Hematology & Oncology

Program Details
Division Chief: Moro Salifu, MD, Acting
Program Director: Carol Luhrs, MD
Address: 450 Clarkson Avenue,
Brooklyn, NY 11203
Telephone: 718 613-8678
Number of first year fellows: 4-5 per year. Total 14
Number of faculty: (MD & PhD 10 Clinical and 1 Research
Hospitals fellows rotate to: Kings County Hospital Center; University Hospital Brooklyn; Brooklyn campus of VA-New York Harbor Healthcare System
Sample Schedule of Assignment
  • PGY 4: 5 months each of Clinical Hematology and Clinical Medical Oncology; Continuity clinic

  • PGY 5: 5 months each of Clinical Hematology and Oncology, One month of Research elective and 2 week rotation in multiple myeloma at MSKCC; Continuity clinic

  • PGY 6: One month Stem Cell Transplant at MSKCC; One month each of Clinical Hematology and Clinical Medical Oncology; 8 months of Research in Clinical or Basic Science; Continuity clinic

Research interests of the division: Health Disparities and Clinical Research in Breast Cancer, Adult T Cell Leukemia and Lymphoma, Thrombotic Thrombocytopenic Purpura.
Conference schedule: Weekly clinical Grand Rounds (2 hours); Weekly Multidisciplinary Tumor Boards; Weekly Journal Club alternating with Board Review; Weekly Hematopathology Conference; Weekly Morning conferences with topics on Patient Safety, Case of the Month and FDA Updates.
Description of the educational aspects and advantage of the program:

The program has both clinical and research strengths. The diversity of the patient population in the three hospitals provides an exceptional clinical experience which covers a broad spectrum of diseases encountered in inner city, minority, medically underserved and immigrant populations together with the usual hematologic and malignant disorders seen in adults. Extensive ambulatory care training is provided in the outpatient clinics which include general hematology, general medical oncology, and specialized clinics for breast cancer and hematologic malignancies. Each institution has a special chemotherapy unit staffed by specially trained oncology nurses. This clinical program is augmented with weekly conferences in hematology and medical oncology, multidisciplinary conferences with radiology, surgery, radiation oncology and pathology. Histology reviews of all cases are held weekly and led by a member of the Department of Pathology. The fellows are encouraged to participate in on-going clinical studies with a faculty mentor.

Application information:

The program participates in the National Resident Matching Program.

Time frame for interviews:

September-October of year preceeding start of fellowship. Board eligibility for American Board of Internal Medicine required.

Contact : Ms. Lois Cooper
Address :

SUNY Downstate Medical Center
MSC 20
Room B5-495
450 Clarkson Avenue
Brooklyn N.Y. 11203

Telephone : 718 613-8678
Fax : 718 270-1578

Current Fellows


photo of Imad Karam

Imad Karam

Undergraduate School: University of Balamand, Lebanon

Medical School: University of Balamand, Lebanon

Residency: St. Luke's Hospital, Chesterfield,  Missouri

Why did I choose Suny Downstate for Fellowship?

It truly was a gut feeling that led me to choose the Suny Downstate Fellowship program. Looking back, I couldn't have been more right. The sense of belonging, the support and the growth I have experienced confirmed that my intuition had guided me to the perfect place to cultivate my aspirations and thrive as a physician.



Cooking; Exploring diverse cuisines; hiking; swimming, traveling, and singing 

photo of Harshasree Seelam

Harshasree Seelam

Undergraduate school: Manipal University

Medical School: American University of Antigua

Residency: Richmond University Medical Center

Why I chose SUNY Downstate for fellowship: Strong clinical program with emphasis on academics and dedicated faculty who are committed to teaching. We have the opportunity to work with a diverse patient population and rotate at multiple hospitals which offer their own unique experiences. I was also impressed by the camaraderie between the fellows and the supportive work environment.


Long distance running, hiking, watching documentaries and cooking shows   

photo of Gaudy Vanegas

Gaudy Vanegas

Medical School: Universidad Americana (UAM)


St. John's Episcopal Hospital 

Why I chose SUNY Downstate for fellowship?

During my rotation at SUNY Downstate Medical Center, I found a fantastic opportunity that matches my career goals perfectly: pursuing a Hematology-Oncology Fellowship. What really stood out were the fellows' strong sense of ethics, their dedication to research, and their responsibility in patient care. But what truly impressed me was the commitment of the Attending Physicians, especially the Program Director. She not only teaches but also cares about ethics and humanity. In short, I found the opportunity I've been looking for, and I'm ready to make the most of it.

Hobbies: cooking

photo of Armine Bagdasaryan

Armine Bagdasaryan

Undergraduate School: University of Southern California

Medical School:

Yerevan State Medical University


One Brooklyn Health, Brookdale Medical Center

Why I chose SUNY Downstate for fellowship?

SUNY Downstate, located in the heart of Brooklyn, serves a largely diverse patient population allowing us to serve a community from different corners of the world, exposing us to a spectrum of pathologies. However, it goes without saying that the main reason are the people… from the welcoming staff, to helpful faculty with impressive professional backgrounds, to our patients who grant us purpose for all we do.


Learning art history, playing the piano and spending time with friends and family

photo of Rachele Hamadi

Rachele Hamadi

Undergraduate School:

Universite Saint Joseph

Medical School:

Universite Saint Joseph, Beirut, Lebanon


Staten Island University Hospital

Why I chose SUNY Downstate for fellowship?

