Vivek Bhalla

Vivek Bhalla, MD, FASN, Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, Nephrology Division, Stanford University School of Medicine


Research Description: Dr. Bhalla directs a basic and translational science research program on kidney complications of diabetes, including kidney disease (DKD) and salt-sensitive hypertension using in vivo and in vitro approaches. Dr. Bhalla was trained as a physician-scientist in molecular and cellular biology at the University of California San Francisco, and studies mechanisms of DKD and mechanisms of ion channel regulation in the distal nephron. As a translational scientist, Dr. Bhalla is a principal investigator on an ongoing collaboration to discover clinical biomarkers of DKD. Dr. Bhalla has received NIH funding for these endeavors including an ongoing R01. He was also recently awarded a Stanford DRC P&F award. He has previously been awarded an NIH-funded grant to study the role of the immune system in mouse models of DKD and a NIH-CTSA pilot grant to initiate a validation cohort for biomarkers of DKD. As a physician-scientist and a practicing nephrologist, Dr. Bhalla has published on DKD in the clinical research arena, has served on an NIH and AHA study sections regarding DKD basic and translational research projects. He directs a specialty clinic for patients with DKD, was a site-PI on the BEACON Phase 3 clinical trial for progression of Stage 4 CKD in diabetic patients, participated in clinical research on DKD as a consulting investigator for the Palo Alto Medical Center Research Institute, and has invited speakerships as an expert in DKD. Dr. Bhalla is also director of the Stanford Hypertension Center, and due to the nexus of diabetes, hypertension, and kidney disease, he has a history of multiple collaborations across the institution. Taken together, with his scientific background, motivation, and complementary collaborations, he is well qualified to participate in the Stanford Diabetes Research Center.

Selected relevant publications (Stanford DRC Members in BOLD):

  1. Zheng X, Soroush F, Long J, Hall ET, Adishesha PK, Bhattacharya S, Kiani MF, Bhalla VMurine glomerular transcriptome links endothelial cell-specific molecule-1 deficiency with susceptibility to diabetic nephropathy. PLoS One 2017 Sep 21; 12(9):e0185250. PMID: 28934365.

  2. Nizar JM, Shepard BD, Vo VT, Bhalla V, “Renal tubule insulin receptor modestly promotes elevated blood pressure, and markedly stimulates glucose reabsorption”, Journal of Clinical Investigation Insights, 2018, July, manuscript accepted for publication.

  3. Nizar JM, Dong W, McClellan RB, Labarca M, Zhou Y, Wong J, Goens DG, Zhao M, Velarde N, Bernstein D, Pellizzon M, Satlin LM, Bhalla V, “Sodium-Sensitive Elevation in Blood Pressure is ENaC Independent in Diet-Induced Obesity and Insulin Resistance”, American Journal of Physiology- Renal Physiology, 310:F812-20, 2016.* subject of editorial (Ecelbarger CA, et al, in the same issue)

  4. Bhalla V, Velez MG, Chertow GM, “A Transcriptional Blueprint for Human and Murine Diabetic Kidney Disease”, Diabetes 62:31-3, 2013.

  5. Bhalla, V., Beinan Zhao, Kristen M.J. Azar, Elsie J. Wang, Sarah Choi, Eric C. Wong, Stephen P. Fortmann,Latha P. Palaniappan, “Racial/Ethnic Differences in the Prevalence of Proteinuric and Non-proteinuric Diabetic Kidney Disease”, Diabetes Care 36: 1215-21, 2013.

  6. Zheng X, Bhalla V, “The Missing Link- Studying the alternative TGF-β pathway provides a unifying theory for different components of diabetic nephropathy”, Diabetes 64:1898-900, 2015.