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April 2015

Presentations

Stephen Davis, MBBS, Professor and the Dr. Theodore E. Woodward Chair in the Department of Medicine, along with the Department of Medicine’s John McLenithan, PhD, Assistant Professor; Braxton Mitchell, PhD, MPH, Professor; Kashif Munir, MD, Assistant Professor; Toni Pollin, PhD, Associate Professor; Kristi Silver, MD, Associate Professor; Soren Snitker, MD, PhD, Associate Professor; Laura Yerges-Armstrong, PhD, Assistant Professor; and Norann Zaghloul, PhD, Assistant Professor, participated in the American Diabetes Research Summit, which was held on February 7 at Sheppard Pratt in Towson, MD. They presented talks, presided over round-table discussions, and held Q&A sessions in order to educate the general public about diabetes.

March 2015

Presentations

Colin Mackenzie, MB, ChB, Professor, Department of Anesthesiology and the Center for Shock, Trauma and Anesthesiology Research, presented “Evaluation of Individual Surgeon Technical Skills During Four Emergency Procedures,” a one-hour lecture based on his findings studying more than 80 surgeons performing emergency trauma procedures on cadavers, at the Association of Military Surgeons of the US in Washington, DC, on December 3, 2014.

Publications

Andrea Meredith, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Physiology, and Rachel White, Betsir Zemen, and Zulqarnain Khan, all Research Associates in the Department of Physiology, co-authored “Evaluation of Mouse Urinary Bladder Smooth Muscle for Diurnal Differences in Contractile Properties,” in Frontiers in Pharmacology, 2015 Jan 9;5(293):1-8.

February 2015

Honors and Awards

Sanjay Rajagopalan, MBBS, FACC, FAHA, the Melvin Sharoky, MD, Endowed Professor in Medicine, Department of Medicine, has been elected as a member of the American Society for Clinical Investigation (ASCI). He will be inducted on April 24 at the annual ASCI meeting in Chicago.

Appointments

Andrea Meredith, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Physiology, was appointed to serve for a three-year term on the Editorial Advisory Board of The Journal of General Physiology. The journal was established in 1918 under the Rockefeller University Press, with a mission to publish research that elucidates basic biological, chemical, or physical mechanisms of broad physiological significance.

Paul Welling, PhD, Professor, Department of Physiology, has been appointed a Fellow in the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Researchers are elevated to this rank because of their efforts toward advancing science applications that are deemed scientifically or socially distinguished. Dr. Welling was recognized for his contributions to the field of renal physiology, particularly in the understanding of sodium, potassium, and water handling in the kidneys.

January 2015

2015 Festival of Science

Inflammation can also lead to diseases not associated with infection or allergy. Stephen N. Davis, MBBS, the Theodore E. Woodward Endowed Chair, and the professor and chairman of the Department of Medicine, is studying the link between glucose metabolism and inflammation, and his discoveries may help to explain why people with diabetes often suffer from atherosclerosis and heart disease. He cites evidence from studies of groups of healthy, diabetic, and obese people, which suggest that improper glucose metabolism increases inflammation in blood vessels.

Grants and Contracts

Thomas Blanpied, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Physiology, received a five-year, $2,220,872 grant from the National Institute of Mental Health for the competing renewal of his research grant “Internal Dynamics of Postsynaptic Density.”

Publications

Andrea Meredith, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Physiology, and collaborator Michael Lai, a Bioengineering graduate student from the University of Maryland, College Park, were among the co-authors on “BK Channels Regulate Sinoatrial Node Firing Rate and Cardiac Pacing in vivo“ in the American Journal of Physiology-Heart and Circulatory Physiology, 2014, Nov 1;307(9):H1327-1338.

December 2014

Laurels

W. Jonathan Lederer, MD, PhD, professor in the Department of Physiology and director of the Center for Biomedical Engineering and Technology, is the co-recipient of the 2015 Peter Harris Distinguished Scientist Award from the International Society for Heart Research (ISHR). The award will be presented during an ISHR meeting in Bordeaux, France, in July 2015.

Events, Lectures and Workshops

Curt Civin, MD, Associate Dean for Research, Director, Center for Stem Cell Biology & Regenerative Medicine, and Professor, Departments of Pediatrics and Physiology, will present “MicroRNA (MIR) Regulation of Human Hematopoietic Stem-Progenitors (HSPCs)” at the Plenary Session during the 7th Annual Maryland Stem Cell Research Fund Symposium (MSCRF), to be held at the Silver Spring Civic Center on December 2.

