Thursday, December 16, 2021
Novavax COVID-19 Vaccine Found to be Safe and Effective in Phase 3 Trial Conducted by UM School of Medicine Researchers
An investigational COVID-19 vaccine made by Novavax was found to be 90 percent effective at preventing COVID-19 illness, according to results from a Phase 3 clinical trial published today in the New England Journal of Medicine. The University of Maryland School of Medicine’s (UMSOM) Center for Vaccine Development and Global Health served as one of the trial sites, and Karen Kotloff, MD, Professor of Pediatrics at UMSOM, served as Co-Chair for the trial protocol.
Tuesday, December 14, 2021
UM School of Medicine’s Office of Public Affairs and Communications Honored with 2021 PRSA ‘Best In Maryland’ Award
The University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM)'s Office of Public Affairs & Communications received the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) 2021 “Best in Maryland Award,” the PRSA’s highest honor, for its COVID-19 Communications program. The award was given at the PRSA Maryland Gala, held on December 9, 2021.
Tuesday, December 07, 2021
UM School of Medicine's Department of Radiation Oncology Announces that Preeminent Scientist, Dr. Zeljko Vujaskovic, will Transition to New Role in the Department
University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) Radiation Oncology Department Chair William F. Regine, MD, FACR, FACRO, announced today that Zeljko Vujaskovic, MD, PhD, Professor and Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Radiation Oncology, will transition from his current faculty position to a new role in the Department, effective December 3, 2021.
Monday, December 06, 2021
UM School of Medicine & Regeneron Researchers Link New Gene Variant in Amish Population to Lower Risk of Heart Disease
University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) researchers, working with scientists from the Regeneron Genetics Center (RGC), discovered a new gene variant associated with lower levels of heart-damaging LDL cholesterol and a blood clotting protein called fibrinogen that appears to significantly lower a person’s risk of heart disease. While the gene variant is extremely rare in the general population (less than 1 in 10,000), it is found in about 12 percent of those living in the Lancaster county, Pennsylvania Amish community, according to the study published today in the journal Science.
Friday, December 03, 2021
UM School of Medicine Researchers Awarded $2 Million NIH Grant to Use Innovative Imaging to Study Causes of Glaucoma
Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) and US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have received a nearly $2 million federal grant to conduct a clinical trial to help determine the pathway that leads to a common cause of blindness, primary open angle glaucoma. It will study how blood flow to the eye’s retina affects the onset and progression of the disease, which could eventually lead to new tests and treatments for the condition.
Wednesday, December 01, 2021
$6.5M Grant Awarded to Develop Treatment for Alcoholic Liver Disease-Associated Kidney Dysfunction
The Institute of Human Virology (IHV) at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) and MitoPower LLC (“MitoPower”) were awarded an SBIR (Small Business Innovation Research) grant of up to $6.5 million over five years from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. The funds will support the development of MitoPower’s lead compound, MP-04, for the treatment of kidney dysfunction due to alcoholic liver disease, a condition known as alcoholic liver disease-associated hepatorenal syndrome (HRS). The IHV, a Center of Excellence member of the Global Virus Network (GVN), will conduct first-in-human single and multiple ascending dose studies to test the safety of the compound, followed by a Phase 1b study in patients.
Tuesday, November 23, 2021
University of Maryland Medicine to Eliminate Race from Kidney Function Estimates
University of Maryland Medicine, comprised of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS) and the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) has announced that it will end the use of a long-standing clinical standard that factors a patient’s race into the diagnosis of chronic kidney disease (CKD). The change could increase access to specialty care, including eligibility for kidney transplantation for thousands of African American people living with advanced kidney disease.
Tuesday, November 16, 2021
UM School of Medicine Names Sofia Cascio as the First Director of Student Financial Wellness
Donna L. Parker, MD, Senior Associate Dean for Undergraduate Medical Education, along with Kerri Thom, MD, MS, Associate Dean for Student Affairs at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM), announced today that Sofia Cascio, MBA, has been named the school’s first Director of Student Financial Wellness.
Tuesday, November 09, 2021
Retinoid Therapy May Improve Vision in People with Rare Genetic Disorder, According to Study in Mice from University of Maryland School of Medicine and NIH
Using data generated from patients and mice with genetic mutation for the disorder Usher syndrome, researchers from the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM), the National Institutes of Health’s National Eye Institute (NEI), and National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD), documented the natural history of vision impairment in patients and identified the cell mechanism behind progressive vision loss.
Thursday, November 04, 2021
University of Maryland School of Medicine Institute of Human Virology Researchers Receive $6.5M to Create African Big Data Hub Designed to Address Public Health and Pandemic Preparedness
Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM)’s Institute of Human Virology (IHV), a Global Virus Network (GVN) Center of Excellence, have received $6.5 million from the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) to streamline big data collection in Nigeria and South Africa in addressing public health needs of the COVID-19 and HIV pandemics.
Tuesday, November 02, 2021
Unexpected Antibody Type Found in People with Malaria Infections
Malaria, a pathogen transmitted into blood by mosquitoes in tropical climates, is typically thought of as a blood and liver infection. However, in a newly published study, researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) have detected antibodies primarily made in response to infections in the mucous membranes — in such areas as the lungs, intestines, or vagina — in study participants with malaria.
Thursday, October 21, 2021
New Research Finds Air Pollution Reduces Sperm Counts through Brain Inflammation
Researchers have long known that air pollution can increase the risk of disorders such as obesity, diabetes, and fertility, but they did not know the exact mechanism for how it can lead to these health conditions.
