What's the Buzz - September 2012

What’s on my mind this month is our partnerships with the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS) and the Veterans Affairs (VA) Maryland Health Care System—and how these partnerships reflect the full alignment of our academic health center (AHC).

From the School of Medicine (SOM), to Faculty Physicians Inc. (FPI), to the University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC) and the Baltimore VA Medical Center, we are working together better than ever. We have aligned our governance, strategies, management and economicsщ۬allowing us to act quickly, work cohesively toward common goals and take greater advantage of collaborative opportunities. Recently, former Johns Hopkins CEO and Dean Dr. Ed Miller, Robert A. Chrencik, president and CEO of UMMS, and I wrote about the benefits of alignment in a special article published in Academic Medicine: "Fully Aligned Academic Health Centers: A Model For 21st-century Job Creation and Sustainable Economic Growth" [Acad Med. 2012 Jul;87(7):982-7].

As the article illustrated, there are many benefits to alignment, not only for our respective institutions, but for our patients and surrounding communities. A recent study found that AHCs with strong alignment between their medical school deans and clinical department chairs were significantly more successful in competing for National Institutes of Health research grants. Aligning our clinical and research missions has also triggered rapid expansion for UMMS and its 12 hospitals—growth that has created thousands of jobs throughout the state. Indeed, University of Maryland Medicine is a powerful economic engine, generating more than $6 billion in annual economic activity.

Achieving full alignment took a lot of hard work and commitment to collaboration. It did not happen overnight, and it followed a period of misalignment that threatened our longterm goals. First, we significantly changed how all joint initiatives and programs are planned, and made SOM and UMMS representatives equal co-chairs on joint committees. We also fully integrated our long-range planning processes. For example, when we developed our most recent strategic plan, leaders from UMMS and the faculty physician practice plan were included in all phases of the process. UMMS likewise facilitated realignment by including SOM leadership and faculty in all of its expansion plans, including planning for mergers, acquisitions, and clinical services expansion. In addition, we promoted the partnership by publishing joint annual reports and through the School of Medicine’s annual State of the School addresses, which each year includes an audience of local, state and national legislators, and major donors.

These steps have resulted in a common set of visions and goals and in the joint planning and execution of major programs and projects throughout the region. One example is the $200 million proton treatment center, which will bring the most advanced radiation technology in cancer treatment to Maryland. When completed, it will be just the 12th proton treatment center in the United States, and the only one in the Baltimore-Washington region. At the same time, the School of Medicine’s internationally recognized basic science and clinical science research capacity has led to impressive clinical achievements, such as the most extensive full-face transplant ever completed worldwide! The culmination of 10 years of research, the face transplant is a perfect example of the life-changing options we can provide for our patients when we combine the expertise of our research and clinical teams to pursue procedures and projects that would have seemed unfathomable only a few years ago.

Full alignment would not have been possible without the full commitment of our partner institutions. I am especially grateful for the ongoing support and collaboration of Robert Chrencik, Jeffrey A. Rivest, president and CEO of UMMC, and Dennis H. Smith, director of the VA Maryland Health Care System. By working together, we have demonstrated what the Greek philosopher Aristotle articulated so well: “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.”  

In the relentless pursuit of excellence, I am

Sincerely yours,

E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA
Vice President for Medical Affairs, University of Maryland
John Z. and Akiko K. Bowers Distinguished Professor and
Dean, University of Maryland School of Medicine

 

Appointments

Carol GreeneCarol Greene, MD, professor, Departments of Pediatrics and Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences, was appointed chair of the Follow-Up and Treatment Subcommittee of the Secretary’s Advisory Committee on Heritable Disorders in Newborns and Children, for a three-year term beginning May 2012.  

Judy LaKind, PhD, associate professor, Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, has been asked to serve on the Board of Directors of the National Swimming Pool Foundation beginning in November. She has also been invited to serve on the USEPA Science Advisory Board Panel related to approaches for deriving “A Maximum Contaminant Level Goal for Perchlorate.”

Terrence MulliganTerrence Mulligan, DO, MPH, assistant professor, Department of Emergency Medicine, has been elected to the Board of the International Federation for Emergency Medicine. In this board position, he will represent emergency medicine activities in North America and the following national emergency medicine societies: the American College of Emergency Physicians, the American Academy of Emergency Medicine, the American College of Osteopathic Emergency Physicians, the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine, and the Canadian Association of Emergency Physicians.

Jon Mark Hirshon Jon Mark Hirshon, MD, MPH, PhD (pictured), associate professor, and Benjamin Lawner, DO, EMT-P, assistant professor, Department of Emergency Medicine, are leading the Maryland Emergency Medical Services Systems Research Interest Group (MEMSS RIG), a new collaboration designed to improve EMS research in Maryland. Participants include physicians from the University of Maryland and Johns Hopkins, EMS administrators from the Maryland Institute for Emergency Medical Services Systems, EMS medical directors, and pre-hospital care providers.

Nanette Steinle, MD, assistant professor, Department of Medicine, was chosen to head a diabetes prevention clinical demonstration project at the Baltimore Veterans Administration Medical Center that started this summer. Baltimore is one of only four sites nationally that were picked to participate in this project, which is funded by the Department of Veterans Affairs National Center of Prevention.

Gerald WilsonGerald Wilson, PhD, associate professor, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, was named by the Center for Scientific Review at the NIH (CSR-NIH) to a four-year appointment as a member of the Molecular Genetics A (MGA) study section. Members are selected on the basis of their demonstrated competence and achievement in their scientific discipline, as evidenced by the quality of research accomplishments, publications in scientific journals, and other significant scientific activities, achievements and honors.

Richard ZhaoRichard Zhao, PhD, professor, Departments of Pathology, Microbiology & Immunology, and the Institute of Human Virology, has been appointed a guest professor at the College of Medicine, Shandong University, Shandong, China, where he will help train doctoral students. Dr. Zhao was also elected as President of the Chinese Biopharmaceutical Association (CBA-USA), one of the largest Chinese American biopharmaceutical associations in the United States.

