Dr. Magdalena Pasarica began her medical career at the University of Medicine and Pharmacy “Carol Davila” in Bucharest, Romania and completed her residency at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. She is board certified in Family Medicine. In the pursuit of excellence in medical research, Dr. Pasarica earned a Ph.D. in Nutrition at Wayne State University and completed a Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Endocrinology at Pennington Biomedical Research Center. She has performed clinical, translational and basic research studies in the area of pathophysiology of adipose tissue, obesity and diabetes mellitus type 2. Her work was recognized by numerous peer reviewed publications and invited talks to prestigious national and international organizations (including NIH – National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disease). In addition to research, Dr. Pasarica has dedicated her career to academic medicine through her work in training undergraduate and graduate students, as well as resident physicians at Florida Hospital.

The University of Central Florida College of Medicine welcomed Dr Pasarica in 2014. An award-winning physician educator, Dr. Pasarica serves as Director for the Internal/Family Medicine Clerkship  and has a key role in teaching lifestyle, obesity and primary care topics in the medical program. As the Family Medicine Chair of Education and the Family Medicine Interest Group Advisor, Dr. Pasarica has been successful in developing a series of opportunities for increasing the number of students entering family medicine residencies of their choice and becoming leaders in the field. Dr. Pasarica is the Medical Director and Co-Advisor for the KNIGHTS student-run free clinic, where she mentors students to perform clinical care to the underserved, and she has led its growth as a nationally recognized opportunity to design, execute and publish quality improvement projects for improved clinical outcomes. In addition to teaching and mentoring students, Dr. Pasarica is actively seeing patients in primary care and contributes to designing ways for the delivery of evidence based care. Dr. Pasarica performs research in the area of medical education (nutrition, lifestyle, obesity medicine) and quality improvement in primary care. Dr. Pasarica was instrumental in founding the Flagship: Medical Scholarly Proceeding channel for the pub-med journal “Cureus”, and now serves as the Editor.

Dr. Pasarica accomplishments are having a national impact through her presentations, publications, and service on national educational committees (including the Obesity Medicine Education Collaborative – Obesity Society), scientific advisory board (Advance Innovation and Promote Solutions in the Health Care System Grants), International Journal of Obesity Editorial Board and grant review panels (including National Academy of Science and the Obesity Society).


Selected Honors and Awards:

  • 2019 Teaching Incentive Productivity (TIP) Award
  • University-Level Excellence in Graduate Teaching Award
  • College-Level Excellence in Graduate Teaching Award
  • Associate Editor for Internal Journal of Obesity
  • Invited talks on “Obesity Management”  for the Florida Academy of Family Physicians, Florida Department of Health, Orlando VA CME program and others
  • Clinical Educational Leadership Award –  University of Central Florida College of Medicine (2016)
  • Innovation Award for Healthcare Provider Training and Education from the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, the Bipartisan Policy Center, and the American College of Sports Medicine (2017)
  • Medical Education Scholarship Award- Outstanding presentation award for undergraduate medical education from Southern Group on Educational Affairs, Austin, TX (2016)
  • Guest editor for Florida Academy Physician Journal “Obesity Management” issue (2016)
  • First place – New Investigator Award from the International Obesity Society – Selection based on original research presentation – Australia (2006)
  • Medical Honoris Causa from the Romanian Medical Association (2007)



