News & Events in the
Department of Medicine
Division of Hematology and Oncology Milestones
The Division of Hematology and Oncology will achieve a milestone with their Blood and Marrow Transplant (BMT) Program. The program will reach its highest volume this fiscal year with 82 transplants. Volume, as depicted in the graph below, has almost doubled over the past 4 years.
This achievement could not have occurred without the phenomenal team of doctors, nurses, PharmD, BMT coordinators, data manager and Stem Cell Lab staff. A key role played in attaining this accomplishment was that of Dr. Pritesh Patel, Assistant Professor and Associate Director of BMT.
In addition to the higher volume, the BMT program had 7 publications, completed an investigator-initiated phase 1 clinical trial in multiple myeloma, continues to experience an increase in the number of transplanted sickle cell patients and has several translational research projects supported by private fundings.
The growth of FMT reflects the growth of the entire Hematology segment of the Division, both in hematologic malignancies and in sickle cell. A larger margin of growth is anticipated.
Grant for Sickle Cell Research
The NIH recently announced funding for a grant titled Improving Sickle cell care in Adolescents & Adults in Chicago (ISAAC). ISAAC is a multi-institutional, national program led by UIC. It is a collaboration among UI Health, Sinai Health System and the Institute of Design of the Illinois Institute of Technology here in Chicago, the University of Illinois at Peoria, and the University of South Carolina in Columbia, SC. ISAAC is one of seven centers funded nationwide by a special, sickle cell disease-focused NHLBI program. The grant covers costs over a six-year period.
A research team of five principal investigators and nine co-investigators will lead ISAAC. The principal investigators from UI Health are Victor Gordeuk, MD, director of the UI Health Sickle Cell Center, Lewis Hsu, MD, PhD, director of the pediatric sickle cell program at UI Health, and Jerry Krishnan, MD, PhD, Associate Vice Chancellor for Population Health UI Health.
ISAAC co-investigators from UI Health include Michael Berbaum, PhD, biostatistician for the Institute for Health Research and Policy, Joseph Colla, MD, emergency medicine specialist, Molly Martin, MD, MAPP, pediatrician and health disparities researcher, Robin Shannon, MS, RN, Clinical Instructor in the College of Nursing, and Robert Winn, MD, Associate Vice Chancellor for Community Based Practice.
An advisory group consisting of representatives of patients, families, patient advocacy groups, schools, colleges, community health centers and the leadership of collaborating institutions will provide input to the ISAAC program. David Loffing, Chief Operating Officer of University of Illinois Hospital, and the Chief Medical Officer of the Sinai Health System are key members of the advisory group.
2016 Internal Medicine Interns
On June 24, 2016, the Division of Academic Internal Medicine and Geriatrics welcomed a new class of interns.
|2016 Department of Medicine Internal Medicine Interns.
UI Employee Recognition Program – Care Award
|Pictured left to right:
Lisa Stigger, Sue Hammerschmidt, Dr. Bharati Prasad, Dr. George Kondos, Dr. Dean Schraufnagel, Dr. Steven Dudek, Dr. Patricia Finn, Alejandra Martinez, and Krystle Stewart
On July 14th, Dr. Steven Dudek was recognized by the UI Employee Recognition program for his compassion and patience with a family of a very sick 37-year old man struggling with difficult decisions related to end of life care options.
Dr. Dudek explained in simple terms the clinical issues in a way that the family understood and was very gentle in discussing end of life treatment options. He did not rush any of the conversation and unwaveringly answered questions.
The Care Award was bestowed on Dr. Dudek for his compassion and professionalism in taking care of this family during a very difficult time for them. His kind and gentle communication with this family helped them get through a trying time.
New Member – Clinical and Integrative Cardiovascular Sciences Study Section
Despite an extremely busy schedule, Dr. Dawood Darbar recently accepted an invitation to serve as a member of the Clinical and Integrative Cardiovascular Sciences (CICS) Study Section at the NIH Center for Scientific Review. His term began on July 1, 2016 and will end on June 30, 2020. 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.
