The division of Immunology and Infectious Diseases within the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Weill Cornell is under the direction of Steven S. Witkin, Ph.D. and is at the forefront in research in several areas of women's health, especially genetic, immune and infectious aspects of disorders affecting pregnant and non-pregnant women. The Weill Cornell Medical College Obstetrics and Gynecology Immunology and Infectious Diseases laboratory has an international reputation for research in obstetrics, genital tract infectious diseases and vulvar vestibulitis syndrome and has generated hundreds of peer-reviewed papers. Dr. Witkin has trained many obstetricians and gynecologists from other countries in Europe, Asia and South America who then return to their home countries and become research and clinical leaders at their respective institutions. The division has had visiting fellows from Brazil, Latvia, Israel, Armenia and Turkey. In addition, Maternal-Fetal Medicine fellows, Reproductive Endocrine fellows and Obstetrics and Gynecology residents routinely participate in the translational research of the division.
There are both clinical and research sections in this division. The clinical laboratory section has established highly sensitive gene amplification assays to detect mycoplasmas in biological samples and is one of the only labs in New York State licensed to perform this testing. In addition, the clinical lab is also licensed to test for clinically relevant polymorphisms in genes associated with development of recurrent vulvovaginal candidiasis and vulvar vestibulitis syndrome.