New robotic device to boost balance in spinal cord injury patients at UofL

$5 million grant awarded to UofL and Columbia University researchers to develop Tethered Pelvic Assist Device
New robotic device to boost balance in spinal cord injury patients at UofL

Tethered Pelvic Assist Device (TPAD)

Spinal cord injury researchers at the University of Louisville pioneered activity-based interventions that have helped individuals with spinal cord injury (SCI) improve mobility. The addition of epidural stimulation to the lumbosacral spinal cord has allowed individuals with SCI to stand without assistance. Susan Harkema, Ph.D., who leads this research at UofL, Claudia Angeli, Ph.D., Enrico Rejc, Ph.D., and Sunil Agrawal, Ph.D., an engineer at Columbia University, have won a $5 million grant to develop a robotic device that will aid individuals with SCI further by helping them regain balance. The Tethered Pelvic Assist Device (TPAD) will provide stimulation and feedback to aid in the recovery of balance, and will be integrated with activity-based training and epidural stimulation research at UofL.

Harkema, Angeli and Rejc, faculty members in the Department of Neurological Surgery at UofL, are working with Agrawal, professor of mechanical engineering and of rehabilitation and regenerative medicine at Columbia Engineering, to develop TPAD. Agrawal specializes in the development of novel robotic devices and interfaces that help patients retrain their movements.

The project has won a five-year, $5 million grant from the New York State Spinal Cord Injury Board. The project also includes Joel Stein, chair of the Department of Rehabilitation and Regenerative Medicine, and Ferne Pomerantz, M.D., assistant professor in that department at Columbia University Medical Center.

TPAD is a wearable, light-weight cable-driven device that can be programmed to provide motion cues to the pelvis and corrective forces to stabilize it. It consists of a pelvic belt with multiple cables connected to motors, a real-time motion capture system, and a real-time controller to regulate the tensions in the cables. The UofL researchers will incorporate the device into the training of SCI patients during standing.

“Our stand and step training, combined with epidural stimulation, have shown success in enabling individuals with SCI regain the ability to stand. We hope the integration of the TPAD device will help these individuals with balance, further improving their functional ability and quality of life,” said Harkema, who also is Director of Research at Frazier Rehab Institute, part of KentuckyOne Health.

In their work with the Kentucky Spinal Cord Injury Research Center (KSCIRC), the UofL researchers have studied the effects of stand and step training along with epidural stimulation in adults with spinal cord injury. Epidural stimulation involves surgically implanting an electrode array over the lower spinal cord to activate the neural circuits.


October 24, 2016

UofL neurosurgeons now providing robotic laser therapy for brain tumors, lesions

Laser can help remove some lesions that were once considered inoperable
UofL neurosurgeons now providing robotic laser therapy for brain tumors, lesions

Neurosurgeons with UofL now provide minimally invasive, image-guided laser therapy with the NeuroBlate system.

Two University of Louisville neurosurgeons are now providing image-guided laser technology to help patients with brain tumors and lesions. According to the National Brain Tumor Society, more than 688,000 Americans are living with a brain tumor. In the past, some tumors were considered too difficult to reach. However, the minimally invasive NeuroBlate laser is now allowing neurosurgeons to remove tumors and lesions that would traditionally be considered inoperable.

NeuroBlate laser therapy can be precisely controlled to kill abnormal tissue while doing as little harm as possible to surrounding healthy tissue. It also can be used in patients who have lesions in areas of the brain that are difficult to access by traditional open surgery without harming essential functions like speech, vision and muscle control. The procedure is performed at Jewish Hospital, a part of KentuckyOne Health.

The NeuroBlate® System from Monteris Medical® is a robotic laser technology that uses real-time magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to precisely guide a laser probe. The laser applies heat to the growth, in controlled amounts, until the diseased tissue is destroyed. It can be used on tumors and lesions in many locations in the brain, near the surface or deep inside.

Neurosurgeons performing the procedure are Joseph S. Neimat, M.D., chair of the Department of Neurosurgery, and Brian J. Williams, M.D., assistant professor and director of the Brain Tumor Program. Both practice with University of Louisville Physicians.

“The procedure is performed while the patient is in an MRI machine, so physicians can see the lesion and surrounding healthy tissue to apply laser energy where it is needed. The temperature of nearby healthy tissue is monitored to help ensure that it is protected as much as possible,” Neimat said. “We are thrilled to have this technology at our fingertips, to be able to help more people suffering from brain tumors and lesions.”

“Laser interstitial thermal therapy or ‘LITT’ offers patients suffering from difficult-to-access or recurrent brain tumors a minimally invasive option for local treatment of their disease,” Williams said. “Because the recovery is quite a bit quicker than with traditional open surgery, patients are able to expeditiously move on to radiation and chemotherapy.”

Rather than making a large opening in the skull, the NeuroBlate laser technology requires just a small hole, about the diameter of a pencil. The procedure is considered minimally invasive surgery, a type of procedure that generally involves less pain, discomfort and scarring than traditional surgery, and allows patients to go home and resume normal activity sooner.

The NeuroBlate System was cleared by the FDA in April 2013 and is in use at more than 20 of the nation's leading health care institutions. It also was licensed by Health Canada in September 2014 as the first and only minimally invasive robotic laser thermal therapy tool available in that country.

Patients seeking appointments with Neimat and Williams should contact UofL Physicians-Neurosurgery at 502-588-6000.


Risk Statement about the NeuroBlate® System
As with any surgical procedure, the NeuroBlate System involves some risks. The technology is not appropriate for every lesion type and location. For example, it may be difficult to use the technology on certain large or irregularly shaped tumors. Certain placements of the laser probe into the brain, or too much heat applied, may cause bleeding or permanent brain damage. Some patients have temporary swelling after the procedure that may cause short-term abnormal brain or nervous system function. Any medical situation, including NeuroBlate, which requires a patient to stay still for long periods can cause dangerous blood clots (deep venous thrombosis). Talk to your physician about the risks of the procedure.

About Monteris Medical®
Monteris Medical (Plymouth, Minn.) is a privately held company developing devices for minimally-invasive, MR-guided neurosurgery. Monteris markets the NeuroBlate® System for controlled, volumetric ablation of brain lesions. Monteris also offers the various Stereotactic anchoring devices for image-guided trajectory alignment, and the AtamA™ Stabilization System for MR-based procedures requiring versatile head fixation. For more information on Monteris Medical, visit or the company’s patient information site

About KentuckyOne Health
KentuckyOne Health, the largest and most comprehensive health system in the Commonwealth, has more than 200 locations including, hospitals, physician groups, clinics, primary care centers, specialty institutes and home health agencies in Kentucky and southern Indiana. KentuckyOne Health is dedicated to bringing wellness, healing and hope to all, including the underserved.  The system is made up of the former Jewish Hospital & St. Mary’s HealthCare and Saint Joseph Health System, along with the University of Louisville Hospital and James Graham Brown Cancer Center. KentuckyOne Health is proud of and strengthened by its Catholic, Jewish and academic heritages.




So, why haven’t we cured cancer yet?

Get the lowdown at Beer with a Scientist, Aug. 9
So, why haven’t we cured cancer yet?

Levi Beverly, Ph.D.

With all the research and effort that has gone into it, why does it seem we still are so far from finding a cure for cancer?

