The University of Iowa

Medical Scientist Training Program

Carver College of Medicine

Recent News and Events *

September 2013

At Medical Student Research Day on September 6, 2013, three MSTP students won awards for their work. Daniel Child, M2G, won the John Stokes Research Award in Internal Medicine and both Leah Feazel, M2G, and Dan Matasic, M1G won an award for Research Excellence in Internal Medicine. View all the awards here.

August 2013

A UI research team led by UI professor Patrick Schlievert, PhD (MSTP mentor) has made a major breakthrough in the understanding of staphylococcal infective endocarditis—a serious infection of the heart valves that kills around 20,000 Americans each year. story and Story from: Fox News

How the Ponseti Method caught on: .In the 1940s, Dr. Ignacio Ponseti, a pediatric orthopedist at the University of Iowa, developed a method of treating clubfoot by stretching the tendon and casting to straighten the foot gradually. In the 1990s, parents searching for the best treatment for their children shared tips online. Story from: MLive

Steve Wynn, chairman and chief executive officer of Wynn Resorts, Limited, has donated $25 million to the UI to accelerate the search for cures for rare eye diseases, including the one that hampers his own vision. Story from: San Francisco Chronicle

May 2013

Jennifer Fiegel, PhD, received an R21 grant from the NIH to research and develop more efffective, inhalable treatments for respiratory infections.  She will be working with Alexander Horswill, PhD (MSTP mentor) and David Stoltz, MD, PhD.

Andrew Ackell, M5G and Tyler Rasmussen, M5G attended the American Physician Scientist Association 9th Annual Meeting in Chicago, Illinois.  Tyler brought home the APSA Outstanding Poster Award as well as the Stanely J. Korsmeyer Young Investigator medallion. Tyler's travel award helped make the trip more affordable for both of them. 

Barry London, MD, Stanley Perlman, MD, PhD* and Joseph Zabner, MD* were recently elected as members of the Association of American Physicians. The goals of the members include the pursuit of medical knowledge, and the advancement through experimentation and discovery of basic and clinical science and their application to clinical medicine. Each year, individuals having attained excellence in achieving these goals, are recognized by nomination for membership.  (Drs. Perlman & Zabner are MSTP Mentors.)

April 2013

Tyler Rasmussen, M5G and Collin Kreple, M5G each won best poster in COM student category; Rachel Starks, M5G for best poster in ICTS student category; Jenn Streeter, M5G for best poster in IC VA Health Care System student category.  The awards list can be viewed here.  Also included in the list were the names of mentors for those who submitted posters, ten of which are MSTP Mentors.

Justin Glasgow, M6G, received a Graduate/Professional Distinguished Student Leader Certificate at the recent Finkbine Awards Dinner on April 9, 2013.  The dinner is held annually to celebrate leadership, learning and loyalty among the University of Iowa's students, faculty, staff and alumni.  

March 2013

Michael D. Abramoff, MD, PhD, professor of ophthalmology (and MSTP Mentor), for receiving a 2013 Young Investigator Award from The Macula Society. The Macula Society describes the Young Investigator Award as an award that recognizes an “individual or group of individuals under the age of 50 years whose work gives high promise of notable advance in the clinical treatment of disorders of the eye.” Dr. Abramoff will receive the award at the 36th Annual Macula Society Meeting in early 2013.

UI researchers developing 3D printer, 'bio-ink' to create human organs. A new interdisciplinary manufacturing venture called the Advanced Manufacturing Technology (AMTecH) group at the University of Iowa College of Engineering’s Center for Computer Aided Design (CCAD) was formed to design, create, and test—both virtually and physically—a wide variety of electromechanical and biomedical components, systems and processes. Currently, the group is working on projects ranging from printed circuit boards for automobiles and aircraft to replacement parts for damaged and failing human organs and tissue, says Dr. Tim Marler, AMTecH co-director.  (Nicholas Zavazava, MD, PhD, MSTP Mentor in Internal Medicine collaborates on the project.)

