Dr. Boss is a general internist having received his clinical training at The Johns Hopkins Hospital. He received his research training both at UCSD (purine biochemistry) and the Massachusetts General Hospital (genetics and folate biochemistry). Throughout his academic career, he has remained clinically active providing primary care to adult patients, presently spending about 15% of his time in clinical work.
Dr. Boss's research interests are in two major areas. The first area of interest is studying the nitric oxide/cyclic GMP/cGMP-dependent protein kinase signal transduction pathway. He has studied nitric oxide regulation of the two mammalian vitamin B12-dependent enzymes methionine synthase and methylmalonyl-CoA mutase, and out of this work he has found a new nitric oxide scavenger which could be useful in the treatment of states of excess nitric oxide such as sepsis. This same drug is also an extremely good cyanide scavenger, and could be used as an antidote if cyanide were used as a weapon of mass destruction. He currently is completing pre-clinical studies of the drug, in anticipation of Phase I and II clinical studies. His second major area of interest is performing translational studies on human cancers to identify potential pharmacological targets. He developed novel patented methods to measure the activation states of Ras and Rho in intact tissues and is applying these to several cancers.
He has been chair of numerous UCSD School of Medicine and campus committees including: (i) the School of Medicine Committee on Educational Policy which oversees all medical school educational programs, both clinical as well as basic research; (ii) the School of Medicine Faculty Council which is the medical school's main governing body; and (iii) the campus-wide Committee on Academic Personnel which reviews appointments, advancements, and promotions for all UCSD faculty.
He served as Director of the Internal Medicine Residency Program at UCSD for 10 years and as Co-Director of the Internal Medicine third year clinical core clerkship for seven years. He is principal investigator of a Physician-Scientist Research Training Program and of a Science Education Partnership Award Program designed to increase the number of under-represented minorities pursuing a health sciences career.
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