Faculty and Staff News
IUSM startups Auricyte, Arrhythmotech win top honors at BioCrossroads competition
Auricyte LLC, a company launched by three Indiana University School of Medicine researchers to cure hearing loss by turning human stem cells into hearing cells, won the Best Pre-Venture category Wednesday at the BioCrossroads New Venture Competition.
The victory marks the third time in four years that a product of IU's Spin Up program, created by the Indiana University Research and Technology Corp. to help researchers with commercially promising technologies start their own companies, has won the pre-venture category.
Another Spin Up company, Arrhythmotech LLC, took second place and $15,000 in the overall competition, which began with 30 entrants before six finalists were announced Monday. Last year’s overall winner, Anagin LLC, also is a Spin Up company.
BioCrossroads' pre-venture prize goes to startups that offer substantial business potential but are very early in development. Founded in 2014, Auricyte is developing a first-of-its-kind "ear-in-a-dish" technology that extends therapy for hearing loss beyond the amplified sound that hearing aids and cochlear implants currently offer.
Through published research by Auricyte co-founders Karl Koehler and Eri Hashino, inner-ear cells from a mouse were shown for the first time to be grown from stem cells in 3-D cultures. The company also holds the only patent pending for such technology.
Koehler is an assistant professor in the IU School of Medicine's Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery and serves as Auricyte's chief science officer. Hashino, a professor in the same department, has more than 20 years of experience in studying inner-ear development and regeneration.
The third founder, Gerry Oxford, is a professor of pharmacology and toxicology, as well as the executive director of the IU School of Medicine's Stark Neurosciences Research Institute.
Last month, Auricyte also was among five companies honored as "Best in Show" at Innovation Showcase 2015, held at Speedway's Dallara IndyCar Factory.
"We are very pleased to win this award from BioCrossroads, especially when you consider both the excellent ideas and promise that the other finalists offer and the meticulous evaluation that the entrants go through," Koehler said. "This honor is special in that it brings not just financial support but valuable momentum in aiding the advancement of our product as we work to enter the market."
Arrhythmotech was co-founded in 2012 by Dr. Peng-Sheng Chen and Shein-Fong Lin. The company is developing noninvasive ways to monitor both sympathetic nerve activity and electrocardiogram signals through its neuECG device. Currently, no device allows simultaneous detection of sympathetic nerve activity and electrocardiogram signals in this manner. While several electrocardiogram technologies are noninvasive, sympathetic nerve activity detection requires direct nerve contact.
Chen serves as division chief of the Krannert Institute of Cardiology and is the Medtronic Zipes Chair in Cardiology at the IU School of Medicine. Lin is a professor of medicine at the IU School of Medicine and director of the Institute for Biomedical Engineering at National Chiao Tung University in Taiwan.
To read more about the award winners and their research, visit the IUPUI Newsroom.
OneStart now retired; get up to speed on One.IU
Happy trails, OneStart! It officially retired yesterday, October 21. One.IU is now the university’s only directory for online services.
Medical Laboratory Scientist program receives NAACLS 10-year accreditation
The Indiana University School of Medicine’s Medical Laboratory Scientist program has received accreditation from the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences through Oct. 31, 2025.After undergoing a review process in the spring of 2015, the program was approved for a 10-year accreditation period. IUSM will be required to submit a Year five Interim Report in October 2019 that includes a summary of the previous five years, how outcomes are measured, analyzed and used, and a summary of annual reporting changes.
New screening guidelines won’t assure fewer mammograms
From Aaron Carroll’s New York Times UpShot column, The New Health Care
In 1985, about three-quarters of women age 40 to 79 had never been screened for breast cancer with mammography. By 2010, things had changed enormously. More than 70 percent of women of similar age had been screened in the previous two years. Many people attribute the large improvements we’ve seen in breast cancer mortality over that period to early detection through ambitious screening programs.
In recent years, though, many researchers have concluded that annual screening mammograms for a wide range of women may be doing more harm than good. Because of this, the American Cancer Society has updated its recommendations on how often women should be screened. But after years of public awareness campaigns, getting physicians, and the public, to accept the new guidelines will probably be very hard.
