News

IT'S A BOY!!!

Congratulations to Dr. Arthi Kaundar on her baby boy! Born on Wednesday, May 22nd, baby Ganesh weighed in at 7lbs. 4oz.

Mom and baby are doing well.

Representation at AAFP National Conference

The AAFP National Conference is a three-day event designed for family medicine residents and medical students. Family medicine leaders and educators conduct special lectures, workshops, procedures courses, and clinics. More than 300 family medicine residency programs are represented in the Exposition Hall. The National Congress of Family Medicine Residents and the National Congress of Student Members hold their annual meetings during the conference. This year, the conference will be held August 1st - August 3rd at Kansas City, MO's, Kansas City Convention Center. More information

UofL Family Medicine Residency Program will send the following representatives:

Dr. Rimy Brar, PGY-2

Dr. Cristina Fernandez, PGY-2

Dr. David Gilbert, PGY-2

Dr. Amy Kim, PGY-2

Dr. Shalonda Newcomb, PGY-1

Dr. Eli Pendleton, Family Medicine

Residency Asst. Program Director

U of L group named as 'Best Doctors in America' for 2014

Doctors picked by consensus peer review.
U of L group named as 'Best Doctors in America' for 2014

A group of doctors from the University of Louisville Department of Medicine were named to the 'Best Doctors in America' list for 2014.


It is no secret in the community that doctors from the University of Louisville Department of Medicine are among the nation's best.

Now, a group of of them are earning well-deserved national recognition as they were selected to the list of Best Doctors in America 2014 by BestDoctors.com.

The Best Doctors in America database is a valued resource that contains the names and professional profiles of approximately 47,000 of the best doctors in the United States.

Only those who earn the consensus support of their peers are included. Doctors cannot buy listings, so, for this reason, inclusion in the Best Doctors in America database is a remarkable honor.

Among those University of Louisville doctors who earned the distinction are:

Based in Boston, Massachusetts, Best Doctors was founded in 1989 by physicians affiliated with the Harvard Medical School to provide expert medical consultation services.

Today, Best Doctors provides its services globally to more than 20 million people, serving large employers, insurance plans, government, and other groups in more than 30 countries.

The organization is privately held with employees and offices in the United States, Canada, UK, Ireland, Spain, Japan, Portugal, and Ecuador, and helps individuals and their treating physicians be absolutely sure they have the right diagnosis and the right treatment.

Best Doctors delivers a comprehensive evaluation of a member's medical condition -- providing value to both patients and treating physicians.

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U of L group named as 'Best Doctors in America' for 2014

Doctors picked by consensus peer review.
U of L group named as 'Best Doctors in America' for 2014

A group of doctors from the University of Louisville Department of Medicine were named to the 'Best Doctors in America' list for 2014.


It is no secret in the community that doctors from the University of Louisville Department of Medicine are among the nation's best.

Now, a group of of them are earning well-deserved national recognition as they were selected to the list of Best Doctors in America 2014 by BestDoctors.com.

The Best Doctors in America database is a valued resource that contains the names and professional profiles of approximately 47,000 of the best doctors in the United States.

Only those who earn the consensus support of their peers are included. Doctors cannot buy listings, so, for this reason, inclusion in the Best Doctors in America database is a remarkable honor.

Among those University of Louisville doctors who earned the distinction are:

Based in Boston, Massachusetts, Best Doctors was founded in 1989 by physicians affiliated with the Harvard Medical School to provide expert medical consultation services.

Today, Best Doctors provides its services globally to more than 20 million people, serving large employers, insurance plans, government, and other groups in more than 30 countries.

The organization is privately held with employees and offices in the United States, Canada, UK, Ireland, Spain, Japan, Portugal, and Ecuador, and helps individuals and their treating physicians be absolutely sure they have the right diagnosis and the right treatment.

Best Doctors delivers a comprehensive evaluation of a member's medical condition -- providing value to both patients and treating physicians.

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U of L scientists find simple indicator for cervical cancer

Further clinical study could result in the plasma thermogram as a compliment test to the traditional screening method for cervical cancer.
U of L scientists find simple indicator for cervical cancer

University of Louisville investigators noted that plasma thermograms have different patterns associated with different demographics, as well as for different diseases.


Researchers at the University of Louisville have confirmed that using the heat profile from a person's blood, called a plasma thermogram, can serve as an indicator for the presence or absence of cervical cancer, including the stage of cancer.