Events, Lectures and Workshops

Cynthia Bearer, MD, PhD, the Mary Gray Cobey Professor of Pediatrics, convened the Children’s Environmental Health Network (CEHN) conference on “The Contribution of Epigenetics in Pediatric Environmental Health” at the Stanford Court Renaissance Hotel in San Francisco, CA, on May 30–June 1. Dr. Bearer is Board Chair for CEHN. The purpose of the conference was to mark the role of epigenetics in determining the impact of the environment on pediatric disease and children’s current and future health. Dr. Bearer also presented a talk on “What Science Tells Us about Children’s Environmental Health” at a Congressional briefing in Washington, DC, hosted by Senator Tom Udall on June 11.  

Jonathan BrombergJonathan Bromberg, MD, PhD, professor, Department of Surgery, was an Honor lecturer, presenting “Anatomy of Tolerance (or Why Surgeons are so Important for Research)” at the 32nd F.L. Raffucci Forum, part of the 62nd meeting of the Puerto Rico Chapter of the American College of Surgeons in San Juan, PR, on February 24. He also presented “Innate and Adaptive Immunity: The Role of Myeloid Cells” at the Canadian Society for Transplantation Annual Scientific Meeting in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada, on February 25; and again presented “Anatomy of Tolerance” at the Neuroimmunology Research Program at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, MN, on April 5.

Curt Civin, MD, professor, Departments of Pediatrics and Physiology; associate dean for research, University of Maryland School of Medicine; and director, Center for Stem Cell Biology & Regenerative Medicine, lectured on April 23 at Grand Rounds for the Department of Pathology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. His topic was “CD34 Stem Cell Stories and Lessons from the CD34 Wars.” On May 3, he presented “Toward Clinical Therapies Using Stem Cells: Lessons from Hematopoietic Stem Cells” at the STEP Forum at the NIH Center for Scientific Review in Bethesda, MD. And on May 9 he served as a panelist on The A. Alfred Taubman Forum on Public Policy: Innovation in Health Care, in the session on “Bringing Health Care Into the 21st Century,” at the Brookings Institute, Washington, DC.

Alan Faden, PhD, the David S. Brown Professor in Trauma, professor, Departments of Anesthesiology, Anatomy & Neurobiology, and Neurology, and director, Center for Shock, Trauma & Anesthesiology Research (STAR ORC), gave the annual Husman Lecture on “Heads Up: Revising Concepts of Brain Trauma and Sports-Related Head Injury” to the Department of Kinesiology and the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland in College Park in April. He also presented a plenary lecture on “Role of Cell Cycle Pathways in Traumatic Brain Injury” at the 30th National Neurotrauma Symposium in Phoenix, AZ, in July 2012.

Gary FiskumGary Fiskum, PhD, the M. Jane Matjasko Professor for Research and vice chair for Research, Department of Anesthesiology, presented a lecture on “Translational Traumatic Brain Injury Research at the University of Maryland School of Medicine” at the National Capitol Area Traumatic Brain Injury Symposium at the NIH in May. He also presented a lecture on “Mitochondrial Toxicity by Anaesthetics and Hyperoxia” at the British Journal of Anesthesiology Symposium on Anesthetic Neurotoxicity in Salzburg, Austria in June. Also in June, he presented a plenary lecture on “Mitochondrial Mechanisms of Acute Brain Injury and Targets for Neuroprotection” at the Versailles International Neurointensive Care Symposium in Versailles, France.

Carol GreeneCarol Greene, MD, professor, Departments of Pediatrics and Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences, was invited by the American Academy of Pediatrics to present the Webinar “Time Out for Genetics: Genetics Evaluation, Referrals, and More—What To Do Next” on June 28.

Alina GrigoreAlina Grigore, MD, MHS, FASE, associate professor, Department of Anesthesiology, presented “Spinal Cord Protection During Open and Endovascular Repair of Thoracoabdominal Aortic Aneurysms” at the 2nd International Congress on Anesthesia for Seniors in Prague, Czech Republic, on June 8.

Brenda Hussey-GardnerBrenda Hussey-Gardner, PhD, associate professor, Department of Pediatrics, presented an invited lecture on “Integrating Early Intervention into Medical Settings” at Baystate Medical Center in Springfield, MA, on May 7. She also gave an invited lecture at Grand Rounds on “Developmental Follow-Up of Infants Born Prematurely” at Baystate Children’s Hospital the next day.

Aikaterini Kontrogianni-KonstantopoulosAikaterini Kontrogianni-Konstantopoulos, PhD, assistant professor, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, chaired the symposium “Cell Motility in Health and Disease” and presented a talk, “Novel Insights in the Regulation of Actomyosin Contraction in Healthy and Diseased Muscle,” at the Experimental Biology Society Meeting in San Diego, CA from April 21–25. Dr. Konstantopoulos is the Chair of the Experimental Biology Society. She also presented “MyBP-C Slow: An Intricate Subfamily of Phosphoproteins” at the 2012 56th Annual Biophysical Society Meeting, also held in San Diego from February 15–19, and presented “Obscurins: Goliaths and Davids Regulate Muscle Structure and Function” at the Myofilament Proteins as Structural Scaffolds and Mediators of Function meeting, held at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI, from June 2–5.

Laurence MagderLaurence Magder, PhD (pictured), professor, Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, and Ayse Mindikoglu, MD, MPH, assistant professor, Department of Medicine, co-authored the abstract “Impact of Estimated Liver Volume on Gender Disparity in Liver Transplantation Rates Among Patients with End-stage Liver Disease on the Liver Transplant Waiting List,” which was selected as a Presidential Poster of Distinction and presented at The Liver Meeting 2011 of the American Association of the Study for Liver Diseases (AASLD) in San Francisco, CA.

Amal MattuAmal Mattu, MD, professor, Department of Emergency Medicine, conducted an eight-hour “Advanced ECG” pre-conference workshop at the Fourteenth International Conference on Emergency Medicine in Dublin, Ireland this past June. His workshop had the highest attendance of all the workshops at the meeting. He also delivered a lecture entitled “Acute Coronary Syndromes in the Elderly: Where Traditional Teaching Falls Short.”  