Levi Beverly, Ph.D., a cancer researcher with the UofL James Graham Brown Cancer Center, will attempt to answer that question at the next Beer with a Scientist, August 9.

Beverly will provide a brief history of cancer and cancer research and discuss recent breakthroughs in our understanding of cancer research. He also will answer the questions he is asked most frequently about cancer:  "What exactly is cancer?" "Is cancer a ‘new’ disease?" "Why can't we cure cancer?" "Do other animals get cancer?" "Is there a cure for cancer that the government doesn't want us to have?"  "Why do some cancers have such high death rates?"

Beverly, an associate professor at UofL in the Department of Medicine, studies lung cancer and leukemia. He talked on this topic at the first Beer with a Scientist event in 2014. This month’s edition will include a look at the progress cancer researchers have made in the past three years. The talk begins at 8 p.m. on  Wednesday, August 9, at Against the Grain Brewery, 401 E. Main St. in Louisville. A 30-minute presentation will be followed by an informal Q&A session.

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.

In 2014, Beverly created the Beer with a Scientist program as a way to bring science to the public in an informal setting. Once a month, the public is invited to enjoy exactly what the title promises:  beer and science. For more information and to suggest future Beer with a Scientist topics, follow Louisville Underground Science on Facebook or email Beverly.

Next Beer with a Scientist:  Sept. 13



August 3, 2017

Abstract submissions open Sept. 30 for aging conference

Second annual UofL/KAG Optimal Aging Conference to be held June 11-13, 2017
Abstract submissions open Sept. 30 for aging conference

The call for abstracts opens Friday, Sept. 30, for the second annual Optimal Aging Conference, hosted by the University of Louisville Institute for Sustainable Health & Optimal Aging in partnership with the Kentucky Association for Gerontology (KAG). The conference will be held June 11-13, 2017, at the Galt House Hotel, 140 N. Fourth St.

The Optimal Aging Conference brings together academics, professionals and older adults across a variety of disciplines who are united by a view that aging is an opportunity, not a disease. Institute Executive Director Anna Faul, Ph.D. said, “This conference is unique in that it emphasizes the potential when diverse individuals come together united in a common commitment to transforming our current aging paradigm, including participation and input from older adults and caregivers.”

Abstract submissions for the conference open Sept. 30 and close Friday, Dec. 16at 11:59 p.m. Practitioners and academicians in any field related to aging care can submit an abstract as the conference will examine service delivery complexities and burdens through both academic and professional workforce perspectives.

Abstracts can be submitted here. More detailed information can be accessed here. The opening of the abstract submissions is the finale of the Institute’s Optimal Aging Month observance.

The Optimal Aging Conference supports the dissemination of biopsychosocial aging research, age-friendly product innovation, and evidence-based practice and education models and social service delivery. Past President of KAG Barbara Gordon said, “We are excited to announce that our theme this year is ‘Approaching Aging as a Life-Long Journey.’ For optimal aging to be realized, we must infuse a lifespan approach into our work, practice, and research.”

Early-bird registration for the conference will open Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2017. The early-bird registration fee for students, medical residents and senior citizens (age 65 and older) is $100; $240 for KAG Members; and $260 for all other academics and professionals. After Feb. 15, registration will be an additional $10 per category.

For more information about the conference, visit or call 502-852-5629.

Training the next generation of cancer researchers

UofL training programs renewed to set exceptional students on course as future investigators
Training the next generation of cancer researchers

LaCreis Kidd, Ph.D., M.P.H., with CEP participant Thomas Packer, Jr.

The University of Louisville is making strides not only in conducting cancer research, but also in educating and motivating the next generation of scientists.

The UofL Cancer Education Program is an intensive summer research and professional development program for outstanding undergraduate and health professional students, supporting their pursuit of careers in cancer research.

The UofL Cancer Education Program, funded by an R25 grant from the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health, accepts about 30 trainees each summer. The students engage in a 10-week research project under the guidance of UofL cancer researchers and lab mentors in basic, clinical, translational, behavioral and population-based cancer research. The mentors are research-intensive UofL faculty, most of whom are affiliated with the James Graham Brown Cancer Center.

This spring, the program was renewed for five years with the leadership addition of director LaCreis Kidd, Ph.D., M.P.H., associate professor and Our Highest Potential Endowed Chair in Cancer Research in the UofL Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology. David Hein, Ph.D., chair of the department, established the program and continues as director along with Kidd. More than 60 UofL faculty members serve as mentors and key contributors to the program.

“The renewal of this program is a clear indication that the trainees are excelling in cancer research during and after completion of the program. In addition, UofL and the James Graham Brown Cancer Center are providing cutting edge research, professional development and networking opportunities for the next generation of cancer research scientists,” Kidd said.

Since it began in 2012, the program has trained more than 150 students, including college undergraduates and medical, public health, dental and nursing students from more than 25 universities across the United States. More than one-third of the trainees have continued their studies as medical, doctoral and MD/PhD students at UofL. Others have continued their cancer research training at institutions such as Johns Hopkins University and Columbia. The five-year award of $1,593,000 supports the students’ research activities, subsistence payments, travel and housing.

To sharpen their professional skills, the trainees participate in engaging professional development activities. The activities include a 90-second elevator pitch contest, speed networking and public speaking activities that allow trainees to connect with their audience and deliver engaging oral presentations.

At the conclusion of the program, the students deliver their work in the form of research posters and oral presentations to faculty, judges and fellow students. Many of the students also present their research at Research!Louisville as well as at regional, national and international scientific meetings. Research conducted in the program is frequently published with a student as first author.

One goal of the UofL NCI Cancer Education Program is to reach underrepresented minorities for participation. Of the 156 students who have completed the program, 53 are underrepresented minority students.

“The NCI R25 Cancer Education Program is well poised to prepare the next generation of young investigators in the field of cancer research or clinical oncology,” Kidd said.

The Cancer Education Program is integrated with other summer research activities on UofL’s Health Sciences Center campus, including the Summer Research Scholar Program for students in the School of Medicine and the School of Dentistry’s Summer Research Program.

UofL Training Program in Environmental Health Sciences renewed

Another training program at UofL, the Training Program in Environmental Health Sciences, was renewed for a five-year term with a $2.4 million T32 grant in late 2016 by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. The program funds predoctoral and post-doctoral students on a full-time basis, incorporating numerous centers, institutes, schools and more than 50 faculty mentors to provide cutting edge basic, clinical, computational and population-based research.

Hein established this program in 2004 and served as principal director until 2016. With the program’s renewal, Gavin Arteel, Ph.D., professor and Distinguished University Scholar in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, took over as director. The Training Program in Environmental Health Sciences supports six predoctoral and three postdoctoral trainees. Graduates of the program have gone on to positions in the Environmental Protection Agency, the Food and Drug Administration, the pharmaceutical industry, and as faculty members at UofL and other prestigious universities. Kevyn Merten, Ph.D., assistant vice president for research and innovation at UofL, was among the first graduates, completing the program in 2006.

“The grant renewal recognizes that the university supports a critical mass of research to support the training of students and postdoctoral associates in this area,” Arteel said. “Two very strong programs that we have are the Diabetes and Obesity Center and the Hepatobiology and Toxicology Program.”

Aruni Bhatnagar, Ph.D., Matthew Cave, M.D., and Hein serve as co-directors for the program.