Tuesday, October 19, 2021
UM School of Medicine Establishes Two New Endowed Professorships and Center for Pathogen Research through Private Gifts and Matching State Funds
University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) Dean E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, announced today that the school of medicine has been awarded $1.25 million in matching funds from the Maryland E-Nnovation Initiative Fund (MEIF), administered by the Maryland Department of Commerce. The funds, totaling $2.5 million when combined with private philanthropy, will enable the establishment of a new Center for Pathogen Research. They will also enable the UMSOM to support research professorships in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology and the Department of Neurology.
Monday, October 18, 2021
University of Maryland School of Medicine Neurology Chair Peter B. Crino, MD, PhD, Receives Prestigious Neuroscience Award
University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) Dean E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA announced today that Peter B. Crino, MD, PhD, Professor and Chair of UMSOM’s Department of Neurology, has received the Javits Neuroscience Investigator Award (R37), which provides $2.7 million in total funding.
Thursday, October 14, 2021
Isabel L. Jackson, PhD, Named Director of Division of Translational Radiation Sciences (DTRS) in UMSOM’s Department of Radiation Oncology
William F. Regine, MD, FACR, FACRO, Professor and Isadore & Fannie Schneider Foxman Chair of UMSOM’s Department of Radiation Oncology, has announced the promotion of Isabel Lauren Jackson, PhD, to the position of Director of the department’s Division of Translational Radiation Sciences (DTRS). Dr. Jackson, the Marlene & Stewart Greenebaum Professor in Radiation Oncology, previously served as that division’s Deputy Director and Director of the Medical Countermeasure Program (MCP).
Monday, October 04, 2021
University of Maryland Medicine Announces Comprehensive Stroke Center at UMMC Receives Top Honors for Stroke Care
The Comprehensive Stroke Center (CSC) at the University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC) has been recognized by the American Heart Association (AHA) as among the best in the nation for patient care, University of Maryland Medicine (comprised of UMMC and the University of Maryland School of Medicine) announced today. The Center has received multiple accolades from AHA, including Gold Plus Recognition for 85% or higher rates of compliance with AHA’s rigorous, research-based stroke care guidelines; Target Stroke Honor Role Elite for rapid treatment of ischemic stroke patients; and 90 percent or higher compliance with guidelines for treating diabetic strokes. The center’s lifesaving care is provided by faculty from the University of Maryland School of Medicine’s Department of Neurology and its Divisions of Neuroradiology and Neurosurgery.
Wednesday, September 29, 2021
UM School of Medicine Researchers Work to Understand Hearing Loss from Noise Damage through Gene Expression Changes
A growing number of people suffer from hearing loss due to exposure to loud noises from heavy machinery, concerts, or explosions. As a result, scientists have been working to understand the mechanism behind how this damage to hearing actually occurs.
Tuesday, September 28, 2021
UM School of Medicine Radiation Oncologist, Dr. Mark Mishra, Receives Prestigious Team Leadership Award from National Cancer Institute to Promote Collaborative Clinical Research
Mark Mishra, MD, Associate Professor of Radiation Oncology and Director of Clinical Research for the Department of Radiation Oncology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM), has been named a 2021 recipient of the National Cancer Institute’s Cancer Clinical Investigator Team Leadership Award (CCITLA). Dr. Mishra’s clinical trial work at the University of Maryland Greenebaum Comprehensive Cancer Center (UMGCCC) led the center’s director, Kevin Cullen, MD, to nominate him for the award. Dr. Mishra, who focuses on treating patients with tumors of the central nervous system and genitourinary tract, also oversees all radiation oncology clinical trial activities at UMGCC and at affiliated practices across the state of Maryland. He also serves as vice-chair of the UMGCCC Clinical Research Committee.
Thursday, September 23, 2021
Dr. Deanna Kelly Appointed New Chair of Institutional Review Board for the Maryland Department of Health
Deanna Kelly, PharmD, Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM), has been appointed to lead the prestigious committee of experts who review and approve all proposed research projects involving human participants for the Maryland Department of Health (MDH). She will chair the MDH Institutional Review Board (IRB) for the next four years, a position she started in July.
Monday, September 20, 2021
UM School of Medicine Receives $7.5 Million Grant to Create Complex Model of Female Reproductive Tract to Study Infections
Researchers at the Institute for Genome Sciences (IGS) at the University of Maryland School of Medicine have received a $7.5 million federal grant to create a complex model of the female reproductive system in order to study sexually transmitted infections (STIs). They plan to create a realistic 3D model that integrates vaginal and cervical epithelial cells and the bacteria that colonize these cells, called a microbiome. They aim to use this model to identity factors that play a role in chlamydia and gonorrhea infections experienced by a growing number of women in the U.S. and worldwide.
Friday, September 17, 2021
UM School of Medicine Researchers Awarded $3 Million National Cancer Institute Grant for Personalized Imaging to Improve Radiation Treatment
Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) have received more than $3 million in federal funding from the National Cancer Institute to conduct a study to develop a new precision-based medicine approach to treat lung cancer patients with radiation therapy. The R01 grant was awarded in July 2021 to Rao P. Gullapalli, PhD, MBA, Professor and Associate Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Diagnostic Radiology and Nuclear Medicine, and Amit Sawant, PhD, Professor and recently appointed Vice Chair for Medical Physics in the Department of Radiation Oncology. They will serve as co-principal investigators on the 5-year project, which involves an academic–industrial partnership with Robin Medical, Inc., based in Baltimore, MD.
