Top News

  • Foroud named Department of Medical and Molecular Genetics chair

    Tatiana Foroud, Ph.D., an internationally recognized genetic researcher who holds several leadership positions at the Indiana University School of Medicine, has been selected as chair of the school's Department of Medical and Molecular Genetics.

    Dr. Foroud, who joined the IU School of Medicine faculty in 1994, was named the P. Michael Conneally Professor of Medical and Molecular Genetics in 2005. She is director of the department's Hereditary Genomics Division and is scientific director of the Indiana Biobank, a primary biospecimen resource at Indiana University. She also leads the Genetics, Biomarker and Bioinformatics Core, a recent addition to the NIH-funded Indiana Alzheimer Disease Center.

    Along with departmental colleague Gail Vance, M.D., Dr. Foroud has been serving as interim chair of the department since former chair Kenneth Cornetta, M.D., stepped down last year to begin a fellowship in palliative care.

    Dr. Foroud's research focuses on the identification of genes contributing to disease, including neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, intracranial aneurysms, alcohol dependence and cancer.

    Read the full news release at the IUSM Newsroom.

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  • Apostolova named first holder of Alzheimer’s research chair position

    Liana G. Apostolova, M.D., has been recommended to become the first holder of the Barbara and Peer Baekgaard Chair in Alzheimer’s Disease Research with the title of Barbara and Peer Baekgaard Professor of Alzheimer’s Disease Research, effective Sept. 4, pending the president’s approval. Dr. Apostolova will retain her current titles of professor of Neurology, professor of Radiology & Imaging Sciences, and professor of Medical & Molecular Genetics; she was appointed to the IUSM faculty with visiting status in June 2015 and to the regular faculty in August 2015.

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  • IUSM Fall Faculty Meeting Sept. 29

    The Faculty Steering Committee invites all IUSM faculty to attend the 2015 fall faculty meeting on Sept. 29 from 4:30 - 6 pm in Walther Hall Auditorium, R3-203

     Faculty meetings are held twice a year to discuss issues and updates pertaining to IUSM students, faculty and curriculum. The fall meeting agenda includes:

    • IUSM 2015 Award Recipients Recognition
    • Medical Student Education (MSE) Update from Bradley Allen, M.D., Ph.D., senior associate dean for Medical Student Education
    • Research Affairs Update from Anantha Shekhar, M.D., Ph.D., executive associate dean for Research Affairs
    • Dean’s Update from Jay Hess, M.D., Ph.D., dean of IU School of Medicine

     Please submit all questions and agenda items to the Faculty Steering Committee.

     All faculty members are encouraged to attend the meeting in person. For those who cannot attend, the meeting will be available via live web stream and teleconference. Instructions for participating remotely are posted on the Faculty Steering Committee website.  After the meeting, a video recording of the meeting will be made available on the website.

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Research News

  • Statewide study finds decreasing rates of osteoporosis treatment

    A statewide study has found that from 2005 to 2012, fewer than a quarter of men and women with documentation of osteoporosis or fragility fracture, conditions for which national guidelines would recommend treatment for osteoporosis, actually received that treatment.

    The study of 37,000 Indiana patients over age 50 also found that the situation is not improving. Those who met these criteria were half as likely to be treated in 2011-2012 as they were in 2005.

    The population health study, from Indiana University School of Medicine, Regenstrief Institute and researchers from Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., a subsidiary of Merck & Co., Inc. under the auspices of a Regenstrief Institute-Merck collaborative partnership, evaluated real world osteoporosis treatment patterns using data from the Indiana Network for Patient Care (which contains information on more than 90 percent of state residents), prescribing data and insurance claims statistics. The goal was to establish how many patients were treated within two years of a diagnosis of osteoporosis or fragility fracture attributable to likely osteoporosis.

    Males meeting indications to treat for osteoporosis were less likely to be treated than females. Black patients were less likely to be treated than white patients. Individuals with multiple chronic conditions also were less likely to be treated for osteoporosis.

    By age 80, only about 20 percent of those for whom guidelines recommend treatment were actually treated. The researchers reported the occurrence of a fragility fracture, even a hip fracture with its painful and potentially debilitating consequences, did not typically prompt treatment for prevention of future fractures. It is known from other studies that older adults are more likely to die in the year following a hip fracture than if the fracture had not occurred.