The team, led by Nichola Garbett, Ph.D., of the University of Louisville Division of Medical Oncology and Hematology, published its findings online Jan. 8 in PLOS ONE ("Detection of Cervical Cancer Biomarker Patterns in Blood Plasma and Urine by Differential Scanning Calorimetry and Mass Spectrometry").

"We have been able to demonstrate a more convenient, less intrusive test for detecting and staging cervical cancer," Garbett said. "Additionally, other research has shown that we are able to demonstrate if the current treatment is effective so that clinicians will be able to better tailor care for each patient."

Other team members from the U of L Department of Medicine include Brad Chaires, Ph.D., also of the oncology division, and Michael Merchant, Ph.D., and Jon Klein, M.D., Ph.D., of the Division of Nephrology and Hypertenstion.

To generate a plasma thermogram, a blood plasma sample is “melted” producing a unique signature indicating a person’s health status. This signature represents the major proteins in blood plasma, measured by Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC).

The team demonstrated that the plasma thermogram profile varies when a person has or does not have the disease, and they believe that molecules associated with the presence of disease, called biomarkers, can affect the thermogram of someone with cervical disease. They used mass spectrometry to show that biomarkers associated with cervical cancer existed in the plasma.

READ THE FULL ARTICLE

READ THE STUDY

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PFF tabs U of L for new patient registry

Louisville named as one of nine centers for new initiative aimed at aiding pulmonary fibrosis research and treatment.
PFF tabs U of L for new patient registry

The Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation selected the University of Louisville as one of nine pilot centers for its new PFF Patient Registry.


The Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation (PFF) in late December announced its plans to establish the PFF Care Center Network (CCN) and the PFF Patient Registry at nine pilot sites, including at the University of Louisville.

Aimed at improving the health and quality of life of patients suffering from pulmonary fibrosis (PF), these initiatives will help provide critical insights enabling the medical research community to develop more effective therapies.

Sites were selected because of their demonstrated commitment to pulmonary fibrosis patient care and research, and their willingness to collaborate in the creation of the PFF Care Center Network.

Besides U of L, those sites include the University of California, San Francisco, University of Chicago, University of Michigan, National Jewish Health, University of Pittsburgh, Vanderbilt University, University of Washington and Yale University.

Dr. Rafael Perez, director of the U of L Interstitial Lung Disease (ILD) program in the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep Disorders Medicine will lead the University of Louisville site.

The ILD program will bring its multidisciplinary core of experts in lung pathology and radiology, pulmonary hypertension, rheumatology, lung transplantation, and research coordinators into the PFF Care Center Network.

Additionally to furthering the mission of outstanding care to individuals with interstitial lung disease, the U of L site will contribute detailed information about interstitial lung diseases through an anonymous patient registry.

"The creation of the registry is a great step forward by the PFF," Dr. Jesse Roman, Chairman of the University of Louisville Department of Medicine said. "The benefits to my patients are that they can contribute to the endeavor and partner with us in identifying new areas for intervention. In short, they become an integral part of their care—they truly are the essence of the network."

Affecting 132,000 to 200,000 individuals in the United States, pulmonary fibrosis is a condition in which the lung tissue becomes thickened, stiff, and scarred. In most cases, there is no known cause and the disease is called idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). There is no cure for IPF, and there is no FDA-approved treatment for IPF in the U.S.

"To make progress with this disease, we need a multidisciplinary approach by teams of expert medical professionals, we need more data, and we need to track the natural history of the disease," Daniel M. Rose, M.D., CEO and Chairman of the Board at the PFF said. "The PFF Care Center Network and Patient Registry will provide these critical cornerstones for improved patient care and progress towards a cure."

The PFF Care Center Network will provide a standardized, multidisciplinary approach to patient care. This model of comprehensive patient care will help identify and establish best practices, determine the impact of specific interventions, and improve the quality of life of patients. The Care Center Network will incrementally expand to eventually include 40 medical centers by 2015.

Meanwhile, the PFF Patient Registry will eventually be the largest database of PF patient records with the furthest demographic reach in the country. It will provide data essential for improving the understanding of the epidemiology, incidence, prevalence, natural history, and other clinical characteristics of PF. The Registry will use consistent data gathering methodology so that the information obtained will be useful to all clinicians and researchers seeking to better understand the disease and develop new therapies for PF.

All the pilot sites of the Care Center Network will participate in the Patient Registry. A principal investigator at each Network site will work with a team of allied health professionals to enroll PF patients into the Registry. The Duke Clinical Research Institute will host and maintain the PFF Patient Registry, and they will oversee the implementation of the Registry.

For more information, please visit www.pulmonaryfibrosis.org or call 888-733-6741.

