Pediatricians, Cardiologist (heart)
10 years of experience

Accepting new patients
Juniata Park - Feltonville
Schc Pediatric Associates Llc
3601 A St
Philadelphia, PA 19134
215-427-5000
Locations and availability (15)

Education ?

Medical School Score Rankings
New York Institute of Technology (2000)
  • Currently 3 of 4 apples
Top 50%

Awards & Distinctions ?

Associations
American Board of Pediatrics

Affiliations ?

Dr. Cummings is affiliated with 10 hospitals.

Hospital Affilations

Score

Rankings

  • Kennedy Memorial Hospital-Umc-Cherry Hill
    Cardiology
    2201 Chapel Ave W, Cherry Hill, NJ 08002
    • Currently 4 of 4 crosses
    Top 25%
  • Kennedy University Hospital – Washington Township
    Cardiology
    435 Hurffville Cross Keys Rd, Blackwood, NJ 08012
    • Currently 4 of 4 crosses
    Top 25%
  • St. Mary Medical Center - Langhorne
    Cardiology
    1201 Langhorne Newtown Rd, Langhorne, PA 19047
    • Currently 3 of 4 crosses
    Top 50%
  • Albert Einstein Medical Center
    Cardiology
    5501 Old York Rd, Philadelphia, PA 19141
    • Currently 3 of 4 crosses
    Top 50%
  • Saint Christopher's Hospital for Children
    3601 A St, Philadelphia, PA 19134
    • Currently 2 of 4 crosses
  • Capital Health System - Mercer Campus
    Cardiology
    446 Bellevue Ave, Trenton, NJ 08618
    • Currently 2 of 4 crosses
  • Capital Health System - Fuld Campus
    Cardiology
    750 Brunswick Ave, Trenton, NJ 08638
    • Currently 1 of 4 crosses
  • Kennedy Health Systems
    18 E Laurel Rd, Stratford, NJ 08084
  • Kennedy Memorial Hospital-Umc-Cherry Hill
  • Kennedy Memorial Hospital -Umc - Washington Twp
  • Publications & Research

    Dr. Cummings has contributed to 12 publications.
    Title Gametogenesis in Malaria Parasites is Mediated by the Cgmp-dependent Protein Kinase.
    Date August 2008
    Journal Plos Biology
    Excerpt

    Malaria parasite transmission requires differentiation of male and female gametocytes into gametes within a mosquito following a blood meal. A mosquito-derived molecule, xanthurenic acid (XA), can trigger gametogenesis, but the signalling events controlling this process in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum remain unknown. A role for cGMP was revealed by our observation that zaprinast (an inhibitor of phosphodiesterases that hydrolyse cGMP) stimulates gametogenesis in the absence of XA. Using cGMP-dependent protein kinase (PKG) inhibitors in conjunction with transgenic parasites expressing an inhibitor-insensitive mutant PKG enzyme, we demonstrate that PKG is essential for XA- and zaprinast-induced gametogenesis. Furthermore, we show that intracellular calcium (Ca2+) is required for differentiation and acts downstream of or in parallel with PKG activation. This work defines a key role for PKG in gametogenesis, elucidates the hierarchy of signalling events governing this process in P. falciparum, and demonstrates the feasibility of selective inhibition of a crucial regulator of the malaria parasite life cycle.

    Title Outcomes Following Electroanatomic Mapping and Ablation for the Treatment of Ectopic Atrial Tachycardia in the Pediatric Population.
    Date July 2008
    Journal Pediatric Cardiology
    Excerpt

