Top News

  • Indiana CTSI receives $33 million NIH grant to improve health statewide

    Indiana consistently lands near the bottom of the nation’s health ranking lists, with too many babies dying before their first birthday and too many people smoking and abusing drugs.

    A statewide network of researchers and staff at Indiana University, Purdue University and the University of Notre Dame have been working together to reverse this poor state of health, and are now seeking the help of Indiana residents of all ages and backgrounds as their partners.

    Indiana’s preeminent research universities are collaborating through the Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI), which recently has been awarded more than $33 million in renewed National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding for the next five years. The institute was founded in 2008 by Anantha Shekhar, MD, PhD, Indiana CTSI director and IU associate vice president of research and university clinical affairs.

    “This NIH grant in excess of $33 million to the Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute is an outstanding achievement, demonstrating Indiana University’s commitment to research excellence and service to our community,” said IU President Michael A. McRobbie. “IU researchers, as part of this multi-campus and multi-institutional effort, are collaborating to solve some of our state’s most critical health challenges. Together, we are striving to make Indiana one of the nation’s healthiest states.”

    “We are thrilled to receive this continued support from the NIH,” said Dr. Shekhar, who is also executive associate dean for research affairs at IU School of Medicine. “It enables us to continue improving health for people living in Indiana, to recruit more researchers and seed innovations in the state, and to speed the movement of discoveries across the universities’ labs to solutions benefiting people living in Indiana.” 

    The Indiana CTSI has also launched a new initiative called “All IN for Health,” which aims to sign up at least 100,000 Indiana residents to its health research volunteer registry over the next three years. So far, the initiative has recruited more than 6,000 people. 

    The All IN for Health website, www.AllIN4Health.info, provides valuable resources aligned with the major health issues affecting Indiana, such as information for expectant mothers interested in quitting smoking. The website also offers opportunities to become research volunteers and be matched to any of the 1,000 active Indiana-based research studies made possible through IU, Purdue and Notre Dame. One such study is part of the new FIT Core located at the IU School of Medicine. FIT stands for Functional, Imaging Tissue Core and allows participants to get screenings of grip, gait speed and bone density at no charge.

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  • More than 50 faculty honored with Trustees’ Teaching Award

    Each year, the Indiana University Board of Trustees recognizes excellence in teaching with the Trustees’ Teaching Awards. This year, 55 IU School of Medicine faculty earned this honor. Award recipients were announced at the school’s May 12 commencement. Faculty receiving the award in 2018 are:

    Mark E. Bauman, MD
    Thomas J. Birdas, MD
    Gabriel T. Bosslet, MD
    Brandon P. Brown, MD 
    Krista M. Brucker, MD
    Kenneth E. Byrd, PhD
    Angela T. Carbone, MD
    Douglas E. Carr, MD 
    Tamika S. Dawson, MD
    Alexander L. Dent, PhD
    David R. Diaz, MD
    Roman Dziarski, PhD 
    Jeffery S. Elmendorf, PhD
    Lyle P. Fettig, MD
    Joseph F. Fitzgerald, MD
    David L. Fryman, MD 
    Thomas A. Gardner, MD
    Greg E. Gaski, MD
    Warren B. Gavin, MD
    Stacey D. Gilk, PhD 
    Jill V. Helphinstine, MD
    Brittney-Shea Herbert, PhD
    Leslie A. Hoffman, PhD
    Butch J. Humbert, MD
    Heather A. Hundley, PhD
    Ashley S. Inman, MD
    Peter C. Jenkins, MD
    Travis J. Jerde, PhD 
    Michael J. King, PhD
    Abigail F. Klemsz, PhD, MD
    Matthew J. Kuhar, MD
    Yunlong Liu, PhD
    Colleen M. Madden, MD
    Rakesh P. Mehta, MD
    Paul I. Musey, MD
    Erin V. Newton, MD 
    Jacqueline V. Nonweiler-Parr, MD
    Jason M. Organ, PhD
    Katie E. Pettit, MD
    April A. P’pool, MD
    Deanna R. Reinoso, MD
    Cynthia L. Robbins, MD
    Maria P.S. Robles, MD
    Rebecca S. Rose, MD
    Courtney M. Rowan, MD
    Charles N. Rudick, PhD
    Daniel E. Rusyniak, MD
    Luke C. Schafer, MD
    Gattadahalli S. Seetharam, PhD
    Don J. Selzer, MD
    Andrew R. Shriner, MD 
    Katie J. Stanton-Maxey, MD
    Wanzhu Tu, PhD
    Gotz Von Bulow, PhD
    Isaac C. Wu, MD