Thursday, September 16, 2021
First Efficacy Results from Africa find Typhoid Vaccine to offer 84 Percent Protection against Typhoid Fever
A new study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, finds a single dose of typhoid conjugate vaccine (TCV) – the only typhoid vaccine licensed for children as young as 6 months – is safe and 84 percent effective in protecting against typhoid in Blantyre, Malawi. These are the first efficacy results from Africa and part of a five-year, multi-country project to accelerate introduction of TCV.
Wednesday, September 15, 2021
Probiotic-Containing Yogurt Protects Against Microbiome Changes That Lead to Antibiotic-Induced Diarrhea, Study Finds
Eating yogurt containing a particular strain of a well-studied probiotic appears to protect against harmful changes in the gut microbiome that are associated with antibiotic administration. That is the finding from a new randomized clinical trial, led by researchers at the University of Maryland School of Maryland (UMSOM), the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy (UMSOP), and Georgetown University Medical Center, which was recently published in the journal Nutrients.
Tuesday, September 14, 2021
University of Maryland Medicine Partners with Vibrent Health to Embark on Landmark Precision Health Research Study
University of Maryland Medicine announced a new partnership today with Vibrent Health, a health technology company based in Fairfax, Virginia, to create the All of Maryland Precision Health Initiative, a statewide digital platform for studies examining how genes and other factors affect health. The mission of All of Maryland -- a study that will be led by University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) researchers -- is to discover better ways to individualize healthcare. The goal is to enable individuals to benefit from treatments tailored to their own health profiles.
Friday, September 10, 2021
UM School of Medicine Study Finds Social Isolation Increases Risk of Death in Seniors Following Critical Illness
Older adults who are socially isolated before spending time in an intensive care unit (ICU) are more likely to experience worsened disability or die when they return home after their hospitalization. That is the finding of a new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Internal Medicine.
Thursday, September 09, 2021
UM School of Medicine Researchers Find Mothers’ Diabetes May Induce Premature Aging of Neural Tissue in Early Development of Fetuses, Leading to Birth Defects
More than 3 million women of birthing age in the U.S. and 60 million in the world have diabetes—a disease that occurs when blood sugar is too high. Even when controlled with insulin, and blood sugar levels are kept mostly in check, maternal diabetes can cause permanent damage to the fetus. About 300,000 to 400,000 fetuses per year from mothers with diabetes develop neural tube defects—when the tissue that eventually forms the brain and spinal cord fails to form properly—which can lead to miscarriage or profound disability.
Wednesday, September 08, 2021
UM School of Medicine Reaching Underserved Communities Through Grass Roots Efforts to Increase COVID-19 Vaccination Rates
In an effort to increase COVID-19 vaccination rates among children and families, and ultimately help bring the pandemic under control, the Department of Family & Community Medicine (DFCM) and the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) are partnering with key community and faith-based groups in Baltimore city to reach the most vulnerable and underserved communities. This partnership will also extend across Maryland, Delaware, Virginia, and West Virginia.
Tuesday, August 31, 2021
Do Genetics Control Who Our Friends Are? It Seems So with Mice
Have you ever met someone you instantly liked, or at other times, someone who you knew immediately that you did not want to be friends with, although you did not know why?
Tuesday, August 31, 2021
Award-Winning Educator Adam Puche, PhD, Named Vice Chair of Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology
Asaf Keller, PhD, Professor and Chair of Anatomy and Neurobiology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM), along with UMSOM Dean E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, announced that award-winning educator Adam Puche, PhD, Professor of Anatomy and Neurobiology, has been appointed to serve as the inaugural Vice Chair of that department, effective immediately.
Friday, August 27, 2021
UM School of Medicine Study Finds Mobile Telemedicine Unit as Effective as Traditional Clinics to Treat Opioid Addiction in Rural Areas
Rural regions in the U.S. have been disproportionately affected by the opioid epidemic, while also having the fewest number of programs to treat opioid use disorder. In an effort to remedy this dire health issue, University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) researchers reconfigured a recreational vehicle (RV) as a telemedicine mobile treatment unit to determine whether it could provide effective screening and treatment to individuals with opioid use disorder in rural areas. Their research, published today in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Network Open, found that the innovative approach to be as successful as traditional brick-and-mortar treatment clinics. The study also found a significant reduction in illicit opioid use among the majority of patients treated on the mobile unit, as well as sustained success in these patients continuing therapy to avoid relapse.
Tuesday, August 24, 2021
Three UMSOM Faculty Members Recognized as 2021 Maryland Daily Record Health Care Heroes
The Maryland Daily Record has honored three leading faculty members at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) with its 2021 Health Care Heroes Awards. The award recognizes those who have provided exceptional service and made significant impacts on the quality of health care in the State of Maryland this year. An outside panel of health care experts selected the winners.
Friday, August 20, 2021
25th Annual White Coat Ceremony Welcomes Class of 2025
On Friday, August 6, 2021, 143 members of UMSOM’s Class of 2025 attended the school’s 25th Annual White Coat Ceremony.. The event was sponsored by the Whiting-Turner Contracting Company and UMSOM’s Medical Family Annual Fund.
