Dr. Gourh is a board-certified rheumatologist with a long-standing interest in scleroderma and currently directs a translational research program focused on understanding the genetics of both pediatric and adult scleroderma, biomarker discovery, and disease classification. After receiving his medical degree in India, he did postdoctoral research in genetics and then joined the faculty at the McGovern Medical School at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, where he became Assistant Professor of Medicine. Dr Gourh completed his medical training at Houston followed by an adult rheumatology fellowship at the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. Dr Gourh became a Henry Metzger Scholar in Translational Medicine at NIAMS and pursued the genetics of African American scleroderma, a health disparity, by forming a multi-center collaboration to perform whole exome sequencing, and genome wide association study involving the largest cohort of African-American scleroderma patients. Dr. Gourh was appointed as an Assistant Clinical Investigator in 2019 and is also an attending physician on the NIH Rheumatology Consultation Service.
Dr Gourh’s research has focused on unraveling the genetic risk factors involved in scleroderma pathogenesis. One of his current projects, the Genome Research in African-American Scleroderma Patients (GRASP), is researching the largest cohort of African-American scleroderma patients to identify genetic differences that increase the prevalence and severity of scleroderma in the African American population. We are using cutting edge technologies like whole exome sequencing (WES), exome array, African diaspora array, and analyses such as admixture mapping, rare variant analysis and various bioinformatics tools to better understand the molecular pathways involved in scleroderma pathogenesis. Another major interest is to understand how autoimmunity plays a role in scleroderma and its role in fibrosis.
In addition to his research activities, Dr. Gourh is an active clinician and a teacher. He has served in various roles at the American College of Rheumatology and has received multiple awards, including the Carwile Leroy/Joseph Korn Prize for Research in Scleroderma, the Young Investigator Award at the 10th International Systemic Sclerosis Workshop, the American Academy of Rheumatology (ACR) Research and Education Abbott Medical and Pediatric Resident Research Award, the ACR Rheumatology Research Workshop Outstanding Abstract award, the 33rd European Workshop for Rheumatology Research Travel Award, ACR Distinguished Fellow Award, and the NIH Genome Recognition of Employee Accomplishments and Talents (GREAT) Award. He has given presentations both nationally and internationally.