Free legal clinic for people with cancer set for Dec. 5

Free legal clinic for people with cancer set for Dec. 5

Gilda's Club of Louisville, 633 Baxter Ave., will be the site of a free legal clinic for people with cancer and their families and caregivers on Dec. 5. The event is organized by the Kentucky Cancer Program at UofL.

Three area organizations are teaming up to sponsor a free legal clinic for people facing cancer and their families and caregivers on Dec. 5.

The Kentucky Cancer Program at the University of Louisville, Louisville Bar Association and Louisville Pro Bono Consortium are sponsoring the clinic, which will be held 6-7:30 p.m., Monday, Dec. 5, at Gilda’s Club of Louisville, 633 Baxter Ave. Free parking is available behind the building and across the street from the club.

At the clinic, attorneys will be available to offer help with life-planning documents under Medicare Part D, including wills, powers of attorney, health care surrogacy and living wills. They also will provide guidance on employee benefits during illness and government assistance that is available such as Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security disability insurance.

Although admission is free, RSVPs in advance are needed at 502-852-6318. For additional information, contact the Kentucky Cancer Program at or 502-852-6318.


Daniel Pitino Foundation grant ensures 5,600 Kentucky children continue to receive cardiac care

New custom vehicle enables UofL Physicians staff to reach patients around the state who need specialized care
Daniel Pitino Foundation grant ensures 5,600 Kentucky children continue to receive cardiac care

Thanks to a nearly $57,000 gift from the Daniel Pitino Foundation, 5,600 children throughout the state of Kentucky will continue to receive life-saving cardiac care from doctors with University of Louisville Physicians.

On Tuesday, July 21, a new van was dedicated that is critical to delivering those services. The van, bought with the gift from the foundation, was unveiled during a news conference at the UofL Physicians Health Care Outpatient Center.

For more than four decades,doctors and staff affiliated with the University of Louisville have packed their bags every week and traveled the state to give those thousands of children with heart problems specialized care close to their homes.

The pediatric cardiology team travels to eight rotating sites from Ashland to Paducah and places in between, bringing all their supplies and medical equipment - such as EKG and echocardiogram machines - in a customized van made just for the task. The team, which lives on the road four days a week, reaches up to 50 patients a day and more than 5,600 per year.

For many of these children, the van makes it possible to get the care they need without having to travel hours to Louisville and have their parents take time off work and spend precious resources on travel expenses and hotels. For some with very limited resources, it makes the difference between getting the care they need and not getting care at all.

But over the years as the latest van aged, it became unreliable, at times leaving the doctors and staff without a way to transport their equipment to patients. Now, thanks to the $56,901 grant from the Daniel Pitino Foundation, the pediatric cardiology travel team has a brand new van made just for them to reach the patients they serve.

“We are so thankful to the Daniel Pitino Foundation for this generous grant that helps us reach so many children in Kentucky who need our services,” said Dr. Walter Sobczyk, senior pediatric cardiologist at UofL Physicians and an associate professor at the UofL School of Medicine.

“Getting care in rural and outlying areas, far from large cities like Louisville, is a very tough task for many families. They have enough to worry about without adding travel and the associated expenses to the mix. We believe that every child deserves access to the health care they need, no matter their circumstances. The van helps ensure they get expert care and have access to the latest in medical advancements and treatments so they can live the best possible life.”

The Daniel Pitino Foundation was founded by UofL men’s basketball coach Rick Pitino and his wife, JoAnne, to honor the memory of their infant son, Daniel, who died of a congenital heart condition in 1987. The foundation’s mission is to benefit underprivileged children and other charitable causes.

“In recognizing the quality care and treatment provided by the doctors and staff of UofL Physicians across the Commonwealth, our board is pleased that we can provide support for the transportation needs of these dedicated individuals,” said Ron Carmicle, executive vice president of the Daniel Pitino Foundation’s board.

For many patients, the van’s services are invaluable.

“It’s made a huge difference in our lives,” said Jill Story, of Benton, Ky., whose daughter Jacee, 16, sees the van’s doctors because of a congenital heart defect. Her husband Matt, 45, also has a congenital heart defect and has been seeing the van’s doctors since he was a child. “It keeps us from having to routinely travel more than three hours to Louisville for their care.”

More about the pediatric cardiology outreach program

The outreach van travels to sites around Kentucky, including Owensboro, Bowling Green, Paducah, Ashland, Murray and Elizabethtown. On most days, the team consists of two doctors and six support staff.  At each site, the team leases office space for the day, where the staff sees up to 50 patients a day, four days a week, Monday through Friday.

The staff also sees referrals from pediatricians and local hospitals. Some patients of the outreach program, like Matt Story, are adults who have been seeing the team’s doctors since they were children.

For patients who need surgery or more complex procedures, the team can arrange for care at Kosair Children’s Hospital in Louisville, as well as transport there.

Back in Louisville, the team also is part of a statewide telemedicine network, where staff at 27 hospitals around the state can digitally transmit results of a heart test for immediate analysis by pediatric cardiology specialists with UofL Physicians at Kosair Children’s Hospital. The UofL Physicians staff at the hospital read up to 2,500 echocardiograms a year.

Initially a state-funded program in the 1950s and 1960s, funding for the outreach van dried up in the late 1970s, leaving the pediatric cardiology clinical practice of the University of Louisville, now part of University of Louisville Physicians, to supply the funding and keep it going.

About University of Louisville Physicians

University of Louisville Physiciansisthe largest multispecialty physician practice in the Louisville region, with nearly 600 physicians in more than 78 specialties and subspecialties, including primary care. Our doctors are the professors and researchers of the University of Louisville School of Medicine, teaching tomorrow’s physicians and leading research into medical advancements. For more information, visit

About the University of Louisville Health Sciences Center

The University of Louisville Health Sciences Center is the city’s only academic medical center. Approximately 1,000 faculty members are involved in education, research and clinical care.  The UofL HSC is home to more than 650 medical and dental residents, 3,000 students pursuing degrees in health-related fields within the Schools of Dentistry, Medicine, Nursing and Public Health and Information Sciences, as well as 14 interdisciplinary centers and institutes. Approximately $140 million in extramural funding enables researchers to uncover the causes of disease and better ways to prevent, treat and cure those diseases. Patients are seen at the Ambulatory Care Building, The James Graham Brown Cancer Center, the UofL Physicians Outpatient Center and University Hospital, which is the primary adult teaching hospital for the School of Medicine. University Hospital’s public mission is steeped in history and now is most clearly visible through its provision of nearly $90 million of health care to the uninsured annually.

UofL diabetes and obesity researcher to chair NIH study section

Bhatnagar will lead group in evaluating grant requests in cardiovascular science
UofL diabetes and obesity researcher to chair NIH study section

Aruni Bhatnagar, Ph.D.


For the next two years, Aruni Bhatnagar, Ph.D., will have significant influence over the funding of certain types of scientific research as he leads a panel that considers grant applications to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Bhatnagar, the Smith and Lucille Gibson Chair in Medicine at the University of Louisville, will serve as chair of the 15-member Clinical and Integrative Cardiovascular Science Study Section, a part of the Center for Scientific Review (CSR) that evaluates grant requests for patient-oriented research involving the cardiovascular system and related regulatory organ systems.