The cancer society now recommends that most women not begin annual screening mammography until age 45. When they turn 55, it recommends that they switch to every-other-year screening. That should continue until a woman is expected to have less than 10 years of life remaining. The society now recommends that no clinical breast exams — where physicians or nurses feel for lumps — be done as a screening procedure at any age.
This is a big change. For years, many organizations, including the cancer society, recommended annual mammograms beginning at age 40 and clinical breast exams every few years starting as early as age 20. After 2003, the society changed its guideline development procedures to be more transparent and evidence-based; these new recommendations are a result.
Read the full story on The New York Times.
Precision monitoring to transform health care: Right data, right person, right time
Precision medicine – prevention and treatment strategies taking individual patient variability (genes, environment, lifestyle) into account – is emerging as a way to revolutionize the practice and outcomes of medical care. In a similar way, with the advent of electronic health record systems in hospitals and doctors’ offices, precision monitoring of care – using available information on an individual to ensure that the right person receives the right data at the right time – also is emerging as a way to promote high quality, efficient care and improve patient outcomes.
With the support of a new $5 million award from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, researcher-clinicians with the Richard L. Roudebush VA Medical Center, the Regenstrief Institute and Indiana University School of Medicine are at the forefront of this change.
The new VA award funds the unique five-year, multi-site Precision Monitoring (PRIS-M) program. PRIS-M will use existing VA electronic health data to implement actionable, personalized, timely monitoring to generate data to transform care quality and outcomes.
Projects will take place in various healthcare environments including the Emergency Department, inpatient units and outpatient units, and will focus on diverse medical conditions. In addition to studying the technical solutions to precision monitoring, investigators also will study how providing actionable data can be used to activate healthcare providers and teams to engage in improvement activities without drowning in information overload.Read more about this award at the IUSM Newsroom.
HHS announces proposal to revise rules governing human subjects research
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and 15 other federal departments and agencies have announced proposed revisions to the regulations for protection of human subjects in research (the “Common Rule”). A Notice of Proposed Rulemaking was published in the Federal Register on Sept. 8, 2015.
Read a Brief Summary of the proposed changes.
Read the Full NPRM.The NPRM does not represent the final rule that will be published; rather, it lists proposed revisions to the Common Rule. HHS is soliciting comments from the research community and other interested parties to be considered in drafting the final rule. The Human Subjects Office is coordinating IU’s comments to be submitted to HHS.
Please contact Shawn Axe at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to participate in formulating IU’s comments. Individual or group comments can also be submitted directly to HHS. To be assured consideration, comments should be submitted by Dec. 7, 2015. See the HHS website for additional information regarding submission of comments.Timeframes for publication of the final rule and implementation of revisions have not yet been determined. As HHS provides additional information, it will be communicated via future editions of the research compliance quarterly newsletter and/or Office of Research Compliance website and emails.
Faculty and Staff News
DiMarchi elected as a member of National Academy of Medicine
Richard D. DiMarchi, an Indiana University Distinguished Professor and member of the external advisory committe for the IU School of Medicine's Industry Collaboration Portal, has been elected as a member of the prestigious National Academy of Medicine. He is one of the world's leading peptide chemists and is the 10th IU faculty member to join the organization and the first on the IU Bloomington campus.
Election to the National Academy of Medicine, previously known as the Institute of Medicine, is considered one of the highest honors in the field of health and medicine, and recognizes individuals who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and commitment to service.
An expert in peptide chemistry, biochemistry and pharmacology, DiMarchi also serves as the Linda and Jack Gill Chair in Biomolecular Sciences and the Standiford H. Cox Professor of Chemistry in the IU Bloomington College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Chemistry, where he previously served as department chair.
DiMarchi’s career spans academia, biotechnology and the pharmaceutical industry. His current research focuses on developing macromolecules with enhanced therapeutic properties through biochemical and chemical optimization.
Read more about DiMarchi’s career and achievements at the IU Bloomington Newsroom.