  1. Lessans S*, Bogdanovski K*, Porter K*, Ballantyne K*, Pasarica M@. Service on Student-Run Free Clinic Executive Board Improves Leadership Skills of Medical Students in the Underserved Medical System. Leadership in Health Services.(Sept 23, 2020) DOI (10.1108/LHS-05-2020-0032)
  2. Pasarica M@, Kay D. Teaching Lifestyle Medicine Competencies in Undergraduate Medical Education: Active Collaborative Intervention for Students at Multiple Locations. Accepted in Advances in Physiology Education. 2020 Sept1;44(3):488-495 (2020)
  3. Lessans S*, Vega X*, Foley B*, Bossan A*, Baker A*, McElroy M*, Crouse E*, Pasarica M@. A patient-centeredness improvement study for efficacy of behavior change for healthy lifestyle and weight loss in a student-run free clinic. Family Practice  2020, July 15;cmaa057 (2020)
  4. Burger M*, Taddeo M*, Hushla D*, Pasarica M@. Interventions for Increasing the Quality of Preventive Care at a Free Clinic. Cureus. Jan 4;12(1):e6562. (2020)
  5. Sairenji T, Stumbar S, Clark K, Watson KH, Bienz D, Scott S, Keyhani J, Minor S, Babb F, Pasarica M, Savi C. Lessons from a symposium on incorporating entrustable professional activities into medical school curricula. Society for Teachers of Family Medicine Education Column. (2019)
  6. Kay D, Pasarica M. Using technology to increase student (and faculty satisfaction with) engagement in medical education. Advances in Physiology Education.43(3):408-413. (2019)
  7. Weinstein M*, Pasarica M@. A case of the forgotten thyroid: The sequelae of chronic untreated hypothyroidism. Cureus. 11(3): e4240. (2019)
  8. Pasarica M@, Denise K, Cameron R. Using Active Pedagogies to Advance Learning for Lifestyle Medicine: an Approach for Medical Students. Advances in Physiology Education. 1;43(2):191-195. (2019)
  9. Kushner RF, Horn DB, Butsh S, Duncan K, Fugate C, Igel L, Pasarica M, Pennings N, Soleymani T, Velazquez T. Development of Obesity Competencies for Medical Education: A Report from The Obesity Medicine. Obesity (Silver Spring). 27(7):1063-1067. (2019)
  10. Pasarica M@. & Kay D. Lifestyle Medicine Education: Finding Learning Outcomes in Unexpected Places. Medical Science Educator. 29, 345–346. (2019)
  11. Pasarica M, Bailey M, Cendán J C. Increasing Students’ Publication Productivity: Could Launching a University Scientific Journal be a Catalyst?. Cureus.11(1):e3953. (2019)
  12. Feradov DF*, Saikaly SK*, Kacheria SA*, Pasarica M@. How could improved provider communication have improved the care this patient received? The Journal of Family Practice. 67(11):708,710-711. (2018)
  13. Anand A*, Wagner C*, Kong S*, Griffith E* Harimtepathip P* Baker KK* Rineer S* Simms-Cendan J,  Pasarica M@. Improving Screening for Latent Tuberculosis Infection in a Student-run Free Clinic. Cureus. 10(4):e2488. (2018)
  14. Lopez YN*, Garufi G*, Pasarica M, Seyhan AA. Elevated and Correlated Expressions of miR-24, miR-30d, miR-146a, and SFRP-4 in Human Abdominal Adipose Tissue Play a Role in Adiposity and Insulin Resistance. International Journal of Endocrinology. 2018:7351902. (2018)
  15. Lu KB*, Thiel B*, Atkins CA*, Deasai A*, Botwin A*, Pavlov MR*, Simms-Cendan J, Pasarica M@. Satisfaction with Healthcare Received at an Interprofessional Student-run Free Clinic: Invested in Training the Next Generation of Healthcare Professionals. Cureus. 10(3):e2282. (2018)
  16. Pasarica M@, Kay D. Teaching evidence based lifestyle management in family medicine training. Education for Primary Care. 29(1):60-61. (2018)
  17. Pasarica M@, Topping D. An evidence-based approach to teaching obesity management to medical students. MedEdPORTAL Publications. 13:10662. (2017)
  18. Pasarica M@, Topping DB. Innovative education of patient care competencies in lifestyle medicine: a collaborative learning activity for the prevention of cardiovascular events. Medical Science Educator. 27, 577–578 (2017)
  19. Klapheke M, Pasarica M. Opioid risk mitigation strategies and overdose resuscitation. MedEdPORTAL Publications. 13:10621. (2017)