Maryland Stem Cell Research Grant Fund Awardees

Investigator-Initiated Grant Awardees:

Curt Civin, MD, Professor, Department of Pediatrics, Director of the Center for Stem Cell Biology & Regenerative Medicine, and Associate Dean for Research—“Genetic Modification of Sickle Cell Disease in Hematopoietic Stem Cells” J Ke Ren, MD, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Anatomy & Neurobiology (secondary appointment) and University of Maryland School of Dentistry—“Mesenchymal Stem Cells for Chronic Pain Therapy”

Exploratory Grant Awardees:

Curt Civin, MD, Professor, Department of Pediatrics, Director of the Center for Stem Cell Biology & Regenerative Medicine, and Associate Dean for Research, and Jonathan Dinman, University of Maryland, College Park—“Directed Delivery of Therapeutic RNAs into Hematopoietic Stem-Progenitor Cells” J Marta Lipinski, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Anesthesiology—“Modeling Parkinson’s Disease Function of the PARK10 Gene USP24 in Human iPS Cells” J A-Lien Lu-Chang, PhD, Professor, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology—“The Effects of Histone Deacetylation and DNA Demethylation on Somatic Cell Reprogramming” J Feyruz Rassool, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Radiation Oncology—“Efficiently Reprogramed Cells with a MYC Signature Display High Fidelity Repair of DNA Damage.” J Joseph Stains, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Orthopaedics—“The Role of the Beta-Catenin Signaling Cascade in the Skeletal Phenotype of Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome”

In the News

Curt Civin, MD, Associate Dean for Research, Director, Center for Stem Cell Biology & Regenerative Medicine, and Professor, Departments of Pediatrics and Physiology, was featured on the cover and in a feature story for the National Foundation for Cancer Research Progress Report. The interview was titled “Molecular Sawdust Holds The Key—The Power of microRNA.”

November 2014

Honors and Awards

W. Jonathan Lederer, MD, PhD, Professor, Department of Physiology, and Director of the Center for Biomedical Engineering and Technology (BioMET), has been se-lected as the co-recipient (with Dr. Roberto Bolli from the University of Louisville) of the 2015 Peter Harris Distinguished Scientist Award of the International Society for Heart Research (ISHR). The award will be bestowed during the 2015 ISHR European Section meeting in Bordeaux, France from July 2–5, 2015. As a recipient of this award, Dr. Lederer will present a major lecture and receive $3,000 and a plaque. An announcement of the Award, along with a photograph and a biosketch, will be pub-lished in Heart News and Views and posted on the ISHR website. Dr. Lederer will also prepare a review article based on his lecture that will be published in the Journal of Molecular and Cellular Cardiology, published by the ISHR. The full details of the award are available on the ISHR website at www.ishrworld.org.

October 2014

Grants and Contracts

Thomas Blanpied, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Physiology, received a five-year, $335,850 subcontract from the University of Pittsburgh as part of a three-investigator, multi-PI R01 grant from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke for “CRCNS: Transmitter Release Site Organization in Plasticity and Disease at the NMJ.”

Mark Rizzo, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Physiology, received a five-year, $1,822,815 grant from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDKD) for a competing renewal of “Regulatory Mechanisms of Insulin Secretion.”

Publications

Andrea Meredith, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Physiology, was among the co-authors on “Nuclear BK channels Regulate Gene Expression Via the Control of Nuclear Calcium Signaling” in Nature Neuroscience, 2014 Aug;17(8):1055-63.

Terez Shea-Donohue, PhD, Professor, Department of Radiation Oncology, was among the co-authors on “An Unsuspected Cause of Diarrhoea and Gastrointestinal Bleeding During Corticosteroid Therapy” in Acta Gastro-Enterologica Belgica, 2014 Jun;77:259–261.

September 2014

Grants and Contracts

W. Jonathan Lederer, MD, PhD, Professor, Department of Physiology, and Director of The Center for Biomedical Engineering and Technology (BioMET), received a $3.55 million grant from NIH/NHLBI for “Multi-scale Spatiotemporal Modeling of Cardiac Mitochondria.” The grant combines advanced computer modeling with state-of-the-art imaging and electrophysiology.