Thursday, August 12, 2021
UM School of Medicine's Institute of Human Virology Member Joins Scientific Advisory Committee of the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations
The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) has announced that Alash'le Abimiku, PhD, Professor of Medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) and scientist at UMSOM’s Institute of Human Virology (IHV) will join CEPI’s Scientific Advisory Committee for a three-year appointment. CEPI supports research and development programs in response to infectious outbreaks such as the current COVID-19 pandemic, as well as future pandemics. UMSOM’s Institute of Human Virology is a Global Virus Network (GVN) Center of Excellence.
Wednesday, August 11, 2021
University of Maryland Medicine Study Gauges Hospital Preparedness for the Next National Medical Crisis
A new study from the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) finds that hospitals nationwide may not be adequately prepared for the next pandemic or mass casualty crisis. A 10-year analysis of hospitals’ preparedness for pandemics and other mass casualty events found only marginal improvements in a measurement to assess preparedness during the years leading up to the COVID-19 pandemic. The study was published in June in the Journal of Healthcare Management.
Thursday, August 05, 2021
UM School of Medicine Study Finds Culinary Medicine Training Improves Medical Students’ Nutrition Knowledge and Confidence in Counseling Patients
Medical school students who took a three-hour culinary medicine training course reported feeling more confident in their nutritional knowledge and in their abilities to counsel patients on healthy eating habits, according to a new study from the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM). The study involved 119 UMSOM medical students who participated in a class that includes a nutrition lecture and cooking lessons in a demonstration kitchen at the Institute for Integrative Health, a non-profit organization based in Baltimore. Culinary medicine training is now required as part of the new Renaissance Curriculum instituted last year at UMSOM. The study was published last month in the American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine.
Tuesday, July 27, 2021
Nationally Renowned Interventional Cardiology and Academic Leader Anuj Gupta, MD, Appointed Clinical Co-Director of Cardiovascular Medicine at the UM School of Medicine
University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) Department of Medicine Chair, Stephen Davis, MBBS, along with UMSOM Dean, E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, announced today the appointment of Anuj Gupta, MD, as Clinical Co-Director of Cardiovascular Medicine for the Department of Medicine.
Wednesday, July 21, 2021
University of Maryland School of Medicine Study Finds Calcium Precisely Directs Blood Flow in the Brain
University of Maryland School of Medicine and University of Vermont researchers have shown how the brain communicates to blood vessels when in need of energy, and how these blood vessels respond by relaxing or constricting to direct blood flow to specific brain regions.
Friday, July 16, 2021
New High-Tech Portal Launched to Speed Innovations to Reverse Hearing Loss
Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) have launched a new online tool that could more quickly advance medical discoveries to reverse progressive hearing loss. The tool enables easy access to genetic and other molecular data from hundreds of technical research studies involving hearing function and the ear. The research portal called gene Expression Analysis Resource (gEAR, umgear.org) was unveiled in a study last month in Nature Methods. It is operated by a group of physician-scientists at the UMSOM Institute for Genome Sciences (IGS) in collaboration with their colleagues at other institutions.
Thursday, July 15, 2021
University of Maryland Greenebaum Comprehensive Cancer Center Earns Renewal of Highest Designation for Cancer Center Excellence from National Cancer Institute
The University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Comprehensive Cancer Center (UMGCCC) has earned renewal of its National Cancer Institute (NCI) designation as a Comprehensive Cancer Center for another five years. The prestigious distinction recognizes the cancer center’s high caliber of scientific leadership and robust programs in basic, clinical and population science research, placing it in the top echelon of cancer centers nationwide.
Wednesday, July 07, 2021
UM School of Medicine Researchers Develop Two Rapid Tests for COVID-19 Using Innovative Techniques
Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) have developed two rapid diagnostic tests for COVID-19 that are nearly as accurate as the gold-standard test currently used in laboratories. Unlike the gold-standard test, which extracts RNA and uses it to amplify the DNA of the virus, these new tests can detect the presence of the virus in as little as five minutes using different methods.
Wednesday, July 07, 2021
Overcoming Pandemic Challenges, Third-Year Medical Students Celebrate Annual Student Clinician Ceremony
The annual Student Clinician Ceremony at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) was held in Leadership Hall on July 2, 2021, to formally welcome the third-year medical students to their clinical rotations. In their rotations, students begin seeing patients alongside doctors and residents as they gain experience in primary care and medical specialties.
Tuesday, July 06, 2021
UM School of Medicine Researchers Receive NIH Avant-Garde Award for Out-Of-Box Concept to Cure HIV and Treat Co-Existing Addiction
Linda Chang, MD, MS, Professor of Diagnostic Radiology & Nuclear Medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM), received the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) 2021 Avant-Garde Award (DP1) for HIV/AIDS and Substance Use Disorder Research — a National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director’s Pioneer Award. This prestigious award supports researchers with exceptional creativity, who propose high-impact research with the potential to be transformative to the field.
Wednesday, June 30, 2021
University of Maryland Children’s Hospital Opens First Trauma-Informed Children & Adolescent Psychiatric Unit In Maryland
Children and teens experiencing acute mental health crises have a safe and healing space to recover in the newly-opened Children & Adolescent Psychiatric Unit at the University of Maryland Children's Hospital (UMCH). The 16-bed, state-of-the-art unit is the first in the state designed both architecturally and clinically to deliver "trauma-informed" care for children spanning 5 to 17 years old. Trauma-informed care is a framework for treating patients who have endured abuse, neglect, violence, school issues and other traumatic events—which not all, but many young patients have experienced.