    Ectopic atrial tachycardia (EAT) is often resistant to medical therapy, with radiofrequency ablation (RFA) being a preferred treatment option. Three-dimensional (3-D) electroanatomic mapping was introduced as a tool for improved substrate localization, although there are no published data with this technology in pediatric patients with EAT. The objective of this study was to examine our experience with 3-D mapping and standard mapping in this patient population. We used retrospective chart review of pediatric patients with EAT requiring RFA from 1993 to 2004. We analyzed the method of ablation, acute success and recurrence rates, procedure and fluoroscopy times, and cardiac function. Twenty-five patients underwent 31 RFA procedures. All patients had been followed for >6 months (6 months to 7 years). Standard mapping (Group 1) was used in 11 patients (5F/6M, 1.4-11.8 years) who underwent 13 RFA procedures; 3-D mapping (Group 2, October 2000-2004) was used in 16 patients (8 F/8M, 2.7-17 years) who underwent 18 RFA procedures. Left-sided focus was present in 6/13 in Group 1 and 7/18 in Group 2 (all transeptal, NS). There was a trend toward fewer lesions with 3-D mapping (15 +/- 14, median 9.5 in Group 1; 8 +/- 6, median 6.5 in Group 2, NS). Acute success was more likely for patients in which 3-D mapping was utilized (10/13 Group 1 vs. 18/18 Group 2, p < 0.04). Recurrence or persistence of tachycardia at follow-up (2 weeks to 1 year) was documented in 7/13 cases in Group 1, compared to only 2/18 cases in Group 2 (p = 0.01). Six patients underwent repeat RFA: two patients using standard mapping (one failure, one success) and four patients using 3-D mapping [all acute and long-term (>1 year) success]. Procedure times (232 +/- 84 vs. 268 +/- 72 min, skin-to-skin) and fluoroscopy times (47 +/- 24 vs. 40 +/- 20 min) were similar (NS). Of the 25 pts, 17 (7 in Group 1, 10 in Group 2, NS) presented with cardiomyopathy [Ejection fraction (EF), 38.6 +/- 12.1%]. Successful RFA resulted in improved EF (61.1 +/- 11.6%, p < 0.0001) in the 14 patients in whom pre-RFA and post-RFA echocardiograms were available. Compared to standard techniques, 3-D electroanatomic mapping has resulted in no acute failures, statistically reduced recurrence rates, and improved overall success in the management of EAT.

    Title Acute Pacing-induced Dyssynchronous Activation of the Left Ventricle Creates Systolic Dyssynchrony with Preserved Diastolic Synchrony.
    Date June 2008
    Journal Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology
    Excerpt

    INTRODUCTION: Patients with heart block have conventionally received a pacemaker that stimulates the right ventricular apex (RVA) to restore heart rate control. While RVA pacing has been shown to create systolic dyssynchrony acutely, dyssynchrony can also occur in diastole. The effects of acute RVA pacing on diastolic synchrony have not been investigated. RVA pacing acutely impairs diastolic function by increasing the time constant of relaxation, decreasing the peak lengthening rate and decreasing peak negative dP/dt. We therefore hypothesized that acute RVA pacing would cause diastolic dyssynchrony in addition to creating systolic dyssynchrony. METHODS AND RESULTS: Fourteen patients (13 +/- 4 years old) with non-preexcited supraventricular tachycardia underwent ablation therapy with subsequent testing to confirm elimination of the tachycardia substrate. Normal cardiac structure and function were then documented on two-dimensional echocardiography and 12-lead electrocardiography prior to enrollment. Tissue Doppler images were collected during normal sinus rhythm (NSR), right atrial appendage pacing (AAI), and VVI-RVA pacing during the postablation waiting interval. Systolic and diastolic dyssynchrony were quantified using cross-correlation analysis of tissue Doppler velocity curves. Systolic dyssynchrony increased 81% during RVA pacing relative to AAI and NSR (P < 0.01). Diastolic synchrony was not affected by the different pacing modes (P = 0.375). CONCLUSION: Acute dyssynchronous activation of the LV created by RVA pacing resulted in systolic dyssynchrony with preserved diastolic synchrony in pediatric patients following catheter ablation for treatment of supraventricular tachycardia. Our results suggest that systolic and diastolic dyssynchrony are not tightly coupled and may develop through separate mechanisms.