Membership on a study section offers a unique opportunity to contribute to the national biomedical research effort. Study sections review grant applications submitted to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), make recommendations on these applications to the appropriate NIH national advisory council or board, and survey the status of research in their fields of science. Dr. Darbar’s participation in the study section will help assure the quality of the NIH peer review process, and we congratulate him on this prestigious appointment.
NIH Study Section Service
The National Institutes of Health, Center for Scientific Review selected Dr. Marcelo Bonini to serve as a member of the Systemic Injury by Environmental Exposure Study Section (SIEE).
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.
International Society for Cellular Therapy Meeting, Singapore 2016
Nadim Mahmud, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Medicine in the Division of Hematology and Oncology, and Director of UI Hospital Stem Cell Laboratory (Blood & Marrow Transplant Program) was an invited speaker for the 22nd Annual Scientific Meeting of the International Society for Cellular Therapy (ISCT) in Singapore. Dr. Mahmud chaired a session titled “Challenges in in vivo experiments in cell based therapies”. In the same session he delivered a talk titled “Test of genotoxicity of expanded human cord blood cells both in small and large animal models”. Dr. Mahmud’s research is focused on cord blood stem cell expansion to improve stem cell transplantation as well as role of epigenetic signals to eradicate leukemia stem cells as a curative therapeutic approach.
He also delivered a talk titled “Accreditation as a risk reduction measure: focus on cell therapy programs in Asia”. He is involved in leadership roles in ISCT and also serves as a Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy (FACT) Accreditation Committee member and inspector for blood and marrow transplant programs in North America and cord blood banks around the world. FACT is a non-profit corporation for accreditation in the field of cellular therapy.
2016 AGA Elsevier Pilot Research Award
Dr. Barbara Jung, Chief of the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology was awarded the 2016 AGA Elsevier Pilot Research Award from the American Gastroenterology Association Research Foundation.
This research initiative award for $25,000 for one year
is offered to investigators to support pilot research projects in
gastroenterology or hepatology related areas.
Dr. Jung’s research on Activin as a Therapeutic Target
and Prognostic Marker in Pancreatitis is a pilot project to support a
new collaboration between Dr. Jung and Dr. Fantuzzi to explore the role
of Activin in potentiating pancreatitis and further whether intervention
in the Activin signaling pathway may provide therapeutic options for
Dr. Jung will be recognized at the Research Recognition
Celebration at Digestive Disease Week (DDW) on Sunday May 22.
Students Show Support for Sickle Cell Center
First-year students from UIC College of Medicine and College of Pharmacy showed support and recognition of the value of our Sickle Cell Center in the Chicago community by organizing a charity auction in November.
The students donated half of the proceeds, a total of $2,564, to the Sickle Cell Center, which provides treatment and support services for patients with sickle cell disease, a disorder of the hemoglobin. The rest of the auction proceeds will go towards the UIC Match Day celebration, which is when medical students across the country find out their residency placements.
The donation was made to spotlight the importance of the Acute Care Treatment Center, a branch of the hospital’s sickle cell program that treats patients suffering from chronic pain episodes.
Click here to read the full article.
Click here for more Department of Medicine News!
Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) awards $13.7 million contract to Dr. Krishnan
Dr. Jerry Krishnan, Professor of Medicine in the Division of Pulmonary, has been awarded a four-year, $13.7 million contract from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) to lead a multi-center clinical trial of two drugs used to treat chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Dr. Krishnan, along with co-principal investigators Dr. Robert Wise of the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and John Walsh, co-founder and president of the COPD Foundation will lead this clinical trial at 50 U.S. centers.
The trial will compare the benefits and risks of two medications currently used to treat COPD — roflumilast, an anti-inflammatory, and azithromycin, an antibiotic. Congratulations to Dr. Krishnan and his colleagues on receiving this prestigious research award from PCORI. To read more visit:http://news.uic.edu/uic-to-lead-13-7m-clinical-trial-of-copd-medications.