Download Curriculum Vitae

Dr. Burstein received his medical degree from Cayetano Heredia University in Lima, Peru.  He completed Internal Medicine residency training at UT Southwestern and Gastroenterology fellowship training at the University of Michigan.  Thereafter, he was also a research fellow at the Vaccine Research Center at the NIH. After completion of his training, he joined the Faculty at University of Michigan (2002-2008), and was later recruited to UT Southwestern, joining the Departments of Internal Medicine (Division of Digestive and Liver Diseases) and Molecular Biology. 

Dr. Burstein′s research training and expertise is in the area of molecular immunology.  Broadly, the work in his laboratory is focused on basic mechanisms that control inflammatory responses in human disease, particularly inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).  Work from the laboratory has investigated the regulation of the NF-kB transcription factor, which led to the discovery of the COMMD protein family.  Thereafter, his group has also investigated the basic functions of these factors in immune regulation, including the recent discovery of their role in endosomal protein sorting. More recently, the lab began investigating the genetic and molecular basis of altered immunity in patients with defined Mendelian disorders.  These studies have led to important discoveries, including the identification of cytosolic RNA:DNA hybrids as regulators of the interferon pathway.


Medical School
Cayetano Heredia Peruvian University (1994)
UT Southwestern Medical Center (1998), Internal Medicine
University of Michigan Hospitals & Health Centers (2001), Gastroenterology
Graduate School
University of Groningen (2013), Molecular Genetics

Research Interest

  • COMMD proteins: We study the regulation of endosomal protein sorting and immune function by members of this protein family.
  • Genetics of inflammatory disorders: Out lab investigates the genetic basis of disorders of immune function, particularly affecting the GI tract
  • Mucosal immunity and immune-tumor interactions in the GI tract


Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications

Microbial Sensing by Intestinal Myeloid Cells Controls Carcinogenesis and Epithelial Differentiation.
Miyata N, Morris LL, Chen Q, Thorne C, Singla A, Zhu W, Winter M, Melton SD, Li H, Sifuentes-Dominguez L, Llano E, Huff-Hardy K, Starokadomskyy P, Lopez A, Reese TA, Turer E, Billadeau DD, Winter SE, Burstein E Cell Rep 2018 Aug 24 9 2342-2355
Endosomal sorting of Notch receptors through COMMD9-dependent pathways modulates Notch signaling.
Li H, Koo Y, Mao X, Sifuentes-Dominguez L, Morris LL, Jia D, Miyata N, Faulkner RA, van Deursen JM, Vooijs M, Billadeau DD, van de Sluis B, Cleaver O, Burstein E J. Cell Biol. 2015 Nov 211 3 605-17
Copper Metabolism Domain-containing 1 Represses Genes that Promote Inflammation and Protects Mice From Colitis and Colitis-associated Cancer.
Li H, Chan L, Bartuzi P, Melton SD, Weber A, Ben-Shlomo S, Varol C, Raetz M, Mao X, Starokadomskyy P, van Sommeren S, Mokadem M, Schneider H, Weisberg R, Westra HJ, Esko T, Metspalu A, Kumar V, Faubion WA, Yarovinsky F, Hofker M, Wijmenga C, Kracht M, Franke L, Aguirre V, Weersma RK, Gluck N, van de Sluis B, Burstein E Gastroenterology 2014 Apr

Honors & Awards

  • Berta M. and Cecil O. Patterson Chair in Gastroenterology
  • Physician of the Year
    North Texas Chapter, Crohn's and Colitis Foundation (2017)
  • Member
    The American Society for Clinical Investigation (ASCI) (2012)
  • Helmsley Scholar
    Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America (2010)
  • AGA Research Scholar Award
    Foundation for Digestive Health and Nutrition (2003)
  • John S. Miller Award
    Outstanding Performance as a House Officer, UT Southwestern Medical School (1998)
  • Valedictorian
    Medical School of Cayetano Heredia University (1994)

Professional Associations/Affiliations

  • American Society for Cell biology (ASCB) (2014)
  • American Society for Clinical Investigation (ASCI) (2012)
  • American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) (1999)