The 2013 Advances in Genomics Research Summer Program will be held August 5th-9th at the National Institutes of Health main campus in Bethesda, Maryland. Visit the program webpage for more information.   Graduate students from underrepresented groups (minorities, persons with disabilities and persons from disadvantaged backgrounds) are encouraged to apply. Applications are due March 25th, and applicants will be notified of their acceptance by May 1st.  (FLYER)

February 2013

UI team to study alcohol's effects on unborn babies.  A 5-year grant from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism will allow researchers to examine fetal alcohol spectrum disorder, a wide-ranging set of adverse effects that fetuses may face from mothers who drink heavily during pregnancy.  The study is led by Daniel Bonthius, MD, PhD, neurology & pediatrics (MSTP Mentor) and Bahri Karacay, PhD, pediatrics and co-investigator on the grant.

A new study by UI researchers suggests that the CF mutation also affects the nervous system and might directly cause some neural abnormalities experienced by people with CF. The findings were published online the week of Feb. 4 in the Early Edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.  Leah Reznikov, PhD, is a UI postdoctoral fellow in internal medicine and first author of the study.  The team included senior study author Michael Welsh, MD (MSTP Mentor) and UI researchers Qian Dong, Jeng-Haur Chen, Thomas Moninger, Jung Min Park, M3G, Yuzhou Zhang, Jianyang Du, Michael Hildebrand, Richard Smith, MD (MSTP Mentor), Christoph Randak, and David Stoltz.

Price for hip replacement highly variable, hard to obtain and many hospitals unable to provide estimates. In a February JAMA article, Jaime Rosenthal, Xin Lu, and Peter Cram, MD found that 40% of top-ranked and 36% of non-top-ranked hospitals were unable to provide a price estimate for a total hip replacement procedure

A recent study by psychiatrists from the Iowa City VA Medical Center and University of Iowa Health Care finds that soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan with mild TBI have measurable abnormalities in the white matter of their brains when compared to returning veterans who have not experienced TBI. These abnormalities appear to be related to the severity of the injury and are related to cognitive deficits. The findings were published online in December in the American Journal of Psychiatry.

Decoding the Neuroscience of Fear and Fearlessness: New findings on the amygdala offer clues to overcoming fear, anxiety, and panic.  A recent article written in part three MSTP mentors:  Michael Welsh, MD, Daniel Tranel, PhD, John Wemmie, MD, PhD

UI partners to form Iowa Liver Center. Called the Iowa Liver Center, the new organization will offer a full range of well-coordinated diagnostic, treatment and support services to care for people with diseases of the liver and biliary tract in central and western Iowa. The center unites the expertise of the University of Iowa Organ Transplant Center, based in Iowa City, the Iowa Digestive Disease Center (IDDC), based in Clive, and Mercy Medical Center–Des Moines, including its affiliated clinics and subsidiaries.

January 2013

ICTS trainee Jacob Elkins, M5G wins prestigious D.C. Spriestersbach Dissertation Prize for mathematics/physical sciences/engineering for his dissertation, “Biomechanics of Failure Modalities in Total Hip Arthroplasty,” which details his research on the failure of total hip implants due to impingement and/or dislocation. 

Team finds gene that promotes drug resistance in cancer:  Findings could lead to better diagnoses, new therapies (The research team includes from the University of Iowa Fenghuang (Frank) Zhan, MD, PhD, and Guido Tricot, MD, PhD and David Bearss, PhD from BYU).

UI is named a best value in public higher education by Kiplinger's (ranked 49th among 100 four-year public institutions that deliver a stellar education at an affordable price.

UI Researcher Eberl learns mechanism of hearing is similar to car battery:  Study made use of the fruit fly 'love song' (Daniel Eberl, PhD is a MSTP mentor)

Congratulations to Claire Buchta (Gail Bishop's* lab), Nicole Chapman (Jon Houtman's* lab) and Jonathan Trujillo, M5G (Stanley Perlman's* lab), recipients of a AAI Young Investigator Abstract Award at the 2012 Autumn Immunology Conference which was held from November 16-19, 2012  (Jonathan Trujillo is a 5th year MSTP student, Dr. Bishop, Dr. Houtman, and Dr. Perlman are all MSTP Mentors).

Matthew Rysavy, M4G has just completed his work as editor of the January 2013 issue of Virtual Mentor, the AMA's Journal of Ethics, on the topic "Ethical Issues in Evidence-Based Medicine."  (Matthew Rysavy is a 4th year MSTP student).


*Disclaimer:  By attaching the names of MSTP mentors to news items in no way depreciates the important contributions of other member of the research teams.  Our purpose is only to identify those news items in which MSTP mentors and students have had a part.