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  • Office of Visual Media relocating to HITS Building June 4

    The IU School of Medicine Office of Visual Media, which is currently located on the first floor of Emerson Hall, will relocate to the Health Information and Translational Sciences (HITS) building effective Monday, June 4. All posters and other project orders will need to be picked up at the following address:

    IU School of Medicine
    Office of Visual Media
    410 W. 10th Street, Suite 0030 (Lower Level)
    Indianapolis, IN 46202

    With questions or for additional information, email vismedia@iupui.edu.

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  • Road closures to impact downtown Indianapolis travel

    The Indiana Department of Transportation will close portions of I-65 in downtown Indianapolis to repair seven bridges. Construction may impact travel to IUPUI, IU School of Medicine offices and Indiana University Health facilities. Road closures will begin on or after Friday, June 1, and should end by Saturday, Aug. 4.

    Summary of road closures:

     I-65 Northbound (NB)

    • All traffic exits at Pennsylvania/Meridian St. (exit 113)
    • Exits CLOSED include West St. and 21st/Senate Ave.
    • All on-ramps CLOSED between Meridian St. and 21st
    • I-65 NB reopens at the 21st on-ramp

     I-65 Southbound (SB)

    • All traffic exits at 21st (exit 115)
    • Exits CLOSED include 21st, West St. and Meridian St.
    • All on-ramps CLOSED between 21st and West St.
    • I-65 SB reopens at the Delaware St. on-ramp (just west of I-65/I-70 split)

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  • Next INScope issue is June 14

    Summer is here, and so is INScope’s abbreviated summer schedule. Today’s issue is the last weekly publication until Thursday, Aug. 9. During June and July, INScope will be published on the following Thursdays:

    June 14
    June 28
    July 12
    July 26

    The deadline for news item submissions is Wednesday at noon for each Thursday’s issue. For more information, visit the INScope page on MedNet. News submissions should be emailed to scopemed@iu.edu.

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  • Don’t forget to get your CrimsonCard before June 30

    If you’ve not yet replaced your IU School of Medicine identification card with a CrimsonCard, time is running out. In less than 40 days, all current school IDs will be deactivated, denying access to IU buildings. CrimsonCards are required for all IU School of Medicine students, faculty and staff (part time and full time), and affiliates, including residents and fellows, by June 30. If applicable in Indianapolis, your access to IU Health buildings will need to be transferred to your new CrimsonCard (see information below).

    How to obtain your CrimsonCard

    Indianapolis: Review Don’t Get Locked Out—Switch to CrimsonCard Today for instructions on replacing your current ID and transferring IU Health access to your new CrimsonCard. This is a multi-step process and may take several days to complete. (Important note: Be sure to hold on to your JagTag or current IU ID until you’ve confirmed that IU Health access has been transferred to your CrimsonCard.)

    Bloomington: Bring your current IU ID (or a government-issued ID) to a CrimsonCard office, Indiana Memorial Union M090 (main level) or Learning Commons 106. When obtaining your CrimsonCard, be sure to tell the card representative you need the IU School of Medicine multi-function card (also called the triple-technology card). Walk-in hours for Bloomington card offices are available.

    Northwest-Gary: Bring your current IU ID (or a government-issued ID) to the CrimsonCard office, Hawthorn 108. When obtaining your CrimsonCard, be sure to tell the card representative you need the IU School of Medicine multi-function card (also called the triple-technology card). Walk-in hours for the Hawthorn card office are available.

