KL2 Training Program

Current & Past Scholars

The following are brief biographies of the scholars selected for each award year. As you can see, they represent broad disciplinary diversity and bring impressive and relevant training and experience to the CASE/Cleveland Clinic CTSC KL2.

Cohort 1 (2005) | Cohort 2 (2006) | Cohort 3 (2007) | Cohort 4 (2008) | Cohort 5 (2009)
| Cohort 6 (2010) | Cohort 7 (2011) | Cohort 8 (2012) | Cohort 9 (2013) | Cohort 10 (2014) | Cohort 11 (2015) | Cohort 12 (2016)

Cohort 8 (2012)

Michael Fu, PhD
Dr. Fu received a BS in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS) from University of California, Berkeley. He came to Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) to pursue graduate studies at the EECS department in the field of medical robotics. For his MS, he investigated the feasibility of using cortical signals from stroke survivors to drive rehabilitation robots. His doctoral work was centered on understanding human task performance in the context of virtual environments and haptic interface robots. After completing his PhD, he joined the Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center to study functional electrical stimulation (FES) interventions for stroke survivors at the Cleveland FES Center. As a KL2 Clinical Research Scholar, Dr. Fu is developing and studying novel rehabilitation approaches to post-stroke motor relearning that combine virtual environments with FES. Dr. Fu is a Principal Investigator with the Cleveland FES Center and Research Assistant Professor in the Department of EECS at CWRU.

Gunnur Karakurt, PhD
Gunnur Karakurt is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health at Case Western Reserve University. She received her Ph.D. in Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT) from Purdue University. Dr. Karakurt's research focuses on interpersonal dynamics in close relationships and their effect on conflict and the well-being of couples and families. Dr. Karakurt has experience in conducting therapy with couples, particularly utilizing evidence based Emotionally Focused Therapy and she is licensed as a Marriage and Family Therapist to practice in the State of Ohio. She has also worked extensively with survivors of domestic violence and co-facilitated self-esteem and parenting groups. Her teaching and clinical experience also extends to supervision. As a KL2 scholar, she will investigate the effectiveness of couple therapy treatment for intimate partner violence using neuropyshiological markers.

Dan Ontaneda, MD
Dr. Ontaneda received his medical degree from The Pontificia Universidad Catolica del Ecuador. He then completed a post-doctoral fellowship at Baylor College of Medicine. He was trained as an intern and neurology resident at Cleveland Clinic. Dr. Ontaneda is a neuroimmunology fellow at The Mellen Center for Multiple Sclerosis at Cleveland Clinic and is board certified in neurology. He is currently a student at the Clinical Research Scholars Program at Case Western University and is expected to graduate with a M.S. in 2012. Dr. Ontaneda was the recipient of a highly competitive Sylvia Lawry Research Fellowship Award through the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. Dr. Ontaneda's research is focused on advanced MRI imaging outcomes for clinical trials in MS. As a KL2 scholar Dr. Ontaneda will study the effects of vitamin D on MRI disease measures in progressive forms of multiple sclerosis. His long term career goal is to be an independent investigator with expertise in advanced clinical trial design in MS with a special focus on MRI imaging.

Federico Perez, MD
Federico Perez is a native of Cali, Colombia, where he obtained his M.D. degree. He completed his residency training in Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases at University Hospitals, MetroHealth and the Cleveland VA Medical Center. He has studied the molecular epidemiology and clinical outcomes of antibiotic resistant Gram negative bacteria under the mentorship of Dr. Robert Bonomo, sponsored by a Wyeth fellowship in Antimicrobial Research and a grant from Steris Corporation. He is currently a staff physician in Infectious Diseases and Medicine at the Cleveland VA Medical Center. As a KL2 scholar, Dr. Perez' research objective is to identify microbiological and clinical determinants of outcome among patients infected with Pseudomonas aeruginosa and other Gram negative bacteria, analyzing a cohort of well-characterized patients and the corresponding bacterial isolates.

David Zidar, MD, PhD
Dave received his BS from Notre Dame and his MD from Duke. He did his internship and residency in internal medicine at Johns Hopkins, and then returned to Duke for Cardiology fellowship where he also completed a PhD in immunology. He's been an interventional cardiologist at CMC for a year and a half, and during that time has worked in Michael Lederman's lab here at Case, exploring the development of novel inflammatory biomarkers in cardiovascular disease. As a KL2 scholar, Dr. Zidar's research will be to develop immunological surrogates of atherosclerotic disease activity