Rady Children's Specialists of San Diego

Medical Group / IPA


Medical School

University of Health Sciences Chicago Med School


University of Chicago Comer Children's Hospital


University of Chicago Comer Children's Hospital

Board Certifications

Neonatology, Pediatrics, Perinatology




Dr. Karen Mestan is chief of the Division of Neonatology in the Department of Pediatrics at Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego and UC San Diego School of Medicine.

Her clinical focus is on the management of critically ill newborn infants cared for in the neonatal intensive care unit, including premature newborns and infants with congenital conditions and complex medical diagnoses.

Her research, funded by the National Institutes of Health, seeks to understand the mechanisms of infant chronic lung diseases, such as bronchopulmonary dysplasia and neonatal pulmonary hypertension. Specifically, Dr. Mestan aims to identify the early biochemical, environmental and genetic markers of preterm birth. These discoveries can lead to new approaches and therapies to improve long-term cardiovascular and lung health, as well as metabolic and neurodevelopmental outcomes in infancy and early childhood.


Placental dysfunction influences fetal monocyte subpopulation gene expression in preterm birth
Sharma AM, Birkett R, Lin ET, Ernst LM, Grobman WA, Swaminathan S, Abdala-Valencia H, Misharin AV, Bartom ET, Mestan KK

Umbilical cord miRNAs to predict neonatal early onset sepsis
Ernst LM, Mithal LB, Mestan K, Wang V, Mangold KA, Freedman A, Das S

Understanding Racial Disparities of Preterm Birth Through the Placenta
Matoba N, Mestan KK, Collins JW

Moving the dial on prenatal stress mechanisms of neurodevelopmental vulnerability to mental health problems: A personalized prevention proof of concept
Wakschlag LS, Tandon D, Krogh-Jespersen S, Petitclerc A, Nielsen A, Ghaffari R, Mithal L, Bass M, Ward E, Berken J, Fareedi E, Cummings P, Mestan K, Norton ES, Grobman W, Rogers J, Moskowitz J, Alshurafa N

Placental vascular maldevelopment, intrauterine growth restriction, and pulmonary hypertension
Mathias M, Bitar M, Aldulescu M, Birkett R, Perez M, Mestan K

Soluble Klotho, a biomarker and therapeutic strategy to reduce bronchopulmonary dysplasia and pulmonary hypertension in preterm infants
Batlahally S, Franklin A, Damianos A, juang J, Chen P, Sharma M, Duara J, Keerthy D, Zambrano R, Shehadeh LA, Martinez EC, DeFreitas MJ, Kulandavelu S, Abitbol CL, Freundlich M, Kanashiro-Takeuchi RM, Schmidt A, Benny M, Wu S, Mestan KK, Young KC

The impact of placental pathology discordance in multiple gestation pregnancies on bronchopulmonary dysplasia-associated pulmonary hypertension
Franklin A, Yallapragada S, Birkett R, Grobman W, Ernst LM, Mestan K

Variations in Umbilical Cord Hematopoietic and Mesenchymal Stem Cells With Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia
Chaudhury S, Saqibuddin J, Birkett R, Falcon-Girard K, Kraus M, Ernst LM, Grobman W, Mestan KK

Cord blood alpha klotho is decreased in small for gestational age preterm infants with placental lesions of accelerated aging
Franklin AD, Saqibuddin J, Stephens K, Birkett R, Marsden L, Ernst L, Mestan KK

Racial differences in placental pathology among very preterm births
Matoba N, Yallapragada S, Davis MM, Ernst LM, Collins JW, Mestan KK

Fetal cord blood and tissue immune responses to chronic placental inflammation and chorioamnionitis
Singh AM, Sherenian MG, Kim KY, Erickson KA, Yang A Mestan K, Ernst LM, Kumar R

Umbilical cord blood metabolomics reveal distinct signatures of dyslipidemia prior to bronchopulmonary dysplasia and pulmonary hypertension
La Frano M, Fahrmann J, Grapov D, Pedersen T, Newman JW, Fiehn O, Underwood MA, Mestan KK, Steinhorn R, Wedgwood S

Genome-wide association study of maternal genetic effects and parent-of-origin effects on food allergy
Liu X, Hong X, Tsai HJ, Mestan KK, Shi M, Kefi A, Hao K, Chen Q, Wang G, Caruso D, Geng H, Gao Y, He J, Kumar R, Wang H, Yu Y, Bartell T, Tan XD, Schleimer RP, Weeks DE, Pongracic JA, Wang X.

Vital signs analysis algorithm detects inflammatory response in premature infants with late onset sepsis and necrotizing enterocolitis
Mithal LB, Yogev R, Palac HL, Kaminsky D, Gur I, Mestan KK

Cord Blood Acute Phase Reactants Predict Early Onset Neonatal Sepsis in Preterm Infants
Mithal LB, Palac HL, Yogev R, Ernst LM, Mestan KK

See the full listing of this physician's publications on PubMed, a service of the National Library of Medicine. PubMed is a third-party website and not affiliated with Rady Children's Hospital-San Diego.

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