    All other IU School of Medicine campuses: Multi-function CrimsonCards for students, faculty and staff will be delivered to your campuses before the June 30 deadline. Watch your email for information about pick-up date and location for your campus. 

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Research News

  • Research leads to new drug for rare bone disease in children

    Research led by two IU School of Medicine faculty members has culminated in U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval of a new drug for patients with an uncommon, painful and deforming bone disease.

    The drug, burosumab, treats X-linked hypophosphatemia, or XLH. It is being brought to market by Ultragenyx Pharmaceutical Inc. in collaboration with Kyowa Hakko Kirin Co., Ltd. and its European subsidiary, Kyowa Kirin International PLC, under the brand name Crysvita.

    XLH is a phosphate-wasting disease that causes rickets and osteomalacia, or softening of the bones. It is typically inherited and affects more than 12,000 patients in the United States and one out of every 20,000 people worldwide. Patients are typically diagnosed as children and have bowed legs, short stature, and experience bone pain and dental abscesses.

    The new treatment is based on patented discoveries made by Michael Econs, MD, chief of the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism at IU School of Medicine, and Kenneth E. White, PhD, the school’s David D. Weaver Professor of Genetics. Drs. Econs and White were the first to publish work in the journal Nature Genetics that mutations in the hormone Fibroblast growth factor-23 (FGF23) could lead to certain genetic forms of hypophosphatemic rickets.

    “I am delighted to have a new therapy for this disease,” said Dr. Econs, the Glenn W. Irwin, Jr. Professor of Endocrinology and Metabolism. “I have been caring for individuals with XLH for my entire career, and I have seen how painful and debilitating it can be. To see our research lead to a new drug for XLH is a dream come true. This therapy will help alleviate suffering and enable patients to live fuller, more active lives.”

    “The most important thing to us as parents is the welfare of our children, and having a discovery that lays the foundation for an effective treatment of an often severe and difficult-to-treat childhood disease is incredibly fulfilling,” added Dr. White, a Chancellor’s Professor.

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Faculty and Staff News

  • Federal funding opportunities available for opioid-related research

    The U.S. government has increased federal funding to address the opioid epidemic through the Fiscal Year 2018 Omnibus Appropriations bill. The first round of National Institutes of Health funding has been announced with individual application deadlines in June, July, October and November of this year. Indiana University researchers are encouraged to pursue relevant opportunities. 

    June 5 and Oct. 5, 2018, deadlines

    Accelerating the Pace of Drug Abuse Research Using Existing Data
    Funding opportunity description: Innovative analysis of existing social science, behavioral, administrative and neuroimaging data to study the etiology and epidemiology of drug using behaviors and related disorders, prevention of drug use and HIV, and health service utilization. 

    Prescription Drug Abuse
    Funding opportunity description: Encourages innovative research applications on prescription drug abuse, including research to examine the factors contributing to prescription drug abuse; to characterize the adverse medical, mental health and social consequences associated with prescription drug abuse; and to develop effective prevention and service delivery approaches and behavioral and pharmacological treatments. Companion funding opportunity is available.

    Neuroscience Research on Drug Abuse, National Institute of Drug Abuse
    Funding opportunity description: Research to identify neurobiological changes from substance use and how these contribute to substance use disorders, including identifying neuro-adaptations that occur during dependence, withdrawal and relapse, in order to identify targets for prevention and treatment interventions. Companion funding opportunity is available.

    Marijuana, Prescription Opioid, or Prescription Benzodiazepine Drug Use Among Older Adults
    Funding opportunity description: Applicants are encouraged to focus on exploring predictors and/or outcomes related to prescription drugs (opioids and benzodiazepines) or marijuana use in older adults. This initiative will support epidemiological investigations, clinical studies in humans, and basic science research in animal models of substance use disorder. Two companion funding opportunities are available: R21 Clinical Trial Optional and R-03 Clinical Trial Optional.