Leonid MedvedLeonid Medved, PhD, professor, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology and Center for Vascular and Inflammatory Diseases, presented  an invited talk entitled  “Structure and Function of Fibrin(ogen) Domains” at St. Louis University in St. Louis, MO, on April 30.  

Istvan MerchenthalerIstvan Merchenthaler, MD, PhD, DSc, professor, Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, presented at the Sixth Annual Meeting of the Organization for the Study of Sex Differences on June 9 in Baltimore. The title of his work was, “A Novel 17-Beta Estradiol Prodrug for the Treatment of Menopausal Symptoms: Hot Flashes, Depression, and Sleep Disorders in Animal Models.”

Charlene QuinnCharlene Quinn, PhD, assistant professor, Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, was an invited speaker at the American Diabetes Association’s 59th Annual Advanced Postgraduate Course. The course presented the latest information in clinical diabetes and provided an educational forum for physicians, nurses, and educators interested in diabetes. Dr. Quinn’s topic was “Diabetes Medical Management - Leveraging Commercial Websites, Patient Portals, and Mobile Devices.”

Kevin ShethKevin Sheth, MD, assistant professor, Department of Neurology, presented “Anti-Epileptic Drug (AED) Use and Outcome in the Ethnic/Racial Variations in Intracerebral Hemorrhage Study” at the April 25 meeting of the American Academy of Neurology (AAN). This abstract received a platform presentation and was cited as a highlight of the AAN meeting.

Roger StoneRoger Stone, MD, MS, clinical assistant professor, and Debra Lee, MD, assistant professor, both from the Department of Emergency Medicine, were invited speakers at the 17th Annual EMS Medical Directors Symposium, sponsored by the Maryland Institute for Emergency Medical Services Systems (MIEMSS) and held in Marriottsville, MD, on April 11. They presented “EMS as the Newest Medical Subspecialty: Implications for Maryland’s EMS Systems.” Dr. Stone was also an invited faculty member at the statewide EMS Care 2012 Conference, held in Ocean City, MD, in mid-April and sponsored by MIEMSS Regions 3 and 5. He presented “Recognition and Mitigation of Excited Delirium: EMS Can Lead the Way.”

Richard ZhaoRichard Zhao, PhD, professor, Departments of Pathology, Microbiology & Immunology, and the Institute of Human Virology, was the chairman of the organizing committee for the 17th Annual Conference of the Chinese Biopharmaceutical Association, held in Qingdao, China, on July 1–3. The theme of the conference was “Emerging Market of Biopharmaceuticals: Opportunities and Challenges.” Over 400 people from seven countries attended this conference.

Karen AndersonThe Department of Neurology had an excellent showing at the 64th American Academy of Neurology Annual Meeting in New Orleans, LA, on April 23, with all of the following presenting: Karen Anderson, MD (pictured), assistant professor; Elizabeth Berry, MD, associate professor; Renzo Figari-Jordon, MD, neurology fellow; Jennifer Gutwald-Miller, MD, neurology resident; Jennifer Hopp, MD, associate professor; Steven Kittner, MD, professor; Allan Krumholz, MD, professor; Robert Lavin, MD, assistant professor, Henry Park, MD, neurology resident; Stephen Reich, MD, professor; Horea Rus, MD, PhD, associate professor; Ana Sanchez, MD, assistant professor; Kevin Sheth, MD, assistant professor; Robert Shin, MD, associate professor; Lisa Shulman, MD, professor; Bryan Soronson, CRA, FACMPE, MPA, administrator; Barney Stern, MD, professor; and William Weiner, MD, professor and chair.

Grants and Contracts

Ricardo FeldmanOla Awad, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow in the lab of Ricardo Feldman, PhD (pictured), associate professor, Department of Microbiology & Immunology, received a two-year fellowship from the Maryland Stem Cell Research Fund “TEDCO” in the amount of $110,000.00, for her research entitled “Role of Autophagy Dysregulation in the Development of Neurodegeneration Using iPSC Model of Gaucher’s Disease.”

Children exploring the BreathmobileMary Beth Bollinger, DO, associate professor, Department of Pediatrics, was awarded a $50,000 grant for the 2012–2013 school year in support of the University of Maryland Children’s Hospital Breathmobile® (pictured), a free mobile clinic providing specialty based asthma care to underserved children in Baltimore.

Alan FadenAlan Faden, PhD, the David S. Brown Professor in Trauma, professor, Departments of Anesthesiology, Anatomy & Neurobiology, and Neurology, and director, Center for Shock, Trauma & Anesthesiology Research (STAR ORC), received a five-year competitive renewal grant of $2,357,385 for NIH RO1: “Role of Cell Cycle Proteins after Traumatic Brain Injury.”

Curt CivinTami Kingsbury, PhD, assistant professor, Department of Physiology and Center for Stem Cell Biology & Regenerative Medicine (PI), and Curt Civin, MD (pictured), professor, Departments of Pediatrics and Physiology; associate dean for research, University of Maryland School of Medicine; and director, Center for Stem Cell Biology & Regenerative Medicine, were awarded a two-year, $230,000 grant for their research entitled “MicroRNA and Control of Quiescence and Pluripotency” from the Maryland Stem Cell Research Fund. Dr. Civin, along with Kara Scheibner, PhD, assistant professor, Center for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine, and Feyruz Rassool, PhD, associate professor, Department of Radiation Oncology and interim director of Radiobiology, were awarded a two-year, $230,000 grant for their research entitled “Regulation of DNA Double Strand Break Repair in Human Hematopoietic Stem Cells by MicroRNAs” from the Maryland Stem Cell Research Fund. Dr. Civin; Steven Zhan, PhD, professor, Department of Pathology and the Center for Vascular and Inflammatory Diseases; and Srujana Cherukuri, PhD, research associate, Department of Pediatrics and the Center for Stem Cell Biology & Regenerative Medicine, were awarded a two-year, $230,000 grant entitled “Modulation of Homing and Engraftment of Hematopoietic Stem Cells by I-BAR Proteins” from the Maryland Stem Cell Research Fund as well.