Sarah Ransom, BS, a PhD student in the Department of Physiology working in the lab of Thomas Blanpied, PhD, Associate Professor, received a two-year, $74,584 NIH Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) F31 individual training grant from the National Institute of Mental Health for “Regulation of NMDA Receptor Activation by Postsynaptic Nanostructure.”

August 2014

Events, Lectures and Workshops

Andrea Meredith, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Physiology, presented “Beyond Transcription: Identification of Novel Biophysical Mechanisms That Generate Daily Differences In SCN BK Currents” at the Society for Research on Biological Rhythms (SRBR) Annual Meeting in Big Sky, MT, on June 15.

Honors and Awards

Curtis Gallagher, Graduate Student, Department of Physiology, was awarded the 2014 Glaser Prize in Imaging for his image of a hippocampal neuron in cell culture expressing cyan fluorescent protein. This prize was established to honor Dr. Edmund Glaser upon his retirement from the Department of Physiology in 1997. Dr. Glaser and his colleague, Dr. Hendrick Van der Loos, made a seminal contribution in the 1960s by creating the first computer-assisted neuron reconstruction system—Neurolucida. Dr. Glaser went on to found a company, MBF Bioscience, to further develop and market software for neuroscience imaging. The Glaser prize is awarded for the most visually attractive scientific image submitted by a student working in the laboratory of a faculty member in the Department of Physiology. All of the 2013 and 2014 submitted images are currently on display in the second-floor lobby of the SMC Campus Center.

The article “Anatomy of Success: The Top 100 Cited Scientific Reports Focused on Hypertension Research” in Hypertension 63:641-647, 2014), cited three articles from the University of Maryland School of Medicine’s Department of Physiology, chosen from a field of more than 380,000 articles. It included a review and hypothesis by Mordecai Blaustein, MD, in the American Journal of Physiology, 1977, 232:C165-C173 (#27; 1294 citations), and a research article by John Hamlyn, PhD, et al. in Nature, 1982, 300:650-652 (#92, 614 citations). Furthermore, Young and Galis’ “List of Top 100 ‘Original’ Articles in Hypertension Research” includes the aforementioned Hamlyn et al. article (#73) and another Hamlyn et al article from Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA, 88:6259-6263, 1991 (# 89; 561 citations). The three articles describe, respectively, the hypothesis that a novel ‘ouabain-like’ hormone plays a role in hypertension (1977); preliminary evidence for the hormone in human plasma (1982); and the purification, from human plasma, and identification of ‘endogenous ouabain’ (1991). Drs. Hamlyn and Blaustein, both professors in the Department of Physiology, are the only authors with two basic research studies on the latter list.

July 2014

Publications

Chunsik Lee, PhD, Research Associate; Anguo Liu, PhD, Research Associate; Alba Miranda-Ribera, PhD, Research Associate; and Sang Hyun, PhD, Research Associate, all from the Department of Medicine; along with Erik Lillehoj, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Pediatrics; Alan Cross, MD, and Simeon Goldblum, MD, both Professors, Department of Medicine; Antonino Passaniti, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Pathology; and Bo-Young Kim, Research Specialist, and Paul Welling, MD, Professor, both from the Department of Physiology, were among the co-authors on “NEU1 Sialidase Regulates the Sialylation State of CD31 and Disrupts CD31-Driven Capillary-like Tube Formation in Human Lung Microvascular Endothelia” in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, 2014 Mar 28;289(13):9121-9135.

Honors and Awards

Steven Fisher, MD, Professor, Department of Medicine, has been awarded the 2014 Distinguished Service Award by the Physiological Genomics Group of the American Physical Society (APS).

Michael Lai, a PhD Student in the Fischell Department of Bioengineering of the University of Maryland, College Park, who is performing his research in the School of Medicine’s Department of Physiology, in the laboratory of Andrea Meredith, PhD, Assistant Professor, was awarded the first annual Hugo Gonzalez-Serratos Scientific Presentation Award for the best presentation at the joint Annual Retreat of the training programs in Integrative Membrane and Interdisciplinary Muscle Research. The award was established to honor the memory of Hugo Gonzalez-Serratos, PhD, who was a professor in the Department of Physiology until his death in 2011. Michael’s research concerns the role of BK-type potassium channels in the sinoatrial node of the heart, where he shows that they strongly influence the pacemaker of the heart.