    July 17 and Nov. 13, 2018, deadlines

    Studies for Implementation of Prevention and Treatment Services
    The purpose of this grant is to identify efficacious and effective strategies or techniques for facilitating systems-level change within or across networks of organizations to promote broad use of evidence-based practices for the prevention and/or treatment of substance use disorders or HIV. Companion funding opportunity is available.

    Additional grants for opioid-related research are expected to be announced this summer. With questions or for more information, contact Laura Kolton, director, federal research relations, at LKolton@iu.edu.

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  • Herzog to lead Herman B Wells Center Gene and Cell Therapy Program

    Roland Herzog, PhD, is the new leader of the Gene and Cell Therapy Program in the Herman B Wells Center for Pediatric Research at IU School of Medicine. 

    Dr. Herzog has been developing and refining gene therapy for X-linked hemophilia using adeno-associated viral vectors. A goal of his laboratory is to induce immune tolerance using gene therapy, thereby suppressing the immune reaction to factors in the blood that promote coagulation. Other approaches include oral tolerance therapies, immune modulatory drugs and lymphocyte-based therapies.  

    Following postdoctoral training at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Dr. Herzog received tenure and rose to the rank of professor of pediatrics at the University of Florida. He is the recipient of the Outstanding New Investigator Award from the American Society of Gene and Cell Therapy, a Bayer Hemophilia Award, a National Institutes of Health (NIH) study section membership (Hemostasis and Thrombosis), a Faculty Research Award from the University of Florida College of Medicine, and the appointments as University of Florida Research Foundation Professor and College of Medicine Term Professor. He also was recognized by the National Hemophilia Foundation as Researcher of the Year in 2017. Dr. Herzog currently serves as editor-in-chief of Molecular Therapy Methods & Clinical Development and as principal investigator of four NIH grants.

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  • Services available to optimize your research

    Time is one of the most precious resources an IU School of Medicine researcher has. That’s why school leadership wants to make faculty aware of resources available to help them optimize their research processes and overall laboratory environments, so they can get the most out of their research projects.

    “From grant writing to teaching to service commitments and more, we know our researchers have a lot on their plates in addition to their research,” said Anantha Shekhar, MD, PhD, executive associate dean for research affairs at IU School of Medicine. “We want to help faculty maximize their time and energy--in this case, when it comes to their research labs--so they can complete more experiments, publish more papers and achieve their research goals sooner.”

    For a limited time, faculty researchers and their labs can--at no cost to them--work with an expert team of consultants to customize a strategy for increased effectiveness and productivity based on the faculty member’s and/or lab’s needs and goals.

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  • Faculty award nominations due June 1

    Honoring outstanding teaching, research and service is an important part of IU School of Medicine’s culture. The school is accepting nominations until Friday, June 1, for the following: Scholar-Educator Award, Exemplar of Professionalism, Excellence in Faculty Mentoring Award, Outstanding Community Engagement Award and Inspirational Educator Award. Award descriptions and submission details are available.

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  • Becker honored by Evansville Rotary Club

    Steven Becker, MD, associate dean and director, IU School of Medicine-Evansville, is the Evansville Rotary Club’s Civic Award winner for 2018. Dr. Becker was recognized for his significant involvement in the Stone Family Center for Health Sciences, a collaboration of the University of Evansville, the University of Southern Indiana and Indiana University, which will open in August.

    “Steve is a risk taker that has blazed the trail for others,” said Indiana Lieutenant Governor Suzanne Crouch, in a video message when the award was announced. “His dream became a vision, and his vision became reality through hard work.”

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  • Remembering Stephen Leapman, MD

    Stephen B. Leapman, MD, Professor Emeritus of Surgery and former IU School of Medicine executive associate dean, passed away on May 13. Dr. Leapman, a transplant surgeon, joined the school in 1977 and was named the Frank C. and Ruby L. Moore and George T. Lukemeyer Professor in 2004. He was the school’s first executive associate dean for educational affairs, serving from 2001 until his retirement in 2009. 

