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Fotios Koumpouras, MD

Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine (Rheumatology); Director of Education and Training, Rheumatology; Director Yale Lupus Program

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Fotios Koumpouras, MD

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Dr. Fotios Koumpouras is Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director of the Yale Lupus Program. Dr. Koumpouras is a native of New York City and is a graduate of the Stuyvesant School at 16yrs of age. He completed his college education at State University of New York with honors in Chemistry and Biology, and was a member of the research team at the Wadsworth Center New York State Department of Health investigating cyclin E as a prognostic marker for breast cancer. In addition, he was part of the effort at the Albany Medical College to bio-engineer erythrocytes in search for a new blood substitute. Dr. Koumpouras attended St. George's University School of Medicine and was elected into Iota Epsilon Alpha, the international medical honor society, and graduated first in his class, completed post-graduate training in internal medicine and was Chief Medical Resident at Stony Brook University. He completed a clinical rheumatology fellowship program, as well as a program in Investigative Rheumatology, at Yale University School of Medicine. He was awarded the Physician Scientist Development Award from the American College of Rheumatology, and was co-PI for the ILAR project geared to improve access for rheumatologic services in East Africa.

Dr. Koumpouras worked closely with Dr. Susan Manzi from 2007-2015 at the University of Pittsburgh and Allegheny Clinic, and was an integral member of the clinical research team. He was involved in both investigator initiated and pharmaceutical clinical trials for SLE and was principal site investigator for the ITN trial of Abatacept and Cyclophosphamide for Lupus Nephritis. He was also principal site investigator for the Double-Blind Randomized Placebo-Controlled Trial of the Effect of Vitamin D3 on the Interferon Signature in Patients with Systemic Lupus Erythematosus. Furthermore, he was site co-PI for the SLICC clinical research program, which resulted in improved criteria for the diagnostic assessment of SLE. He was co-investigator of the Safety and Effectiveness of Belimumab in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Registry (SABLE) clinical trial. Dr. Koumpouras was the site PI for BLISS 99 and co-PI for HGS 1006, the clinical trials that lead to approval of Benlysta for the treatment of systemic lupus. Presently Dr. Koumpouras is the principle investigator for several active clinical trials in SLE at Yale and developed and is principle investigator of the Yale Rheumatology BioRepository.

Dr. Koumpouras is board certified in both internal medicine and rheumatology. He is an active member of the American College of Rheumatology, the Arthritis Foundation, and the Lupus Foundation. He is an committee member for the ACR RheumPAC, often going to Washington to advocate for arthritis in congress. In addition to SLE, Dr. Koumpouras has an interest in lupus biomarkers, new lupus therapeutics, clinical trial management and execution, rheumatology education, diagnostic and treatment dilemmas, and adolescent arthritis.

Education & Training

  • Investigative Fellowship
    Yale University (2007)
  • Fellowship
    Yale University School of Medicine (2006)
  • Chief Residency
    Stony Brook University Hospital (2004)
  • Residency
    Stony Brook University Hospital (2003)
  • MD
    St. George’s University School of Medicine (2000)
  • BS
    University at Albany (1994)


  • American College of Rheumatology
    Washington, United States 2020
    Medical Image Mystery as a Teaching Tool
  • East Africa Project
    Nairobi, Kenya (2006-2007)
    Improve rheumatology education in Kenya

Honors & Recognition

AwardAwarding OrganizationDate
Patients' Choice 5th Anniversary AwardVitals.com2015
YOU ROCK AwardArthritis Foundation, Pittsburgh Chapter2013
Physician Scientist Development AwardAmerican College of Rheumatology2006
Resident of the YearStony Brook University2003
Future Physician AwardSt. George's University1998
Iota Epislon Alpha International Medical Honor Society1996
Ben V. Smith Scholar Award for ScienceUniversity at Albany1990
National Merit Semi-Finalist1989

Professional Service

Lupus Foundation of AmericaModerator2018 - Present
American College of RheumatologyPolitical Action Committee2016 - Present

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