  20. Pasarica M@Harris DMFranklin AL*. Medical students teaching peer athletes: an innovative way of instructing the physiology of exercise, nutrition, and sleep as fundamentals for lifestyle medicine. Advances in Physiology Education. 41(3):432-435. (2017)
  21. Brown A*, Ismail R*, Gookin G*, Hernandez C*, Logan G*, Pasarica M@. The effect of medical student volunteering in a student-run clinic on specialty choice for residency. Cureus. 9;9(1):e967. (2017)
  22. Pasarica M@, Combs K*, Lee J*, Guevara A*. An innovative education on the core competency “systems-based practice”: Performing quality improvement projects in a student-run free clinic. Medical Science Educator. 27, 3–4 (2017)
  23. Lee JS*, Combs K*, KNIGHTS Research Group 2016*, Pasarica M@. Improving Efficiency While Improving Patient Care in a Student-Run Free Clinic. Journal of the American Board Family Medicine. 30(4):513-519. (2017)
  24. Bajpeyi S, Pasarica M, Conley KE, Murray K, Sereda O, Sparks LM, Smith SR. Pioglitazone-induced improvements in insulin sensitivity occur without concomitant changes in muscle mitochondrial function. Metabolism Clinical and Experimental. 69:24-32. (2017)
  25. Pasarica M@, Lee E, Lee M. Introduction to mindfulness: evidence-based medicine lecture and active session. MedEdPORTAL Publications. 12:10472. (2016)
  26. Pasarica M@, Harris DM, Simms-Cendan J, Gorman AL. Collaborative learning activity utilizing evidence-based medicine to improve medical student learning of the lifestyle management of obesity. MedEdPORTAL Publications. 12:10426. (2016)
  27. Seyhan A, Nunez-Lopez Y, Xie H, Yi F, Mathews C, Pasarica M, Pratley R. Pancreas-enriched miRNAs are altered in the circulation of subjects with diabetes: a pilot cross-sectional study. Scientific Reports. 6:31479. (2016)
  28. Birs A*, Liu X*, Nash B*, Sullivan S*, Garris SN*, Simms-Cendan J, Pasarica M@. Medical Care in a Free Clinic: A Comprehensive Evaluation of Patient Experience, Incentives, and Barriers to Optimal Medical Care with Consideration of a Facility Fee. Cureus.;8(2):e500. (2016)
  29. Covington JD*, Tam CS, Pasarica M, Redman LM. Higher circulating leukocytes in women with PCOS is reversed by aerobic exercise. Biochimie. 124:27-33. (2016)
  30. Garufi G, Seyhan A, Pasarica M@. Elevated secreted frizzled-related protein 4 in obesity: a potential role in adipose tissue dysfunction. Obesity (Silver Spring). 23(1):24-7. (2015)
  31. Pasarica M@, Narciso P. Are low carbohydrate diets safe and effective methods for losing weight? Evidence Based Practice – FPIN. 15(3): 10-11. (2012)
  32. Bajpeyi S, Pasarica M, Moro C, Conley K, Smith SR. Skeletal muscle mitochondrial capacity and insulin resistance in type 2 diabetes. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. 96(4): 1160-8. (2011)
  33. Pasarica M@, Narciso P. How safe and effective is finasteride for hair loss in post-menopausal women.  Evidence Based Practice. FPIN. 14(5): 14. (2011)
  34. Pasarica M, Rood J, Ravussin E, Schwarz JM, Smith SR, Redman LM. Reduced oxygenation in human obese adipose tissue is associated with impaired insulin suppression of lipolysis. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. 95(8): 4052-5. (2010)
  35. Costford SR, Bajpeyi S, Pasarica M, Albarado DC, Thomas SC, Xie H, Church TS, Jubrias SA, Conley KE and Smith SR. Skeletal muscle NAMPT is induced by exercise in humans. American Journal of Physiology. Endocrinology and Metabolism. 298(1): E117-26. (2010)
  36. Pasarica M, Gowronska-Kozak B, Burk D, Remedios I, Hymel D, Gimble J, Ravussin E, Bray GA, Smith SR. Adipose tissue collagen VI in obesity. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. 94(12): 5155-62. (2009)
  37. Pasarica M, Tchoukalova YD, Heilbronn LK, Fang X, Albu JB, Kelley DE, Smith SR, Ravussin E; Look AHEAD Adipose Research Group. Differential effect of weight loss on adipocyte size subfractions in patients with type 2 diabetes. Obesity (Silver Spring). 17(10): 1976-8. (2009)
  38. Sparks LM, Pasarica M, Sereda O, deJonge L, Thomas S, Smith SR. Effect of adipose tissue on the sexual dimorphism in metabolic flexibility. Metabolism. 58(11): 1564-71. (2009)