PFF tabs U of L for new patient registry

Louisville named as one of nine centers for new initiative aimed at aiding pulmonary fibrosis research and treatment.
PFF tabs U of L for new patient registry

The Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation selected the University of Louisville as one of nine pilot centers for its new PFF Patient Registry.

The Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation (PFF) in late December announced its plans to establish the PFF Care Center Network (CCN) and the PFF Patient Registry at nine pilot sites, including at the University of Louisville.

Aimed at improving the health and quality of life of patients suffering from pulmonary fibrosis (PF), these initiatives will help provide critical insights enabling the medical research community to develop more effective therapies.

Sites were selected because of their demonstrated commitment to pulmonary fibrosis patient care and research, and their willingness to collaborate in the creation of the PFF Care Center Network.

Besides U of L, those sites include the University of California, San Francisco, University of Chicago, University of Michigan, National Jewish Health, University of Pittsburgh, Vanderbilt University, University of Washington and Yale University.

Dr. Rafael Perez, director of the U of L Interstitial Lung Disease (ILD) program in the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep Disorders Medicine will lead the University of Louisville site.

The ILD program will bring its multidisciplinary core of experts in lung pathology and radiology, pulmonary hypertension, rheumatology, lung transplantation, and research coordinators into the PFF Care Center Network.

Additionally to furthering the mission of outstanding care to individuals with interstitial lung disease, the U of L site will contribute detailed information about interstitial lung diseases through an anonymous patient registry.

"The creation of the registry is a great step forward by the PFF," Dr. Jesse Roman, Chairman of the University of Louisville Department of Medicine said. "The benefits to my patients are that they can contribute to the endeavor and partner with us in identifying new areas for intervention. In short, they become an integral part of their care—they truly are the essence of the network."

Affecting 132,000 to 200,000 individuals in the United States, pulmonary fibrosis is a condition in which the lung tissue becomes thickened, stiff, and scarred. In most cases, there is no known cause and the disease is called idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). There is no cure for IPF, and there is no FDA-approved treatment for IPF in the U.S.

"To make progress with this disease, we need a multidisciplinary approach by teams of expert medical professionals, we need more data, and we need to track the natural history of the disease," Daniel M. Rose, M.D., CEO and Chairman of the Board at the PFF said. "The PFF Care Center Network and Patient Registry will provide these critical cornerstones for improved patient care and progress towards a cure."

The PFF Care Center Network will provide a standardized, multidisciplinary approach to patient care. This model of comprehensive patient care will help identify and establish best practices, determine the impact of specific interventions, and improve the quality of life of patients. The Care Center Network will incrementally expand to eventually include 40 medical centers by 2015.

Meanwhile, the PFF Patient Registry will eventually be the largest database of PF patient records with the furthest demographic reach in the country. It will provide data essential for improving the understanding of the epidemiology, incidence, prevalence, natural history, and other clinical characteristics of PF. The Registry will use consistent data gathering methodology so that the information obtained will be useful to all clinicians and researchers seeking to better understand the disease and develop new therapies for PF.

All the pilot sites of the Care Center Network will participate in the Patient Registry. A principal investigator at each Network site will work with a team of allied health professionals to enroll PF patients into the Registry. The Duke Clinical Research Institute will host and maintain the PFF Patient Registry, and they will oversee the implementation of the Registry.

For more information, please visit www.pulmonaryfibrosis.org or call 888-733-6741.

U of L residents complete another successful match

Continues trend of near perfection in fellowship matches.
U of L residents complete another successful match

Several members of the of the U of L Internal Medicine Residency Program seeking fellowship appointments were matched successfully.


Many members of the University of Louisville Internal Medicine Residency Program seeking fellowship appointments following their graduation in 2014 were recently matched successfully, including four at U of L.

Over the past four years, 97% of the program's internal medicine residents have successfully matched into their choice of fellowship.

"Our residency training program is second to none," Dr. Jesse Roman, Chairman of the University of Louisville Department of Medicine said. "Our faculty and staff work daily to ensure that our residents receive outstanding training. In the end, however, the credit goes to the residents - we are very proud of them."

