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Benjamin S. Bleier, MD
Instructor of Otology and Laryngology, Harvard Medical School

My research focus is on the role of sinonasal mucosal barrier function in the pathogenesis of chronic rhinosinusitis. Using a combination of immunohistochemical and air-liquid interface primary epithelial culture techniques we are working to determine how transmembrane epithelial proteins such as the ATP-binding cassette(ABC) transporters function to promote the elaboration of Th1 and Th2 skewed cytokines in the setting of chronic inflammatory disease states(Figure).
 An additional synergistic interest is studying mucosal permeability and epithelial responses to a variety of topical therapeutics and drug eluting polymers. Using both in vitro and animal models we are working to develop biocompatible materials to enhance the medical and surgical management of patients with chronic rhinosinusitis.



Figure: Fluorescein labeled Anti-Pgp binding in a sample of sinus mucosa derived from a patient with chronic sinusitis with nasal polyposis(nuclei counterstained with propidium iodide).

Selected Publications

Research Investigations

1. Bleier BS, LiVolsi VA, Chalian AA, Gimotty PA, Botbyl JD, Weber RS. Technetium Tc 99m Sestamibi Sensitivity in Oxyphil Cell-Dominant Parathyroid Adenomas. Archives of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery. 132(7):779-82, 2006 Jul.

2. Bleier BS, Mirza N. Image Guided Transoral Approach to the Pterygopalatine Fossa. Laryngoscope. 116(10):1927-1929, 2006 Oct.

3. Bleier BS, Palmer JN, Sparano AM, Cohen NA. Laser Assisted Cerebrospinal Fluid Leak Repair: An Animal Model to Test Feasibility. Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery. 137(5):810-4, 2007 Nov.

4. Bleier BS, Levine MS, Mick R, Rubesin SE, Sack SZ, McKinney K, Mirza N. Post-Chemoradiation Dysphagia: Analysis by Modified Barium Swallow. Annals of Otology, Rhinology, and Laryngology. 116(11):837-41, 2007 Nov.

5. Bleier BS, Gawthrop CS, Thaler ER, Sewell DA, Montone KT, Marvel DM, Chiu AG. Diffuse Intranasal Papillomatosis and its Association with the Human Papillomavirus. Archives of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery. 134(7):778-80, 2008 Jul.

6. Bleier BS, Gratton MA, Leibowitz JM, Palmer JN, Newman JG, Cohen NA. Laser Welded Endoscopic Endoluminal Repair of Iatrogenic Esophageal Perforation: An Animal Model. Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery. 139(5):713-7, 2008 Nov.

7. Bleier BS, Palmer JN, Gratton MA, Cohen NA. Laser Tissue Welding in the Rabbit Maxillary Sinus. American Journal of Rhinology. 22(6):625-28, 2008 Nov-Dec.

8. Chennupati SK, Chiu AG, Tamashiro E, Banks CA, Cohen MB, Bleier BS, Kofonow JM, Tam E, Cohen NA. Effects of an LL-37 derived antimicrobial peptide in an animal model of biofilm Pseudomonas sinusitis. American Journal of Rhinology and  Allergy. 23(1):46–51, 2009 Jan-Feb.

9. Bleier BS, Paulson DP, O’Malley BW, Li D, Palmer JN, Chiu AG, Cohen NA. Chitosan Glycerophospate Based Semi-Rigid Dexamethasone Eluting Biodegradable Stent. American Journal of Rhinology. 23(1):76-79, 2009 Jan-Feb.

10. Harvey RJ, Debnath N, Srubiski A, Bleier BS, Schlosser RJ. Fluid Residuals and Drug Exposure in Nasal Irrigation. Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery. 141(6):757-61, 2009 Dec.
11. Bleier BS, Cohen NM, Bloom JD, Palmer JN, Cohen NA. Laser Tissue Welding in Lung and Tracheobronchial Repair: An Animal Model. Chest. 138(2):345-9, 2010 Aug

12. Bleier BS, Kofonow JM, Hashmi N, Chennupati SK, Cohen NA. Antibiotic Eluting Chitosan Glycerophosphate Implant in the  Setting of Acute Bacterial Sinusitis: A Rabbit Model. American Journal of Rhinology and Allergy. 24(2):129-32, 2010 Mar.

13. Bleier BS, Cohen NA, Chiu AG, O’Malley BW, Doghramji L, Palmer JN. Endonasal Laser Tissue Welding: First Human Experience. American Journal of Rhinology and Allergy. 24(3):244-6, 2010 May.

14. Bloom JD, Bleier BS, Mirza N, Chalian AA, Thaler ER. Factors Predicting Endoscopic Exposure of Zenker’s Diverticulum. Annals of Otology, Rhinology & Laryngology. 119(11):736-741, 2010 Nov.