  39. Moro C, Galgani J, Luu L, Pasarica M, Mairal A, Bajpeyi S, Schmitz G, Langin D, Liebisch G, Smith SR. Influence of gender, obesity and muscle lipase activity on intramyocellular lipids in sedentary individuals. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. 94(9): 3440-7. (2009)
  40. Moro C, Pasarica M, Elkind-Hirsch K, Redman LM. Aerobic exercise training improves atrial natriuretic peptide and catecholamine-mediated lipolysis in obese women with polycystic ovary syndrome. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. 94(7): 2579-86. (2009)
  41. Pasarica M, Xie H, Hymel D, Bray G, Greenway F, Ravussin E, Smith SR – Lower total adipocyte number but no evidence for small adipocyte depletion in patients with type 2 diabetes. Diabetes Care. 32(5): 900-2. (2009)
  42. Knotts TA, Lee HW, Kim JB, Oort PJ, McPherson R, Dent R, Reddy JK, Uno K, Katagiri H, Pasarica M, Smith SR, Sears DD, Grino M and Adams SH. Molecular characterization of the tumor suppressor candidate 5 gene: regulation by PPARƴ and identification of TUSC5 coding variants in lean and obese humans. PPAR Research. 2009:867678. (2009)
  43. Pasarica M, Sereda O, Redman L, Albarado D, Hydel D, Roan L, Rood J, Burk D, Smith SR. Reduced adipose tissue oxygenation in human obesity – evidence for rarefaction, macrophage chemotaxis and inflammation without an angiogenic response. Diabetes. 58(3): 718-25. (2009)
  44. Sparks LM, Pasarica M, Ukropcova B, Bray G, Miles J, Smith SR. Relation of adipose tissue to metabolic flexibility. Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice. 83(1): 32-43. (2009)
  45. Pasarica M, Loiler S, Dhurandhar NV. Acute effect of infection by adipogenic human adenovirus Ad36. Archives of Virology. 153(11): 2097-102. (2008)
  46. Pasarica M, Mashtalir N, Koska J, Permana P, de Courten B, Yu M, Ravussin E, Gimble J, Dhurandhar NV. Adipogenic human adenovirus Ad-36 induces commitment, differentiation and lipid accumulation in human adipose derived stem cells. Stem Cells. 26(4): 969-78. (2008)
  47. Rogers PM, Fusinski KA, Rathod MA, Loiler SA, Pasarica M, Sutton GM, McAllister EJ, Mashtalir N, Gimble JM, Holland TC, Dhurandhar NV. Human adenovirus Ad-36 induces adipogenesis via its E4 orf-1 gene. International Journal of Obesity. 32(3): 397-406. (2008)
  48. Pasarica M, Zachwieja J, deJonge L, Redman S, Smith SR. Effect of growth hormone on body composition and visceral adiposity in middle aged men with visceral obesity. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. 92(11): 4265-70. (2007)
  49. Vangipuram S, Yu M, Tian J, Stanhope K, Pasarica M, Havel PJ, Heydari A, Dhurandhar NV. Adipogenic human adenovirus-36 reduces leptin expression and secretion and increases glucose uptake by fat cells. International Journal of Obesity. 31(1): 87-96. (2007)
  50. Pasarica M, Shin A, Yu M, Ou Yang H, Rathod M, Mohankumar S, Catherine J and Dhurandhar NV. Human adenovirus 36 induces adiposity, increases insulin sensitivity, and alters hypothalamic monoamines in rats. Obesity (Silver Spring). 14(11): 1905-13. (2007)


Book Chapters

  1. Lee E, Pasarica M, St. Onge E – Updated in Diabetes. Family Practice Essentials (accepted in April 2020, to be published in 2021)
  2. Pasarica M, Dhurandhar N. Pharmacological Management of the Obese Patient. In Lifestyle Medicine, 3rd edition. Eds. James M. Rippe. Taylor & Francis. pp491-504 (2019)
  3. Pasarica M, Smith S. – Drugs for Weight Loss and Maintenance: Present and Future. In “Treatment of the Obese Patient, Second Edition”. Eds. Robert F. Kushner and Daniel H. Bessessen, Springer. pp 225-246 (2014)
  4. Pasarica M, Dhurandhar RN, Mashtalir N, and Dhurandhar NV. Viral Induction of Obesity and Adipogenesis. In “Adipose Tissue in Health and Disease”. Eds. T Leff and J.G. Granneman. Wiley-Blackwell. pp 307-332. (2010)
  5. Pasarica M, Dhurandhar NV. Infectobesity: obesity of infectious origin. In “Advance in Food and Nutrition Research- volume 52” Ed Steve L Taylor. Elsevier. pp 61-102. (2007)