Bhatnagar is the director of the UofL Diabetes and Obesity Center, where he leads a group of 30 investigators focused on developing a better understanding of the cardiovascular complications of diabetes. His research focuses on the mechanisms by which oxidative stress affects cardiovascular function.

“Aruni Bhatnagar’s recognition by the NIH reflects the quality of research at the University of Louisville. Having him participate as the chair of this NIH study section elevates our programs even further on the national scale and emphasizes the importance of his work in the larger scientific community,” said David L. Dunn, M.D., Ph.D., executive vice president for health affairs at UofL.

Members of the CSR study sections are selected based on their achievements in their scientific disciplines, demonstrated by their research accomplishments, publications and other activities. The study section chair is in place for a two-year term. Bhatnagar’s term began July 1, 2015 and runs through June 2017.

Bhatnagar says serving as a study section chair is both an honor and a responsibility.

“Being appointed as a chair of a study section is a clear recognition of the leadership role of a scientist, both in conducting research as well as in contributing to the discussion of specific research ideas and projects,” Bhatnagar said. “With a diminishing NIH budget, it is becoming increasingly important that only the best science is funded and that the new, untested ideas that have high potential are not subsumed by a process that favors the status quo and is reluctant to support innovative research.”

UofL medical student selected for Universal Notes student editorial panel

Andrew Smith will help improve app designed to assist students with licensure exams

University of Louisville medical student Andrew Smith has been selected as a member of the 2015-2016 Student Editorial Panel for Universal Notes, a subscription-based web application that assists students in preparation for Step 1, 2 and 3 exams as well as the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME) assessments. Smith is one of 10 students selected from medical schools in the United States and abroad to serve on the panel for one year beginning this month.

Smith, a third-year student in the School of Medicine, responded to a call for applicants who are interested in learning about medical education.

“It sounded like a great opportunity because I hope to teach medicine. One of the things we get to do is write questions for the Q-bank, so I hope it will improve my question writing. Also, I will be studying as I am updating the questions, so it will improve is my knowledge base,” Smith said.

Universal Notes was developed by Aaron McGuffin, M.D., associate professor of pediatrics at Marshall University Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine, as a tool for assisting medical students prepare for the exams they must pass on their way to becoming physicians. McGuffin created the student editorial panel to critique the material and to serve as a training ground for medical educators of the future.

“Students are the lifeblood of the success of Universal Notes,” McGuffin said. “One job of the panel is to use it and evaluate it and say how it could be better. The other thing is we put them in the role of teacher so they have to look at the curriculum as if they are teaching it. That gives them a respect for the challenges of preparing information for delivery. My hope for these student editors is they eventually want to be academic clinicians.”

Students were selected for the editorial panel based on their demonstrated desire to teach. Smith has been involved in teaching his fellow students at UofL both as an undergraduate and in medical school, tutoring students in chemistry and anatomy and teaching sections of the prematriculation program, which helps medical students get a head start on the curriculum for the following year of study.

“Andrew was one of the best student instructors I have had in the prematriculation program. He went above and beyond in preparing and presenting the lectures. He even hosted evening and weekend review sessions and created a practice practical lab exam for the students,” said Mary Joshua, UofL’s director of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion and prematriculation program coordinator. “He has a real passion for sharing his knowledge with other people.”

Smith already has begun evaluating the material in Universal Notes and developing questions.

“It needs more information, but that’s what we are here to do,” Smith said. “It is pretty exciting. I do love this kind of thing.”

About Universal Notes:  Universal Notes is a comprehensive online study and assessment tool for medical students, helping them prepare for Step 1, Step 2, Step 3 and NBME. A companion app is available for Android and iOS devices. Universal Notes is compiled and edited by medical students and educators. The database contains information on basic sciences, drugs, diseases, labs, competencies and board review questions.

Bumpous named chair of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery and Communicative Disorders

Bumpous named chair of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery and Communicative Disorders

Jeffrey Bumpous, M.D.

The University of Louisville Board of Trustees has named Jeffrey “Jeff” Bumpous, M.D., chair of the newest department in the UofL School of Medicine, the Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery and Communicative Disorders. Bumpous was named chair at the board’s meeting on June 4.

The board established the new department at its May 14 meeting by elevating the program from two divisions within the Department of Surgery in a move that strengthens the provision of clinical care to patients and education and training to future physicians as well as audiologists and speech pathologists. At UofL, otolaryngologists practice with University of Louisville Physicians-Ear, Nose and Throat. Communicative disorders professionals practice with UofL Physicians-Hearing & Balance and UofL Physicians-Speech Pathology.

“Dr. Bumpous brings a wealth of educational, clinical and research experience to the department chair’s position,” said Toni Ganzel, M.D., dean of the UofL School of Medicine. “We could have no one better to launch our new department for the benefit of our students, residents and faculty as well as the patients we serve.”

Bumpous is the J. Samuel Bumgardner Professor of Otolaryngologic Surgery and chief of the former Division of Otolaryngology in the Department of Surgery. He has been at UofL since 1994 and leads a multidisciplinary team of health care providers in treating cancers of the head and neck. These include cancers of the mouth, larynx (voice box), pharynx (throat), nasal cavity, sinuses, salivary glands and thyroid gland.

A native of Fort Benning, Ga., Bumpous earned his bachelor’s degree from Morehead State University and his medical degree from UofL. He completed his internship and residency in general surgery, otolaryngology and head and neck surgery at Saint Louis University and a post-graduate fellowship in advanced head and neck and cranial base surgery at the University of Pittsburgh.

Bumpous currently is president of the Society of University Otolaryngologists and a member of the Board of Directors of the American Board of Otolaryngology. He has served as associate editor of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery and on the editorial boards of the American Journal of Surgery and Laryngoscope. He also has served in leadership roles in the American Academy of Otolaryngology, the American Head and Neck Society, the Kentucky Society of Otolaryngology, the Louisville Otolaryngologic Society and other professional organizations.

Bumpous was named St. Louis University’s 1989 Intern of the Year. During his tenure at UofL, he has won three Vincent J. Hyams resident teaching awards signifying his leadership in mentoring young physicians. He is a 2003 Recipient of the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Honor Award. In 2013, he was named Physician of the Year by UofL’s James Graham Brown Cancer Center, a part of KentuckyOne Health. He is board-certified in otolaryngology and is lead or co-author of more than 60 journal articles and scientific book chapters.

UofL medicine dean, education chair, professor to be honored

Presentation Academy’s Tower Awards on Oct. 8 will recognize women leaders

The dean of the University of Louisville School of Medicine and a professor and chair in UofL’s College of Education and Human Development will be among the recipients honored with Tower Awards from Presentation Academy of Louisville on Oct. 8 at the Louisville Marriott Downtown, 280 W. Jefferson St.

Now in its 20th year, the Tower Awards is an annual event honoring women leaders in their fields and highlighting the contributions and talents of these role models to Presentation Academy students and the Louisville community. Funds from this event are applied to the academy’s tuition assistance program. Since its inception, the event has raised more than $2 million.

From UofL, Toni Ganzel, M.D., M.B.A., dean of the medical school, will receive the Tower Award in Science and Health Care, and Gaëtane Jean-Marie, Ph.D.,professor and chair of the Department of Educational Leadership, Foundations andHuman Resource Education in UofL’s College of Education and Human Development, will receive the Tower Award in Arts and Communications.