Vargo-Gogola pursues research for earlier detection of breast cancer
Research to improve mammograms, conducted by IU School of Medicine-South Bend’s Tracy Vargo-Gogola, Ph.D., and Notre Dame’s Ryan Roeder, Ph.D., has received funding from the Kelly Cares Foundation.
The foundation, the namesake of Paqui Kelly and her husband, Notre Dame head football coach Brian Kelly, is contributing $140,000 to the Harper Cancer Research Institute on behalf of Roeder and Vargo-Gogola's work.
Their project seeks to improve early detection of breast cancer, particularly among women with dense breast tissue, by employing gold nanoparticles to enhance imaging. Studies have been successful in mouse models. The team now plans to test the approach on humansized breast models using clinical mammography.Vargo-Gogola is senior lecturer of biochemistry and molecular biology at IUSM-SB; Roeder is associate professor of aerospace and mechanical engineering and the principle investigator on the project. This project also is supported by St. Joseph Regional Medical Center, the Walther Cancer Foundation and the National Science Foundation.
Fox appointed distinguished adjunct professor at Notre DameMark D. Fox, M.D., Ph.D., M.P.H., director and associate dean of Indiana University School of Medicine-South Bend has joined the faculty of the University of Notre Dame as distinguished adjunct professor of theology. He also has been appointed adjunct professor for the Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health at IUPUI, in the Center for Health Policy.
Eskenazi announces new center to treat Alzheimer’s and other mental disorders
For years, Eskenazi Health has been laying the groundwork and conducting research necessary to create a new approach to brain care. On Oct. 16, Eskenazi Health announced the new Sandra Eskenazi Center for Brain Care Innovation, the first of its kind in the nation.
Eskenazi Health and the Health & Hospital Corporation of Marion County (HHC) have named the center in honor of a leadership gift from Sandra Eskenazi of $5 million to the Eskenazi Health Foundation’s $50 million campaign in support of the center’s vision: “transforming brain health for all, now.” She is the daughter of Sidney and Lois Eskenazi, the Central Indiana couple who provided a $40 million gift to the Eskenazi Health Capital Campaign and for whom the Eskenazi Health system is named.
The Sandra Eskenazi Center will employ a completely re-envisioned model of care that includes two important distinctions: It will provide care for the whole person – mind, body and family, and it will expedite the translation of best practices discovered in the lab directly to patient care.
“The most important thing we can do at this moment is to address the crisis in mental health, which draws very deeply on the work that we’ve committed to for decades here at Eskenazi Health,” said Dr. Lisa Harris, chief executive officer of Eskenazi Health. “We’ve created a rich environment historically designed to promote and support the health and well-being of each patient from every direction, creating the perfect backdrop for us to focus on mental health. Sandra’s gift has empowered us to follow our passion – one we mutually hold.”
Always at the forefront of innovative practice, Eskenazi Health is already a leader in advancing brain health through implementation science in Indianapolis. Recognized internationally for the work of the Healthy Aging Brain Center (HABC) and the Prevention and Recovery Center for Early Psychosis (PARC), what is happening here is unprecedented.
The IU School of Medicine’s Malaz Boustani, M.D., has been named the founding director of the Sandra Eskenazi Center for Brain Care Innovation. As director of the HABC, he developed core competencies to address the devastating effects of Alzheimer's disease and dementia for his patients. He will build on this expertise in brain care research and health care innovation to lead the Sandra Eskenazi Center in developing and implementing a far-reaching and visionary model of brain care.
"Through decades of research in brain health, we have learned that by reorganizing care, we can obtain better outcomes at lower costs," said Dr. Boustani. "While the Sandra Eskenazi Center will first focus on patients and their families in Indianapolis, the model of care will be scalable to various locations, age groups and diseases, and could soon expand nationally and internationally, and become a new standard of care in the 21st century."
To learn more about this groundbreaking center and the services offered, read the full news release.