    Title Very Long Term Studies of the Seeding of Beta-amyloidosis in Primates.
    Date May 2007
    Journal Journal of Neural Transmission (vienna, Austria : 1996)
    Excerpt

    Cerebral beta-amyloidosis was found in 16/18 marmosets aged <10 yrs and 8/9 marmosets aged >10 yrs, injected intracerebrally with human or marmoset brain homogenate containing beta-amyloid 1-8 years previously. It was found in only 2/12 marmosets aged <10 yrs and 1/15 marmosets aged >10 yrs, injected with synthetic Abeta-peptides, CSF, or brain tissue which did not contain beta-amyloid. Cerebral beta-amyloidosis was found in 0/11 uninjected marmosets aged <10 yrs and in 5/29 uninjected marmosets aged >10 yrs. The beta-amyloidosis comprised small and large vessel angiopathy and some plaques throughout cortex and was qualitatively similar in injected marmosets and, when present, in uninjected marmosets. Of those injected marmosets which were positive, the amount of beta-amyloidosis was unrelated to age or incubation times but the 3 injected marmosets without beta-amyloidosis had incubation times of <3.5 years. We conclude that beta-amyloid, or associated factors, can initiate or accelerate the process of cerebral amyloidosis in primates.

    Title Neglect of Memory After Dopaminergic Lesions in Monkeys.
    Date March 2006
    Journal Behavioural Brain Research
    Excerpt

    Crossed unilateral dopaminergic lesions of the nigrostriatal bundle and unilateral inferotemporal cortex ablations (DA x IT lesions) in marmoset monkeys produced impaired retention of object discriminations first learnt before, or after, the DA lesion but no impairment on new learning of the same type of task. Retention testing of a pre-operatively learned task was given after new learning of a different task so impairment cannot be attributed to improvement with practice or spontaneous recovery. We argue that the DA lesion produces a form of intentional neglect, a defect of volition, which is the mnemonic counterpart of the volitional neglect of directional hypokinesia, which animals with this lesion also exhibit. The DA lesion was unilateral (for welfare reasons) so the information to be retrieved had to be confined to that hemisphere by the use of an IT ablation in the other hemisphere. Unilateral DA lesion compromises the competence of ipsilateral fronto-striatal interactions and our results parallel those found in monkeys with crossed IT x frontal lesions that are impaired on complex tasks requiring effortful implementation of a cognitive strategy but are not impaired on discrimination learning. Parkinsonian patients with sub-total but bilateral DA loss may lack 'top-down' conative mechanisms as well as 'top-down' movement initiation mechanisms. They may fail to initiate retrieval strategies, although they may not exhibit retrograde amnesia under test conditions that provoke retrieval. Failure to self-initiate retrieval of relevant knowledge may contribute to the paucity of cognitive style and loss of executive skills exhibited by some patients with Parkinson's disease.

    Title Further Analysis of the Effects of Immunotoxic Lesions of the Basal Nucleus of Meynert Reveals Substantial Impairment on Visual Discrimination Learning in Monkeys.
    Date June 2005
    Journal Brain Research Bulletin
    Excerpt

    In this paper we undertake a combined analysis of several studies in which marmoset monkeys received immunotoxic lesions of the cortical cholinergic projections from the basal nucleus of Meynert (NBM) bilaterally and/or in combination with immunotoxic lesions of other parts of the cholinergic system or ablations of the target inferotemporal neocortical area. Analysis of the mean learning scores across all visual discriminations learning tasks for each lesion combination revealed highly significant impairments where the NBM was lesioned bilaterally or where an NBM lesion in one hemisphere was crossed with an inferotemporal cortical ablation in the other hemisphere. This demonstrates that the cholinergic projection from the NBM to the major target area of neocortex involved in visual discrimination learning, i.e. the inferotemporal cortex, makes an important contribution to the perceptuo-mnemonic processes necessary for this type of learning. A new study demonstrates a significant effect of a subtotal bilateral cholinergic lesion confined to the NBM on a concurrent object-reward association task using black objects which is perceptually and mnemonically demanding. These results do not preclude the possibility that cholinergic projections from the NBM to other parts of the neocortex make a contribution to other cortical functions which are not mnemonic. It is well established that lesions of the cholinergic projection from the diagonal band of Broca disrupts the mnemonic functions of the hippocampus. The results described here suggest that degeneration of the cholinergic projections in Alzheimer's disease and other dementias will contribute to the loss of those mnemonic functions which are dependent on the neocortex.