Ganzel was named dean in 2013 and joined UofL in 1983 as an assistant professor in otolaryngology. She served as director of the division of otolaryngology at UofL from 1993 to 2001, when she was named associate dean of student affairs for the School of Medicine. A native of New Mexico, Ganzel earned her bachelor of science and medical degrees from the University of Nebraska. She earned a master’s degree in business administration/medical group management from the University of St. Thomas in Minneapolis. She completed her residency in otolaryngology at the University of Nebraska before joining the faculty at the Creighton University School of Medicine. She is a fellow of the Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine Program for Women at Drexel University College of Medicine in Philadelphia, the nation’s only in-depth program for women leaders in academic health care.

Jean-Marie came to UofL as chair and professor in 2013. She was previously a faculty member in educational leadership at the University of Oklahoma and Florida International University. She has a doctorate in educational leadership and cultural studies and post-baccalaureate certificate in women’s studies from the University of North Carolina-Greensboro. A native of Haiti, she obtained her masters’ and bachelor degrees from Rutgers University. Her research focuses on leadership preparation and development in the United States and global context, women and educational leadership and urban school reform through educational equity and social justice. She is co-principal investigator on two industry grants and contracts totaling approximately $1 million funded by the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, and U.S. Department of the Army. She also is editor of the Journal of School Leadership and has authored more than 60 publications.

Other Tower Award recipients scheduled to be recognized are Rebecca Matheny, Louisville Downtown Partnership, in the category of Business Technology and Trade; Susan Gatz, Sisters of Charity of Nazareth, in Education; Kathleen Quinn Abernathy, Frontier Communications, in Government and Law; and Maria Price, St. John Center, in Service and Advocacy. The Queen’s Daughters Inc. will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award.

Tickets to the event are $100 per person or $1,000 for table of 10. For more information and to obtain tickets, contact Martha Brown Stephenson at Presentation Academy, 502-583-5935, extension 117, or

Diane Harper, M.D., M.P.H., M.S., chosen for executive program

UofL department chair and researcher is the 17th member of UofL faculty selected for ELAM
Diane Harper, M.D., M.P.H., M.S., chosen for executive program

Diane Harper, M.D., M.P.H., M.S.

University of Louisville Family and Geriatric Medicine Chair Diane M. Harper, M.D., M.P.H., M.S., has been selected as a member of the 2015-2016 class of the Hedwig van Ameringen Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine (ELAM) Program. Harper is one of only 54 women in the nation selected for the program.

ELAM is a year-long fellowship for women faculty in schools of medicine, dentistry and public health. The program develops professional and personal skills required for leadership and management in health care. More than 800 ELAM alumnae hold leadership positions in institutions around the world.

Harper was named the Rowntree Endowed Chair and professor in the Department of Family and Geriatric Medicine at the UofL School of Medicine in 2013. She is an award-winning clinician, educator and researcher with a background in family medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, epidemiology and biostatistics, as well as chemical engineering.

Harper was the U.S. principal investigator who designed the global trials to understand the efficacy of both of the prophylactic human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines to control cervical cancer. She was a lead author in multiple Lancet publications,New England Journal of Medicine and JAMA, and co-author of more than 140 additional articles on cervical cancer prevention. She also has consulted for and published with the World Health Organization on the use of prophylactic HPV vaccines. Harper is a member of the NIH’s Population Sciences and Epidemiology Integrated Review Group of the Epidemiology of Cancer Study Section, as well as the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Special Emphasis Panel on HPV Vaccine Impact among Men who have Sex with Men (MSM) and Serosorting and Other Seroadaptive Behaviors Among Men Who Have Sex With Men (MSM) in the US.

In ELAM’s 20-year history, 16 faculty members from UofL have completed the fellowship, including UofL School of Medicine Dean, Toni M. Ganzel, M.D., M.B.A., who participated in 2003-2004.

For more information on the ELAM program, visit the program’s website. A complete list of UofL’s ELAM alumnae is included below.


The Hedwig van Ameringen Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine® (ELAM®) Program

University of Louisville Alumnae


Lourdes C. Corman, M.D. (1996-1997)

Professor and Vice Chair of Medicine

Chief, Division of Medical Education

University of Louisville School of Medicine


Laura F. Schweitzer, Ph.D. (1998-1999)

Professor, Department of Anatomical Sciences and Neurobiology

Associate Dean of Faculty Affairs

Associate Dean of Student Affairs

University of Louisville School of Medicine


Linda F. Lucas, M.D. (1999-2000)

Associate Professor of Anesthesiology

University of Louisville School of Medicine

Director, One Day Surgery

University of Louisville Hospital


Barbara J. McLaughlin, Ph.D. (2000-2001)

Professor of Ophthalmology

Associate Dean for Research

University of Louisville School of Medicine


Connie L. Drisko, DDS (2001-2002)

Professor of Periodontics

Assistant Dean for Research

University of Louisville School of Dentistry


Susan Galandiuk, M.D. (2001-2002)

Professor of Surgery

University of Louisville School of Medicine


Mary Thoesen Coleman, M.D., Ph.D. (2002-2003)

Associate Professor of Family and Community Medicine

Vice Chair for Clinical Affairs, Department of Family and Community Medicine

University of Louisville School of Medicine


Toni M. Ganzel, M.D., M.B.A. (2003-2004)

Interim Dean, School of Medicine

Professor of Surgery, and Otolaryngology

University of Louisville School of Medicine


V. Faye Jones, M.D., Ph.D., M.S.P.H. (2007-2008)

Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

Professor of Pediatrics

University of Louisville School of Medicine


Kathy B. Baumgartner, Ph.D. (2008-2009)

Associate Professor of Epidemiology and Population Health

University of Louisville School of Public Health and Information Sciences


Melanie R. Peterson, D.M.D., M.B.A. (2008-2009)

Associate Professor of Dentistry

University of Louisville School of Dentistry


Anees B. Chagpar, M.D., M.Sc., M.P.H. (2009-2010)

Academic Advisory Dean, School of Medicine

Director, Multidisciplinary Breast Program

Associate Professor of Surgery

University of Louisville School of Medicine


Jill Suttles, Ph.D. (2010-2011)

Professor of Microbiology and Immunology

University of Louisville School of Medicine


Kelli Bullard Dunn, M.D. (2012-2013)

Professor of Surgery

University of Louisville School of Medicine


Sharmila Makhija, M.D., M.B.A. (2012-2013)

Chair, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Women's Health

Donald E. Baxter Endowed Chair in Obstetrics and Gynecology

Professor of Gynecologic Oncology

University of Louisville School of Medicine


M. Ann Shaw, M.D. (2013-2014)

Associate Dean for Medical Education

Academic Advisory Dean

Professor of Medicine

University of Louisville School of Medicine

UofL program improves half-century staple for teaching medical students

'Academic Medicine' publishes UofL report on innovative way to utilize standardized patients
UofL program improves half-century staple for teaching medical students

For more than 50 years, standardized patients have been a staple of medical school instruction. These individuals are trained in symptoms and problems associated with disease and act as patients to give medical students hands-on training in the practice of medicine.

Today, the University of Louisville School of Medicine has taken use of standardized patients (SPs) to a new level, allowing more students to achieve learning objectives in a compressed time period and learn more about managing the continuity of care for patients.