Rick Matteson, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Physiology, and Director of Student Research Education and Dual Degree Programs, and Susan Wolfsthal, MD, the Celeste Lauve Woodward, MD Professor in Humanism and Ethical Medical Practice, Department of Medicine, Internal Medicine Residency Program Director, and Associate Chair for Education in the Department of Medicine, were inducted into the Carolyn J. Pass, MD ’66 and Richard M. Susel, MD ’66 Academy of Educational Excellence, which was established in 2008 to honor faculty members past and present who demonstrate exceptional innovation in, and dedication to, medical education; who embody the highest ideals of the medical and/or science professions; and who display a singular commitment to the best interests of medical students.

Matthew Trudeau, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Physiology, received the Cranefield Award for his paper “Direct Interaction of EAG Domains and Cyclic Nucleotide-Binding Homology Domains Regulate Deactivation Gating in hERG Channels,” which was published in the Journal of General Physiology in 2013. The Paul F. Cranefield Award was created by the Council of the Society of General Physiologists to honor Paul F. Cranefield, MD, PhD, who for 30 years served as Editor of the Journal of General Physiology. The Award is meant to recognize an independent young investigator who in the preceding calendar year has published an outstanding article in the journal. It further was stipulated that the Award need not be given every year; that it should be reserved for a truly noteworthy paper. This award comes with a $2,000 cash prize, to be issued at the Society of General Physiologists meeting in September 2014. Elena Gianulis, BS, Graduate Student, won the Graduate Student Cranefield Award for the same paper.

Paul Welling, MD, Professor, Department of Physiology, received the Steven Hebert Award from the American Physiological Society and was honored to deliver the Steven Hebert Distinguished Lecture at the Experimental Biology Meeting in San Diego, CA, in April 2014. This award from the Epithelial Transport Group honors Dr. Steven Hebert, former chair and C.N.H. Long Professor of Cellular and Molecular Physiology and Professor of Medicine at the Yale University School of Medicine, who was a pioneer in developing a genetic and molecular understanding of renal ion transport mechanisms. Dr. Welling’s lecture highlighted his laboratory’s efforts to elucidate the molecular underpinnings of sodium-potassium balance, and blood-pressure control. Dr. Welling joins the illustrious company of former awardees such as Richard P. Lifton (Yale); Ernest M. Wright (UCLA); William Guggino (Johns Hopkins); and Gerardo Gamba (Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico) in this honor.

Events, Lectures and Workshops

Steven Fisher, MD, Professor, Department of Medicine, was an invited speaker and presented “Regulation and Function of Myosin Light Chain Phosphatase” at “Symposium on Regulatory Circuits in Cell Motility: A Celebration of Dave Hartshorne’s Career,” sponsored by The Physiological Society of Philadelphia. He also presented on “Smooth Muscle Cell Biology and Mechanobiology” at the International Society for Applied Cardiovascular Biology in April.

John McLenithan, PhD, Assistant Professor, Departments of Medicine and Physiology, gave a lecture on “Adipokines and Inflammatory Mediators: The Link Between Obesity and GDM” at the 13th Annual Meeting of the Diabetes in Pregnancy Study Group of North America, and “Adipose Tissue in Health and Disease” in a lecture at Howard University’s Department of Nutrition.

Media Spotlight

Stephen Davis, MBBS, FRCP, FACP, the Theodore E. Woodward Professor of Medicine and Chairman, Department of Medicine, was quoted in the Baltimore Sun article “Officials Urge Consumers to Cut Back on Sugar” on March 21, and was featured in a WJZ-TV interview on March 25 at the opening of the Expanded Diabetes Center at the University of Maryland Midtown Campus.

June 2014

Publications

Terez Shea-Donohue, PhD, Professor, and Aiping Zhao, MD, Associate Professor, both from the Department of Radiation Oncology, were among the co-authors on “SerpinB2 Mediated Regulation of Macrophage Function During Enteric Infection” in Gut Microbes, 2014 Feb 5;5(2) [Epub ahead of print].

May 2014

Events, Lectures & Workshops

Scott Thompson, PhD, Professor and Chair, Department of Physiology; Elyse Sullivan, PhD student, Program in Neuroscience; and Emma Rose, PhD, Visiting Assistant Professor, Department of Psychiatry, were on Capitol Hill on March 26 on behalf of the Society for Neuroscience, lobbying congress on the need for increased funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Science Foundation (NSF). The three met with healthcare and science policy staffers in the offices of both Maryland senators and Maryland representatives to describe their personal experiences with the drastic consequences of sequestration on the research enterprise and to make the case for a full restoration of funding for the NIH and NSF.