    Title Mild Topographical Memory Impairment Following Crossed Unilateral Lesions of the Mediodorsal Thalamic Nucleus and the Inferotemporal Cortex.
    Date June 2005
    Journal Behavioral Neuroscience
    Excerpt

    Monkeys with crossed unilateral lesions of the dorsomedial thalamus and contralateral ablations of the inferotemporal cortex were mildly impaired on acquisition and retention of visual conditional tasks requiring the integration of information about objects and their positions in space. They were not impaired on other conditional and nonconditional tasks. This impairment pattern resembles, qualitatively, that found following crossed unilateral lesions of the anterior thalamus and the inferotemporal cortex or bilateral lesions of the anterior and mediodorsal thalamic nuclei. Although the flow of visual information from the inferotemporal cortex through the hippocampal-fornix-anterior thalamic circuit plays a major part in memory for objects in places, the flow of information between inferotemporal cortex and mediodorsal thalamus, possibly by means of the frontal cortex, also makes some contribution.

    Title Topographical Memory Impairments After Unilateral Lesions of the Anterior Thalamus and Contralateral Inferotemporal Cortex.
    Date September 2004
    Journal Neuropsychologia
    Excerpt

    Monkeys with crossed unilateral excitotoxic lesions of the anterior thalamus and unilateral inferotemporal cortex ablation were severely impaired at learning two tasks which required the integration of information about the appearance of objects and their positions in space. The lesioned monkeys were also impaired at learning a spatial task and a task which required the integration of information about the appearance of objects and the background on which the objects were situated. Monkeys with only one of the unilateral lesions were not impaired and previous work has shown that monkeys with bilateral lesions of the anterior thalamus were not impaired on these tasks. These results indicate that the whole of the inferotemporal cortex-anterior thalamic circuit, which passes via the hippocampus, fornix, mamillary bodies and mamillothalamic tract, is essential for the topographical analysis of information about specific objects in different positions in space. Together with previous work, the results show that a unilateral lesion may affect cognition in the presence of other brain damage when an equivalent bilateral lesion alone does not. The tasks required the slow acquisition of information into long term memory and therefore assessed semantic knowledge although other research has shown impairment on topographical processing within working or episodic memory following lesions of the hippocampal-diencephalic circuit. It is argued that the hippocampal-diencephalic circuit does not have a role in a specific form of memory such as episodic memory but rather is involved in topographical analysis of the environment in perception and across all types of declarative memory.

    Title Dissociation of Hemi-spatial and Hemi-motor Impairments in a Unilateral Primate Model of Parkinson's Disease.
    Date May 2004
    Journal Behavioural Brain Research
    Excerpt

    Monkeys with unilateral lesions of nigrostriatal dopamine projections were tested on a series of spatial tasks. One task, in which monkeys were required to use one or the other arm to retrieve food rewards from different positions, allowed separate assessment of the use of each arm in each hemi-space in order to distinguish hemi-spatial and hemi-motor impairments. The lesioned monkeys exhibited a persistent neglect of contralesional space when using either arm which could be dissociated from a motor impairment in the contralesional arm alone. Another task allowed free use of either arm across peri-personal space and demonstrated an ipsilesional bias in the monkeys' self-determined attention (orientation) to a task which they were trying to perform. It is argued that the tendency for monkeys with this lesion to rotate ipsilesionally is due to an ipsilesional deviation of the 'centre of interest' (determined by telencephalic circuitry) relative to 'straight ahead' (determined by brainstem circuitry). The dopamine projections may contribute to cortico-subcortical circuits which determine the spatial layout of mental representation, attention and intention. The results in this primate model of unilateral Parkinson's disease (PD) support the view that patients with left-sided Parkinsonian symptoms exhibit a unilateral deficit in spatial mental representation as well as their well-recognised motor symptoms. Patients with bilateral Parkinson's symptoms may exhibit bilateral deficits in mental representation.

