Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
Faculty Profiles
Kathryn N Farrow, MD, PhD

Kathryn N Farrow, MD, PhD

Professor of Pediatrics (Neonatology)

Focus of Work

Bio

Dr. Farrow received her B.A. in Chemistry from The Colorado College and then went on to receive her M.D. and Ph.D. from The University of Colorado School of Medicine. For her Ph.D. work, she worked with Dr. Arthur Gutierrez-Hartmann on tissue-specific gene regulation. After completing her degrees, she went to SUNY Stony Brook in New York for her pediatric residency before coming to Chicago for her Neonatology Fellowship at The Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago (formerly Chil...[Read full text]Dr. Farrow received her B.A. in Chemistry from The Colorado College and then went on to receive her M.D. and Ph.D. from The University of Colorado School of Medicine. For her Ph.D. work, she worked with Dr. Arthur Gutierrez-Hartmann on tissue-specific gene regulation. After completing her degrees, she went to SUNY Stony Brook in New York for her pediatric residency before coming to Chicago for her Neonatology Fellowship at The Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago (formerly Children’s Memorial Hospital). Since becoming faculty at Northwestern and Lurie Children’s, Dr. Farrow has become a successful independent physician-scientist specializing in the development of the pulmonary vasculature, and she has risen to the rank of Professor of Pediatrics. She also serves as the Fellowship Director for Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine and the Associate Director for the Department of Pediatrics Physician Scientist Training Program. She has been elected to national societies such as the Society for Pediatric Research, the Perinatal Research Society, and the American Pediatric Society.[Shorten text]

Academic Focus

Dr. Farrow's research focuses on the tissue-specific and developmental regulation of soluble guanylate cyclase (sGC), cGMP, and phosphodiesterases (PDEs) in the pulmonary vasculature, both in normal transition after birth, as well as in the context of bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) and pulmonary hypertension (PH). Dr. Farrow’s laboratory has demonstrated that exposure to high levels of oxygen, which is a common treatment for both BPD and PH, leads to decreased sGC expression and activity and i...[Read full text]Dr. Farrow's research focuses on the tissue-specific and developmental regulation of soluble guanylate cyclase (sGC), cGMP, and phosphodiesterases (PDEs) in the pulmonary vasculature, both in normal transition after birth, as well as in the context of bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) and pulmonary hypertension (PH). Dr. Farrow’s laboratory has demonstrated that exposure to high levels of oxygen, which is a common treatment for both BPD and PH, leads to decreased sGC expression and activity and increased PDE5 expression and activity in the pulmonary vascular smooth muscle of neonatal sheep and mice. This decreased sGC activity and increased PDE5 activity together lead to decreased pulmonary vascular relaxation in response to nitric oxide, a common pulmonary vasodilator. These changes happen rapidly and persist long after the initial insult. In the future, new drugs such as sGC activators, PDE5 inhibitors or anti-oxidants may play an important role in the treatment of infants with BPD and PH. Furthermore, in collaboration with Dr. Karen Mestan, Neonatology, Dr. Farrow is exploring why growth-restricted infants seem to be particularly high risk for BPD and PH. Utilizing a novel mouse model of intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR), Dr. Farrow hopes to identify the mechanisms that place certain infants at high risk for BPD and PH. Finally, Dr. Farrow also collaborates with Dr. Fawzi, Department of Ophthalmology, to investigate the role of cGMP signaling in the premature retinal vasculature since retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) is a significant problem in the same group of high-risk preterm infants. Our preliminary data in rodents suggest it may be plausible to develop a single therapy that can effectively prevent both ROP and BPD-associated PH.[Shorten text]

Clinical Focus

Dr. Farrow sees patients in the neonatal intensive care unit at both Prentice Women’s Hospital and the Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. Based on her academic interests, Dr. Farrow is most interested in the very premature infants and how we can best optimize their care in the hospital to prevent long-term morbidity and mortality.

Keywords


Education and Certification

  • MD, PhD: University of Colorado (1999)
  • Residency: SUNY/State University Of New York, Stony Brook, Pediatrics (2002)
  • Fellowship: Northwestern University, McGaw Medical Center (Children’s Memorial Hospital), Neonatal/Perinatal Medicine (2005)
  • Board Certification: General Pediatrics, Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine

Contact

Administrative office: 312-503-3435
Laboratory: 312-503-6614

Morton Building Room 4-685D
310 E Superior
Chicago IL 60611