UVA SOM Faculty News Weekly Round-Up: November 30, 2018

November 30, 2018 by School of Medicine Webmaster   |   Leave a Comment

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UVA SOM Faculty News Weekly Round-Up November 30, 2018

• THRIV Holds 1st Annual Clinical Research Symposium

In October, the Translational Health Research Institute of Virginia (THRIV) held the 1st Annual THRIV Scholars Clinical Translational Research Symposium. The event highlighted the work of THRIV Scholars.

Presentations from second-year THRIV Scholars included:
• Pulse Oximetry Cardiorespiratory Scores to Predict Adverse Events and Outcomes in Premature Infants” (Brynne Sullivan, MD, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, School of Medicine)
• “Affordable Care Act’s effects on persons living with HIV (PLWH) in Virginia” (Kathleen McManus, MD, MSCR, Assistant Professor of Medicine, School of Medicine)
• “A pragmatic clinical trial evaluating impact of continuous predictive monitoring on nurse-driven outcomes in a dynamic intensive care setting” (Jessica Keim-Malpass, PhD, RN, School of Nursing)
• “Bioengineered Hydrogels to Facilitate 3D neural Stem Cell Survival and Growth in a Stroke Environment” (Kyle Lampe, PhD, Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering, School of Engineering and Applied Sciences)

The first-year Scholars began their projects this summer, and they provided brief introductions to their research as well:
• “Application of a Ketogenic Diet in Relapsing-Remitting Multiple Sclerosis” (J. Nicholas Brenton, MD, Assistant Professor of Neurology, School of Medicine)
• “Predicting injury risk after motor vehicle collisions using occupant and vehicle telemetry data” (Thomas Hartka, MD, MS, Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine, School of Medicine)
• “Use of an Internet-based intervention to prevent cognitive decline in older adults with mild cognitive impairment” (Meghan Mattos, PhD, RN, Assistant Professor of Acute and Specialty Care, School of Nursing)
• “Computational Modeling of Intestinal Mucosa: Image Analysis and Multiomics” (Sana Syed, MD, MS, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, School of Medicine)

Read more about the 1st Annual THRIV Scholars Clinical Translational Research Symposium:…/thriv-holds-1st-annual-clin…

• Leading Science Organization Adds Five More from UVA as Fellows

The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) has named five University of Virginia professors among its 2018 class of fellows. Election as a fellow is an honor bestowed upon AAAS members by their peers.

Three of the five new fellows are School of Medicine faculty and include Douglas W. DeSimone, professor and chair of cell biology; Wladek Minor, professor of molecular physiology and biological physics; and Lukas K. Tamm, professor and chair of molecular physiology and biological physics.

Craig H. Benson, professor of civil and environmental engineering and dean of the School of Engineering, and Brian A. Nosek, professor of psychology, were also elected to the 2018 class of AAAS fellows.

Read more:…/leading-science-organization-ad…

• UVA Makes Surprising Discovery About Neurons, Our Irreplaceable Nerve Cells

New research from UVA School of Medicine has changed a well-accepted scientific belief about neurons, the vital nerve cells that allow us to experience the world and record those experiences as memories in our brains.

UVA’s new discovery reveals that these unique cells recycle and dispose of their waste in an unexpected way, and in turn, that knowledge could help us better understand – and eventually treat or even prevent – neurological diseases.

Because of the massive size of some neurons, scientists have believed that they must have waste-processing centers stationed along their length. Called “lysosomes,” these processing centers are capsules inside the cell that are responsible for degrading unneeded or defective material down to its building blocks, which can then be reused for making new materials in the cell.

The new research from the lab of Bettina Winckler of UVA’s Department of Cell Biology suggests that this well-accepted notion is off base, if not entirely wrong.

It turns out that the waste processing wasn’t being done in satellite locations spread nicely across the cell. Instead, the debris was being hauled, often long distances, to a centralized location called the soma, which serves as the hub for many activities inside the neuron.

Further, many of the compartments previously designated to be lysosomes inside the cell didn’t appear to be performing that function at all. Now scientists are debating if they should even be called lysosomes.

In addition to Winckler, UVA researchers Chan Choo Yap, Laura Digilio, and Lloyd P. McMahon contributed to the study. Their research has been published in the Journal of Cell Biology.

Read more:…/uva-makes-surprising-discovery-…

• UVA Faculty Recognized for Contributions to Medical Education

Meg Keeley, MD, Assistant Dean for Student Affairs, Professor of Pediatrics, Director of the Fourth Year Program, has received The Ron Arky Award from the Learning Communities Institute. The award was created in honor of Dr. Arky, Professor of Medicine and Director of the Francis Peabody Society at Harvard Medical School, and is given to luminaries in the field “for significant contributions to the development of learning communities in medical education.”

Read more about Dr. Keely, the award, and UVA’s own learning communities:…/learning-communities-capita…

• UVA House Call: Dr. Luke Wilkins on Varicose Veins

Luke Wilkins, MD, from UVA Vein Clinic discussed varicose veins and related complications and treatment.

Watch the interview:…/uva-house-call-dr-luke-wilkins-on-va…

Did we miss something? If you have UVA SOM faculty news to share, please email

Filed Under: Faculty News Weekly Round-Up, News



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