Wednesday, June 23, 2021
IN MEMORIAM: Longtime UM School of Medicine Department Chair, John Kastor, MD
The Department of Medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine is saddened to announce the passing of former Chairman, John Kastor, MD. Dr. Kastor was recruited to the University of Maryland School of Medicine in 1984 and served for 13 years as the first Theodore E. Woodward Professor of Medicine and the 11th Chairman of the Department of Medicine.
Wednesday, June 23, 2021
Recycling of the Eye’s Light Sensors Is Faulty in Progressive Blindness of Older Adults, University of Maryland School of Medicine Researchers Show
With the National Eye Institute reporting that about 11 million older adults in the U.S. endure a condition that leads to progressive blindness, known as age-related macular degeneration, University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) researchers are starting to understand what goes wrong in the disease, in order to develop new therapies to treat it.
Monday, June 21, 2021
UM School of Medicine Researchers Discover Genetic Cause of Neurodevelopmental Disorder
University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) researchers identified a new gene that may be linked to certain neurodevelopmental disorders and intellectual disabilities. The researchers believe that finding genes involved in certain types of developmental disorders, provide an important first step in determining the cause of these disorders and ultimately in developing potential therapies for treating them.
Wednesday, June 16, 2021
UM School of Medicine Researchers Awarded $5 Million NIH Grant to Improve Use of Genetic Risk Scores in Diverse Populations
Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) have received a $5 million federal grant to pool genomic information from existing and new datasets – predominantly in African and African American populations -- in order to calculate the risk of developing specific diseases. They will use sophisticated modeling and genetic datasets to calculate the risk, known as a polygenic risk score, with an emphasis on studying people from different ancestries.
Monday, June 14, 2021
Study Links COVID-19 Public Health Efforts to Dramatic Drop in COPD Hospitalizations
Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) analyzed data at the 13-hospital University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS) and found public health measures designed to reduce the spread of the COVID-19 virus may have fostered a substantial side benefit: Hospital admissions for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) were reduced by 53 percent, according to a new study published in The American Journal of Medicine. This is likely due to a drop in circulating seasonal respiratory viruses such as influenza.
Wednesday, June 09, 2021
Global Study of Microbes in 60 Cities Finds Each Has Unique Fingerprint of Viruses and Bacteria
Each city has its own unique microbiome, a “fingerprint” of viruses and bacteria that serves as type of city profile, according to a new study from an international consortium of researchers that included a team from the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM). The international project, which sequenced and analyzed samples collected from public transit systems and hospitals in 60 cities around the world, was published today in the journal Cell.
Tuesday, June 08, 2021
Nearly One in Five Patients Who Die from Unexplained Sudden Cardiac Death Have Suspicious Gene, UM School of Medicine Study Finds
As many as 450,000 Americans die every year from a sudden, fatal heart condition, and in slightly more than 1 in 10 cases the cause remains unexplained even after an autopsy. Researchers from the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) and their colleagues have found that nearly 1 in 5 patients with unexplained sudden cardiac death – most of whom were under age 50 – carried rare genetic variants. These variants likely raised their risk of sudden cardiac death. In some cases, their deaths may have been prevented if their doctors had known about their genetic predisposition to heart disease. The study findings were published last week in JAMA Cardiology.
Tuesday, June 08, 2021
IN MEMORIAM: UM School of Medicine Biomedical Research Pioneer and Pharmacology Professor, Laure Aurelian, PhD
The Department of Pharmacology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) is saddened to announce the passing of Laure Aurelian, PhD, Professor Emerita of Pharmacology. She was the first woman to receive a PhD from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and was a pioneer who opened doors for many women to pursue research careers in biomedical science. She was also among the first women to receive independent funding from the National Institutes of Health, receiving her first R01 award in 1970.
Wednesday, June 02, 2021
University of Maryland Faculty Physicians, Inc. (FPI) Positions for Significant Business Growth and Advancement, Promotes Three Top Executives to Senior Leadership Positions
William Tucker, MBA, CPA, Associate Dean for Practice Plan Affairs at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) and Chief Corporate Officer for University of Maryland Faculty Physicians, Inc. (FPI), along with UMSOM Dean E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, have announced recent promotions in the FPI organization. These are expected to further enhance the financial growth and success of FPI, the UMSOM’s faculty practice organization.
Friday, May 28, 2021
Grateful Patient David Carroll Makes a $1 Million Bequest Pledge to Support the Future of the Advanced Heart Failure Program
University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) Dean E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, announced today that grateful patient David Carroll has made a generous $1 million bequest pledge in support of the Advanced Heart Failure (AHF) program in UMSOM’s Department of Medicine’s Division of Cardiovascular Medicine. This gift follows an initial five-year pledge of $5,000 made by Mr. Carroll in 2017 for operating support of the program.
Thursday, May 20, 2021
University of Maryland Medicine Performs Two Successful Lung Transplants on Patients with COVID-19 Lung Damage
Two patients who were near death after COVID-19 destroyed their lungs, survived and are thriving due to state-of-the-art care and double-lung transplants by University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) surgeons at the UM Medical Center (UMMC).
