Faculty and Staff News
Kaplan named chair of Department of Microbiology and Immunology, director of basic science in Brown Center
Mark Kaplan, PhD, Billie Lou Wood Professor of Pediatrics, has been selected to chair the IU School of Medicine Department of Microbiology and Immunology and serve as director of basic science in the Brown Center for Immunotherapy. His new appointment begins January 1, 2020.
“Dr. Kaplan’s strong leadership and his approach to collaboration make him uniquely qualified for his roles with the department and the Brown Center,” said Jay L. Hess, MD, PhD, MHSA, dean, IU School of Medicine, and executive vice president for university clinical affairs. “His leadership will be critical to our success in discovering how we can apply emerging immunotherapies to more patients.”
Kaplan joined the IU School of Medicine faculty in 1998 as an assistant professor of microbiology and immunology. In 2005, he was named the director of pediatric pulmonary basic research in the Department of Pediatrics and was promoted to professor in 2008. In 2014, Kaplan was honored with the Billie Lou Wood Professorship, and became associate director of the Wells Center for Pediatric Research in 2017.
His research examines transcription factors that are involved in the development of T helper cell subsets and how those cells contribute to inflammation in allergic and autoimmune diseases.
“The Department of Microbiology and Immunology was my first home at Indiana University and its faculty have been colleagues, collaborators and friends. I am honored to lead the next phase of growth and development that will build on an already outstanding department,” Kaplan said. “I am excited to use my experience to guide this expansion of the basic and translational immunology program.”
Kaplan will hold the Nicole Brown Chair, have a primary appointment as professor of microbiology and immunology and a secondary appointment, with tenure, as professor of pediatrics.
He succeeds Stanley Spinola, MD, as chair of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology. Spinola has led the department since 2010 and announced that he intended to step back from his administrative responsibilities once the next chair was in place. In a message emailed this week announcing Kaplan’s appointment, Hess recognized Spinola for his exceptional leadership of the department and his many contributions to the school. Spinola will continue to serve as chair until Kaplan assumes the role in January. Afterward, he will remain on the faculty and continue his research and teaching.
Broxmeyer awarded IU President’s Medal
More than 36 years after arriving at IU School of Medicine and a decade after earning the title of emeritus, Hal Broxmeyer, PhD, one of the school’s legendary researchers, still operates at breakneck speed. Internationally celebrated as the father of umbilical cord transplants, Broxmeyer and his team have received more than $92 million in research grants and published more than 795 papers that have been cited more than 63,000 times.
In recognition of his impact and influence, IU President Michael A. McRobbie presented Broxmeyer with the President’s Medal for Excellence, a rare honor which is awarded to individuals at Indiana University for “outstanding academic, artistic or professional accomplishments or to individuals for exceptional service to the university.”
“Dr. Broxmeyer’s work in the area of human umbilical cord blood as a source of transplantable hematopoietic stem cells truly has been pioneering,” McRobbie said during the medal presentation on Friday, August 23. “His research has brought much closer the possibilities of a cure in some forms of cancer and blood diseases in children and adults.”
For more on Broxmeyer’s career and pioneering research, visit the Newsroom.
CureWorks will be a “game changer” for Riley kids with cancer
Kids with aggressive, life-threatening cancers and their families in the Midwest have a new reason to feel hopeful, thanks to a collaboration among elite children’s hospitals that includes Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health.
“Game changer” is how Jamie Renbarger, MD, IU School of Medicine professor of pediatrics, and division chief of Riley’s hematology/oncology program, describes the news that Riley has been selected as the only CureWorks member hospital in the Midwest. The unique collaboration among five academic children’s hospitals from Seattle to Washington, D.C., means Riley oncologists and IU School of Medicine researchers will have greater access to cutting-edge immunotherapy trials for pediatric oncology patients.
“Being part of this collaborative group from a T-cell therapy and a cellular therapy perspective really puts us in a different ballgame,” said Renbarger. “It feels like a game changer in terms of where we are in the field. But beyond that, for Riley patients and families, it will mean bringing clinical trial options for patients who have no good options left.”
Instead of being forced to travel long distances for clinical trials, as is the case for a few Riley patients who are enrolled in trials at Seattle Children’s, patients will soon be able to get more advanced care closer to home.
