I wanted to lead off with some amazing news regarding our research mission this month. In the last several years, the amount of extramural funding support coming to the Department of Medicine averaged about $60-65 million. Given the COVID-19 pandemic, remaining stable was laudable. However, through a combination of some critical recruitments as well as new grants to existing faculty, our funding has risen to more than $80 million. This is incredible and a testament to the outstanding research being performed in the DOM.
In addition, I am so proud that our research model includes a combination of basic and clinician investigators. Indeed, the core research faculty in the Department has over 60 PhD research scientists that are absolutely critical to our mutual success. I want to highlight two scientists, Dr. Jie Sun and Charles Chalfant. Dr. Sun’s laboratory is a world leader in the study of respiratory tract immunology, and he has done critically important research on COVID-19. Dr. Chalfant’s laboratory studies cell signaling associated with bioactive lipids and RNA splicing with a focus on basic science mechanisms related to cancer, wound healing, and inflammation. In both cases, these labs are providing critical insights into human disease. I encourage you to look up their groundbreaking work and my thanks for their contributions to the University of Virginia and beyond.
One reminder that we will have monthly town halls starting in August that will highlight various aspects of the Department, and I welcome your suggestions for topics or questions. Enjoy this month’s Medicine Matters, which highlights the Division of Nephrology, a world leader in the area. The Division provides outstanding clinical care throughout Central Virginia and is an excellent example of a clinical program that has grown exponentially. In addition, faculty in the Division (led by Dr. Mark Okusa) are recognized world leaders in their areas of specialization. They include Rasheed Balogun for plasmapheresis, Adam Campbell for kidney stones, the entire kidney transplant team, and many others. I encourage you to read and learn more about your colleagues.
With best wishes,
Mitchell H. Rosner, MD, MACP
Henry B. Mulholland Professor of Medicine
Chair, Department of Medicine