I am delighted to have chosen SUNY Downstate for my hematology/oncology fellowship, a decision driven by numerous compelling factors that align perfectly with my professional aspirations. The program's esteemed reputation in the field is a testament to its commitment to excellence and innovation, assuring me of the high-quality education and mentorship I will receive.  The patient population's diversity, encompassing the VA, Kings County Hospital, and SUNY Downstate Hospital, will offer me exposure to a wide spectrum of cases. This exposure not only enriches my learning but also perfectly dovetails with my vision to integrate geriatric oncology into my future career. The program's location in the heart of New York City is the icing on the cake.

Hobbies: Rock climbing, hiking, pilates, yoga, reading, tennis

photo of Junjing Guo, MD

Junjing Guo, MD

Medical School: Harbin Medical University

Residency: SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University

Why I chose SUNY Downstate for fellowship? I had a great training experience here as a resident. Love the diverse physician and patient population; Having opportunities to provide medical care for historically underserved populations; Dedicated faculty committed to excellence of training and mentoring next generation oncologist; Constantly evolving to deliver cutting edge clinical management of neoplastic diseases to patients and high quality translational research experience at multiple centers; I believe that I will have all the support I need from our dedicated faculty, senior trainees and rapidly evolving program to achieve my career goals of excellence and leadership as a clinical and investigational oncologist.

Hobbies: Swimming, running, ice skating.

photo of Leen Khoury, MD

Leen Khoury, MD

Medical School: Tishreen University Faculty of Medicine

Residency: SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University

Why I chose SUNY Downstate for fellowship? During my residency at SUNY Downstate, I immediately recognized the strong commitment to teaching from the program director and Hematology/Oncology faculty. We are a high-volume center with rotation at multiple centers, including SUNY Downstate, Kings County Hospital, Brooklyn VA and Memorial Sloan Kettering Center (MSKCC). During my three-year fellowship, I will have the opportunity to work with outstanding faculty and manage cases from all oncologic specialties.

Hobbies: Walking, dancing and Pilates.

photo of Ramtin Moradi, MD

Ramtin Moradi, MD

Medical School: Azad University Mashhad Branch

Residency: Richmond University Medical Center

Why I chose SUNY Downstate for fellowship? Vibrant academic environment with excellent faculties dedicated to teaching.

Hobbies: Netflixing

photo of Aye Mon Thida, MD

Aye Mon Thida, MD

Undergraduate School: No. 2, Basic Education High School, Kamayut, Myanmar

Medical School: University of Medicine (1), Yangon, Myanmar

Residency: NYCHHC/Woodhull


Why I chose SUNY Downstate for fellowship? I had an opportunity to do an elective rotation at SUNY Downstate when I was a resident, and it was clear to me that this is an environment where fellows feel supported and are all happy with the training. I found the program a perfect balance of strong clinical training and ample research opportunities. The fellowship program and faculty are genuinely invested in the growth and success of fellows, and I knew that this is the place that would help me build the skills I need to provide the best possible care for my patients. Finally, the fellows are a fantastic group of talented and supportive people whom I am very thrilled to have as my peers.

Hobbies:  Cooking, trying out new food, traveling.

photo of Kafi Thomas,MD

Kafi Thomas,MD

Undergraduate school: Queen’s University, Kingston, ON

Medical School: St. George’s University, School of Medicine

Residency: Internal Medicine, Harlem Hospital affiliated with Columbia University

Fellowship: Hospice & Palliative Medicine, Wright State University, Boonshoft School of Medicine

Why I chose SUNY Downstate for fellowship? Strong clinical program. Opportunity to care for the underserved.

Hobbies: Swimming, tennis, mystery novels and spending time with my dogs.

photo of Burak Erdinc, MD

Burak Erdinc, MD

Undergraduate School: Yalova High Science School, Turkey

Medical School: Istanbul University Cerrahpasa Medical Faculty, Turkey

Residency: Brookdale University Hospital Medical Center, Brooklyn, NY

Why I chose SUNY Downstate for fellowship? Because this program has strong fundamentals and highly effective educational environment.

Hobbies: Running, tennis, table tennis, chess

photo of Firas Jafri, MD

Firas Jafri, MD

Medical School: Jinnah Medical and Dental College

Residency: Westchester Medical Center

Why I chose SUNY Downstate for fellowship? Because training at Downstate has a lot to offer. A strong didactic curriculum, collegial environment, and pathology over a vast spectrum from an underserved population of Brooklyn to the patients at the VA is what is being offered by this program and that is what I want to see myself as a competent Hematologist/Oncologist.

Hobbies: Travelling, reading about world history, fiction whether it be a novel or console games, playing cricket, eating for pleasure, gardening.

photo of Sylvester Homsy, MD

Sylvester Homsy, MD

Undergraduate School: Université Saint Joseph, Beirut, Lebanon

Medical School: Université Saint Joseph, Beirut, Lebanon

Residency: Staten Island University Hospital – Northwell Health

Why I chose SUNY Downstate for fellowship? Diversity

Hobbies: Basketball, playing music, chess

photo of Amena Mohiuddin, MD

Amena Mohiuddin, MD

Medical School: University of Missouri Kansas City Combined BA/MD program

Residency: SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University

Why I chose SUNY Downstate for fellowship? What really drew me to this program was the collegial environment and the great camaraderie among the fellows. This fellowship program exposes you to a variety of conditions and truly trains you to become adept in not only recognizing but also managing them. Additionally, it affords you the honor of caring for an underserved population. Last but not least, program leadership makes fellow education and wellbeing a priority, striving in earnest to train well-rounded Hematologists/Oncologists.

Hobbies: Spending time with my family, watching my son grow up and capturing all his firsts, cooking, hiking, reading, gardening (although my basil plant would beg to differ)