Dr. Perdita Permaul is a clinical investigator, pediatric allergist/immunologist and an assistant professor of pediatrics at Weill Cornell Medicine. She completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Pennsylvania, her medical degree at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, and completed her pediatric residency at New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center. She then moved to Boston and continued her training at Boston Children’s Hospital, where she completed a fellowship in Allergy and Immunology. During her three-year fellowship, she served as a research fellow in the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital where she participated in the development and execution of asthma clinical trials of the Asthma Clinical Research Network (ACRN)/NHBLI. Upon completing fellowship, Dr. Permaul continued on as a pediatric allergist and immunologist at Massachusetts General Hospital and assistant professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School until her return to Weill Cornell.
Dr. Permaul has authored a number of scientific papers, reviews and book chapters on original research showing how indoor allergen exposures affect asthma outcomes in urban children with asthma, both in the school and home environments. Her current clinical/translational asthma research is supported by grant funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to study the interactions between childhood obesity, the environment, and asthma morbidity in an established cohort of inner-city children with asthma. Obesity and asthma are two chronic childhood diseases that have shown a striking surge in prevalence over the past two decades. Obese children with asthma experience significantly greater symptoms, poor response to inhaled corticosteroid therapy, loss of asthma control, and higher asthma-associated health care utilization. The underlying pathophysiologic mechanisms for explaining why obesity leads to poorly controlled asthma is largely unknown. Ongoing work has focused on studying how obesity related systemic inflammation contributes to the development of severe asthma in children through profiling of cytokines and other inflammatory and immune mediators. Dr. Permaul is also a co-investigator of NIH funded multi-center pediatric asthma clinical trials focused on early interventions to prevent the development of asthma.