaedic molecular medicine. In 2009, he was elected to The National Academy of Medicine.

The late Victor McKusick, the father of clinical genetics, described Kaplan as “one of the really outstanding orthopaedic researchers of his generation. His work with FOP has been extraordinary and extends all the way from the patients to the bench and back again. The devotion of the families and the patients to him is testimony to the kind of human being he is.” Cited in 2006, as one of the 15 people who make America great, Newsweek noted “the disease was so rare, nobody wanted to deal with it until he came along.”

Information courtesy of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.



Eileen M. Shore, Ph.D.


Eileen M. Shore, Ph.D., is the Cali and Weldon FOP Research Professor in the Departments of Orthopaedics and Genetics in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, and is the co-Director of the Center for Research in FOP and Related Disorders. Using molecular biology and genetics approaches to investigate cell differentiation and development in human genetic disease, her research focuses on two rare disorders of de novo formation of extra-skeletal bone, fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva (FOP) and progressive osseous heteroplasia (POH) with the goal of applying knowledge gained through laboratory research to developing treatments for these conditions. Her work led to the discovery of the mutated genes in both FOP and POH, and she currently investigates the cellular targets and molecular pathways involved in regulation of cell differentiation leading to cartilage and bone formation and identifying and testing potential therapeutic strategies.

Shore attended the University of Notre Dame (B.S., Biology), Indiana University (M.A., Biology), and the University of Pennsylvania (Ph.D., Cell and Molecular Biology). Following postdoctoral studies at the Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia, she joined the faculty of Penn's Department of Orthopaedic Surgery. She is also a member of the Cell and Molecular Biology Graduate Group, the Genomics Institute, the Penn Center for Musculoskeletal Disorders, and the Institute for Translational Medicine and Therapeutics.

Over the years she has been the recipient of several awards in her field, including a Johnson & Johnson Focused Giving Award, a Rita Allen Foundation Award, and an AIMM Young Investigator Award. She holds several ongoing grants, including from the National Institutes of Health. Shore has published over 100 original articles in peer-reviewed journals. She has previously been the President of the Advances in Mineral Metabolism Board of Directors and is a recent member of the Council of the American Society of Bone and Mineral Research.

Information courtesy of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. 


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