I am a physician scientist/gastroenterologist with a focus on pancreatic diseases. Upon joining UIC as a faculty member, I brought together a multidisciplinary group of healthcare providers that and successfully achieved institutional recognition as “The National Pancreas Foundation (NPF) Pancreatitis Center”. African Americans and Hispanics form the majority of our patient population here at UIC and health disparities are in the center of my clinical and translational research. I previously investigated contribution of diet and gut microbiome to increased colorectal cancer burden in African Americans in Chicagoland area using Chicago Colorectal Cancer Consortium samples and database. This study along with additional data resulted in subsequent RO1 funding which investigates diet modulation of bacterial sulfur and bile acid metabolism and colon cancer risk in a multi-institutional project that includes UIC. My current research which is supported by KL2 from NIH focuses on understanding the contribution of diet high in animal protein and fat and gut microbiome to acute pancreatitis in the context of health-care disparities. Recurrent acute pancreatitis leads to repetitive cycles of pancreatic injury which subsequently results is chronic pancreatitis, a well-known risk factor for pancreatic cancer and this is another area of interest for me.