Those from The University of Louisville who matched for 2014-2015 include:

 

Doctor








Specialty








School



















Thorsten Leucker








Cardiology








Johns Hopkins University



















Nirmanmoh Bhatia








Cardiology







Vanderbilt University



















Robin Singh








Cardiology







University of South Florida



















Luisa Franco








Nephrology








The University of Louisville



















Sambhavi Krishnamoorthy








Nephrology







Washington University



















Michael Scott








Pulmonary/Critical Care








Northwestern University



















Gregory Pfister








Pulmonary/Critical Care







The University of Louisville



















Matthew Woodford








Pulmonary/Critical Care







Thomas Jefferson University



















Ami Joglekar








Rheumatology








Vanderbilt University



















Tarsheen Sethi








Oncology/Hematology








Vanderbilt University



















Jonathan Obert








Gastroenterology








The University of Louisville



















Leslie Beavin








Infectious Diseases








The University of Louisville



















Sheri Montandan








Allergy








University of Pittsburgh



















Stephen Dinetz








Allergy








Medical College of Georgia
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Bolli receives donation to advance adult stem cell research

Jewish Heritage Foundation, funds from late U of L board chairman total $3 million.
Bolli receives donation to advance adult stem cell research

Louis Waterman, Jewish Heritage Foundation Fund for Excellence board chair, announces his part of a $3 million gift to the University of Louisville to help advance Dr. Roberto Bolli's adult stem cell research in the treatment of heart disease.

For more than a decade, Roberto Bolli, M.D., FAHA, has been working to revolutionize the treatment of heart failure by providing patients treatment derived from their own cardiac stem cells.

The University of Louisville on Friday announced that the Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence is providing just over $2 million to help Bolli move his research another step closer to being able to help potentially millions of people throughout the world.

The university also announced it was providing nearly $1 million from proceeds from a previous gift from former U of L board chair the late Owsley Frazier, bringing the total to $3 million in support of Bolli’s groundbreaking work.

The funds will be used to purchase and install a Current Good Manufacturing Practices facility required by the Food and Drug Administration for processing the stem cells for use in the study participants.

"Through nearly five years of research studies Dr. Bolli has provided patients who have had heart attacks infusions of their own cardiac stem cells and finding that their hearts are actually regenerating heart muscle severely damaged by heart attack," James Ramsey, Ph.D., president of the University of Louisville said. "This gift from the Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence will enable Dr. Bolli and his team to significantly expand his clinical trials with the goal of transforming the lives of hundreds of people, and eventually millions."

READ THE FULL ARTICLE

SEE PHOTO GALLERY

Bolli receives AHA's Research Achievement Award

U of L doctor recognized for 'melding basic experiments with patient-oriented studies' and 'extraordinary research.'
Bolli receives AHA's Research Achievement Award

Dr. Roberto Bolli, Chief of the University of Louisville Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, received the 2013 Research Achievement Award from the American Heart Association.

Roberto Bolli, M.D., FAHA, of the University of Louisville has won the American Heart Association Research Achievement Award for 2013 "for the profound and lasting impact of his extraordinary contributions to cardiovascular research."

Bolli, Professor of Medicine, Physics and Biophysics, Chief of the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine and Director of the Institute of Molecular Cardiology at the University of Louisville received the award, a citation and $2,500 honorarium Sunday during the opening of the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2013 at the Dallas Convention Center.

In addition, Bolli is a Distinguished University Scholar and holds the Jewish Hospital Heart & Lung Institute Distinguished Chair in Cardiology at U of L.

"Over the past 40 years, (Dr.) Bolli has gained deserved recognition as a world leader in his field," American Heart Association president Mariell Jessup, M.D., of the University of Pennsylvania said in presenting the award. "He has advanced our understanding of the mechanisms responsible for injury to the heart during ischemia and reperfusion, opening the way for developing novel protective strategies in patients with ischemic heart disease."

In early studies Bolli established a primary role of oxygen-free radicals in development of reversible heart dysfunction, or "myocardial stunning."

His research further delineated at the molecular level how cardiac muscle adapts to stress, Jessup said.

“Seamlessly melding basic experiments with patient-oriented studies has been a hallmark of Dr. Bolli’s research,” Jessup noted. “He has made great strides in solving the mysteries of ischemic heart disease and developing effective new approaches in the attack on this worldwide problem afflicting millions.”

More recently, Bolli has emerged as a leader in regenerative cardiology, the pioneering use of patient-derived cardiac stem cells to repair heart muscle damaged during a heart attack.

The Kentucky scientist currently is directing the first major study to test the potential healing effect of patients’ own stem cells..

"It is an extraordinary honor to receive the Research Achievement Award, Bollis said. "I am profoundly grateful to the American Heart Association, which has been an incredible partner and supporter for more than 30 years. Its role in my professional activities cannot be overstated: Simply put, my work and my career would not have happened without the support of the AHA."