Cullen to co-lead Regenstrief's transformational Global Health Informatics Program
Theresa Cullen, M.D., M.S., an internationally respected leader in health information technology and its application in resource-limited environments, has been named associate director of the Regenstrief Institute's Global Health Informatics Program. She joins the institute's Center for Biomedical Informatics as an investigator following three-and-a-half years as chief medical informatics officer and director of health informatics at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
Dr. Cullen holds the rank of rear admiral (retired) with the U.S. Public Health Service, with which she served for 26 years, all but one with the Indian Health Service, where, from 2006 to 2011, she was the IHS' chief information officer and oversaw the largest U.S. rural health network (400 facilities in 36 states across the country) from a health information perspective.
She also has had multiple deployments to Albania as a USPHS officer through the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Global Health Affairs and has participated in medical and public health service trips to Central America and Africa.Read the full announcement on the IUSM Newsroom.
CTSI - IU Kelley MBA Core and Project Business Management Assistance RFPs due Nov. 20
Indiana CTSI requests proposals for business planning assistance. Cores, resources and units providing a central service to CTSI investigators are eligible. A core/unit may submit multiple proposals. Priority will be given to proposals that will (1) lead to improvements in organizational efficiency, speed of service, and/or quality; and (2) has the potential to be extrapolated and benefit other cores, resources or units.
For selected projects, the Kelley School student team will work with the core for the 2016 spring semester. The project will start in February-March 2016 and wrap up between May and June 2016 with a final team presentation. As part of an 8 to 12 week engagement, the selected core will be expected to engage with the MBA students for initial product scope (2 hours), additional follow-up or onsite meetings (8-12 hours) and a final project close-out (1-2 hours). The MBA students will contribute 30-60 hours (depending on the project scope, number of team members and course credit assignment) to the project progression in turn.
Contact Name: Rob Dimmitt
Contact Email: email@example.com
View the submission checklist, download an application or submit a proposal at indianactsi.org.
Indy - Health & Benefits FairThe 2015 Health & Benefits Fair is Friday, Oct. 20, from 9 am to 3 pm, at the IUPUI Campus Center. The fair includes open enrollment informational sessions, free flu shots, confidential health screenings with a $100 incentive and more. For more inforamtion, view the full flyer.
Bloomington - Second annual science fest is Oct. 24
Albert Einstein and Richard Feynman will be among those helping children and people of all ages celebrate their love of science on Saturday, Oct. 24, at Indiana University Bloomington.
Arriving only a week before Halloween, the famous physicists will return as family-friendly "zombies" during the second annual IU Science Fest. The event builds upon a longstanding tradition at IU to invite the public to campus to discover science with over 100 fun-filled, educational activities that will spark imaginations and ignite a desire to learn.
Over 1,800 people attended last year’s inaugural event.
Members of the IU Physics Club, which puts on a physics demonstration show each year, will play the "zombies." This year's theme, "Jurassic Swain," will see the famous physicists come back to stop other costumed "dinosaurs" from terrorizing Swain Hall.
The show will be one of hundreds of activities taking place from 9 am to 3 pm in the IU Bloomington buildings of Swain West, Jordan Hall, Lindley Hall, the Chemistry building and Kirkwood Observatory, plus special sign-in activities in the Student Building and IU Research and Teaching Preserve.Read more about this event on the IU Bloomington Newsroom.
Indy - TRIP Fall Showcase is Nov. 4
Engage with several of IUPUI's distinguished faculty scholars as they present their translational research and illustrate how they improve people's lives at the IUPUI TRIP Community Showcase. The showcase will also feature a presentation by the 2015 Bantz-Petronio Translating Research into Practice Award recipient, Dr. Susan Hickman. Dr. Hickman will present on “Decisions that Matter: Using evidence-based strategies to improve advance care planning.”
The showcase will take place Wednesday, Nov. 4, from 5 to 6:30 pm at the IUPUI Campus Center. The event is free and open to the public, but RSVPs are requested by Friday, Oct. 30. View more information about this event here.
Indy - University Library offers quarterly newsletterThe IUPUI University Library now offers a quarterly newsletter that includes information about research updates and publications, a list of valuable instructional blogs and upcoming campus events. To subscribe to the newsletter, email firstname.lastname@example.org.