The Longitudinal Standardized Patient Project gives students a single SP to see throughout their two-year Introduction to Clinical Medicine course. In the course, students must successfully master the core patient history-taking, examination and communication skills they will need for their future training and ultimately, as practicing physicians.

“In the program, each student only sees ‘their’ patient, one of nine patient characters we have developed, in 19 different patient encounters,” said Charles Kodner, M.D., director of the Introduction to Clinical Medicine course. “This single SP enables the development of a continuity relationship, eliminating the need for the student to review the patient’s history with each encounter. Students gain time to focus on the purpose of the patient visit and the individual learning outcome they are expected to achieve.

“In short, the Longitudinal Standardized Patient Project more closely mirrors what our students will see when they start caring for actual patients later in their training and once they become practicing physicians.”

The ongoing student-SP relationship has strong benefits for the student, said Carrie Bohnert, director of the UofL Standardized Patient Program. “Students begin to realize much earlier in the medical education that patients are real people with potentially complex personal and medical histories,” she said. “They are able to experience a doctor-patient relationship that has continuity – something not otherwise available during the first two years of medical school.”

An unexpected benefit has been the growing role of the SP as teacher as well. “Our SPs have developed personal teaching relationships with their students and are able to identify subtle changes in student skill development or lack of development and other problems that might otherwise be missed without a strong continuity relationship,” Bohnert said.

The program has been well-received, Kodner said. “As we survey students both before and after the Longitudinal Standardized Patient Project, we have observed substantial increases in our students’ perceptions that the cases were realistic and that they could learn about medical problems and their patient as a person in the time available.”

Said Bohnert, “the outcomes of this program have exceeded expectations, allowing our students to experience both the joys and the challenges of a long-term doctor-patient relationship.”

Kodner and Bohnert discuss the program in an article, “The Longitudinal Standardized Patient Project: Innovation from Necessity,” in  Academic Medicine, published online Nov. 18 and scheduled for publication in an upcoming issue of the print version of the journal.

Academic Medicine is the scholarly journal of the Association of American Medical Colleges, the accrediting body and professional organization of medical schools in the United States and Canada.

Funding for the Longitudinal Standardized Patient Project was provided in part by a Paul Weber Award of $50,000 for Excellence in Teaching, awarded May 2010 by the University of Louisville.




UofL is first to launch free open access internal medicine education series provides online medical lectures to anyone
UofL is first to launch free open access internal medicine education series

The home page of features links to online lectures and additional multimedia in internal medicine.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The University of Louisville Department of Medicine has launched what is believed to be the first open-access internal medicine education online community in the United States. provides free evidenced-based medical education lectures that are available to anyone. The project was developed by resident physicians in internal medicine – physicians who have received their medical degrees but are still in training before practicing on their own. The lectures are presented by faculty from the University of Louisville School of Medicine.

The project makes internal medicine didactic lectures, grand rounds and other special lectures easily accessible to UofL residents and for the education of medical students, physicians and other medical professionals everywhere. Over 40 lectures are already online, attracting more than 1,400 subscribers from over 100 countries, with over 25,000 views.

The program was developed under the leadership of Jennifer Koch, M.D., program director of UofL’s internal medicine residency program with support from Jesse Roman, M.D., chair of the Department of Medicine. Internal medicine resident physician Michael Burk, M.D. serves as the founder and managing director of the site along with a team of resident physicians including Laura Bishop, M.D., Brady Wright, M.D., Chris Migliore, M.D., Shanna Barton, M.D. and chief medical resident Ishan Mehta, M.D.

“We have faculty at the UofL School of Medicine who are extremely knowledgeable and amazing teachers. Why keep this knowledge to ourselves, when we can contribute to the international community of medical education?” Koch said. “Our goal is to teach the world medicine.”

The effort is part of the international #FOAMed movement.  Advocates of #FOAMed seek to accelerate medical knowledge sharing.

The hashtag refers to the concept of Free Open Access “Meducation” (medical education), first promoted at the 2012 International Conference on Emergency Medicine in a lecture by Mike Cadogan, an emergency medicine physician, educator and digital media enthusiast from Australia. Frustrated by the resistance of many physicians and medical educators to the serious potential of social media, he decided to rebrand what he and others were doing online as a form of continuing education.

"We've actively managed to engage a large group of researchers and significant academics who are moving away from writing textbooks and journal articles to doing more in the online arena," Cadogan said. "That's lending a sense of credence to what we're doing."

"The journals are still an essential part of the culture we work in," he allowed, but medical education is starting to be influenced by the open source and open content trends on the Internet, where "you take all the simple stuff, all the basic knowledge, and make it free."

While never intended to replace traditional medical education, #FOAMed efforts such as will greatly augment the availability and access of quality medical education programs.

Match Day 2015 starts future physicians on their professional journey

Event that matches medical students to residencies set for March 20
Match Day 2015 starts future physicians on their professional journey

Students are waiting for noon to strike before opening the envelopes telling them where they have matched in this photo from the 2014 Match Day program.

Approximately 160 fourth-year students in the University of Louisville School of Medicine will take part in Match Day, the nationally observed event that matches graduating medical students to the residency programs they will complete after graduation.

Match Day in Louisville will be held Friday, March 20, at the Greater Louisville Medical Society, 101 W. Chestnut St. Doors open at 10 a.m.

Match Day is a joyous, exciting event for medical students and their families, as all students receive an envelope at noon Eastern Standard Time, open it and find out where their professional journey as a medical doctor will take them.

The process begins months before. The National Resident Matching Program (NRMP) provides a uniform process for matching medical school applicants’ preferences for residency positions with residency programs’ preferences for applicants.

Following interviews with their choices of residency programs, fourth-year medical students submit those preferences to the NRMP. The residency programs do likewise, submitting their preferences for applicants to the NRMP. A matching algorithm then uses those preferences to place individuals into positions, and all matches throughout the United States are announced at the same time on Match Day.



Art to Beat Cancer features more than 60 works of art

Art to Beat Cancer features more than 60 works of art

"A Horse" by Ekaterina Ziuzina is among the works of art being auctioned at Art to Beat Cancer to benefit the UofL James Graham Brown Cancer Center.

More than 60 works of art by 18 national and international artists will be featured at Art to Beat Cancer, Friday, Nov. 23. The event kicks off at 5:30 p.m. at the Green Building, 732 E. Market St.

Art to Beat Cancer benefits research being carried out by the University of Louisville’s James Graham Brown Cancer Center. Created by artist Doyle Glass, Art to Beat Cancer supports the Kim and Doyle Glass Endowment for Developmental Therapeutics. Doyle’s wife Kim is currently battling Stage IV breast cancer, and the Glasses have established the endowment with a goal of raising $1 million to provide critical funding to move new cancer-fighting drugs from the research stage to the clinical setting.

Bidding is currently open for each work of art on the Bidding For Good website. Additionally, for only $50 you can participate in an art ticket raffle for a 1 in 24 chance to win one of 18 paintings, each valued at up to $4,000. People also are welcome to make a cash donation, which will be matched on the Bidding for Good website. Winning bids will be announced at the event.