 

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Screenings part of Lung Cancer Awareness Month

Screenings part of Lung Cancer Awareness Month

Dr. Rodrigo Cavallazzi

Lung cancer is the deadliest of cancers among men and women. But, did you know you can get lung cancer even if you don't smoke?

The American Cancer Society estimates 3,000 non-smokers die each year from secondhand smoke. It is estimated that the rate of lung cancer among veterans may be twice that of the general population.

Screening for cancer increases the chance of being diagnosed at early stages, which allows for more successful treatment.

Rodrigo Cavallazzi, M.D., of the University of Louisville Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep Disorders Medicine, leads a new lung cancer screening using a Computed Tomography Scanner (CT) which takes many pictures of the same area from many angles and then places them together to produce a 3-D image.

READ THE FULL ARTICLE

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Folz discusses COPD Awareness Month

Women are also 37 percent more likely to have COPD and account for more than half of COPD deaths in America, said Rodney Folz, M.D., Ph.D., of the University of Louisville Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep Disorders Medicine.
Folz discusses COPD Awareness Month

Dr. Rodney J. Folz

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is the third leading cause of death in the United States, and Kentucky holds a high burden with the disease.

Kentucky ranks No. 1 in the nation with the highest:

  • Overall adult COPD prevalence rate in the country
  • Cigarette use among youth ages 12 to 17
  • Smoking attributable adult mortality

COPD is underdiagnosed and undertreated, especially for women who have a bigger problem than men getting a proper diagnosis.

Women are also 37 percent more likely to have COPD and account for more than half of COPD deaths in America, said Rodney Folz, M.D., Ph.D., of the University of Louisville Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep Disorders Medicine, and U of L Physicians – Pulmonary/Critical Care Medicine.

READ THE FULL ARTICLE

Folz discusses COPD Awareness Month

Women are also 37 percent more likely to have COPD and account for more than half of COPD deaths in America, said Rodney Folz, M.D., Ph.D., of the University of Louisville Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep Disorders Medicine.
Folz discusses COPD Awareness Month

Dr. Rodney J. Folz

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is the third leading cause of death in the United States, and Kentucky holds a high burden with the disease.

Kentucky ranks No. 1 in the nation with the highest:

  • Overall adult COPD prevalence rate in the country
  • Cigarette use among youth ages 12 to 17
  • Smoking attributable adult mortality

COPD is underdiagnosed and undertreated, especially for women who have a bigger problem than men getting a proper diagnosis.

Women are also 37 percent more likely to have COPD and account for more than half of COPD deaths in America, said Rodney Folz, M.D., Ph.D., of the University of Louisville Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep Disorders Medicine, and U of L Physicians – Pulmonary/Critical Care Medicine.

READ THE FULL ARTICLE

UofL doc's article focuses on physician's fundamental responsibilities

Stillman, Tailor tell New England Journal of Medicine, "Lack of insurance can be lethal."
UofL doc's article focuses on physician's fundamental responsibilities

Each physician's responsibility for improving conditions for the un- and under-insured is the focus of a "Perspective" article, penned by a pair of UofL Department of Medicine doctors, appearing in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Physicians have a fundamental responsibility to treat people in need, to educate their patients about health care reforms and to work with their professional organizations to demand health care for everyone, regardless of their ability to pay.

That is the thrust two University of Louisville physicians, Michael Stillman, M.D., and Monalisa Tailor, M.D., put forth in a "Perspective" for the New England Journal of Medicine.

Their article, "Dead Man Walking," will be published in an upcoming print issue of the publication and was posted online Oct. 23, 2013.

The two Department of Medicine faculty tell the story of a man they call "Tommy Davis" who was chronically uninsured despite being employed full-time. Davis spent a year experiencing severe abdominal pain and constipation. Only when the pain was at its most severe did he come to the emergency room for relief.

The diagnosis? Metastatic colon cancer. Davis will die too soon because he was uninsured.

"If we'd found it sooner," Davis said to the physicians, "it would have made a difference. But now I'm just a dead man walking."

UofL receives $13.8 million to study use of promising new adult stem cell to treat heart failure

Award is one of university’s largest-ever federal grants for medical research
UofL receives $13.8 million to study use of promising new adult stem cell to treat heart failure

The research team on the Program Project Grant is shown on the steps of the Abell Administration Center at the UofL Health Sciences Center in October 2016, with principal investigator Roberto Bolli, M.D., at front center.

The University of Louisville has received one of its largest grants for medical research in the school’s 219-year history, a $13.8 million award from the National Institutes of Health to study a promising new type of adult cardiac stem cell that has the potential to treat heart failure.