Member hospitals are supported in launching and participating in exclusive clinical trials. CureWorks streamlines immunotherapy production, clinical trial enrollment and the trial coordination process.
“This opportunity to work with esteemed partners will allow more rapid development of the new frontier of care to help children fight cancer,” said Elaine Cox, MD, Riley chief medical officer, and professor of clinical pediatrics, IU School of Medicine.
Read this news announcement for more on Riley’s membership and what CureWorks means for patients.
All-School Meeting is next Thursday
Don’t miss your opportunity to hear firsthand about what’s going on at IU School of Medicine at the All-School Meeting on Thursday, September 5. All faculty, staff and learners are invited to attend the meeting, which will be held from 4:30-6 pm in Walther Hall (R3), C203. IU School of Medicine Dean Jay Hess, MD, PhD, MHSA, and the executive associate deans will share updates, and there will be opportunities to ask questions. Award recipients also will be announced. A reception will follow from 6-7 pm.
Those unable to attend may participate via a live web stream. Instructions to access the live stream are available on the Faculty Steering Committee page.
High-intensity step training boosts stroke survivors’ walking skills
High-intensity step training that mimics real-world conditions may better improve walking ability in stroke survivors compared to traditional low-impact training, according to new research in the American Heart Association’s journal “Stroke.”
“People who suffer strokes often have difficulty walking and impaired balance. Rehabilitation traditionally focuses on patients practicing low-intensity walking, usually only in a straight line in the forward direction, which does not provide enough of a challenge to the nervous system to enable patients to negotiate real-world situations, such as uneven surfaces, stairs or changing direction,” said study author T. George Hornby, PhD, professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation.
“Our study suggests that stroke patients can handle higher intensity and more difficult tasks than previously thought possible. We need to move beyond traditional, low-intensity rehabilitation to challenge the nervous and cardiovascular system so patients can function and perform better in the real world.”
Read the Newsroom post for more details on the study.
Faculty and Staff News
Background checks required for programs involving young children
The Indiana University Programs Involving Children (PIC) policy requires that background checks be conducted every five years for all paid faculty, staff, students and volunteers in IU School of Medicine clinical departments and select other areas of the school. This week, IU School of Medicine constituents affected by this policy received an email with specific details.
The PIC policy was created to ensure the overall protection and safety of children involved in IU programs through the use of background checks, program registration, a mandate for program-specific guidelines and an emphasis on the legal duty to report suspected child abuse and neglect.
IU has partnered with a third-party vendor to manage and conduct the background checks. Emails sent this week include next steps and initial instructions for completing the background checks. Deadline for submitting the background check application is Friday, September 27. For more information, view these Frequently Asked Questions. With additional questions, contact Claire McRoberts, JD, IU School of Medicine Faculty Affairs Counsel, at firstname.lastname@example.org or Joseph Scodro, JD, deputy general counsel, at email@example.com.
Work at HITS and park at Fairbanks? October 1 is deadline to find a new spot.
IU School of Medicine employees who work in the HITS building and park in the Fairbanks Hall parking lot will need to begin parking in an IUPUI-designated parking lot on Tuesday, October 1.
To address overcrowding issues in the Fairbanks Hall parking lot, after October 1, the Fairbanks lot will only be available to IU School of Medicine employees whose workspaces are located in Fairbanks.
Employees affected by the change should have received an email about the shift. After October 1, only employees located at Fairbanks Hall will be able to operate the gates and park in the Fairbanks lot.
Learn more about IUPUI parking permits and lot locations by visiting the parking services website. Questions? Contact your supervisor.
Student Affairs offices temporarily relocating to Gatch Hall
Beginning Monday, September 9, the IU School of Medicine Student Affairs offices will be temporarily relocated due to construction in the Medical Science building. You will find all of the Student Affairs deans, the Records office, the Office of Career Development, the Registrar and Service Learning on the fifth floor of Gatch Hall.
Research Rally is September 13
The IU School of Medicine Research Rally will be held from 8:30 am-3:30 pm, Friday, September 13, in IUPUI’s Hine Hall Auditorium. A showcase of core services available on campus to assist investigators, the Research Rally provides an overview of 17 support cores prepared to speed the course of your research projects. Attendees who have their rally logbook stamped from at least 12 of the 18 checkpoints will be eligible for a chance to win a set of Apple AirPods with charging case.