In addition to Doyle Glass, artists represented at Art to Beat Cancer are Eric Bowman, Jill Carver, J.M. Culver, Glenn Dean, Patrick Donley, Bato Dugarzhapov, Mark Haworth, Joshua Jenkins, Matthew Katz, Kevin Macpherson, Wanda Macpherson, Denise LaRue Mahlke, C.W. Mundy, Antonio Rodriguez, David Schuster, Michele Usibelli, Dan Young and Ekaterina Ziuzina.

For additional information, contact Michael Neumann, 502-852-4642.

UofL post-doctoral fellow earns award from veterans’ group for top funding application

UofL post-doctoral fellow earns award from veterans’ group for top funding application

Lynnette Montgomery, Ph.D. receives Fritz Krauth Award from PVA

University of Louisville researcher Lynnette Montgomery, Ph.D., has received the 2015 Fritz Krauth Memorial Fellowship Award from the Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA), for submitting the top scholarship application to the organization for the year. Earlier this year, Montgomery was awarded a two-year, $100,000 scholarship from the PVA for research she is conducting in the lab of Charles Hubscher, Ph.D., in the Department of Anatomical Sciences and Neurobiology.

Montgomery, one of eight researchers who received grants from the PVA Research Foundation in 2015, is studying how activity-based rehabilitation can improve bladder function after spinal cord injury (SCI). Often, following SCI, the bladder produces excessive urine, a condition known as polyuria. This can lead to a high number of catheterizations, each of which increases the possibility of urinary complications.

Preliminary work in Hubscher’s lab has shown that the hormone vasopressin decreases following spinal cord injury, causing an increase in the production of urine. Montgomery is working with rodent models to understand the mechanisms behind vasopressin reduction and hopes to determine whether exercise and medication aimed at increasing vasopressin levels will alleviate polyuria following SCI.

“It’s an exciting area of research and it is very under studied,” Montgomery said. “Bladder control is one of the top quality-of-life issues for spinal cord injury patients. If a patient has to use a catheter four times a day instead of six, or is able to sleep through the night instead of waking for catheterization, it makes a big difference in quality of life.”

The Krauth Fellowship is named for Fritz Krauth, a Navy veteran who incurred a spinal cord injury as a naval aviator. Prior to his death in 2002, Krauth provided a gift to PVA to support research initiatives through the PVA Research Foundation. The foundation provides grants that will lead to improved understanding and treatment of spinal cord injury and disease. The researcher submitting the top fellowship application to the PVA each year is honored with the Fritz Krauth Memorial Fellowship Award.

“Paralyzed Veterans of America is dedicated to advancing research for spinal cord injury and dysfunction and supporting leading medical experts such as Dr. Montgomery. Her breakthrough findings will improve the life of veterans and every person living with SCI. It will also ensure they have the means to pursue a life undefined by disability,” said Sherman Gillums, Jr., deputy executive director of PVA.

A native of Australia, Montgomery came to the University of Louisville in 2013 to join Hubscher’s lab. Hubscher was recently awarded continued funding from the Department of Defense.

“The translational research studies being conducted in our laboratory address the areas of highest priority and utmost importance for the spinal cord injured population, bladder and sexual function,” Hubscher said. “The award from the Paralyzed Veterans of America and continued funding from the Department of Defense will allow us to address multiple questions regarding potential underlying mechanisms for the benefits of activity-based rehabilitation on urogenital function after spinal cord injury.”


About Paralyzed Veterans of America

Paralyzed Veterans of America is a congressionally chartered veterans service organization dedicated solely for the benefit and representation of veterans with spinal cord injury or disease. For nearly 70 years, PVA has ensured that veterans have received the benefits earned through their service to our nation, monitored their care in VA spinal cord injury units and funded research and education in the search for a cure and improved care for individuals with paralysis. In addition, PVA develops career services, works to ensure accessibility in public buildings, provides health and rehabilitation opportunities through sports and recreation, and advocates for veterans and all people with disabilities.


November 16, 2015

UofL faculty member named ‘Research Exemplar’

Bhatnagar among 28 nationwide named by P.I. Program at Washington University in St. Louis
 UofL faculty member named ‘Research Exemplar’

Aruni Bhatnagar, Ph.D.

The director of the Diabetes & Obesity Center at the University of Louisville has been named one of just 28 “Research Exemplars” in the biomedical field by the P.I. Program through the Center for Clinical and Research Ethics at Washington University in St. Louis and in collaboration with St. Louis University.

Aruni Bhatnagar, Ph.D., the Smith and Lucille Gibson Chair in Medicine, was cited for conducting high-quality, high-impact research and exemplifying professionalism and integrity in research. The Research Exemplars were selected for their leadership and management skills in successfully running research laboratories and mentoring junior faculty.

“Aruni Bhatnagar’s commitment to research and to the development of the next generation of researchers is well known within the University of Louisville community,” William Pierce, Ph.D., executive vice president for research and innovation, said. “For his efforts to be distinguished by the Exemplar Project solidifies his place as one of the standard-bearers of research quality and integrity.”

UofL’s director of research integrity concurred. “Washington University in St. Louis and St. Louis University have a position of national leadership in the area of research professionalism. This award recognizes decades of Aruni's work and affirms the critical role mentoring plays in the responsible and successful conduct of research,” Allison Ratterman, Ph.D., said.

About Aruni Bhatnagar, Ph.D.

Aruni Bhatnagar, Ph.D., holds dual professorships in medicine and in biochemistry and molecular biology. He joined UofL in 1998. Bhatnagar is a Distinguished University Scholar, director of the UofL Diabetes and Obesity Center and a Fellow of the American Heart Association.

Bhatnagar is a leading environmental health scientist who led the creation of the field of environmental cardiology. Through multidisciplinary approaches, he has identified the influence of environmental factors that contribute to systemic inflammation and cardiovascular disease risk. His work has extended from basic bench research to national and global policy.

With more than 200 peer-reviewed journal articles and $100 million in research support, colleagues hold him in the highest esteem an intellectual leader and as an exemplary mentor, teacher and public servant. He has been a member of more than 50 review panels of the National Institutes of Health, Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Defense. He currently serves as the deputy editor of the journal, Circulation Research. Under his mentorship, more than 15 junior investigators have obtained independent funding.

Colleagues describe Bhatnagar as an innovative, productive scientist who is extraordinarily skilled at leading large research programs and who ensures the highest standards of scientific integrity.

“I am honored to join my peers from across the United States as a Research Exemplar,” Bhatnagar said. “This program focuses on the intersection of leading a research lab and conducting high-quality, high-impact research with integrity and professionalism.

“To be included among this group is extremely gratifying and reaffirms my commitment to the role of research scientist.”


'Noah and Dr. B'

UofL business professor, wife with son facing serious illness start fund to help other families
'Noah and Dr. B'

Salvatore Bertolone Jr., M.D., talks with 16-year-old Noah as parents Geneva and Mike Barone look on.

A University of Louisville College of Business professor and his wife have created a new fund to help families with children who are patients of the UofL Physicians-Pediatric Cancer and Blood Diseases clinic.

Donations are being accepted by the fund which has been set up to help families pay for expenses not covered by insurance and to help improve the clinic’s ability to treat patients. Approximately $16,000 of the $50,000 goal the family has set has been raised thus far.