    Read the full news release at the IUSM Newsroom.

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  • Grant supports software to judge quality of electronic public health data

    A $381,000, 2-year grant from the National Library of Medicine at the National Institutes of Health will support development of open source software tools to measure and monitor the quality of electronic data being transmitted to public health departments across the nation from health care systems, medical laboratories, physician offices and other sources.

    The software is being developed by by the Regenstrief Institute and the Indiana University Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health.

    "While automated syndromic surveillance is on the rise, most public health departments don't have the resources or the expertise to measure, as well as continually monitor, the quality of the growing amount of data they are receiving," the grant's principal investigator Brian Dixon, Ph.D., said. He is a Regenstrief Institute investigator and an assistant professor in the IU Fairbanks School of Public Health.

    "We will be developing standards-based software that will be available without charge to any public health agency in any state that wishes to assess incoming electronic data for a range of critical quality issues, including timeliness, completeness and accuracy."

    Dr. Dixon and colleagues are modifying a software platform originally developed to analyze data on drug effectiveness. He anticipates that the value of the new software will grow as additional electronic information infrastructure for public health reporting is created and relied upon by state and local health departments to support early identification of emerging threats as well as to assess and monitor population health.

    Visit the IUSM Newsroom to read the full news release.

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  • IUSM receives nearly $5.5 million in new grants and awards in August