Thursday, May 13, 2021
First-in-Maryland Trial Launched to Test Experimental Device for Thoracoabdominal Aortic Aneurysms
Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) launched the first-in-Maryland clinical trial of an experimental device to repair a balloon-like bulge in the aorta, the body’s main artery that extends from the heart through the chest into the abdomen. The UMSOM researchers are also surgeons with the University of Maryland Heart and Vascular Center at the University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC). Surgeons implanted the device to repair the artery in the first patient at UMMC in February.
Tuesday, May 11, 2021
New Study Suggests Pregnant Women Hospitalized for Covid-19 Infection Do Not Face Increased Risk of Death
Pregnant women who develop severe COVID-19 infections that require hospitalization for pneumonia and other complications may not be more likely to die from these infections than non-pregnant women. In fact, they may have significantly lower death rates than their non-pregnant counterparts. That is the finding of a new study published today in the Annals of Internal Medicine conducted by researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM).
Wednesday, May 05, 2021
Three Leading UMSOM Faculty Named Among Maryland's Top 100 Women
The Maryland Daily Record has named three leading faculty members at the University of Maryland School of Medicine to its 2021 listing of Maryland’s Top 100 Women. The three-- Tracy L. Bale, PhD, Professor of Pharmacology; Kimberly Lumpkins, MD, MBA, Associate Professor of Surgery; and Jill RachBeisel, MD, the Dr. Irving J. Taylor Professor and Chair of Psychiatry—were chosen for their “outstanding achievements demonstrated through professional accomplishments, community leadership and mentoring,” according to the publication.
Tuesday, May 04, 2021
“Strength, Resilience, and Partnership”
Marking a previous year unlike any other, the entire University of Maryland School of Medicine community—faculty, staff, students, alumni, friends, and benefactors—gathered as one online on Saturday, May 1 for a virtual hour-long celebration of the 2021 School of Medicine Gala, which coincides annually with the Medical Alumni Association Reunion Weekend.
Tuesday, May 04, 2021
Primary Care Providers Over-Treat Patients Based on Overestimation of Medical Conditions, UM School of Medicine Study Finds
Primary care practitioners often over-estimate the likelihood of a patient having a medical condition based on reported symptoms and laboratory test results. Such overestimations can lead to overdiagnosis and overtreatment, according to a recent study conducted by researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) published in JAMA Internal Medicine.
Friday, April 30, 2021
University of Maryland School of Medicine Begins Pediatric Trial of Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine
This Phase 2/3 Trial Will Test the Vaccine in Children Ages 6 Months to 11 Years
Thursday, April 29, 2021
UMSOM Endowed Professor and Renowned Neurologist Seemant Chaturvedi, MD, Receives Association of Indian Neurologists in America Lifetime Achievement Award
I am very grateful to the selection committee for the honor of the Lifetime Achievement Award. I have participated in AINA activities for more than 15 years and witnessing the growth of the organization has been very rewarding.
Wednesday, April 14, 2021
UM School of Medicine Researchers Map Brain Regions Responsible for Intoxicating Effects of Alcohol
The slurred speech, poor coordination, and sedative effects of drinking too much alcohol may actually be caused by the breakdown of alcohol products produced in the brain, not in the liver as scientists currently think. That is the finding of a new study led by researchers from the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) and the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. It was published recently in the journal Nature Metabolism and provides new insights into how alcohol may affect the brain and the potential for new treatments to treat alcohol misuse.
Tuesday, April 13, 2021
UM School of Medicine Researchers Find Habitual Snoring Linked to Significant Brain Changes in Children
Children who regularly snore have structural changes in their brain that may account for the behavioral problems associated with the condition, including lack of focus, hyperactivity, and learning difficulties at school. That is the finding of a new study conducted by researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM), which was published today in the journal Nature Communications.
Tuesday, April 13, 2021
UM School of Medicine Study Shows that Psychedelic Experience May Not be Required for Psilocybin’s Antidepressant-like Benefits
University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) researchers have shown that psilocybin—the active chemical in “magic mushrooms”— still works its antidepressant-like actions, at least in mice, even when the psychedelic experience is blocked. The new findings suggest that psychedelic drugs work in multiple ways in the brain, and it may be possible to deliver the fast-acting antidepressant therapeutic benefit without requiring daylong guided-therapy sessions.
Monday, April 12, 2021
University of Maryland School of Medicine Study Identifies New Mechanism that May Cause Blindness in Older Adults
Using laboratory-grown roundworms, as well as human and mouse eye tissue, University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) researchers have identified a new potential mechanism for age-related macular degeneration—the leading cause of blindness among older adults. The UMSOM researchers say that the findings suggest a new and distinct cause that is different from the previous model of a problematic immune system, showing that the structural organization of the eye’s light-detecting cells may be affected by the disease. The discovery offers the potential to identify new molecular targets to treat the disease.
Friday, April 09, 2021
Researchers Link Several Heart Disease Risk Factors to Increased Risk of COVID-19 Infections
As the COVID-19 pandemic lingers, researchers have found associations between certain lifestyle factors and a person’s risk of getting infected. While it has already been established that those with Type II diabetes and a high body mass index (BMI) are at greater risk of experiencing hospitalizations and other severe complications related to COVID-19, they are also at greater risk of getting symptomatic infection in the first place. That is the finding of a recent study conducted by researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM)that was published in the journal, PLoS ONE.