Wendy LaneWendy Lane, MD, MPH, assistant professor, Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, was awarded a $25,000 grant by the Abell Foundation for her “Child Abuse and Maltreatment Program.”

A-Lien Lu-ChangA-Lien Lu-Chang, PhD, professor, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, received a $127,958 S10 award grant from NIH for “Typhoon FLA9500 Variable Mode Imaging System.”

Laurence MagderLaurence Magder, PhD, professor, Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, was awarded a $5,000 grant from the American Bar Foundation for his work “Surrogate Decision-Making.”

C. David PauzaC. David Pauza, PhD, professor, Department of Medicine, received a new, four-year, $3.1 million R01 from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID) for his work on “FcRn-targeted Mucosal HIV Vaccine.” He also received a new, two-year, $422,000 R21 from the NIH for his work on “T-Follicular Helper Cells in Env-immunized Macaques.”

Chris PloweChristopher Plowe, MD, MPH, professor, Department of Medicine, and Andrea Berry, MD, assistant professor, Department of Pediatrics, received a four-year, $2.3 million grant from NIAID for their project entitled “Immuno-epidemiological Epitope Mapping of a Blood Stage Malaria Vaccine Antigen.”

Martin SchneiderMartin Schneider, PhD, professor, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, received a five-year, $1.2 million NIH/NIAMS MERIT award for “Roles of Voltage Sensor, S100A1 and Calmodulin in Skeletal Muscle Calcium Signaling.”

Stephanie VogelStefanie Vogel, PhD, professor, Department of Microbiology & Immunology, received a five-year training grant from the NIH/NIAID with a cumulative total of $970,450 to support training in the research of “Signaling Pathways in Innate Immunity.”

Honors and Awards

Jennifer Albrecht, MS, a student in the Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, was the winner of this year’s Trudy Bush Award. The Trudy Bush award was funded through donations to the Trudy Bush Memorial Fund following her death in 2001. The award is granted to a PhD student in Epidemiology & Public Health who has demonstrated excellence in an area of women’s health and/or epidemiologic research.

Mona BaumgartenMona Baumgarten, PhD, associate professor, was awarded the Epidemiology and Human Genetics Program Faculty Teaching Award in May. At the same ceremony, Samer El-Kamary, MBChB, MPH, assistant professor, was awarded the Epidemiology and Human Genetics Program Mentor Award. Both are from the Department of Epidemiology & Public Health.

Maya Das, MD, JD, clinical fellow, and Lisa Klingenmaier, MPH, both 2012 graduates of the Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, were the first recipients of the Renee Royak-Schaler Memorial Fund Award, presented on May 17 at the EPH Commencement Celebration.

Suzanne Doyon, MD, adjunct assistant professor, Department of Pharmacology, received the Judges’ Top Prize in The Maryland Health Data Innovations Contest, sponsored by the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, for her idea “Improving the Reporting of Fatal and Non-Fatal Drug Overdoses.”

Jim GoldJames Gold, PhD, professor, Department of Psychiatry, has been awarded the Alexander Gralnick Research Investigator Prize from the American Psychological Association. This $20,000 grant recognizes exceptional individuals working in the area of serious mental illness, including but not limited to schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and paranoia. The prize was established to honor the late Alexander Gralnick, MD, a Life Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association, and his contributions in the field of serious mental illness. It aims to carry on Dr. Gralnick’s legacy by facilitating research by doctoral-level investigators in the area of serious mental illness.

Jay MagazinerJay Magaziner, PhD, MSHyg, professor and chair, Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, was selected as the 2012 recipient of the Gerontological Society of America’s Excellence in Rehabilitation of Aging Persons Award. This award will be presented at the GSA Annual Meeting in San Diego in November. Dr. Magaziner was also invited to provide the Rehabilitation Awardee Lecture during the 2013 Annual Meeting in New Orleans.

Alex DrohatAtanu Maiti, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow in the lab of Alex Drohat, PhD (pictured), associate profssor, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, received a $1000 travel award to present “Structural Basis for Excision of Deaminated and Oxidized 5-methylcytosine by Thymine DNA Glycosylase” at the National ASMBM meeting, held April 21-25 in San Diego.

Amal Mattu, MD, professor, and Victoria Romaniuk, MD, clinical instructor, both from the Department of Emergency Medicine, were named to the Top 40 list of speakers at the Council of Emergency Medicine Residency Directors Academic Assembly 2012, held in Atlanta in April. Dr. Mattu came in at number one.

Yvette RooksYvette Rooks, MD, assistant professor, Department of Family & Community Medicine, and director of the Family Medicine Residency, was the winner of this year’s John M. Dennis Award from the Western Maryland Area Health Education Center (AHEC). Dr. Rooks was recognized for her leadership in the creation and implementation of community medicine rotations in Western Maryland; her contributions to the Western Maryland AHEC through the Garrett-Allegany Health Workforce Development Network; and her tireless advocacy and unwavering commitment to rural training for University of Maryland Family & Community Medicine residents. The Dennis award is presented in honor of John M. Dennis, MD, Vice Chancellor for Health and Academic Affairs at the University of Maryland Baltimore and Dean of the School of Medicine from 1977–1988, whose visionary and dedicated support made possible the development of the Western Maryland AHEC program.

Elijah SaundersElijah Saunders, MD, clinical professor, Department of Medicine, was among the winners of this year’s Daily Record Influential Marylanders Award in the area of Healthcare. This award honors individuals who impact Maryland’s business community and bring services and success to the region.