    Investigator Sponsor Type Project Title Begin Date End Date Awarded Dollars
    Amanda Rae Stram National Heart, Lung And Blood Institute New The Role of Mitochondrial Protein Acetylation in Left Ventricular Function 8/4/2015 8/3/2016 34,422
    Amy Lewis Gilbert Eskenazi Health New 2015 AAMC Accelerating Health Equity, Advancing through Discovery Ahead Learning Cohort/ Eskenazi Health MLP Site 5/20/2015 6/30/2018 7,500
    Anna Maria V Storniolo Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation Renewal (not prev committed) Collection and Storage of Biological Specimens Intended for use in the Elucidation of Breast Carcinogenesis 6/1/2015 5/31/2017 1,100,000
    Anna Maria V Storniolo The Breast Cancer Research Foundation New Molecular profiles of breast tissue from women at high risk of breast cancer 10/1/2015 9/30/2016 249,725
    Chandy C John National Institute Neurological Disorders & Stroke New Research Training in Infection and Neurodevelopment in Uganda 6/1/2015 5/31/2016 213,319
    Cynthia Diane Brown Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Renewal (not prev committed) Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Care Center - 2015/2016 7/1/2015 6/30/2016 73,190
    Elliot J Androphy Brigham And Women's Hospital New Optimization of a novel series of thiazolopyridines for the treatment of SMA 4/1/2015 3/31/2016 109,200
    Emily Anderson-Baucum National Institute Of Diabetes, Digestive & Kidney New The Role of Macrophage Deoxyhypusine Synthase in the Progression of Obesity-Associated Adipose Tissue Inflammation 8/1/2015 7/31/2016 52,406
    Hal E Broxmeyer National Institute Of Diabetes, Digestive & Kidney New Hematopoietic stem and progenitor cell regulation for enhanced clinical efficacy 8/1/2015 7/31/2016 995,319
    Harikrishna Nakshatri U.s. Department Of Veterans Affairs New IPA 7/1/2015 6/30/2016 11,476
    James Butler American Society Of Transplant Surgeons New Defining the stimulatory properties of vascular endothelium in a porcine model: A strategy to promote anergy in clinical xenografts 7/1/2015 6/30/2016 40,000
    Jamie L Renbarger Riley Children's Foundation New Caroline Symmes Endowment for Pediatric Cancer Research (13-A14) 7/1/2015 6/30/2016 10,285
    Jing-Yuan Liu Grace M. Showalter Trust New Characterization of Newly Synthesized Lead Analogs Targeting Survivin for Cancer Treatment 7/1/2015 6/30/2016 60,000
    Kathleen M. O'Neil Duke University New Observational Study of Pediatric Rheumatic Diseases: The CARRA Registry 7/15/2015 7/14/2017 185,250
    Kathryn M Haider Jaeb Center For Health Research Inc New Phase 1 Trial of Bevacizumab Treatment for Severe Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP) 1/1/2015 12/31/2018 62,492
    Kathy D. Miller The Breast Cancer Research Foundation Renewal (not prev committed) Inhibiting fatty acid synthase to improve efficacy of neoadjuvant chemotherapy 10/1/2015 9/30/2016 250,000
    Linda A DiMeglio Benaroya Research Institute At Virginia Mason New Immune Tolerance Network 8/1/2015 1/31/2016 19,137
    Linda A DiMeglio National Institute Of Diabetes, Digestive & Kidney New Type 1 Diabetes TrialNet at Indiana University Clinical Center 7/20/2015 4/30/2016 422,729
    Louis M Pelus National Heart, Lung And Blood Institute New Role of PGE2 and other eicosanoids in hematopoietic stem cell function 8/1/2015 6/30/2016 393,030
    Melissa Ann Kacena Center For The Advancement Of Science In Space New Rodent Research-4 7/24/2015 12/31/2015 91,370
    Michael J. Econs National Institute Arthritis Musculoskeletal Skin New Iron Therapy for Autosomal Dominant Hypophosphatemic Rickets: A Pilot Project 9/1/2015 8/31/2016 167,755
    Michelle S Howenstine Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Renewal (not prev committed) IN-182/182 - Riley Hospital for Children Indiana University Medical Center (Howenstine, Michelle) 7/1/2015 6/30/2016 172,400
    Molly Duman Scheel Grace M. Showalter Trust New Showalter Scholar- Molly Duman Scheel 7/1/2015 6/30/2016 25,000
    Paul G Biondich Regenstrief Institute, Inc. New RTI Tanzania 1/25/2015 8/31/2015 23,650
    Peng-Sheng Chen Yale University New Exercise in Genetic Cardiovascular Conditions 2/1/2015 1/31/2020 11,500
    Peng-Sheng Chen Temple University New The Contribution of Melanocyte-like Cells to Atrial Function and Development 12/31/2014 5/31/2016 96,424
    Ranjani N Moorthi National Institute Of Diabetes, Digestive & Kidney New Longitudinal Assessment of Skeletal Muscle Physiology in Dialysis Patients 8/1/2015 5/31/2016 173,397
    Robert J Fallon Riley Children's Foundation New Zachary E Klinger Chair of Pediatrics-Hematology/Oncology 7/1/2015 6/30/2016 73,234
    Shannon Leigh Risacher National Institute On Aging New Sensory and Perceptual Measures as Biomarkers of Alzheimer's Disease Pathology 8/15/2015 4/30/2016 122,343
    Shelley A. Johns Indiana University Health New Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Breast Cancer Survivors Coping with Disruptive Fear of Recurrence 7/1/2015 6/30/2016 49,711
    Terry A Vik Alexs Lemonade Stand Foundation New DNA sequencing using malaria slides to detect leukemia 7/1/2015 6/30/2016 100,000
    William J. Sullivan Clemson University New Translational control of encystation in the Entamoebae 7/1/2015 6/30/2017 21,450

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Faculty and Staff News

  • Malec and Kean win international rehabilitation award

    James E. Malec, Ph.D., and Jacob Kean, Ph.D., of the IU School of Medicine Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation have received the 2015 Fürst Donersmarck Foundation research prize in neurorehabilitation.

     Malec, professor and research director for the IU School of Medicine Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, and Mayo Clinic Emeritus Professor of Psychology; and Kean, research health scientist at the Richard L. Roudebush VA Medical Center and assistant research professor at the IU School of Medicine Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, received the award in recognition for their work with the national MPAI-4 database.

     Applications were elicited through the World Federation for NeuroRehabilitation. Their research manuscript, “Post-inpatient Brain Injury Rehabilitation Outcomes: Report from the National OutcomeInfo Database,” provided a description of their most recent and largest study of OutcomeInfo data. Malec and Kean received an award of 15,000 euros, as well as an invitation to a reception on Nov. 11 in Berlin.

     For more information about the award and the foundation, visit the Fürst Donnersmarck Foundation website.

