Queen's Medical Center

The Queen's Medical Center (QMC) is a private, nonprofit, acute medical care facility in Honolulu, Hawai’i. As the leading medical referral center in the Pacific Basin, QMC offers a broad range of primary and specialized care services. With the latest technologies in interventional cardiology and cardiac surgery, Queen's Heart at QMC is the most comprehensive program in Hawai’i for the diagnosis and treatment of patients with thoracic aortic disease and its complications.

Photo of Ralph V. Shohet, MDRalph V. Shohet, MD
Principal Investigator

Ralph V. Shohet, MD, is the principal investigator (PI) for GenTAC at QMC. Dr. Shohet is a cardiologist at QMC and the director of cardiovascular research at the John A. Burns School of Medicine at the University of Hawai’i (UH). He is also the PI of the NHLBI-funded Cardiovascular Center of Biomedical Research Excellence at UH. Board-certified in internal medicine and cardiovascular disease, Dr. Shohet has spent his career forging bench-to-bedside links. Using molecular genetic tools, he has investigated signaling pathways in the heart that contribute to hypertrophy, heart failure, and the response to hypoxia. Dr. Shohet has extensive experience with the evaluation of mouse models of cardiovascular disease, including MRI and echocardiography for characterization of cardiac function and mass. Projects in Dr. Shohet’s laboratory focus on cardiovascular gene regulation, and he has helped to develop a novel gene therapy technology using sonographic disruption of perfusion microbubbles.


May Vawer, RN
GenTAC Study Coordinator

Phone: 808-537-7185


Fiona Kennedy, RN, BSN
Research Nurse Coordinator

Fiona Kennedy, RN, BSN is the Research Nurse Coordinator at QMC. She has been a Registered Nurse since 1986 and received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing from the University in Victoria, BC, Canada. She has been a research coordinator for the last 16 years. Her experiences include national and international studies focusing on women and children’s health, childhood diabetes, and cardiology. She is responsible for all aspects of the GenTAC study at QMC including recruitment, patient visits, collection of data/samples, data entry, and packing/shipping. Ms. Kennedy is the primary contact person for referrals and patients interested in participation.