Andrew Auerbach, MD

PARC Advisory Board Member
Professor of Medicine, Division of Hospital Medicine
Chair, Clinical Content Oversight Committee for UCSF Health

Andrew Auerbach MD MPH is Professor of Medicine at the University of California San Francisco School of Medicine, in the Division of Hospital Medicine.

Dr. Auerbach is a widely recognized leader in Hospital Medicine, having authored or co-authored the seminal research describing effects of hospital medicine systems on patient outcomes, costs, and care quality. He leads a 13-hospital research collaborative focused on new discoveries in healthcare delivery models in acute care settings, and continues an active research mentoring program at UCSF.

Allan Basbaum, PhD

PARC Advisory Board Member
Professor and Chair, Department of Anatomy

Following upon our extensive earlier studies of the CNS circuits through which opioids exert their analgesic effects, our laboratory now examines the mechanisms through which tissue and nerve injury produce changes in the peripheral and central nervous system that result in persistent pain. In parallel studies we examine the circuits through which pruritogens generate itch.

Joshua Berke, PhD

PARC Core Leader
Professor, Department of Neurology and UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences
Director, Alcohol and Addiction Research Group

Josh Berke's laboratory at UCSF investigates brain mechanisms involved in learning, motivation and decision-making, and how these mechanisms go awry in disorders such as drug addiction, Parkinson's Disease and Huntington's Disease. (see He is also Director of the Alcohol and Addiction Research Group, and holds the Rudi Schmid Distinguished Professorship in Neurology.

Daniel Ciccarone, MD, MPH

PARC Core Leader
Professor of Family and Community Medicine

My research is centered on the contextual issues of treatment and prevention of HIV/AIDS, and related diseases, in socially marginalized populations. My long-term objective is to combine ethnographic and epidemiological research to explore the intricate socio-behavioral-medical issues of medication adherence, access to care and risk taking behaviors, particularly related to drug use and drug users. My work, including collaborations, has been published in JAMA, NEJM, PLoS Medicine, AJPH, JAIDS and other peer-reviewed journals.

Howard Fields, MD, PhD

PARC Advisory Board Director
Professor Emeritus
UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences

Howard Fields received his MD and PhD in Neuroscience at Stanford in 1965-66. After Internal Medicine training at Bellevue Hospital in New York, he spent three years as a research neurologist at Walter Reed Army Institute of Research. Following clinical training in neurology at the Boston City Hospital Service of Harvard Medical School in 1972, he joined the faculty of the University of California San Francisco. Fields major interests are in nervous system mechanisms of pain and substance abuse with a focus on how endogenous opioids contribute to these mechanisms.

Amber Fitzsimmons, DPTSc

PARC Core Leader for the Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science
Associate Professor and Chair
Physical Therapy

Dr. Fitzsimmons is an Associate Professor with joint appointments in the Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science and the School of Medicine’s Anatomy Department, and was named Chair of the Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science on July 1, 2018. Prior to her return to academia for her doctorate research, she worked for over a decade in clinical practice with an emphasis on acute care and acute rehabilitation.

Stefan Friedrichsdorf, MD

PARC Advisory Board Member

Stefan Friedrichsdorf is the medical director of the Center of Pain Medicine, Palliative Care and Integrative Medicine at the UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals in Oakland and San Francisco – one of the most comprehensive programs of its kind in the country.

Michael Gropper, MD, PhD

PARC Executive Sponsor
Professor and Chair
Anesthesia and Perioperative Care

Dr. Gropper, Chair of the UCSF Department of Anesthesia and Perioperative Care, is the executive sponsor for the PARC initiative. The PARC has also formed an advisory board that brings together faculty leaders from across the university with expertise in pain management, drug development, addiction medicine, and behavioral science to discover new and innovative methods for reducing pain.

UCSF Research Profile

Judith Hellman, MD

PARC Advisory Board Member
Vice Chair for Research and the William L. Young Distinguished Professor of Anesthesia and Perioperative Care

My research program is focused on basic and translational research on sepsis and other forms of inflammation-driven acute organ failure ("Inflammatory Critical Illness"). Sepsis and multiple organ failure are leading causes of death in the Intensive Care Unit. These processes result from a complex inflammatory response that is initiated through the innate immune system by interactions between host cells and microbes or endogenous host factors that are released during injury or cell death.

S Andrew Josephson, MD

PARC Advisory Board Member
Professor and Chair

Dr. S. Andrew Josephson specializes in neurovascular and other neurologic disorders, caring for general neurology and stroke patients in the hospital as well as in clinic. He is the founder of UCSF's Neurohospitalist Program and specializes in difficult to diagnose inpatient neurologic conditions. He serves as Chair of the Department of Neurology and is the Carmen Castro Franceschi and Gladyne K. Mitchell Neurohospitalist Distinguished Professor.

David Julius, PhD

PARC Advisory Board Member
Professor and Chair

Our group is interested in understanding how sensory systems enable us to perceive our world. In one aspect of our research, we exploit the power of natural products to elucidate molecular mechanisms of touch and pain sensation. For example, we have asked how capsaicin, the main pungent ingredient in "hot" chili peppers, elicits burning pain, and how menthol, the cooling agent in mint leaves, evokes an icy cool sensation.

Gretchen Kiser, PhD

PARC Advisory Board Member
Executive Director
Research Development Office

Dr. Gretchen Kiser is the Executive Director of the Research Development Office (RDO) at the University of California San Francisco.