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  • Indiana CTSI announces GLUE award recipients

    The Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute recently selected three projects to receive $200,000 each in funding for the next two years through the IU Grant Linking University-Wide Expertise Awards. The three projects address issues in psychological and brain sciences, and chemistry.

    Ken Mackie, M.D., professor of psychological and brain sciences at Indiana University Bloomington, is the principal investigator for the Translational Adolescent Cannabis Use Research Center. The goal of this center, after funding from the National Institutes of Health, is to investigate the antecedents and effects of adolescent cannabis use in both preclinical models and in adolescent and young adult populations, as well as to develop novel, evidence-based therapies. Its accomplishments will both contribute to the public policy debate on cannabis and help devise more effective therapeutic strategies. Co-investigators include Stephen Boehm, Ph.D., and Karmen Yoder, Ph.D.

    Franco Pestilli, Ph.D., assistant professor of psychological and brain sciences, was awarded funds for his project titled, “Improved accuracy for anatomical mapping and network structure of the Alzheimer’s brain.” The purpose of the study is to investigate the structure of the human brain connectome in individual brains to build predictive models of prodromal Alzheimer’s disease, with the goal of informing precision medicine. Co-investigators on this project include Andrew Saykin, Psy.D., Joaquin Goni, Ph.D., Li Shen, Ph.D., of the IU School of Medicine, and Olaf Sporns, Ph.D., of the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences.

    Peter Ortoleva, distinguished professor in physical chemistry and chemical biology at IU Bloomington will conduct a study titled, “Integrated computational and laboratory approach for the efficient discovery of antiviral vaccines.” Through this study, an integrated program of computational and experimental methods will be developed to facilitate the discovery of vaccines that protect against viral infections. Co-investigators include Aaron Ermel, M.D., and Darron Brown, M.D., of the IU School of Medicine.

     Read the full news release at the IUSM Newsroom.

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Partner News

  • IU Bloomington celebrates 50 years of neuroscience; Shekhar gives address

    The Program in Neuroscience in the Indiana University Bloomington College of Arts and Sciences will commemorate 50 years of neuroscience on Friday, Sept. 18.

    The 50th anniversary celebration will include a series of talks by several distinguished speakers, among them four of the program’s most successful alumni and two nationally renowned visionaries in the field with strong ties to the program. Topics will include reflections on the future of neuroscience.

    Anantha Shekhar, M.D., associate vice president for university clinical affairs at IU and executive associate dean for research affairs at the IU School of Medicine, will deliver the closing keynote, "Circuits and Solutions: A translational neuroscience approach to fear-based psychiatric disorders."

    "Among Indiana University's many historic strengths is the Program in Neuroscience, which has been making innovative interdisciplinary connections since 1965, when it was established as one of the first of its kind in the U.S.," said Provost and Executive Vice President Lauren Robel. "Research from this program tackles issues from eliminating pain to constructing the human connectome to better understanding the mechanisms that shape human behavior. The Program in Neuroscience addresses health and mental wellness issues in the state of Indiana and far beyond."

    Founded in 1965, the IU Program in Neuroscience now includes about 80 faculty members and 40 predoctoral researchers working with faculty members from 11 departments or schools across campus, including biology, chemistry, cognitive science, computer science, kinesiology, mathematics, medical sciences, optometry, physics, psychological and brain sciences, and speech and hearing.

    Read the full news release at the IU Bloomington Newsroom.

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  • IU Health Day of Service is Sept. 18

    On Sept. 18, IU Health will engage thousands of team members across the state for its annual Day of Service. This day is a favorite of many team members because of the opportunity to come together beyond hospital walls and take the IU Health mission – to improve the health of patients and the community through innovation and excellence in care, education, research and service –directly into the community. 

     This year marks the 7th annual IU Health Day of Service, and the third year the effort has focused specifically on obesity prevention – a need identified by community health needs assessments taken by Hoosiers living in all IU Health communities. The daylong project is hosted by Strength That Cares, IU Health’s year-round volunteer program that involves more than 10,000 team members from across the state.  

