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Honor for Service—The Einstein Postdoctoral Association (EPA) elected Elena Martynova, Ph.D., to represent Einstein at the National Postdoctoral Association Conference this April, in Cleveland, Ohio. With more than 500 postdoctoral scholars, faculty, and industry representatives expected to attend, the conference is the largest in the nation at which postdocs can network and improve their professional and leadership skills. The EPA selects one postdoc annually to attend the conference with sponsorship provided by the Belfer Institute. The honor recognizes Dr. Martynova’s dedication to improving postdoctoral life through her participation in numerous campus groups, including the Quality of Life committee, the Senate Council committee, the Einstein Senate, and the EPA. Dr. Martynova is a postdoctoral fellow in the lab of Ales Cvekl, Ph.D., who is professor of ophthalmology & visual sciences and of genetics, the Max Berger Chair in Ophthalmology, and vice chair for research in of ophthalmology & visual sciences.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Innovative Recognition—The National Academy of Inventors (NAI) has elected William Jacobs, Jr., Ph.D., as an NAI fellow. The distinction recognizes his numerous accomplishments as an innovator in biomedical research and is the highest professional accolade bestowed to academic inventors. These include development of the shuttle plasmid for use in introducing foreign DNA into mycobacteria and establishment of dual-reporter and luciferase mycobacteriophages to rapidly diagnose drug-resistant tuberculosis. Dr. Jacobs’ research focuses on developing systems to genetically manipulate the Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the  causative agent of tuberculosis. In recent years there has been an alarming increase in the incidence of tuberculosis that is resistant to some or all of the drugs currently available. The World Health Organization has declared this a global health emergency. Dr. Jacobs’ lab currently aims to identify genes that play a key role in the virulence of M. tuberculosis, and which may prove to be effective targets for drug development. Dr. Jacobs is professor of microbiology & immunology and of genetics and holds the Leo and Julia Forchheimer Chair in Microbiology & Immunology at Einstein and has been a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator for the last 30 years. 

Monday, February 12, 2018

Rewarding Development—Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the most common liver disorder in the United States. The Harrington Discovery Institute, in Cleveland, Ohio, has selected Victor Schuster, M.D., as a recipient of its 2018 Harrington Scholar-Innovator Award. Through support from the institute, awardees undertake innovative studies in diverse fields, ranging from cancer, diabetes, and liver disease, to osteoporosis and addiction, and are encouraged to develop products that could have commercial potential. The honor provides Dr. Schuster with a two-year grant supporting his efforts to develop a small molecule drug to mitigate and reverse nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). Using funds from the award, Dr. Schuster and his team will investigate therapeutic potential of increasing the body’s level of cell communication molecules called prostaglandins in a preclinical mouse model of NAFLD. The goal of the study is to significantly improve treatment outcomes for NAFLD and liver fibrosis/cirrhosis treatment worldwide. Dr. Schuster is senior vice-dean, professor of medicine and of physiology and biophysics, and holds the Ted and Florence Baumritter Chair in Medicine.

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Invited Keynote Address—The National Cancer Institute (NCI) and the American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB) have invited John Condeelis, Ph.D., to deliver the keynote address at their workshop “Imaging Subcellular to Cellular Cancer Biology,” on April 5, 2018, at the NIH Natcher Conference Center, in Bethesda, MD.  He will present “Multiphoton Intravital Imaging at Single Cell Resolution Reveals the Mechanism of Cancer Cell Dissemination and Metastasis.” Dr. Condeelis is a pioneer in study of the tumor microenvironment using multiphoton imaging techniques to understand the mechanisms that allow cancer to spread. His discoveries have been used by clinicians at Einstein-Montefiore in the clinical prognosis and treatment of breast cancer. He is professor and co-chair of anatomy & structural biology, as well as the Judith and Burton P. Resnick Chair in Translational Research. He also is co-director of the Gruss-Lipper Biophotonics Center and of the Integrated Imaging Program, scientific director of the Analytical Imaging Facility, and director of the Tumor Microenvironment and Metastasis Program, in the Albert Einstein Cancer Center.