Grants & Contracts

Robert Bloch, PhD, Professor, Department of Physiology, received a new five-year, $1,688,500 grant from the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases for his research on “Role of Dysferlin In T-Tubules of Skeletal Muscle.”

Mark Rizzo, PhD, Associate Professor, and Withrow Wier, PhD, Professor, both from the Department of Physiology, received a new two-year, $422,125, Multi-PI R21 research grant from the Office of the Director, National Institutes of Health, for their research on “Development of RhoA Optical Sensor Mice for Novel Vascular Smooth Muscle Studies.”

April 2014

Grants & Contracts

Robert Bloch, PhD, Professor, Department of Physiology, received a one-year $250,000 contract from the Jain Foundation for “Analyzing the Role of Dysferlin in Skeletal Muscle in Vitro and in Vivo.”

Honors & Awards

Mordecai Blaustein, MD, Professor, Department of Physiology, will receive the American Physiological Society’s (APS) 2014 Annual Reviews Award for Scientific Reviews at the Experimental Biology Meeting on April 29 in San Diego, CA.

Publications

Terez Shea-Donohue, PhD, Professor, and Aiping Zhao, PhD, Associate Professor, both from the Department of Radiation Oncology, were among the co-authors on “Role of Macrophages in the Altered Epithelial Function During a Type 2 Immune Response Induced by Enteric Nematode Infection” in PLoS One, 2014 Jan 23;9(1):e84763.

March 2014

Honors & Awards

Shannon Salyer, Administrative Analyst, Department of Physiology, received the distinction of making the Dean’s List for her undergraduate studies at the University of Maryland University College. This is the second such distinction in a row for Ms. Salyer. Shannon was the 2012/2013 recipient of the James T. Hill Scholarship for University of Maryland Baltimore Staff and has put her scholarship to good use by receiving this back-to-back recognition for her hard work.

February 2014

Appointments

Andrea Meredith, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Physiology, has been elected to serve as a Councilor of the Society of General Physiologists, for a three-year term ending in 2016. The Society, founded in 1948, has a rich history in the field of physiology, and is headquartered at the Marine Biological Lab in Woods Hole, MA.

Events, Lectures & Workshops

Colin Mackenzie, MB, ChB, Clinical Professor, Department of Anesthesiology, was one of three international guests invited to give Plenary Lectures at the Australian Society of Anesthesiologists’ Annual Scientific Meeting in Canberra, Australia, from September 26–29, 2013 and in Perth and Freemantle, Western Australia, from October 1–3, 2013, as part of the Australian Society of Anesthesiologists’ CME outreach program. His lectures were entitled: “New ‘Big Data’ Approaches to Trauma Outcome Prediction”; “Current and Future Interventions for Acute Cervical Spine Trauma”; “Video Task Analysis in Healthcare and Anesthesia Crisis Events”; and “HBOC’s: Myths, Reality and the Future.”

January 2014

Appointments

Scott Thompson, PhD, Professor and Chair, Department of Physiology, became the Chair of the Public Education and Communication Committee of the Society for Neuroscience last November. This strong international professional organization has 42,000 members, supporting scientists and physicians devoted to understanding the brain and nervous system. Dr. Thompson’s committee oversees many programs focused on educating the public, policy makers, and educators about neuroscience, including the dissemination of neuroscience information through press releases and web-based content.

Paul Welling, MD, Professor, Department of Physiology, was appointed by the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) to serve on its Finance Committee for a three-year term starting in July 2013.

Grants and Contracts

Owen Woodward, PhD, Research Associate, Department of Physiology, received a four-year, $308,000 Scientist Development research grant from the American Heart Association’s National Center for “Regulation of Uric Acid Transporter ABCG2 in the Kidney.”

Publications

Andrea Meredith, PhD, Associate Professor; Chris Shelly, PhD, Postdoctoral Fellow; Joshua Whitt, Program in Neuroscience Graduate Student; and Jenna Montgomery, PhD, Postdoctoral Fellow, all from the Department of Physiology, were among the co-authors on “Phosphorylation of a Constitutive Serine Inhibits BK Channel Variants Containing the Alternate Exon ‘SRKR’” in The Journal of General Physiology, 2013 Nov 25; 142(6): 585-598. The article was accompanied by a commentary, “Multilevel Regulation: Controlling BK channels in Central Clock Neurons” in the same issue, pages 579-583.