The announcement on Friday was made by Gregory Postel, M.D., interim president of UofL, and the study’s principal investigator, Roberto Bolli, M.D., director of UofL’s Institute of Molecular Cardiology. Bolli also serves as scientific director of the Cardiovascular Innovation Institute at UofL and as a professor and chief of the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine at the School of Medicine.

“This is a prestigious grant reflecting the magnitude of the work being conducted here,” Postel said. “Being awarded this grant is a huge, huge accomplishment.”

Bolli thanked the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute and the NIH for their support. “It is critical that we have this type of support for the important research programs that we carry out, which can help patients around the world,” he said.

Heart failure affects millions of people, and the most common cause is a heart attack. When a person suffers a heart attack, part of the heart muscle dies from lack of oxygen and is replaced with scar tissue, which does not contract. Because of the loss of muscle, the heart becomes weaker and less able to pump.

Until now, conventional treatments for heart failure have consisted of surgery or medications, which can alleviate symptoms but do not cure the disease. In contrast, Bolli’s focus has been on how to repair the heart itself and actually cure heart failure using a patient’s own stem cells. It is an approach that could revolutionize the treatment of heart disease.

The NIH grant is a continuation of a Program Project Grant (PPG) that Bolli and his team were originally awarded in 2005. The overall goal of this PPG is the use of stem cells to repair the damage caused by a heart attack by regenerating heart muscle in the area that died, replacing the scar tissue with new muscle and thereby making the heart stronger and able to pump more blood.

A PPG is a cluster of several projects with a common focus relating to one theme, in this case, the use of adult stem cells to repair the heart. It involves a collaboration among different investigators working as a team, a collaboration that otherwise might not be able to occur without funding.

The latest round of funding comes after Bolli and his colleagues discovered a new population of adult stem cells, called CMCs, in the heart three years ago.

“CMCs seem to be more effective,” Bolli said. “In addition to showing more promise than those we have used in the past, these cells also offer several advantages in that they can be produced more easily, faster, more consistently and in larger numbers than other adult stem cells, which have proven tricky.”

He said this would make them easier to apply for widespread use, as specialized labs to isolate the cells would not be needed as with other types of adult stem cells.

Bolli and his team want to find out what CMCs will do when transplanted into a diseased heart in mice and pigs, ultimately laying the groundwork for clinical trials in patients.

On Friday, Postel noted that the NIH didn’t just approve UofL’s grant application - a long, multistep process involving more than a dozen reviewers who are experts in the field - it funded the project with a perfect score and rare high praise. In fact, the committee reviewing the application concluded Bolli’s program was, quote “exceptional,” with “significant translational impact, an exceptional leader and investigative team and an exceptional environment.”

“We are continually striving for new and better ways to treat heart disease,” Bolli said. “I’m confident we are not that far from a cure.”

 

Beating cancer with leading-edge research right here in Louisville

Learn how UofL researchers and clinicians are diagnosing and curing cancer at the next Beer with a Scientist, Oct. 12
Beating cancer with leading-edge research right here in Louisville

Levi Beverly, Ph.D.

Clinicians using a person’s breath to detect cancer. Computers helping identify the best cancer therapies. Researchers testing ways to activate a patient’s own immune cells to find and kill cancer cells. Scientists using tobacco plants to produce vaccines against cancer-causing viruses. These and other promising and interesting techniques for beating cancer will be discussed at the next Beer with a Scientist event. Levi Beverly, Ph.D., will present, “Cutting-edge ways that researchers and clinicians are diagnosing and curing cancer right here in Louisville,” at the free, public event, which also is part of Research!Louisville.

Beverly is an assistant professor in the University of Louisville School of Medicine Departments of Medicine and Pharmacology and Toxicology, and is a researcher at the James Graham Brown Cancer Center. His research focuses on understanding the biology of lung cancer and leukemia. In addition, his group is trying to find new therapies for treating cancer and new drugs to protect patients from the detrimental side effects of common cancer treatments.

The event begins at 8 p.m. onWednesday, Oct. 12, at Against the Grain Brewery, 401 E. Main St. in Louisville. A 30-minute presentation will be followed by an informal Q&A session. This edition of Beer with a Scientist is part of Research!Louisville, an annual week-long festival of health-related research being conducted at the Louisville Medical Center.

The Beer with a Scientist program began in 2014, the brainchild of Beverly, who hoped to make science accessible to the public in an informal setting. Once a month, the public is invited to enjoy exactly what the title promises:  beer and science.