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Honor of Distinction—The Academy for Radiology & Biomedical Imaging Research presented its 2017 Distinguished Investigator Award to Michael Lipton, M.D., Ph.D., F.A.C.R. The honor recognizes individuals for their achievements in the field of biomedical imaging. Dr. Lipton’s research and clinical efforts using medical imaging have contributed significantly to detecting and characterizing mild brain injuries or concussion. His work on the adverse effects of soccer heading, even in the absence of concussion, has garnered international press attention.  His laboratory uses noninvasive methods to understand human cognition, behavior and functional abnormalities of the brain. Dr. Lipton is professor of radiology, of psychiatry and behavioral sciences, and in the Dominick P. Purpura Department of Neuroscience. He also is associate director of Einstein’s Gruss Magnetic Resonance Research Center, Director of Radiology Research and Medical Director of MRI Services at Montefiore.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Most Downloaded Article—A publication by Jill Crandall, M.D., and colleagues, titled, “Statin use and risk of developing diabetes: results from the Diabetes Prevention Program,” appearing in the October 1, 2017 issue of BMJ Open Diabetes Research & Care, is the journal’s most downloaded article of the year. Dr. Crandall’s study found that the use of statins —a class of drugs used to lower blood cholesterol—heightens the risk of type 2 diabetes (T2D) in susceptible individuals. It was already known that long-term use of statins increases the risk of T2D in patients at low risk for the disease by 10 to 12 percent. Dr. Crandall and colleagues looked at the incidence of T2D among 3,234 participants in the Diabetes Prevention Program —a population already at high risk for T2D— and found that statin use increased their T2D risk by close to 30 percent. The publication received coverage in U.S. News & World Report and was the subject of more than 500 tweets. Dr. Crandall is professor of medicine, director of the Diabetes Clinical Trials Unit, and an attending physician in medicine at Montefiore.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Advocacy and Community Service Award—The Society of General Internal Medicine (SGIM) has awarded Eva Metalios, M.D., the 2017 Mid-Atlantic SGIM Advocacy and Community Service Award. The award is given annually to an SGIM clinician member in the mid Mid-Atlantic region —which includes New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C.— who has made significant contributions to improve the health of his/her community through advocacy and/or community service. Dr. Metalios was recognized for her work developing and overseeing the Bronx Human Rights Clinic. A founding physician and volunteer at the clinic since its inception in 1993, she has spent more than two decades providing care, developing programs, and conducting research focused on marginalized populations, specifically torture survivors and asylum seekers in the United States. Dr. Metalios is associate professor of medicine at Einstein, as well as medical director for adult medicine at Montefiore’s Wakefield Ambulatory Care Center, and associate program director for the Wakefield Internal Medicine Residency Program.

Monday, January 22, 2018

Eye Institute Honor—Wei Liu, Ph.D., and colleagues were among the five "honorable mentions" awarded by The National Eye Institute (NEI), as part of its 3-D Retina Organoid Challenge, or 3-D ROC. The challenge is part of an ongoing initiative focused on advancing the field of retinal organoid research, with regard to treatment of retinal diseases. According to the NEI, vision-related diseases affect millions of Americans, underscoring the need for innovative and effective treatment options. Challenge participants sought to develop a physiologically competent 3-D model of a human retina; the printing technology has the potential to aid the field of retinal disease therapeutics because of its scalability and reproducibility. Dr. Liu’s research focuses on stem cell-based modeling of retinal development, aimed at disease modeling and repair. Dr. Liu and his team were recognized by the NEI for integrating their expertise in retina biology, engineering and bioprinting into a novel prototype.  Dr. Liu is assistant professor ophthalmology & visual sciences and of genetics.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Leadership Honor—The Allen Institute for Brain Science selected Renata Batista-Brito, Ph.D., as one of its Next Generation Leaders. The honor recognizes novel contributions by neuroscientists at an early stage in their careers. Dr. Batista-Brito’s research focuses on sensory mechanisms in the mature brain and how these processes are altered in neuronal disorders. She has identified key pathways of cortex development within the brain. As a Next Generation Leader, she will receive informal training as a scientific advisor at the institute. She will also engage in collaborative research, and serve as the institute’s ambassador with academic and industry colleagues. Currently completing her postdoctoral work at Yale, Dr. Batista-Brito will join Einstein’s Dominick P. Purpura Department of Neuroscience as an assistant professor in February 2018.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Academy Recognition—The Academy of Behavioral Medicine has elected Jeffrey Gonzalez, Ph.D., a fellow, in recognition of his excellent productivity and accomplishment in the field.  Behavioral medicine is a discipline aimed at developing and integrating behavioral and psychological knowledge relevant to the understanding of health and illness, with findings applied to prevention, treatment and rehabilitation. Dr. Gonzalez’s research aims to identify cognitive factors associated with better treatment compliance in patients with chronic illness, such as Type 2 diabetes. He is particularly interested in establishing the connection between emotional distress, depression and risk of poor health outcomes in variety of chronic diseases. The academy offers a forum for the exchange of cutting-edge ideas to established scientists and leaders in the field. Dr. Gonzalez is associate professor of medicine and of epidemiology & population health.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018
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