    For this year’s Day of Service, IU Health team members will spend 6,000 hours at more than 20 locations throughout Indiana—including community parks, walking trails and schools--enhancing these spaces to encourage physical activity in an effort to combat obesity and improve health.  IU Health team member volunteers will be joined by colleagues from Indiana University School of Medicine, Indiana University Health Physicians and Rehabilitation Hospital of Indiana, in partnership with Indy Parks, IPS, Playworks and more.  

     Learn more about the IU Health Day of Service and its impact or email empvol@IUHealth.org to get involved.

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Student News

  • Applications for El Salvador spring break service trip due Oct. 1

    Are you interested in combining travel and service work over your spring break? Experiencing other cultures first-hand? Practicing your Spanish? The Enlace Project, in partnership with the the IU School of Medicine, will offer a weeklong service trip to El Salvador over spring break, March 12-19, 2016. This program is available only to students at the master’s level and higher.

     You will have the chance to contribute to public health infrastructure in a rural community, observe the health care system of a developing country and practice your Spanish. Participants will have a true cultural experience through a homestay with members of a rural community during the week. This is the second year the trip has been offered. There is no language requirement for participating.

    Submit your application by Oct. 1. For more information or with questions, please contact Emily Potts (epotts@umail.iu.edu), Ellie Hansotte (ehansott@iupui.edu) or Kathleen Fenerty (kfenerty@iupui.edu).

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Opportunities

  • Funding opportunity through Merck/Regenstrief; RFPs due Sept. 18

    Through a partnership first established in 2012 to fund collaborative research projects, Merck and Regenstrief are now accepting RFPs for 2016 project funding. The first step in the application process is a short proposal, due by 5 pm on Sept 18.

     The initial proposal should include a descriptive title and paragraph or two explaining the concept, aim and general methods of the proposed idea. Approved proposals will move to the charter stage, where the collaborative team will create a multi-page charter and preliminary budget. The Collaboration Steering Committee will review these charters in October and choose projects that will progress into detailed project planning. Final approval of projects will occur in December.

     The funding period for these projects will be Feb. 1, 2016 – Jan. 31, 2017. All projects are a collaboration between Regenstrief/IU/Purdue researchers and Merck scientists. Since the Merck-Regenstrief partnership began in 2012, 40 collaborative projects have been funded.

     Projects in the following areas are currently being considered for funding:

     Disease states and treatments of interest:

    • Alzheimer’s and dementia: Disease progression, risk factors, caregiver impact and resource utilization
    • Diabetes: Treatment pathways; clinical impact of treatment inertia, including long term outcomes and resource utilization
    • Hepatitis C: Treatment adherence, real world efficacy of treatment, drug-drug interactions, and special populations including those with chronic kidney disease and injection drug use
    • Oncology: A special focus on lung cancer, head and neck cancers, and melanoma
    • Insomnia and sleep disturbances: Economic burden
    • Vaccines: Increasing vaccination rates among vulnerable populations

     Methodologies and technology innovations:

    • Innovative ideas for improving the efficiency of clinical trials, such as e-consenting, electronic communication with subjects
    • Predictive modeling related to patient migration between health systems
    • Predictive modeling of medication switching
    • Applications of natural language processing and patient reported outcomes

     Funding is available as salary support for faculty members and RI/IU/Purdue staff, payment for hardware and software needs of the project, as well as support from Collaboration Cores, which include biostatistics, natural language processing and the Data Core. Typical awards range from $100,000 - $350,000 in total costs for the year.

     For more information on the collaboration and project proposal process ,or to submit a proposal, email Katie Allen at

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  • Deadline extension: RFAs for MTP drug development services due Oct. 15

    The Molecular Therapeutics Program, a part of the Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute, has established a service agreement with Covance, Inc. to support early-stage drug discovery within CTSI partners: Indiana University, Purdue University and the University of Notre Dame.

    The Molecular Therapeutics Program (MTP) will support early-stage drug development studies through services provided by Covance Inc. and Quintiles Biosciences, two contract research organizations that provide pharmaceutical development services.

     The deadline for applications is 5 pm Thursday, Oct. 15. Complete guidelines and application forms available at the Indiana CTSI grants portal. Applicants must log in using their institutional username and password. Application instructions are under "Drug Development Services through the Molecular Therapeutics Program (MTP)-2015.10."

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