Admission is free. Purchase of beer, other beverages or menu items is not required but is encouraged.

Organizers add that they also encourage Beer with a Scientist patrons to drink responsibly.

For more information and to suggest future Beer with a Scientist topics, follow Louisville Underground Science on Facebook.

 

More about Research!Louisville

An annual conference highlighting health-related research in the Louisville Medical Center, Research!Louisville features four days of showcases and events sponsored by the University of Louisville, University of Louisville Hospital/KentuckyOne Health, Jewish Hospital & St. Mary’s Foundation/KentuckyOne Health and Norton Healthcare. Find the full schedule for this year’s Research!Louisville at www.researchlouisville.org.

 

October 5, 2016

UofL sole site in Kentucky testing investigational device for emphysema

UofL sole site in Kentucky testing investigational device for emphysema

Tanya Wiese, D.O., director of the UofL Interventional Pulmonary Program

The University of Louisville has launched a research trial to study an investigational medical device designed to aid patients with emphysema by shutting off the diseased part of the lung. UofL is the only site in Kentucky among 14 nationwide testing the device.

The Zephyr Endobronchial Valve (EBV) is a one-way valve that blocks off diseased lung sections to inhaled air but allows trapped air already inside the area to escape. This enables the collapse of the diseased part of the lung, allowing for the healthier parts of the lung to expand.

Emphysema, a type of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, is an ongoing, progressive disease of the lower respiratory tract in the lungs. It is a seriously disabling disease with the potential for major complications and is often eventually fatal.

The symptoms of emphysema include shortness of breath and wheezing, an abnormal whistling sound made by the lungs during breathing. It is usually caused by smoking or other long-term exposure to inhaled irritants such as air pollution, chemicals, manufacturing fumes or small particles such as coal dust.

The randomized study, known as the LIBERATE study, is investigating the safety and effectiveness of the EBV for treating emphysema symptoms as compared to a current standard medical therapy program alone. Tanya Wiese, D.O., director of the Interventional Pulmonary Program, is principal investigator of the UofL study.

“The Zephyr EBV’s novel mechanism of action shows promise to help the healthy parts of the lung expand and reduce the effect of the disease,” Wiese said. “While not a cure, we believe this device could bring relief and improved quality of life to our patients with emphysema.”

The EBV can be placed by a doctor in a diseased section of the lungs using bronchoscopy, a procedure to access the lungs using a small tube with a camera on the end. With bronchoscopy, a physician can reach the airways in the lung by passing the tube through either the mouth or nose so invasive surgery is not required.

The problem of emphysema is particularly acute in Kentucky. The American Lung Association estimates that more than 56,000 Kentuckians, or 13 percent of the population, have emphysema, making the incidence of emphysema in Kentucky one of the highest in the United States.

Enrollment in the study is expected to be completed by the end of 2015 and patients will be followed for three years. To schedule an appointment to be screened for inclusion or for more information, contact Crissie DeSpirito at 502-852-0026 or crissie.despirito@louisville.edu. Additional information on the LIBERATE study is available on the national clinical trials website, ClinicalTrials.gov, using the Clinical Trials Identifier NCT01796392 or by calling 1-888-248-LUNG.

The other trial sites are Arizona Pulmonary Specialists, Cleveland Clinic, Duke University Medical Center,  Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, Temple University Hospital, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, University of Pittsburg Medical Center, The Mayo Clinic, University of California at Davis Medical Center,  University of California, San Francisco and University of Southern California.

The study is sponsored by Pulmonx Inc., a pulmonology-focused medical device company headquartered in Redwood City, California.

Beer with a Scientist: Up close and personal with personalized precision medicine, Mar. 23

Learn how a patient’s DNA can be used to improve medical treatments at the next Beer with a Scientist
Beer with a Scientist:  Up close and personal with personalized precision medicine, Mar. 23

Roland Valdes Jr., Ph.D.

Roland Valdes Jr., Ph.D., will explain how personalized precision medicine uses an individual patient’s genetic material (DNA) to improve drug treatments for that patient at the next Beer with a Scientist on March 23.

Valdes, a Distinguished University Scholar and professor in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of Louisville, has researched and patented biological markers that can be used to personalize a patient’s treatment for a specific disease. By analyzing a patient’s DNA, pathologists can pinpoint whether that individual may be susceptible to adverse events, respond well to a specific medication, or experience drug sensitivities or interactions.

The program begins at 8 p.m. on Wednesday, Mar. 23 at Against the Grain Brewery, 401 E. Main St. A 30-minute presentation will be followed by an informal Q&A session.