Don’t pass up this opportunity to interact with scientific service cores ready to drive your research forward. The rally is being held in conjunction with the Indiana CTSI Annual Meeting, “Piecing Together the Alzheimer’s Disease Puzzle.”
September 11 women’s health lectureship to focus on obesity
Obesity has become one of society’s most significant public health challenges. Plan to attend the Merritt Lectureship in Women's Health at 8:15 am, Wednesday, September 11, to learn the latest in obesity medicine and nutrition, and clinical interventions for the treatment of obesity. Featured speaker is Fatima Cody Stanford, MD, MPH, MPA, FAAP, FACP, FTOS, an obesity medicine physician-scientist, who also will discuss the physiology of weight loss and the pathophysiology of obesity. Registration is available. The lectureship is sponsored by the National Center of Excellence in Women’s Health at IU School of Medicine.
Plan to attend Mark Brothers Award lecture on September 10
Amy Shiu Lee, PhD, recipient of the Mark Brothers Award, will present "Critical role of the unfolded protein response regulator GRP78/BiP in cancer” at 3 pm, Tuesday, September 10, in Walther Hall (R3), Room 203.
Lee is the associate director for basic research and professor of biochemistry and molecular medicine at the University of Southern California (USC) Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center. Her research focuses on the mammalian stress response and molecular chaperones. Lee’s lab has made numerous discoveries in understanding how these genes are regulated and their role in the development of human diseases.
The Mark Brothers Award was established in 1997 in honor of Dr. Guey C. Mark's older brothers who emigrated from Canton, China. They settled in South Bend, Indiana, where they built a successful restaurant business. Due to their reverence and respect for higher education, Mark’s brothers supported his pursuit of a career in medicine.
Registration is available for the lecture and a reception immediately following.
FrameWorx event to address how Indiana is raising the bar for public health
When it comes to public health, it’s no longer a secret that Indiana ranks near the bottom of nearly every statistic with tobacco use, opioid use and obesity among the biggest culprits. Plan to attend the next FrameWorx event on Tuesday, September 10, to learn how the state is raising the bar to improve Hoosier health. Speakers include Indiana State Health Commissioner and IU School of Medicine alumna Kristina Box, MD; Joseph Vest, PhD, MPH, Regenstrief Institute; and Sarah Wiehe, MD, MPH, Indiana CTSI. Registration is available. FrameWorx is sponsored by BioCrossroads.
Governance and advocacy are topics of next Culture and Conversation event
Learn how to participate in advocacy at the local, state and national level, while also complying with the governance components of IU School of Medicine at the next Culture and Conversation event. The session will be held from noon-1 pm, Wednesday, September 11, in Fesler Hall, Room 319. Faculty, staff and learners are invited to attend. Register and learn more.
Grab lunch and watch the canoe races at IU School of Medicine’s Regatta BBQ
Need a way to celebrate the IUPUI Regatta? Faculty, staff and learners are invited to the IU School of Medicine barbeque from 11 am-1 pm, Saturday, September 21, at Military Park. Sponsored by Faculty Affairs, Professional Development and Diversity and Medical Student Education, this year’s family-friendly regatta event promises food, games and friendly competition, along with an opportunity to meet IU School of Medicine Dean Jay Hess, MD, PhD, MHSA, and other school leaders. Register for the event.
Save the date: Steven C. Beering Award Lecture is November 6
The 2019 Steven C. Beering Award will be presented to George R. Stark, PhD, a cancer biology researcher from the Cleveland Clinic. Stark will present his lecture, "The two faces of interferon: Is our major antiviral defense mechanism a friend or a foe in cancer?," at 9 am, Wednesday, November 6, in Walther Hall (R3), Room 203. Registration is available.
The IU School of Medicine Steven C. Beering Award honors an internationally recognized individual for outstanding research contributions to the advancement of biomedical and clinical science. Established in 1983, the award honors the important contributions Beering made to the school as its dean from 1974 to 1983.
IU Health Physicians Social is October 2
The IU Health Physicians Social will be held from 5:30-7:30 pm, Wednesday, October 2, at the Ritz Charles in Carmel. The event provides an opportunity for physicians, advanced practice providers and system executives to make connections and build relationships. Register by emailing Khristi Autajay at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 317.944.5713.