    Title Recombinant Adeno-associated Viral Vector (raav) Delivery of Gdnf Provides Protection Against 6-ohda Lesion in the Common Marmoset Monkey (callithrix Jacchus).
    Date January 2004
    Journal Experimental Neurology
    Excerpt

    Glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) has shown potential as a treatment for Parkinson's disease. Recombinant adeno-associated viral vectors expressing the GDNF protein (rAAV-GDNF) have been used in rodent models of Parkinson's disease to promote functional regeneration after 6-OHDA lesions of the nigrostriatal system. The goal of the present study was to assess the anatomical and functional efficacy of rAAV-GDNF in the common marmoset monkey (Callithrix jacchus). rAAV-GDNF was injected into the striatum and substantia nigra 4 weeks prior to a unilateral 6-OHDA lesion of the nigrostriatal bundle. Forty percent of the dopamine cells in the lesioned substantia nigra of the rAAV-GDNF-treated monkeys survived, compared with 21% in the untreated monkeys. Fine dopaminergic fibres were observed microscopically in the injected striatum of some rAAV-GDNF-treated monkeys, suggesting that rAAV-GDNF treatment may have prevented, at least in part, the loss of dopaminergic innervation of the striatum. Protection of dopamine cells and striatal fibre innervation was associated with amelioration of the lesion-induced behavioural deficits. rAAV-GDNF-treated monkeys showed partial or complete protection not only in the amphetamine and apomorphine rotation but also in head position and the parkinsonian disability rating scale. Therefore, our study provides evidence for the behavioural and anatomical efficacy of GDNF delivered via an rAAV vector as a possible treatment for Parkinson's disease.

    Title Functional and Histological Evidence for the Protective Effect of Nxy-059 in a Primate Model of Stroke when Given 4 Hours After Occlusion.
    Date October 2003
    Journal Stroke; a Journal of Cerebral Circulation
    Excerpt

    BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: NXY-059 has substantial protective effects when administered immediately after the onset of ischemia in a primate model of stroke. This study examined the efficacy of this drug when administered 4 hours after onset, a more clinically relevant time point. METHODS: Before surgery, marmosets were trained and tested on a number of neurological tests, which assessed general neurological function, motor ability, and spatial awareness. Four hours after permanent middle cerebral artery occlusion (pMCAO), marmosets received a bolus of saline (n=13) or NXY-059 (n=13), and osmotic minipumps were implanted, providing 48-hour saline or drug (85 micromol/kg per hour) infusion. The monkeys were retested 3 and 10 weeks after surgery. Finally, infarct size was evaluated with histological analysis. RESULTS: The unbound plasma NXY-059 concentration was 200+/-9 micromol/L after 24-hour infusion, a concentration well tolerated in stroke patients. Drug treatment ameliorated the long-term motor impairment produced by pMCAO; the marmosets were better at using their contralesional, stroke-affected arm than controls at both 3 and 10 weeks. Saline-treated animals had a debilitating spatial neglect at 3 weeks with residual signs evident at 10 weeks. NXY-059 treatment substantially attenuated neglect at 3 weeks, with no deficit being seen at 10 weeks. NXY-059 reduced the overall infarct size by 28% (saline, 324+/-46 mm3; NXY-059, 234+/-30 mm3) with protection to the cortex, white matter, and subcortical structures. CONCLUSIONS: NXY-059 is an effective neuroprotective agent when administered 4 hours after pMCAO in a primate species, attenuating both motor and spatial neglect. The compound also substantially lessened the volume of cerebral damage.

    Title Eye-opening in Kittens.
    Date March 1976
    Journal Vision Research

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