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William C. Hsu, M.D.

Dr. Hsu is the Director of the Asian Clinic at Joslin Diabetes Center, an Investigator in the Section on Vascular Cell Biology, Co-Director of Joslin’s Asian American Diabetes Initiative, as well as an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Hsu received his medical degree from Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City and completed his residence training in Internal Medicine at Yale New Haven Hospital. He completed his clinical training in Endocrinology and Metabolism at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Joslin Diabetes Center, and Harvard Medical School.  He has received teaching awards from Yale University School of Medicine and Harvard Medical School. Dr. Hsu is the chief editor of Joslin’s interactive bilingual Web site designed for Asian American patients with diabetes (http://aadi.joslin.harvard.edu/).

Dr. Hsu's research interests include understanding the causes of diabetes among Asian Americans and developing novel medical technologies for the treatment of diabetes.

Despite their leaner body habitus, Asian Americans have higher rates of diabetes than Caucasian Americans. As Co-Director of Joslin’s Asian American Diabetes Initiative, Dr. Hsu works on key projects that address diabetes health disparities in Asian Americans.

As a clinical investigator curious about barriers to diabetes knowledge and care in immigrants, Dr. Hsu collaborates with regional community health centers to study the role of linguistic and cultural obstacles in diabetes care for Chinese immigrants. This research challenges the current belief that offering interpretive services or staffing bilingual healthcare providers alone is an effective strategy in addressing cultural differences. Dr. Hsu and colleagues found that healthcare institutions must use educational materials as an essential component of an overall approach to providing culturally oriented and linguistically appropriate diabetes care.

In other ongoing research, Dr. Hsu is exploring the potential differences in the pathophysiology of diabetes in Asians compared to Caucasians. By using the euglycemic insulin clamp technique, he is comparing the levels of insulin resistance and correlating them with other clinical parameters in Asians with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Another project focuses on how changes in diet might lead to the development of diabetes in Asian populations. Dr. Hsu and team are conducting a randomized controlled diet study to investigate inflammatory responses to the transition from an Asian diet to a Western diet in Asian Americans versus Caucasians.

Dr. Hsu’s research also concerns the development and application of innovative diabetes technologies, such as novel insulin pumps and continuous glucose sensors, in the treatment of diabetes. He conducts clinical trials, adapting these technologies and applying them in the therapeutic regimens of patients.

Selected References
Hsu WC, Cheung S, Ong E, Wong K, Lin S, Leon K, Weinger K, King GL. Identification of linguistic barriers to diabetes knowledge and glycemic control in Chinese Americans with diabetes. Diabetes Care 29:415-416, 2006.

Gavrila A, Hsu W, Tsiodras S, Doweiko J, Gautam S, Martin L, Moses AC, Karchmer AW, Mantzoros CS. Improvement in highly active antiretroviral therapy-induced metabolic syndrome by treatment with pioglitazone but not with fenofibrate: a 2 x 2 factorial, randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial. Clin Infect Dis 40:745-749, 2005. 

Hsu WC, Cheung S, King GL. Staying Healthy with Diabetes—A Guide for the Chinese American Community, revised edition. Boston: Joslin Diabetes Center, 2004.

Hsu WC, Mantzoros CS. Obesity—genetics, pathogenesis, therapy. Principles of Diabetes Mellitus. Poretsky L (ed.) Boston: Kluwer Academic Publishers, pp. 665-669, 2002.

Hsu

Page last updated: April 25, 2014