Aikaterini Kontrogianni-KonstantopoulosMary Shriver, a graduate student on the Cancer Biology track who works in the lab of Aikaterini Kontrogianni-Konstantopoulos, PhD (pictured), associate professor, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, received an award for her poster presentation “Obscurins Invade Breast Cancer Research” at the Graduate Research Conference, held April 5 at the campus center. Nicole Perry, a second-year student also working in the lab of Dr. Kontrogianni-Konstantopoulos, received an award at the same event for her poster presentation “Loss of Giant Obscurins is Associated with Tumorigenic Properties in Breast Epithelial Cells.” Beth Zucconi, a graduate student in the lab of Gerald Wilson, PhD, associate professor, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, was awarded Best Oral Presentation in the Basic Sciences I session of the conference.

Barney SternBarney Stern, MD, professor, and Kevin Sheth, MD, assistant professor, both from Department of Neurology, won the top prize for most promising science for their “GAMES Pilot Study” presentation at the Princeton Stroke Conference, in Cincinnati, OH, on May 15, which was sponsored by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders.

Hoai-An Truong, PharmD, MPH, and Kyndra Johnson, MPH, both students in the Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, were inducted into the Delta Omega Honorary Society in Public Health in May.

David WeberDavid Weber, PhD, professor, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, has received a US patent for “Inhibitors of the S100-p53 Protein-Protein Interaction and Method of Inhibiting Cancer Employing the Same.” The patent will be in effect until February 9, 2025.

Jun Zhao, MD, neuromuscular neurology fellow, Department of Neurology, was in the top third percentile of her peer-training cohort in the nationally recognized American Association of Neuromuscular and Electrodiagnostic Medicine examination, which tested neuromuscular/EMG fellows from programs across the country in June 2012. A department spokesperson says, “This is an outstanding result, and we are very proud of her achievement. We look forward to continuing to build the strength of the program with future fellows.”

In the News

Mimi BlitzerMiriam Blitzer, PhD, professor, Department of Pediatrics, was quoted in The Wall Street Journal on June 25 in an article entitled “Study Looks at Irish Risk for a Rare Fatal Disease.”

Robert EdelmanRobert Edelman, MD, clinical professor, Departments of Medicine and Pediatrics and the Center for Vaccine Development, discussed “Dangerous Bugs Causing Lyme Disease and Chagas Disease” on Baltimore’s WCBM-AM 680 radio talk show The Medical Hour on June 10.

Peter GormanPeter Gorman, MD, associate professor, Department of Neurology, and his article from the Journal of Science entitled “Paralyzed Rats Walk Again,” were featured by Dr. Murtaza Akhter on ABC News on May 31.

Andrew PollakAndrew Pollak, MD, professor, Department of Orthopaedics, was quoted in the June 4 issue of Time magazine, in the story “How This Leg Was Saved.”

H. Ronald ZielkeH. Ronald Zielke, PhD, professor, Department of Pediatrics, and director of the NICHD Brain and Tissue Bank for Developmental Disorders, was quoted in numerous publications, including the June 25 edition of The New York Times, on the impact of the loss of a large proportion of the frozen brain tissue from autistic individuals that had been stored at the Harvard Brain Tissue Resource Center. Due to this unfortunate accident, the NICHD Brain and Tissue Bank at the University of Maryland is now the only source of significant amounts of frozen autism brain tissue in the world.

New Faculty

Kelley BanaganThe Department of Orthopaedics has welcomed the following new faculty over the past year: Joshua Abzug, MD, an assistant professor specializing in pediatric orthopaedics and hand surgery; Christina Boulton, MD, an assistant professor specializing in orthopaedic traumatology; Kelley Banagan, MD (pictured), an assistant professor specializing in spine surgery; and Henock Wolde-Semait, MD, an assistant professor specializing in musculoskeletal oncology and orthopaedic surgery.

Homayara Aziz, MD, joined the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences as an instructor in the Division of General OB/GYN in July. Dr. Aziz earned her Doctor of Medicine degree from Ross University School of Medicine in 2008 and completed her residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology in June 2012. Dr. Aziz will see patients at the Baltimore/Washington Medical Center and will provide care in the areas of general gynecology and low-risk obstetrics.

Katrina Daley, MD, joined the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences as an instructor in the Division of General OB/GYN in July 2012. Dr. Daley earned her Doctor of Medicine degree from Temple University School of Medicine in 2008. She completed her residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Maryland Medical Center in June 2012. Dr. Daley’s responsibilities include teaching medical students and residents during her clinical service. She will see patients at the 419 West Redwood Street location.

Thomas Hornyak, MD, PhD, joined the Department of Dermatology in September 2011 as an associate professor. He will have a secondary appointment in the Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology. Previously, Dr. Hornyak worked in the Dermatology Branch, Center for Cancer Research, at the National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health (NCI/NIH) as an investigator. He obtained his MD and his PhD degree in Biological Chemistry from the University of Michigan Medical School. His research interests are the epigenetics of melanoma development and tumorigenicity and the characterization of melanocyte stem cells.

David KaetzelDavid Kaetzel, PhD, joined the Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology in June 2012 as a Visiting Assistant Professor. Previously, Dr. Kaetzel worked in the Department of Molecular and Biomedical Pharmacology at the University of Kentucky College of Medicine. He obtained his PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Maryland, College Park. His research interests are oncogenesis and metastasis, metastasis suppressor genes, mechanisms of DNA repair, transcriptional control of growth factor genes, and nuclear hormone receptors.

Alexandre Medina de JesusAlexandre Medina de Jesus, DSc, joined the Department of Pediatrics as an associate professor in the Division of Neonatology on May 1.  Dr. Medina received his DSc in Biophysics at the Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. His postdoctoral training was done in the Neuroscience Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology at Virginia Commonwealth University. Dr. Medina has held several academic appointments, most recently as an assistant professor in the Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology at Virginia Commonwealth University. He is a member of various professional societies, and his research has been published in several peer-reviewed articles; he was first or senior author on 11 of these publications.

Kiran Panickar, PhD, joined the Department of Pediatrics as assistant professor in the Division of Gastroenterology at the Mucosal Biology Research Center on April 2. Dr. Panickar received his BA in Psychology/Statistical methods from St. Xavier’s College, Gujarat University, Ahmedabad, India in 1984. He received his PhD in Psychology at the Center for Neuroscience and Department of Psychology, Division of Sciences, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand in 1992. Dr. Panickar has held several post-doctoral fellowships since 1992, focusing on neurocognitive research and the combination of research and nutrition on obesity pathophysiology.