The Dr.Salvatore Bertolone Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Fund has been created by Michael Barone, Ph.D., professor of marketing, and his wife Geneva to assist families with children who are patients of Salvatore J. Bertolone Jr., M.D., and other physicians at the clinic. Bertolone is a specialist in pediatric cancer and blood diseases with UofL Physicians and chief clinical operations officer for subspecialties with the Department of Pediatrics at UofL.

Nicknamed the “Noah and Dr. B” fund on Facebook and GoFundMe, the fund is named for Bertolone and the Barone’s 16-year-old son, who has been battling a rare brain disorder, inflammatory pseudotumor (IPT), since 2006. Bertolone has treated Noah since the family moved to Louisville from Iowa shortly after his diagnosis.

IPTs are non-cancerous lesions that can affect organ systems but originate in the central nervous system. In Noah, the IPTs have attacked his brain stem, affecting his ability to move, speak, see and maintain balance.

A variety of treatments were prescribed for Noah before Bertolone hit upon a chemotherapy-type drug known as Revlimid® (lenalidomide) and another chemotherapeutic agent, VP-16.

“We kept looking, and then decided to try an anti-inflammatory,” Bertolone said. “Now, Noah is in school every day. He’s walking, and we hope he can keep his disease at bay.”

“After these treatments, Noah saw improvement in just a week’s time,” said Geneva Barone. “His speech is better, his whole body is more mobile, and he has more energy.”

“During the summer, he worked hard in physical therapy, and his balance, strength, endurance and ability to get around greatly improved,” Michael Barone said.

Noah, who is a junior at North Oldham High School, said, “I believe that this disease has been a blessing in disguise because it has allowed me to have relationship with great people such as Dr. B and the others at the clinic.  The care I have received there has made me want to help other kids at the clinic and their families deal with their diseases.”

Noah’s success as a patient of Bertolone’s inspired the family to give back. In December 2014, Michael and Geneva made an initial gift of $10,000 to start the Noah and Dr. B fund, which assists the families of Bertolone’s patients with expenses not associated with their treatment but are just as necessary.

“We know not every family has the means for all the expenses associated with a serious illness of their child,” Michael Barone said. “The fund we have set up is designed to help with those ‘extras’ – gas money, transportation, meals – as well as medical-related expenses that aren’t covered by their health plan.” To date, the fund has been used by the clinic to purchase new infusion pumps used in treatment and to help some families with first-time prescription co-payments.

“We’re looking forward to raising more funds and seeing those monies being used to help the clinic and families in more ways. We have just recently been selected a Kentucky Derby Marathon Charity and are looking for other ways to raise money for the fund. Bottom line, we just want the fund to help families have less to worry about,” he said. “They already have so much to worry about as it is.”

“The fund that Noah’s family has set up is just so typical of that family,” Bertolone said. “They have seen the needs of the patients and the parents in the clinic, and they are just such loving, wonderful people.

“In spite of this overwhelming disease that their son has, they look out and say, ‘What can we do for others who come here (to the clinic) and help make life a little better for them?’”

For more information about this fund, visit the Noah and Dr. B page on Facebook at, and to donate, go to

Petrino to walk the red carpet at The Julep Ball

Petrino to walk the red carpet at The Julep Ball

UofL Football Coach Bobby Petrino

Most often seen walking the sidelines, University of Louisville Head Football Coach Bobby Petrino will be walking the red carpet instead on May 2.

Petrino and wife Becky will be celebrity guests at The Julep Ball, the premier Derby Eve Party with a Purpose. Held annually on the evening before the Kentucky Derby, The Julep Ball supports the work of the James Graham Brown Cancer Center at the University of Louisville. The event on May 2 at the KFC Yum! Center kicks off with a 6:30 p.m. cocktail reception, followed by dinner and a live auction at 8 p.m.

An Official Event of the 140th Kentucky Derby®, The Julep Ball provides a celebrity-studded night to remember with a multi-course seated dinner, a knock-your-socks-off auction, multiple open specialty bars, complimentary valet parking, and dancing until the wee hours of Derby morning. Tickets to The Julep Ball sell out in advance each year. The full evening’s entertainment is $600 per person, $5,000 for a table of 10, and $100 per person for dance-only tickets. For further information and to buy tickets, go to The Julep Ball website,

About Bobby Petrino

One of the nation's best offensive minds returned home to Louisville in January when UofL Vice President/Director of Athletics Tom Jurich announced Petrino as the Cardinals' football coach. The Cardinals’ head coach from 2003-06, Petrino led UofL to an unprecedented 41-9 record in four seasons on the sidelines and currently boasts an 83-30 record at the collegiate level.

During his time at Louisville, Petrino directed the program to a bowl game each year, but more significantly, guided the school to its first BCS victory – a 24-13 win over Wake Forest in the FedEx Orange Bowl. The 41 wins over that four-year span are the most in school history and featured an average margin of victory of 26.0.

He also showed the ability to develop players, as Petrino had 14 selected in the NFL Draft, including Amobi Okoye, who was the 10th overall selection in 2007 by the Houston Texans. Eric Wood, who was recruited by Petrino, was the 28th selection by the Buffalo Bills in 2009. Michael Bush, a fourth-round pick by the Oakland Raiders, amassed 2,514 rushing yards in three-plus seasons with the Cardinals.

Coupling his success at Louisville and Arkansas, Petrino has led his teams to seven bowl games in nine years, including both Louisville’s and Arkansas’ first BCS bowl games. His programs have achieved four 10-win seasons along with top-10 finishes nationally three times. His 2006 Louisville squad and 2011 Arkansas team concluded with No. 5 rankings in the Associated Press polls.

During Petrino’s time at Louisville, he coached the Bronko Nagurski and Ted Hendricks Award winner Elvis Dumervil, who led the nation in sacks (20) and forced fumbles (10) on his way to earning All-America honors in 2006. During that same season, Bush scored 24 touchdowns and became the school's first 1,000-yard rusher since 1999.

While the head coach of three different programs, Petrino’s offenses have compiled a 100-yard rusher on 99 occasions and a 300-yard passer 66 times over the last 15 seasons.

Prior to returning to Louisville, Petrino spent one season as head coach at Western Kentucky, where he helped WKU finish the regular season with an FBS school record eight wins while closing the season on a four-game winning streak. The team also set a new school record for total offense (5,502 yards) and passing first downs (141) in a season.


About the James Graham Brown Cancer Center:

The James Graham Brown Cancer Center is a key component of the University of Louisville Health Sciences Center. As part of the region's leading academic, research and teaching health center, the cancer center provides the latest medical advances to patients, often long before they become available in non-teaching settings. The JGBCC is a part of KentuckyOne Health and is affiliated with the Kentucky Cancer Program. It is the only cancer center in the region to use a unified approach to cancer care, with multidisciplinary teams of physicians working together to guide patients through diagnosis, treatment and recovery. For more information, visit our web site,

The Julep Ball is sponsored in part by Advanced Cancer Therapeutics, Ashton Advertising, Bob Montgomery Dixie Honda, Boutique Serendipity, The Dahlem Company, Dillards, Enterprise, Headz Salon, Heaven Hill, Hubbuch & Co., InGrid Design, Jaust Consulting Partners, Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, KentuckyOne Health, Kroger, Louisville Magazine, Maker’s Mark, Millennium: The Takeda Oncology Company, Morgan Stanley, MPI Printing, Nfocus, Old 502 Winery, Power Creative, Tito’s Handmade Vodka, WAKY and WHAS11.