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MU Health System Leaders Announce Awards at Health Sciences Research Day

Leaders from the University of Missouri Health System and MU Institute for Clinical and Translational Science (iCATS) announced the winners of 15 student research awards and the faculty Dorsett L. Spurgeon, MD, Distinguished Medical Research Award during its annual Health Sciences Research Day held Thursday, Nov. 14, 2013.

“Our goal for Health Sciences Research Day is to showcase the outstanding research that students are conducting at the University of Missouri and to encourage collaboration by sharing our research with colleagues,” said Jamal Ibdah, MD, PhD, professor of internal medicine and medical pharmacology and physiology, director of the MU School of Medicine’s division of gastroenterology, senior associate dean for research in the School of Medicine, and director of MU iCATS. “It’s impressive to see so many students engaged in top-notch health sciences research at MU. Educating strong researchers today is the key to developing tomorrow’s health care breakthroughs.”

In addition to student research awards, the Spurgeon award is presented annually to a MU School of Medicine researcher for outstanding accomplishments early in his or her career. This year’s award winner was Maike Krenz, MD, assistant professor of medical pharmacology and physiology and a researcher at MU’s Dalton Cardiovascular Research Center. The winner receives a plaque and $5,000.

Three Dean’s Awards were presented to students for their research abstracts. The winners receive plaques and $500.”Maike Krenz is performing important research to better understand inherited heart defects,” said Hal Williamson, MD, vice chancellor of the University of Missouri Health System. “Congenital heart diseases are among the most common birth defects, affecting approximately one percent of babies born each year. With research funded by the National Institutes of Health, Dr. Krenz is working to better understand heart development on a cellular level in hopes of developing better treatments for heart defects.”

Lexi Ragsdale, an undergraduate student studying biological sciences, mentored by David Berversdorf, MD, associate professor of neurology and radiology at the medical school, won the MU School of Medicine Dean’s Award for Outstanding Student Research for her project, “Effects of Propranolol on Social and Cognitive Functioning in Autism Spectrum Disorders.”

Charlene Freeman, Anna Grimshaw, and Sarah Twenter, graduate students in the School of Health Professions, mentored by Karen Hebert, PhD, assistant professor of occupational therapy, won the MU School of Health Professions Dean’s Award for Outstanding Student Research for their research project, “The Role of Sensory Processing Styles in Impulsive Responding.”

Whitney Beaton, RN, a graduate student in the MU Sinclair School of Nursing, mentored by Patricia Schnitzer, PhD, RN, associate professor of nursing, won the MU Sinclair School of Nursing Dean’s Award for Outstanding Student Research for her research project, “Medication Adherence in Adults Listed for Kidney Transplant.”

Awards also were presented to students for basic science and clinical research in two categories, including Category I, for undergraduate students, medical students, Conley Scholars and summer research fellowship participants; and Category II, for graduate students, resident physicians, medical fellowship physicians and post-doctoral researchers.

Research Day Award Recipients

Category I Clinical

  • 1st place – Daniel Miller, medical student and graduate student in the School of Medicine, mentored by M. Sharon Stack, PhD, adjunct professor of pathology and anatomical sciences at the medical school, for his research project, “Small RNA and Big Ideas in the Molecular Classification of Head and Neck Cancer”
  • 2nd place – Samuel Windham, medical student in the MU School of Medicine, mentored by Gordon Christensen, MD, professor of internal medicine at the medical school, for his research project, “Brain Abscesses in a Rural Mid-Missouri Clinical Center”
  • 3rd place – Arwa Mohammad, medical student in the MU School of Medicine, mentored by Carla Dyer, MD, assistant professor of internal medicine at the medical school, for her research project, “Enhancing Adherence to Guideline-recommended Imaging for Pulmonary Nodule Follow-up”

 

Category I Basic

  • 1st place – Rindi Uhlich, medical student in the MU School of Medicine, mentored by Stephen Barnes, MD, professor of surgery at the medical school, for her research project, “Novel MicroRNA Correlations in the Severely Injured”
  • 2nd place – Dominic Zanaboni, medical student in the MU School of Medicine, mentored by John Thyfault, PhD, associate professor of nutrition and exercise physiology at the medical school, for his research project, “Rats Bred for Intrinsically High or Low Aerobic Capacity Display Different Responses to High-Fat Diets”
  • 3rd place – Rachel Waller, medical student in the MU School of Medicine, mentored by Rajiv Mohan, PhD, professor of ophthalmology at the medical school, for her research project, “Cellular and Molecular Toxicity of Hybrid Gold Nanoparticles to Human Corneal Fibroblasts”

 

Category II Clinical

  • 1st place – Seth Holwerda, graduate student in the MU School of Medicine, mentored by Paul Fadel, PhD, associate professor of medical pharmacology and physiology at the medical school, for his research project, “Arterial Baroreflex Control of Sympathetic Nerve Activity During Acute Hypotension is Enhanced in Young, Normotensive Black Men”
  • 2nd place – Steven Taylor, MD, resident physician in the MU School of Medicine, mentored by David Chang, MD, associate professor of otolaryngology at the medical school, for his research project, “Novel Peritonsillar Abscess Drainage Task Simulator”
  • 3rd place – Shahzad Raza, MD, post-doctoral fellow in the MU School of Medicine, mentored by A. Mosharraf Hossain, MD, assistant professor of internal medicine at the medical school, for his research project, “Epidemiological and Survival Characteristics of Breast Cancer Among the U.S. Asian Indian and Pakistani Women Compared With Other U.S. Population Groups: A Surveillance, Epidemiology and End-Result (SEER) Database Study”

 

Category II Basic

  • 1st place – Brian Bostick, MD, PhD, post-doctoral clinical fellow in the MU School of Medicine, mentored by James Sowers, MD, professor of internal medicine at the medical school, for his research project, “Impact of Voluntary Exercise on Prevention of Metabolic and Cardiovascular Disease in Female Mice Fed a Western Diet”
  • 2nd place – Kasun Kodippili, graduate student in the MU School of Medicine, mentored by Dongsheng Duan, PhD, professor of molecular microbiology and immunology at the medical school, for his research project, “Nitric Oxide Dependent Attenuation of Sympathetic Vasoconstriction is Impaired in Contracting Skeletal Muscles of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy Dogs”
  • 3rd place – Justin Fletcher, graduate student in the MU School of Medicine’s Department of Nutrition and Exercise Physiology, mentored by R. Scott Rector, PhD, assistant professor of internal medicine at the medical school, for his research, “Impact of Voluntary Wheel Running in Combination With Overnight Fasting on Hepatic Mitochondrial Metabolism and Function”