Hirsh Komarow, M.D.

 Hirsh D. Komarow, M.D.

Credit: NIAID
Staff Clinician, Mast Cell Biology Section

Major Areas of Research

  • Evaluation, characterization and treatment of patients with clonal mast cell disease with a focus on mastocytosis
  • Mechanistic and genetic basis for physically induced urticaria
  • Examining the interplay of atopy and autoinflammatory disorders
  • Application of impulse oscillometry to asthma and other pulmonary diseases

Program Description

A greater understanding of the role of mast cells in innate and acquired immunity has been conducted through the evaluation, characterization and treatment of patients with cutaneous and systemic mastocytosis, a clonal mast cell disorder of excessive mast cell proliferation and activation. This initiative includes interventional approaches to better manage patients with these disorders. 

There is a research agenda to investigate the genetic basis and pathogenic mechanisms of physical urticarias, both to better understand and manage these reactions and to shed light on allergic reactions in general. Urticarial manifestations are generally thought to be the result of mast cell activation and degranulation, which is supported by the finding of increased levels of serum histamine during urticarial flares. Current translational studies are focused on the further characterization of induced urticarias through genetic sequencing, expression of mast cell activating proteins, and expression of serum cytokines. This area of research includes the evaluation of patients with autoinflammatory disorders and their genetic and phenotypic overlap with atopic diseases.

An additional area of research focuses on the utility of impulse oscillometry, a non-invasive, and non-effort dependent technology that measures airway resistance and reactance in patients with asthma and other pulmonary disorders.

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Dr. Komarow obtained his M.D. from Sackler School of Medicine in Ramat Aviv, Israel, and completed his pediatric residency at MetroHealth Medical Center/Case Western Reserve Medical Center in Cleveland, OH. Dr. Komarow completed his Allergy and Immunology Fellowship at the National Institutes of Health in 2001 and was a Research Fellow in the Genetics and Genomics Branch of the National Institute of Arthritis, Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases until 2005, when he joined the Laboratory of Allergic Diseases as a Staff clinician. In 2018 he was appointed as an Associate Research Physician in the Mast Cell Biology Section. Dr. Komarow is a Fellow of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology.


  • American Academy of Pediatrics
  • American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology
  • American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology

Selected Publications

Komarow, H. D., J. Skinner, M. Young, D. Gaskins, C. Nelson, P. J. Gergen, and D. D. Metcalfe. 2012. A study of the use of impulse oscillometry in the evaluation of children with asthma: Analysis of lung parameters, order effect and utility compared with spirometry. Pediatr Pulmonol, 47:18–26.

Meyer,D., Alexander Gorbach, Wei-Min Liu, Nevenka Medic, Michael Young, Celeste Nelson, Sarah Arceo, Avanti Desai, Dean Metcalfe, and Hirsh Komarow. 2013. Mast cell dependent vascular changes associated with an acute response to cold immersion in primary contact urticaria, PLoS One, 8: e567773.

Komarow, H.D., Sarah Arceo, Michael Young, Celeste Nelson, Dean D. Metcalfe. 2014. Dissociation between history and challenge in a patients with physical urticarias, J Allergy Clin Immunol Pract. 2:786-790.

Boyden, S. E., A. Desai, G. Cruse, M. L. Young, H. C. Bolan, L. M. Scott, A. R. Eisch, R. D. Long, C. R. Lee, C. L. Satorius, A. J. Pakstis, A. Olivera, J. C. Mullikin, E. Chouery, A. Megarbane, M. Medlej-Hashim, K. K. Kidd, D. L. Kastner, D. D. Metcalfe, and H. D. Komarow. 2016. Vibration-induced mast cell degranulation caused by a mutation in ADGRE2. N Engl J Med 374: 656-663.

Kulinski, J. M., D. D. Metcalfe, M. L. Young. Y. Bai, Y. Yin, R. Eisch, L. M. Scott, and H. D. Komarow. 2018. Elevation in histamine and tryptase following exercise in patients with mastocytosis. J Allergy Clin Immunol Pract. 7:1310-1313.

Kulinski, J. M., Eisch R, Young ML, Rampertaap S, Stoddard J, Monsale J, Romito K, Lyons JJ, Rosenzweig SD, Metcalfe DD, Komarow HD. 2019. Clinical implications of skewed lymphocyte subpopulations identified in patients with mastocytosis. J Allergy Clin Immunol Pract. 2019 Jul 15. pii: S2213-2198(19)30620-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jaip.2019.07.004. [Epub ahead of print]

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