Department of OBGYN

Pamela Ann Moalli, MD, PhD

  • Division Director, Urogynecology & Pelvic Reconstructive Surgery
  • Professor, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences, Division of Urogynecology & Reconstructive Pelvic Surgery
  • Professor, Department of Bioengineering, University of Pittsburgh
  • Adjunct Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Carnegie Mellon University
  • Member Faculty, McGowan Institute of Regenerative Medicine, University of Pittsburgh
  • Professor, Clinical & Translational Research Institute
  • Primary Member, Magee-Women Research Institute

After receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree with distinction from Brown University, Dr. Moalli participated in the NIH sponsored Medical Scientist Training Program at Northwestern University from 1986-1994, earning a PhD in Molecular and Cellular Biology and an MD.  She completed her residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at Magee-Womens Hospital of the University of Pittsburgh from 1994 to 1998 and then completed a fellowship in Urogynecology and Reconstructive Pelvic Surgery at the same institution.  In 2000, Dr. Moalli was appointed as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences at Magee-Womens Hospital and an Investigator at the Magee-Womens Research Institute.  In 2004, she became co-Director of Translational Research in Urogynecology Research Laboratories.   In 2006, she was appointed Director of the fellowship in Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery.  In 2007, she was promoted to Associate Professor with tenure with secondary appointments in the Department of Bioengineering and the McGowan Institute of Regenerative Medicine.  In 2011, Dr. Moalli obtained a secondary appointment at the Clinical and Translational Institute and in 2012 became adjunct Professor of Bioengineering at Carnegie Mellon University.  In 2018, she was promoted to a full Professor with tenure with an additional secondary appointment in the Department of Molecular and Cellular Pathology.  In 2019, she became director of the Division of Urogynecology and Reconstructive Pelvic Surgery.

Education & Training

  • Fellowship, Urogynecology and Reconstructive Pelvic Surgery, UPMC Magee-Womens Hospital, 2000
  • Residency, Obstetrics & Gynecology, UPMC Magee-Women's Hospital, University of Pittsburgh, 1998
  • MD, Ph.D. in Molecular and Cellular Biology, Northwestern University, 1994

Representative Publications

  • Knight KM, King GE, Palcsey SL, Artsen AM, Abramowitch SD, Moalli PA. A soft elastomer alternative to polypropylene for pelvic organ prolapse repair: a preliminary study. Int Urogynecol J. 2021 Apr 16. doi: 10.1007/s00192-021-04792-0. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 33860812.
     
  • Pace N, Artsen A, Baranski L, Palcsey S, Durst R, Meyn L, Moalli P. Symptomatic Improvement After Mesh Removal: A Prospective Longitudinal Study of Women with Urogynecologic Mesh Complications. BJOG. 2021 May 28. doi: 10.1111/1471-0528.16778. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34047446.
     
  • Artsen AM, Rytel M, Liang R, King GE, Meyn L, Abramowitch SD, Moalli PA. Mesh induced fibrosis: The protective role of T regulatory cells. Acta Biomater. 2019 Jul 19. pii: S1742-7061(19)30520-3. doi: 10.1016/j.actbio.2019.07.031. [Epub ahead of print] PMCID:PMC6717663
     
  • Knight K, Moalli P, Abramowitch SD. Preventing Mesh Pore Collapse by Designing Mesh Pores with Auxetic Geometries: A Comprehensive Evaluation via Computational Modeling. J Biomech Eng. 2018 Jan 19. doi: 10.1115/1.4039058. [Epub ahead of print] PMID:29350744
     
  • Tennyson L, Rytel M, Palcsey S, Meyn L, Liang R, Moalli P. Characterization of the T Cell Response to Polypropylene Mesh in Women with Complications. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2019 Feb;220(2):187.e1-187.e8. doi: 10.1016/j.ajog.2018.11.121. Epub 2018 Nov 9. PMCID:PMC6557122
     
  • Liang R, Knight K, Easley D, Palcsey S, Abramowitch S, Moalli PA. Towards rebuilding vaginal support utilizing an extracellular matrix bioscaffold. Acta Biomaterialia; 2017; 57:324-333. PMCID: PMC5639927

For additional publications, visit Moalli, P - Search Results - PubMed (nih.gov).

 

Clinical Interests/Research Interests

To date, Dr. Moalli’s research has mainly focused on 1) the development of novel biomaterials for use in pelvic reconstructive surgeries; 2) defining and reducing maternal birth injury; and 3) vaginal biofabrication.  A current project in the lab titled, “Defining the host response to local stress variations induced by polypropylene prolapse mesh:  The critical next step toward obviating biomaterial complications” seeks to define the delicate interplay between a biomaterial derived from polypropylene, the extracellular matrix, and vaginal fibroblasts.  Based on the data obtained, the Moalli group will design a “smart” material with properties that promote a constructive healing response.   A second project  titled, “Development of novel elastomeric auxetic devices for use in reconstructive pelvic surgeries” aims to develop a biomaterial for use in surgery that is soft and elastic with material properties and behavior similar to that of the vagina but with sufficient mechanical integrity to respond to transient increases in intra-abdominal pressure.  Her group has explored the use of bioscaffolds and living tissues generated in culture from vaginal fibroblasts for use in reconstructing pelvic ligaments.  Finally, faced with individuals that have lost a significant portion of functional vagina due to extirpative surgeries for pelvic cancers or chemotherapy and transgender patients needing a neovagina, the Moalli group is using a synthetic biology approach to vaginal biofabrication.  To do this, not only are they isolating and characterizing vaginal stem cell populations across the entire organ, but also developing interactive mechanical niches based on the structure and function of vaginal extracellular matrix. 

Translational Research Laboratories in Urogynecology (TRLU) Pamela Moalli, MD, PhD | Magee-Womens Research Institute & Foundation (mageewomens.org)

Research Grants

Currently Funded Research Grants:

2R01 HD083383
NIH/NICHD
Mesh complications: The role of local mechanical stresses on tissue remodeling following mesh implantation

R01HD097187
NIH
Overcoming complications of polypropylene prolapse meshes:  Development of novel elastomeric auxetic devices

1R01GM12155
NIH
Assessing the Impact of Macrophage Polarization Upon the Success of Biomaterial Implants