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Robert Pignolo, MD, PhD

Robert Pignolo, MD, PhD Physician

Associate Professor of Medicine at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and the Presbyterian Medical Center of Philadelphia

Dr. Pignolo is a Penn Medicine employed physician.

Clinical Specialties


  • Medicine
    • Geriatric Medicine

Programs & Centers:

Board Certification:

  • Geriatric Medicine, 2002
  • Internal Medicine, 2001

Description of Clinical Expertise

Osteoporosis; Bone disorders; Geriatrics

Practice Locations and Appointments

Insurance Accepted

  • Aetna US Healthcare
  • Cigna
  • Cigna HealthSpring
  • CVS Health
  • Devon Health Services (Americare)
  • Gateway Health Plan
  • Geisinger Health Plan
  • HealthAmerica / HealthAssurance, a Coventry Plan
  • HealthPartners
  • HealthPartners Medicare
  • HealthSmart
  • Highmark Blue Shield
  • Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey
  • Humana / Choicecare
  • Independence Blue Cross (Keystone East)
  • Intergroup
  • Keystone First
  • Multiplan
  • NJ Medicaid
  • NJ Qualcare
  • Oxford Health Plan
  • PA Medicaid
  • PA Medicare
  • Preferred Health Care/LGH
  • Rail Road Medicare / Palmetto GBA
  • Remedy Partners at Penn Medicine
  • Tricare
  • United Healthcare
  • UnitedHealthcare Community Plan
  • US Family Health Plan

Education and Training

Graduate School: University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
Medical School: Medical College of Pennsylvania
Residency: Hahnemann University Hospital
Fellowship: Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania


Advances in Mineral Metabolism, International American Aging Association (AGE), National American College of Physicians-American Society of Internal Medicine, National American Geriatrics Society, National American Society for Bone and Mineral Research, International Association of Osteobiology, International International Fibrodysplasia Ossificans Progressiva Association (IFOPA), International National Osteoporosis Foundation, National The Gerontological Society of America, National Vibe Pharmaceuticals (UPStart Program), National

Hospital Affiliation

Dr. Pignolo is a Penn Medicine employed physician.

Hospital Privileges:

  • Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania: Has privileges to treat patients in the hospital.
  • Penn Presbyterian Medical Center: Has privileges to treat patients in the hospital.


Description of Research Expertise:

Bone biology; Osteoblast differentiation; Cell aging; Senescence; Osteoporosis; Heterotopic ossification; Stem cell biology; Aging; Mesenchymal stem cells

Selected Publications:

Egan, K.P., Kim, J-H., Mohler, E.R. III, Pignolo, R.J.: Role for Circulating Osteogenic Precursor Cells in Aortic Valvular Disease Atherosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology 31 : 2965-2971,2011.

Kan, L., Lounev, V.Y., Pignolo, R.J., Duan, L., Liu, Y., Stock, S.R., McGuire., T.L., Lu, B., Gerard, N.P., Shore, E.M., Kaplan, F.S., Kessler, J.A.: Substance P Signaling Mediates BMP Dependent Heterotopic Ossification Journal of Cellular Biochemistry 112 : 2759–2772,2011.

Pignolo, R.J., Xu, M., Russell, E., Richardson, A., Kaplan, J., Billings, P.C., Kaplan, F.S., Shore, E.M.: Heterozygous inactivation of Gnas confers enhanced osteoblast differentiation and formation of heterotopic ossification Journal of Bone and Mineral Research 26 : 2647-2655,2011.

Suda, R.K., Billings, P.C., Egan, K.P., Kim, J-H., McCarrick-Walmsley, R., Glaser, D.L., Porter, D.L., Shore, E.M., and Pignolo, R.J.: Circulating Osteogenic Precursor Cells in Heterotopic Bone Formation Stem Cells 27 : 2209-2219,2009.

Pignolo, R.J., Suda, R.K., McMillan, E.A., Shen, J., Lee, S-H, Choi, Y., Wright, A.C., and Johnson, F.B.: Defects in Telomere Maintenance Molecules Impair Osteoblast Differentiation and Promote Osteoporosis Aging Cell 7 : 23-31,2008.

Adegbite, N.S., Xu, M., Kaplan, F.S., Shore1, E.M., and Pignolo, R.J.: Diagnostic and Mutational Spectrum of Progressive Osseous Heteroplasia (POH) and Other GNAS-based Disorders of Heterotopic Ossification American Journal of Medical Genetics 146A : 1788-1796,2008.

Kaplan, F.S., Glaser, D.L., Shore, E.M., Pignolo, R.J., Xu, M., Zhang, Y., Senitzer, D., Forman, S.J., and Emerson, S.: Hematopoietic stem cell contribution to ectopic skeletogenesis Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery (Am.) 89 : 347-357,2007.

Lee, S-H, Rho, J., Jeong, D., Sul, J-Y, Kim, T., Kim, N., Kang, J-S, Miyamoto, T, Suda, T., Lee, S-K, Pignolo, R.J., Koczon-Jaremko, B., Lorenzo, J., and Choi Y.: v-ATPase V0 subunit d2-deficient mice exhibit impaired osteoclast fusion and increased bone formation Nature Medicine 12 : 1403-1409,2007.

Kaplan, F.S., Shore, E.M., Rishi, G., Billings, P.C., Glaser, D.L., Pignolo, R.J., Graf, D., and Kamoun, M.: Immunological features of fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva and the dysregulated BMP4 pathway Clinical Reviews in Bone and Mineral Metabolism 3 : 189-194,2005.

Du, X., Shen, J., Kugan, N., Furth, E.E., Lombard, D.B., Cheung, C., Pak, S., Luo, G., Pignolo, R.J., DePinho, R.A., Guarente, L., and Johnson, F.B.: Telomere shortening exposes functions for the mouse Werner and Bloom syndrome genes Molecular & Cellular Biology 24 (19): 8437-46,2004.

Academic Contact Info

Division of Geriatric Medicine
Ralston-Penn Center
3615 Chestnut Street
Perelman School of Medicine
424B Stemmler Hall
36th Street and Hamilton Walk

Philadelphia, PA 19104
Phone: (215) 662-2746
Fax: (215) 573-8684
Patient appointments: 800-789-PENN (7366)

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