The Beer with a Scientist program began in 2014 and is the brainchild of UofL cancer researcher Levi Beverly, Ph.D. Once a month, the public is invited to enjoy exactly what the title promises:  beer and science.

Admission is free. Purchase of beer, other beverages or menu items is not required but is encouraged.

Organizers add that they also encourage Beer with a Scientist patrons to drink responsibly.

For more information and to suggest future Beer with a Scientist topics, follow Louisville Underground Science on Facebook.

 

March 16, 2016

Seminar offers care guidance for couples after cancer treatment

Seminar offers care guidance for couples after cancer treatment

Daniela Wittmann, Ph.D.

A March 28 workshop is designed to help cancer care providers support and provide resources for patients and families coping with sexual dysfunction related to chronic illness and treatment.

Daniela Wittmann, Ph.D., University of Michigan clinical assistant professor of urology, will present “Assessing and Treating Sexual Dysfunction After Cancer Treatment: The Role of the Oncology Social Worker.”

The University of Louisville’s Kent School of Social Work, Baptist Health Cancer Care and Hosparus co-sponsor the 12:30-4 p.m. event in the Cancer Resource Center Conference Room of the Charles and Mimi Osborn Cancer Center, Baptist Health Louisville, 4003 Kresge Way.

The seminar is intended for the social workers, oncology nurses, doctors and caregivers who help cancer patients through the grief process, treatment and recovery.

The workshop and lunch are free but registration is required by March 21 at http://uofl.me/1PkxEYu. Three continuing education units are available for social workers for $30 during the National Social Work Month event.

Wittmann will discuss a biopsychosocial approach to understanding sexual dysfunction after cancer treatment and providing treatment geared to improving recovery of sexual function and relationships.

She is co-author of the American Cancer Society guideline for prostate cancer survivorship care and has led the development of psychosocial interventions in the University of Michigan’s program. She has more than 30 years of clinical experience focusing on adjustment to chronic illness.

For more information, contact Karen Kayser at 502-852-1946 or karen.kayser@louisville.edu.

Posted March 11, 2016

Gut environment could reduce severity of malaria

UofL and Tennessee researchers find that gut microbes influence disease
Gut environment could reduce severity of malaria

Nathan Schmidt, Ph.D.

Posted Feb. 8, 2016

Microorganisms in the gut could play a role in reducing the severity of malaria, according to a new study co-authored by researchers at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and the University of Louisville.

Steven Wilhelm, the Kenneth and Blaire Mossman Professor in UT's Department of Microbiology, and Shawn Campagna, associate professor of chemistry at UT, partnered with Nathan Schmidt, assistant professor of microbiology and immunology at U of L, to examine the gut microbiomes of mice. They discovered that the severity of malaria is not only a function of the parasite or the host but also is influenced by the microbes in the infected organism.

The research could one day help scientists develop new treatments for malaria in humans.

The findings will be published Feb. 8, in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

"Unfortunately, we are still years away from an effective and easily administered malaria vaccine, and drug resistance is a growing concern," Schmidt said.

Wilhelm added, "The research provides a potential new avenue to investigate factors that control the severity of malaria. With 1 million people dying each year, many of whom are young children, any approach that may save even a few lives is worth following up on."

Malaria is a mosquito-borne disease, and those with the illness often experience fever, chills and flu-like symptoms. It may be fatal if left untreated. Malaria transmissions typically occur in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.

During the study, the research team found that genetically similar mice acquired from different vendors showed significant differences in pathology after infection with malaria. The researchers measured the mice gut microbiomes—via DNA sequencing of the bacteria in the digestive tract—and noted significant differences within the different populations. Schmidt directly transferred the gut microbiomes to other mice and was able to show that the differences in disease severity were transferred.

The researchers observed an increased abundance of bacteria common in yogurt in the mice that exhibited reduced malaria pathology. When mice were fed a yogurt containing these bacteria the researchers discovered that the severity of malaria decreased.

"These results demonstrate the possibility of modifying the gut microbiome to prevent severe malaria," Schmidt said.

Wilhelm noted that while the research interventions lessened the severity of malaria in mice, it did not prevent or cure it.

The researchers are a long way from perfecting similar treatments in humans but are working on understanding the mechanism.

"A way to help people who are infected—and especially a simple and cheap way, as much of the infection occurs in the developing world—would be a great service to society," Wilhelm said.

The study was supported by the National Institutes of Health, the American Cancer Society and Wilhelm's Mossman Professorship.