Friday, April 09, 2021
Lowering Music Volume at Group Spin Classes Does Not Affect Intensity of Workouts, UM School of Medicine Researchers Find
Fitness center instructors often turn up music volumes significantly during classes sometimes loud enough to cause hearing damage -- based on an assumption that participants will work out more intensively when volumes are raised. A new University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) study, however, found that those who attend indoor cycling (“spinning”) classes do not lower the intensity of their workouts when the volume is reduced to a safer decibel level. The findings were published today in the journal Noise & Health.
Thursday, April 08, 2021
UM School of Medicine Genomics Scientist Claire M. Fraser, PhD, Delivers Passionate Address as Capstone to Her Presidency of American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
Genomic medicine pioneer and leader Claire M. Fraser, PhD, who is the Director of the Institute for Genome Sciences and the Dean’s Endowed Professor at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM), recently concluded her year as President of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) with a stirring lecture at the group’s annual meeting.
Thursday, April 01, 2021
University of Maryland Medicine and the Tuberous Sclerosis Alliance Mark One-Year Anniversary of Center for Adults with Neurodevelopmental Disorders and TSC Center of Maryland
Maryland’s only treatment centers for adults with autism, epilepsy, tuberous sclerosis complex, and other neurodevelopmental conditions fill critical need for clinical care and social support. Across Maryland, adults who have aged out of pediatric programs for neurodevelopment disorders such as autism, have found a critical resource in The University of Maryland Clinical Center for Adults with Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (UMCCAND) and the Tuberous Sclerosis Complex Center of Maryland (TSCCM). Launched one year ago, the two centers provide clinical evaluation, care, and treatment for a range of complex neuro-disabilities including adult autism, epilepsy, tuberous sclerosis, and other neuro-disabilities.
Monday, March 29, 2021
Cancer Drug Lessens the Toxicity of a Protein from the Virus that Causes Covid-19, UM School of Medicine Study Finds
University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) researchers have identified the most toxic proteins made by SARS-COV-2—the virus that causes COVID-19 – and then used an FDA-approved cancer drug to blunt the viral protein’s detrimental effects. In their experiments in fruit flies and human cell lines, the team discovered the cell process that the virus hijacks, illuminating new potential candidate drugs that could be tested for treating severe COVID-19 disease patients. Their findings were published in two studies simultaneously on March 25 in Cell & Bioscience, a Springer Nature journal.
Thursday, March 25, 2021
Longstanding UM School of Medicine Dean and Widely Recognized Academic and Institutional Leader, Dr. E. Albert Reece, Announces He Will Transition from the Deanship in 2022; His Tenure Continued the UMSOM Upward Trajectory as an Academic Powerhouse
University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) Dean E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, a widely recognized visionary leader who elevated the UMSOM into a top-tier biomedical research and patient-focused academic center, announced that he will complete his 16-year tenure as Dean, at the end of the next academic year. He will return to the UMSOM faculty where he will lead a new Center, and continue research and teaching.
Monday, March 22, 2021
University of Maryland School of Medicine Researchers Awarded Funding to Lead National Discussion on Active Surveillance for Men with Low Risk Prostate Cancer
Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) have been awarded $100,000 in funding through the Eugene Washington PCORI Engagement Awards, an initiative of the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). The funds will support a national discussion and conference aimed at identifying evidence gaps to guide future research on the use of active surveillance to monitor low-risk prostate cancers. This approach will serve as an alternative to immediate treatment with surgery, radiation, or hormone therapy which all have potentially debilitating side effects.
Thursday, March 18, 2021
UM School of Medicine Helps Maryland Conduct State-Wide Sequencing of Variants in Positive COVID-19 Test Specimens
In an effort to monitor the spread of COVID-19 variants in the State of Maryland, University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) Dean E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, announced that UMaryland Genomics at UMSOM will perform genome sequencing of variants in at least 10 percent of COVID-19 test samples, reaching an important benchmark set by the federal government to help control the spread of these variants.
Tuesday, March 16, 2021
New Study Finds Healthcare Settings Do Not Pose Added Risk Factor for Covid-19 Infection Spread Among U.S. Healthcare Personnel
Healthcare personnel who were infected with COVID-19 faced stronger risk factors outside of the workplace than in their hospital or healthcare settings. That is the finding of a new study published today in the Journal of the American Medical association's JAMA Network Open conducted by University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) researchers and colleagues at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and three other universities.
Friday, February 26, 2021
Internationally Renowned Neuroscience Researcher and Academic Leader Asaf Keller, PhD, Appointed Chair of the Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology at the UM School of Medicine
University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) Dean E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, announced today that prominent international neuroscientist and academic leader, Asaf Keller, PhD, who is Professor of Anatomy and Neurobiology at UMSOM, has been appointed to serve as the Chair of the Department Anatomy and Neurobiology, effective immediately. Dr. Keller has served as the Department’s Interim Chair for the past year and a half and is internationally recognized as a leader in the fields of sensory perception, chronic pain and addiction research.
Thursday, February 25, 2021
UM School of Medicine Researchers Participate in Landmark Study Detailing Sequencing of Full Human Genomes to Better Capture Genetic Diversity
Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) co-authored a study, published today in the journal Science, that details the sequencing of 64 full human genomes. This reference data includes individuals from around the world and better captures the genetic diversity of the human species. Among other applications, the work will enable population-specific studies on genetic predispositions to human diseases as well as the discovery of more complex forms of genetic variation.