    “During his years as executive associate dean, Dr. Leapman led several transformations in medical education, including the design and implementation of a competency-based curriculum and the establishment of the Teacher-Learner Advocacy Committee,” said Stephen Bogdewic, PhD, executive vice dean, IU School of Medicine. “However, his most remarkable accomplishment was perhaps his successful effort to increase the size of the medical school class to ensure Indiana would have enough doctors in the coming two decades. Through his efforts, Dr. Leapman helped take statewide medical education to new and exciting heights.”

    Services were held for Dr. Leapman earlier this month in Skokie, Illinois.

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Student News

  • Student reconnects with life-saving physician

    Nearly 30 years ago, John Brown, MD, saved David Maurer’s life. On May 12, Dr. Brown guided Maurer through another life-changing event--graduation from medical school. During the ceremony, Dr. Brown hooded Maurer. The act is a rite of passage, signaling Maurer’s transition to becoming a physician.

    Maurer’s life got off to a rough start. At 3-months-old, he struggled to breathe because of a blood vessel wrapped around his trachea. This congenital heart defect led him to Riley Hospital for Children, where Dr. Brown performed the surgery that saved Maurer. Now an active triathlon competitor, Maurer only bears a small scar on his chest as a reminder of what could have been.

    “I’d never formally met Dr. Brown before medical school,” Maurer said. “I just knew his name. During my third-year surgery rotation, I walked into the operating room and there he was. He didn’t remember me so I told him, ‘We met 29 years ago and I don’t blame you for not remembering, but you gave me this scar!’”

    Reconnecting with Dr. Brown led to Maurer’s most memorable medical school experience, highlighted in this MD Student News blog post.

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Opportunities

  • Hester cancer research scholarship applications due June 1

    The IU Simon Cancer Center Merilyn Hester Scholarship fund was created to assist medical and/or PhD students pursuing degrees in biomedical sciences who have demonstrated an interest and potential for conducting pediatric hematology or pediatric oncology research and who have not received any other type of scholarship or grant for the upcoming academic year. Successful applicants are students who have a strong academic record, have outstanding character and well-defined professional goals. One recipient will be selected this year to receive $8,000 in scholarship funding. The application includes complete guidelines and requirements. Application deadline is Friday, June 1.

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  • Register for upcoming Disease Diagnostics INventors Challenge

    The Purdue Institute of Inflammation, Immunology and Infectious Disease is sponsoring a team competition event, Disease Diagnostics INventors Challenge, on Thursday and Friday, June 28 and 29, at the Purdue Memorial Union in West Lafayette. The two-day event seeks to catalyze the development of novel disease detection technologies through a competitive application process that incentivizes the formation of multidisciplinary teams of clinicians, life scientists, engineers and analytical chemists. Only team applications will be accepted and all team members are considered co-PIs. Teams must be composed of, but not limited to, one clinician (in human or veterinary practice) or biologist, one engineer, and one analytical chemist. In addition, this competition requires collaboration with clinicians at IU School of Medicine who have relevant disease diagnostics needs.

    Event itinerary:
    June 28: Team Building Day will highlight investigators’ expertise and the laboratory capabilities that are available to address clinical needs presented by medical and veterinarian experts.
    June 29: Proposers Competition Day will involve teams making presentations of their technology idea to a panel of judges. Team presentations will be ranked and winners will be selected on the same day.

    Team proposals are limited to $30,000 per team for a one-year project period. It is anticipated that three teams will be funded for the 2018-2019 period. Registration for the June 28-29 event is available.

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Partner News

  • Eskenazi Health recognized by Brown University policy experts

    Eskenazi Health recently participated in a site visit conducted by health care policy experts from Brown University’s School of Public Health. The Brown team has access to national data on Medicare claims and works to identify effective strategies to improve care for high-need Medicare beneficiaries. Eskenazi Health was identified by Brown as an exemplary health care system, placing the hospital among the top 5 percent of health systems nationwide and the only safety net health system in this top 5 percent.

    To rank among the best, the health system had to be in the top 20 percent in three indicators, which included 90-day hospital readmission, 90-day hospital mortality and percentage of days alive spent in the community. Out of 3,000 health systems in the country, only 127 hospitals ranked in the top 20 percent across all three outcomes.

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