Michal Zalzman, PhD, joined the Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology in February as an assistant professor. Previously, Dr. Zalzman worked at the Laboratory of Genetics at the National Institute on Aging, NIH, as a post doctoral fellow. In 2001, she obtained a Master of Science degree in Human Molecular Genetics and Biochemistry at Tel Aviv University, Israel. In 2007, she earned a doctorate in Molecular Cell Biology Stem Cell Research at Tel Aviv University in Israel. Her research interests are Stem Cell Immortality.

New Staff

Rahul Singhvi, ScD, MBA, is the new University of Maryland Bio-Entrepreneur-in-Residence. He will be a member of the Office of Research Development’s Office of Technology Transfer team, which consists of intellectual property and licensing staff who provide strategic business advice to faculty and staff in evaluating the commercial potential of their disclosed technologies. He will interact with inventors to assess the business case and market potential for building start-up companies. Sharing his extensive experience in new business ventures, Dr. Singhvi will advise on patent status, identify financing opportunities, and commercial partners. Dr. Singhvi—a business leader in the vaccine and pharmaceutical industries—is also a Managing Partner and co-Founder of MLV Healthcare Partners, a New York-based merchant bank. He graduated as the top-ranked chemical engineer from the Indian Institute of Technology in Kanpur, India, and obtained both his MS and ScD degrees in chemical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He also received an MBA degree from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

Publications

Sania AmrSania Amr, MD, professor, Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, was a co-author on “Urinary Bladder Cancer Risk Factors in Egypt: A Multicenter Case-Control Study” in Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers & Prevention, 2012 Mar;21(3):537-546.

Melissa ArmstrongMelissa Armstrong, MD, assistant professor, Department of Neurology, was among the co-authors of new guidelines on “How To Best Treat Involuntary Movements in Huntington’s Disease” that were published by the American Academy of Neurology in July.

Kelley BanaganKelley Banagan, MD, assistant professor, and Daniel Gelb, MD, associate professor, both from the Department of Orthopaedics, were co-authors on “Surgical Management of Cervical Spine Fractures,” a book chapter in The Textbook of Spinal Surgery, recently published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Mona BaumgartenMona Baumgarten, PhD (pictured), associate professor; Michelle Shardell, PhD, assistant professor; William Hawkes, PhD, assistant professor; Patricia Langenberg, PhD, professor; Denise Orwig, PhD, assistant professor; and Jay Magaziner, PhD, MSHyg, professor and chair, all from the Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, co-published “Care-Related Risk Factors for Hospital-Acquired Pressure Ulcers in Elderly Adults with Hip Fracture” in the Journal of the American Geriatric Society, 2012 Feb;60(2):277-283.  

Lindsay BlackLindsay Black, PhD, professor, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, published an article entitled “Extensive Proteolysis of Head and Inner Body Proteins by a Morphogenetic Protease in the Giant Pseudomonas Aeruginosa Phage wKZ” in Molecular Microbiology, 2012 March 20. He also published “Bubblegrams Reveal the Inner Body of Bacteriophage wKZ” in Science, 2012 Jan 13;335(6065):182.

Michael BondMichael Bond, MD (pictured), assistant professor, and Bryan Hayes, PharmD, clinical assistant professor, both from the Department of Emergency Medicine, along with emergency medicine residency graduates James Campagna, MD, and Esteban Schabelman, MD, co-authored “The Use of Cephalosporins in Penicillin-
Allergic Patients” in The Journal of Emergency Medicine, 2012 May;42(5):612-20. The paper was also featured in Medscape, a medical news e-bulletin.

Jonathan BrombergJonathan Bromberg, MD, PhD, professor, Department of Surgery, was co-author of “Literature Watch: Initiating Immune Responses in States of Sterile Inflammation” in the American Journal of Transplantation, 2012 Jan, 12(2):271. He was also co-author on “Literature Watch: Fetal T Cells and Immunological Tolerance” in the American Journal of Transplantation, 2012 Feb, 12(3):511; and on “Literature Watch: AHR and Tryptophan Catabolism: Putting the Effector T-Cell Response to Sleep” in the American Journal of Transplantation, 2012 Mar, 12(4):801.

Rebecca BrotmanRebecca Brotman, PhD, assistant professor, Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, co-published “Temporal Dynamics of the Human Vaginal Microbiota” in Science of Translational Medicine, 2012 May, (4)132, 132ra52. Co-authors included Pawel Gajer, PhD, research associate, and Jacques Ravel, PhD, professor, both from the Department of Microbiology & Immunology.

Curt CivinCurt Civin, MD, professor, Departments of Pediatrics and Physiology; associate dean for research, University of Maryland School of Medicine; and director, Center for Stem Cell Biology & Regenerative Medicine, co-authored “Late-Stage Erythroid Precursor Production is Impaired in Mice with Chronic Inflammation” in the journal Haematologica, 2012 May 11 [Epub ahead of print].

Ann Gruber BaldiniHannah Day, PhD, graduate research assistant; Anthony Harris, MD, MPH, professor; Ann Gruber-Baldini, PhD (pictured), professor; Clayton Brown, PhD, associate professor; and Daniel Morgan, MD, associate professor, all of the Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, co-published “Association Between Contact Precautions and Delirium at a Tertiary Care Center” in Infection Control Hospital Epidemiology, 2012 Jan;33(1):34-39. Gruber-Baldini was also a co-author on “The Effects of Gait Impairment With and Without Freezing of Gait in Parkinson’s Disease” in Parkinsonism Related Disorders, 2012 Mar;18:239-242. Co-authors included Karen Anderson, MD, clinical associate professor; Paul Fishman, MD, PhD, professor; William Weiner, MD, professor and chair; and Lisa Shulman, MD, professor, all from the Department of Neurology.