Wednesday, February 24, 2021
UM School of Medicine Recruits New Advanced Science Communications Group in the UMSOM Office of Public Affairs & Communications
University of Maryland School of Medicine’s Assistant Dean for Public Affairs & Communications, Christopher J. Hardwick, MA, along with Dean E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, announced today that the UMSOM has formed an Advanced Science Communications Group within the Office of Public Affairs & Communications (OPAC). The new Group will focus on broadly communicating the UMSOM faculty’s research and breakthrough discoveries to national and international audiences through a wide range of news media.
Wednesday, February 10, 2021
UM School of Medicine Researchers Release Extensive Data on Rare Variants through NHLBI TopMed Grant
Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) and their colleagues published a new analysis today in the journal Nature from genetic sequencing data of more than 53,000 individuals, primarily from minority populations. The early analysis, part of a large-scale program funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, examines one of the largest and most diverse data sets of high-quality whole genome sequencing, which makes up a person’s DNA. It provides new genetic insights into heart, lung, blood, and sleep disorders and how these conditions impact people with diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds, who are often underrepresented in genetic studies.
Tuesday, February 09, 2021
UM School of Medicine Researchers Find that Misuse of Opioid Drugs During Pregnancy Could Have Lasting Impact on Child’s Development from Infancy Through Teen Years
As the number of pregnant women using opioid drugs continues to rise, questions have been raised about the long-term health effects on children exposed to these drugs in the womb. Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine now have preliminary but striking evidence that suggests that such exposure can cause long-lasting impairment in the brain’s ability to process sensory information. These impairments may give rise to autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and substance use disorders during adolescence. The landmark study, recently published in Journal of Neuroscience, used a preclinical model to study the issue and found that newborn mice exposed to the opioid fentanyl in the womb developed withdrawal symptoms and sensory processing disorders that lasted at least until adolescence.
Friday, February 05, 2021
UM School of Medicine Researchers Demonstrate Strong Immune Response for New COVID-19 Vaccine in Pre-Clinical Tests
Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) have found promising results in pre-clinical studies for a new experimental vaccine against COVID-19 made by Novavax. The vaccine was found to generate a robust immune response in animals exposed to the vaccine with strong data indicating safety and efficacy, according to the study published recently in the journal Nature Communications. The results have been used to begin testing the vaccine in human trials in the U.S. with a Phase 3 trial that recently launched at the UMSOM’s Center for Vaccine Development and Global Health.
Friday, February 05, 2021
Business Leader and Philanthropist Michael Greenebaum Named Vice Chair of University of Maryland School of Medicine Board of Visitors
University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) Dean E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, along with UMSOM Board of Visitors Chair Cynthia Egan, announced today that Michael Greenebaum, a prominent business leader and philanthropist who has served on the UMSOM’s Board since 2012, has been named Vice Chair of the Board of Visitors.
Wednesday, February 03, 2021
Clinical and Academic Leader, Dr. Jill RachBeisel, Appointed Chair of the Department of Psychiatry at the UM School of Medicine
University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) Dean E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, announced today that Jill RachBeisel, MD, Associate Professor of Psychiatry, has been appointed to serve as the Chair of the Department of Psychiatry, effective immediately. Dr. RachBeisel has served as the Department’s Interim Chair for the past two years and was previously Acting Chair and Vice Chair of the Department. A prominent leader at UMSOM, she has garnered tremendous support among faculty and staff for her efforts to forge partnerships among various entities in an effort to strengthen mental health services provided to patients and the community at large. Dr. RachBeisel will be named The Dr. Irving J. Taylor Endowed Professor and Chair, Department of Psychiatry, when she is invested March 18.
Monday, February 01, 2021
Three Top University of Maryland School of Medicine Physician-Scientists Honored as Distinguished Fellows by AAAS
Three preeminent physician-scientists at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) have been named to an elite group of scientists, engineers, and innovators, as 2020 Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). AAAS is the world’s largest multidisciplinary scientific society and a leading publisher of cutting-edge research through its Science family of journals.
Thursday, January 28, 2021
COVID-19 Pandemic Led to Decreased School Meal Access for Children in Need Across Maryland, UM School of Medicine Study Finds
School closures during COVID-19 have decreased access to school meals, which is likely to increase the risk for food insecurity among children in Maryland, according to a new report issued by researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM). The number of meals served to school-age children during the first three months of the pandemic dropped by 58 percent, compared to the number of free or reduced-price meals served the previous spring. As a result, thousands of children across the state were placed at increased risk of food insecurity, with many likely experiencing the health ramifications associated with the abrupt disruption in their access to regular meals.
Wednesday, January 27, 2021
Dr. Wilbur Chen, Nationally-Recognized Vaccine Researcher, Selected for Federal Committee that Guides Immunization Policies
Wilbur H. Chen, MD, MS, FIDSA, FACP, Professor of Medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM), has been named a new voting member of the federal government’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), the prestigious board of experts that makes recommendations on the safe use of vaccines for Americans. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services selected Dr. Chen for the 15-member advisory committee based on his expertise and national leadership in vaccinology, infectious diseases, public health, and preventive medicine. He will remain in his current role at UMSOM while he serves in his four-year term, which began last month.
Thursday, January 21, 2021
UM School of Medicine Hosted Media Availability for Ensuring Trust in COVID-19 Vaccine Event
On January 22, 2021 at 2 p.m., the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) hosted Black faith-based leaders, COVID-19 research volunteers, and “America’s Doctor,” Anthony Fauci, MD. The event provided straight talk about fears, trust issues, and why we need our Black and Brown community to be a part of COVID-19 vaccine research.