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Inna Belfer, MD, PhD
Associate Professor, Anesthesiology
Office Address
Biomedical Science Tower 1
200 Lothrop Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
Undergraduate School
Moscow Medical University (MMSI), Moscow, Russia
Medical/Graduate School
Moscow Medical University (MMSI), Moscow, Russia, MD Hebrew University, Jerusalem, Israel, PhD, Neurobiology
Moscow State Clinic Hospital #6, Moscow, Russia
National Institutes of Health, Postdoctoral Fellowship, Human Genetics
Subspecialty Research Interests
Human pain genetics Molecular epidemiology of human pain
I am a human geneticist with a primary interest in the relationship between genotypes and complex traits such as human pain, psychiatric diseases, and addictions. My current research focuses on optimizing pain assessment, acute and chronic pain phenotyping, selection of pain candidate genes, and genotyping SNP markers. My primary goal is to identify genetic and non-genetic determinants of human pain conditions such as post-mastectomy chronic pain, with a particular focus in the effect of genotype on the neurobiology of primary afferent neurons in human dorsal root ganglia.
Selected Publications
  • Young EE, Lariviere WR, Belfer I. Genetic basis of pain variability: recent advances. J Med Genet. (2012) ; 49(1):1-9
  • Belfer I, Segall S. COMT genetic variants and pain. Drugs Today (Barc). (2011); 47(6):457-67.
  • Mogil JS, Sorge RE, LaCroix-Fralish ML, Smith SB, Fortin A, Sotocinal SG, Ritchie J, Austin JS, Schorscher-Petcu A, Melmed K, Czerminski J, Bittong RA, Mokris JB, Neubert JK, Campbell CM, Edwards RR, Campbell JN, Crawley JN, Lariviere WR, Wallace MR, Sternberg WF, Balaban CD, Belfer I, Fillingim RB. Pain sensitivity and vasopressin analgesia are mediated by a gene-sex-environment interaction. Nat Neurosci. (2011); 14(12):1569-73.
  • Neely GG, Hess A, Costigan M, Keene AC, Goulas S, Langeslag M, Griffin RS, Belfer I, Dai F, Smith SB, Diatchenko L, Gupta V, Xia CP, Amann S, Kreitz S, Heindl-Erdmann C, Wolz S, Ly CV, Arora S, Sarangi R, Dan D, Novatchkova M, Rosenzweig M, Gibson DG, Truong D, Schramek D, Zoranovic T, Cronin SJ, Angjeli B, Brune K, Dietzl G, Maixner W, Meixner A, Thomas W, Pospisilik JA, Alenius M, Kress M, Subramaniam S, Garrity PA, Bellen HJ, Woolf CJ, Penninger JM. A genome-wide Drosophila screen for heat nociception identifies α2δ3 as an evolutionary conserved pain gene. Cell. (2010); 143(4):628-38.
  • Costigan M, Belfer I, Griffin RS, Dai F, Barrett LB, Coppola G, Wu T, Kiselycznyk C, Poddar M, Lu Y, Diatchenko L, Smith S, Cobos EJ, Zaykin D, Allchorne A, Gershon E, Livneh J, Shen PH, Nikolajsen L, Karppinen J, Männikkö M, Kelempisioti A, Goldman D, Maixner W, Geschwind DH, Max MB, Seltzer Z, Woolf CJ. Multiple chronic pain states are associated with a common amino acid-changing allele in KCNS1. Brain. (2010); 133(9):2519-27.
  • Belfer I, Wu T, Hipp H, Walter J, Scully M, Nyquist PA, Bollettino A, Goldman D, Max MB, DeGraba TJ. Linkage of large-vessel carotid atherosclerotic stroke to inflammatory genes via a systemic screen. Int J Stroke. (2010); 5(3):145-51.
  • Belfer I, Dai F. Phenotyping and genotyping neuropathic pain. Curr Pain Headache Rep. (2010); 14(3):203-12.