Vasken DilsizanVasken Dilsizian, MD, FACC, FAHA, professor, Department of Diagnostic Radiology & Nuclear Medicine, was lead author on “Molecular Imaging of Human ACE-1 Expression in Transgenic Rats,” published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology: Cardiovascular Imaging, 2012 Apr;5(4):409-18.

Robert EdelmanRobert Edelman, MD, clinical professor, Departments of Medicine and Pediatrics and the Center for Vaccine Development, served as a consulting clinical editor on the textbook Clinical Research and the Law, authored by Patricia M. Tereskerz, JD, PhD, from the University of Virginia, and published by Wiley-Blackwell in June 2012.

W. Andrew Eglseder, MD, associate professor, Department of Orthopaedics, co-authored “Treatment of High-Energy Supracondylar/Intercondylar Fractures of the Distal Humerus” in the Journal of Surgical Orthopaedic Advances, 2011 Winter;20(4):230-5.

Alan FadenAlan Faden, PhD, the David S. Brown Professor in Trauma, professor, Departments of Anesthesiology, Anatomy & Neurobiology, and Neurology, and director, Center for Shock, Trauma & Anesthesiology Research (STAR ORC), along with Junfang Wu, PhD, and Bogdan Stoica, MD, both assistant professors in the Department of Anesthesiology, co-published “Delayed Expression of Cell Cycle Proteins Contributes to Astroglial Scar Formation and Chronic Inflammation After Rat Spinal Cord Contusion” in Journal of Neuroinflammation, 2012 Jul 11;9(1):169 [Epub ahead of print]. Drs. Faden, Wu and Stoica, along with Chunshu Piao, MD, PhD, post-doctoral fellow, Department of Anesthesiology, co-published “Delayed Cell Cycle Pathway Modulation Facilities Recovery After Spinal Cord Injury” in Cell Cycle, 2012 May 1;11(9):1782-95. Drs. Faden, Stoica and Piao also co-authored with David Loane, PhD, assistant professor, Department of Anesthesiology, “Combined Inhibition of Cell Death Induced by Apoptosis Inducing Factor and Caspases Provides Additive Neuroprotection in Experimental Traumatic Brain Injury” in Neurobiology Disease, 2012 Jun;46(3):745-58.

Sam GalvagnoSamuel Galvagno, Jr., DO, PhD, assistant professor, Department of Anesthesiology, was lead author on “Association Between Helicopter vs. Ground Emergency Medical Services and Survival for Adults with Major Trauma” in JAMA, 2012 Apr 18;307(15):1602-10.

Wei Guang, MD, PhD, research associate, and Erik Lillehoj, PhD, associate professor, both from the Department of Pediatrics, and William Twaddell, MD, assistant professor, Department of Pathology, were co-authors on “Molecular Interactions between MUC1 Epithelial Mucin, b-Catenin, and CagA Proteins” in Frontiers in Immunology, 2012;3:105. Their article was part of a special Research Topic entitled “Factors that Promote T Helper and Regulatory T Cell Responses to Helicobacter pylori Infection of the Gastric Mucosa,” hosted by Thomas Blanchard, PhD, associate professor, Department of Pediatrics.

Samer El-KamarySamer El-Kamary, MB, ChB, MPH (pictured), and Mohamed Hashem, MB, BCh, both assistant professors, and Thomas Strickland, MD, PhD, professor, all from the Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, co-published “Risk Factors for Hepatitis C Virus Infection Among Egyptian Healthcare Workers in a National Liver Diseases Referral Centre” in Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 2012 Feb;106(2):98-103. Drs. Hashem and El-Kamary also were co-authors on “Risk Factors for Hepatitis C Virus Acquisition and Predictors of Persistence Among Egyptian Children” in Liver International, 2012 Mar;32(3):449-456.

Aikaterini Kontrogianni-KonstantopoulosAikaterini Kontrogianni-Konstantopoulos, PhD, assistant professor, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, co-published “Myosin Binding Protein-C Slow is a Novel Substrate for Protein Kinase A (PKA) and C (PKC) in Skeletal Muscle” in the Journal of Proteome Research, 2011 Oct 7;10(10):4547-55. She also co-published “Loss of Giant Obscurins Promotes Breast Epithelial Cell Survival Through Apoptotic Resistance” in FASEB Journal, 2012 Jul;26(7):2764-75. Epub 2012 Mar 21. She received an invitation for a press release regarding the above study from Dr. Weissmann, editor-in-chief for the FASEB Journal.

Steven LudwigSteven Ludwig, MD, associate professor, Department of Orthopaedics and chief of spine surgery, co-authored “Subaxial Posterior Decompression and Fusion Techniques,” “Subaxial Posterior Laminoplasty and Laminectomy,” and “Subaxial Posterior Foraminotomy,” all book chapters in The Textbook of Spinal Surgery, recently published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. Dr. Ludwig, along with Mohit Gilotra, MD, PG-4 resident, and Cullen Griffith, MD, PG-2 resident, also co-authored “Capacitive Coupling Reduces Instrumentation-Related Infection in Rabbit Spines: A Pilot Study,” published in Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research, 2012 Jun;470(6):1646-51.

Ayse MindikogluLaurence Magder, PhD, professor, Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, and Ayse Mindikoglu, MD, MPH (pictured), assistant professor, Department of Medicine, were among the authors on “Comparison of Seven Liver Allocation Models with Respect to Lives Saved Among Patients on the Liver Transplant Waiting List” in Transplant International, 2012 Apr;25(4):409-415. Addtionally, Magder and Hongbin Fang, PhD associate professor, co-authored “Differences Between Male and Female Systemic Lupus Erythematosus in a Multiethnic Population” in the Journal of Rheumatology, 2012 Apr;39(4):759-769.

Leonid MedvedLeonid Medved, PhD, professor, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology and the Center for Vascular and Inflammatory Diseases, published “Identification of VLDLR as a Novel Endothelial Cell Receptor for Fibrin That Modulates Fibrin-Dependent Transendothelial Migration of Leukocytes” in Blood, 2012 Jan;119(2):637-64. He also published “On the Mechanism of AlphaC Polymer Formation in Fibrin” in Biochemistry, 2012 Mar 27;51(12):2526-2538.