15. Bleier BS, Debnath I, O’Connell BP, Vandergrift WA, Palmer JN, Schlosser RJ. Preliminary Study on the Stability of Beta-2 Transferrin in Extracorporeal Cerebrospinal Fluid. Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery. 144(1):101-103, 2011 Jan.

16. Bleier BS, Schlosser RJ. Endoscopic Anatomy of the Postganglionic Pterygopalatine Innervation of the Posterolateral Nasal Mucosa. International Forum of Allergy and Rhinology.(In Press)

17. Bleier BS, Debnath I, Harvey RJ, Schlosser RJ. Temporospatial Quantification of Fluorescein Labeled Sinonasal Irrigation Delivery. International Forum of Allergy and Rhinology.(In Press)

18. Bleier BS, Wang EW, Vandergrift WA, Schlosser RJ. Mucocele Rate Following Endoscopic Skull Base Reconstruction Using Vascularized Pedicled Flaps. American Journal of Rhinology and Allergy. (In Press)

19. Bleier BS, Wang EW, Curry WT, Schlosser RJ. The Bipedicled Anterior Septal(BAS) Flap: A Radioanatomic and Cadaveric Study. Laryngoscope. (In Press)

20. Mulligan JK, Bleier BS, O'Connell B, Mulligan RM, Wagner C, Schlosser RJ. Vitamin D(3) correlates inversely with systemic dendritic cell numbers and bone erosion in chronic rhinosinusitis with nasal polyps and allergic fungal rhinosinusitis. Clin Exp Immunol. (Epub ahead of print)


1. Bleier BS, Kennedy DW, Palmer JN, Chiu AG, Bloom JD, O’Malley BW. Current Management of Juvenile Nasopharyngeal Angiofibroma: A Tertiary Center Experience 1999-2007. American Journal of Rhinology and Allergy. 23(3):328-30, 2009 May-Jun.

Case Reports

1. Bleier BS, Newman JG, Quon H, Feldman MD, Kent KK, Weinstein GS. Eccrine Porocarcinoma of the Nose: Case Report and Review of World Literature. Archives of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery. 132(2):215-8, 2006 Feb.

Reviews, Chapters, Monographs and Editorials

1. Bleier BS, Govindaraj S, Palmer JN. State of the Art Cerebrospinal Fluid Leak and Encephalocele Repair. Operative Techniques in Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery. 17(1):49-57, March 2006.

2. Bleier BS, Govindaraj S, Palmer JN. Paranasal Sinus Mucoceles. In: Kountakis SE. Onerci M. Eds., Rhinologic and Sleep Apnea Surgical Techniques. Berlin: Springer 2007.

3. Bleier BS. Complications of Sinusitis. In: Thaler E. Kennedy DW. Eds., Rhinosinusitis: A Guide to Diagnosis and Management. New York: Springer 2008.

4. Bleier BS, Palmer JN, Woodworth BA. Recurrent Mucoceles. In: Kountakis SE. Jacobs JB. Gosepath J Eds., Revision Sinus Surgery. Berlin: Springer 2008.

5. Bleier BS, Palmer JN. Cranial Base Repair Using Endoscopic Laser Welding (ELW). Otolaryngologic Clinics of North America. 42(5):901-6, Oct 2009.

6. Bleier BS. Novel Topical Therapeutics. Otolaryngologic Clinics of North America. 43(3):539-49, viii-ix, June 2010.

7. Virgin FW, Bleier BS, Woodworth, BA. Evolving Materials and Techniques for Endoscopic Sinus Surgery. Otolaryngologic Clinics of North America. 43(3):653-72, xi, June 2010.

8. Bleier BS, Schlosser RJ. Prevention and Management of Medial
Rectus Injury. Otolaryngologic Clinics of North America. 43(4):801-7, Aug 2010.

9. Bleier BS, Schlosser RJ. Navigation in Endoscopic Paranasal and Skull Base Surgery. In. Stamm A. Ed., Endoscopic Skull Base and Brain Surgery: Tips and Pearls. New York: Thieme 2011.

10. Bleier BS, Lin DT. Surgical Debate: Orbital Exenteration. In. Chiu AG. Ramakrishnan V. Suh J. Eds., Sinonasal Tumors. New Delhi; Jaypee Brothers 2011.

11. Bleier BS, Schlosser RJ. Sphenoid Sinus CSF/Encepholocele Repair. In Palmer JN. Chiu AG. Eds., Atlas of Endoscopic Sinus and Skull Base Surgery. Philadelphia: Elsevier 2011.