Daniel MorganDaniel Morgan, MD (pictured), assistant professor; Michelle Shardell, PhD, assistant professor; Surbhi Leekha, MBBS, MPH, assistant professor; Kerri Thom, MD, assistant professor; Eli Perencevich, MD, MS, adjunct associate professor; and Anthony Harris, MD, MPH, professor, all from the Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, along with Jennifer Johnson, PhD, associate professor, Department of Pathology, were co-authors on “Transfer of Multidrug-Resistant Bacteria to Healthcare Workers’ Gloves and Gowns After Patient Contact Increases with Environmental Contamination” in Critical Care Medicine, 2012 Apr;40(4):1045-1051. Shardell, along with Dawn Alley, PhD, assistant professor, Ram Miller, MD, CM, adjunct assistant professor; Gregory Hicks, PT, PhD, adjunct assistant professor; and Jay Magaziner, PhD, MSHyg, professor and chair, Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, also co-published “Comparing Reports from Hip-fracture Patients and Their Proxies: Implications on Evaluating Sex Differences in Disability and Depressive Symptoms” in the Journal of Aging Health, 2012 Apr; 24(3):367-383.

Terrence MulliganTerrence Mulligan, DO, MPH, assistant professor, Department of Emergency Medicine, along with other members of the International Federation for Emergency Medicine Task Force on Access and Availability of Emergency Care, co-authored a paper called “World Health Assembly Resolution 60.22 and Its Importance as a Health Care Policy Tool for Improving Emergency Care Access and Availability Globally” in the July 2012 issue of the Annals of Emergency Medicine.

Vincent NjarVincent Njar, PhD, professor, Department of Pharmacology and head of the Medicinal Chemistry section of the Center for Biomolecular Therapeutics, and Abhijit Godbole, MD, PhD, a post-doctoral fellow in Dr. Njar’s lab, co-published “Autophagy Inhibition Synergistically Enhances Anti-cancer Efficacy of RAMBA, VN/12-1 in SKBR-3 Cells, and Tumor Xenografts” in Molecular Cancer Therapeutics, 2012 Apr;11(4):898-908. Additionally, Drs. Njar and Godbole co-published “Murine Toxicology and Pharmacokinetics Evaluation of Retinoic Acid Metabolism Blocking agent (RAMBA), VN/12-1” in Cancer Chemotherapy and Pharmacology, 2012 May 13 [Epub ahead of print]. Puranik Purushottamachar, PhD, research associate, and Marlena Martin, BS, research technician, both also from Dr. Njar’s lab, were co-authors on these manuscripts. Finally, Drs. Njar and Godbole also co-published a book chapter, “Prostate Cancer: Current and Emerging Therapies” in the book Current Cancer Treatment—Novel Beyond Conventional Approaches in Dec 2011, and a review article “New Insights Into the Androgen-targeted Therapies and Epigenetic Therapies in Prostate Cancer” in Prostate Cancer, 2011:918707.

Vincent Pellegrini Jr.Vincent Pellegrini, Jr, MD, the James Lawrence Kernan Professor and Chair, Department of Orthopaedics, co-authored “Perspective: Integrating Research Into Surgical Residency Education: Lessons Learned From Orthopaedic Surgery,” published in Academic Medicine, 2012 May;87(5):592-7.

Gloria ReevesGloria Reeves, MD (pictured), assistant professor, and Teodor Postolache, MD, associate professor, both from the Department of Psychiatry; Soren Snitker, MD, PhD, associate professor, Department of Medicine; and Patricia Langenberg, PhD, professor, Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, co-published “Calibration of Response and Remission Cut-Points on the Beck Depression Inventory-Second Edition for Monitoring Seasonal Affective Disorder Treatment Outcomes” in the Journal of Affective Disorders, 2012 Apr;138(1-2):123-127.

Robert O'TooleMarcus Sciadini, MD, associate professor, and Robert O’Toole, MD (pictured), assistant professor, both from the Department of Orthopaedics, were co-authors on “Geriatric Trauma: Demographics, Injuries, and Mortality” in the Journal of Orthopaedic Trauma, 2012 Feb 25 [Epub ahead of print].

Kevin ShethKevin Sheth, MD (pictured), assistant professor, and Carolyn Cronin, MD, assistant professor, both from the Department of Neurology, were among the co-authors on “Intravenous rt-PA is Not Associated with Increased Risk of Hemorrhage in Patients with Intracranial Aneurysms” in NeuroCritical Care, 2012 Jul 3 [Epub ahead of print]; on “No Increased Risk of sICH in tPA Treated Stroke Patients With ECASS Exclusion Criteria” in Stroke, 2012 Apr 24 [Epub ahead of print]; and—along with Dheeraj Gandhi, MBBS, professor, Department of Diagnostic Radiology & Nuclear Medicine—on “Higher Volumes Endovascular Stroke Centers Have Decreased Time to Treatment” in the Journal of Neurointerventional Surgery, 2012 May 13 [Epub ahead of print]. Dr. Sheth was also a co-author on Anti-Epileptic Drug (AED) Use and Outcome in the Ethnic/Racial Variations in Intracerebral Hemorrhage Study, an April 2012 publication from the American Academy of Neurology.

Kate TracyJ. Kathleen Tracy, PhD (pictured), associate professor, Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, along with Sarah Temkin, MD, and Mishka Terplan, MD, MPH, both assistant professors, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Science, were co-authors on “Have Racial Disparities in Ovarian Cancer Increased Over Time? An Analysis of SEER Data” in Gynecologic Oncology, 2012 Apr;125(1):19-24.

Gerald WilsonGerald Wilson, PhD, associate professor, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, was a co-author on “Coordinated Expression of Tristetraprolin Post-Transcriptionally Attenuates Mitogenic Induction of the Oncogenic Ser/Thr Kinase Pim-1” published in PLoS One, 2012;7(3):e33194. Epub 2012 Mar 8.