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VPMA Voice

Last week, I spent two days traveling the state on behalf of UI Health Care to meet with Iowa legislators and other community and health care leaders. It was a wonderful chance to update and educate them about our enterprise, listen to their thoughts and concerns, and positively engage in outreach with Iowa’s communities.

Conversations centered on a whole host of important topics, including Iowa’s health care and workforce development needs. For example, I had a good discussion on workforce training with our colleagues at the Siouxland Medical Education Foundation, one of our family medicine training sites.

I also visited the Iowa Statewide Poison Control Center, an effort jointly managed by UI Health Care and St. Luke’s Hospital in Sioux City. The Center aims to reduce illnesses, deaths, and costs associated with poisoning by providing prevention information, advice, and education. This was a great opportunity to thank the Center’s directors face-to-face for their continued support of these important services for Iowans.

Outreach is important to the vitality of UI Health Care. Our friends and constituents across the state are loyal supporters of our academic medical center mission. Their faith in us is a wonderful reflection of the outstanding hard work and dedication of everyone who works, learns, and volunteers at UI Health Care.

Signed, Jean Robillard

Drs. Lentz and Geyer will lead MSTP

Steven Lentz, MD, PhD, has been named the new director of the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) in the UI Carver College of Medicine.
Dr. Lentz previously served as the associate director of the program. Pamela Geyer, PhD, who directed the program from 1999 to 2006, will be the new co-director.

Dr. Lentz succeeds Michael Knudson, MD, PhD, who stepped down as MSTP director in June 2010 to direct the Tissue Procurement Core Facility and continue his research as a faculty member in the Department of Pathology.

In addition to being professor of internal medicine, Dr. Lentz is the Henry Hamilton Chair in Hematology and the director of the Division of Hematology, Oncology and Blood and Marrow Transplantation.

Dr. Geyer is a professor of biochemistry, coordinator of graduate curriculum in the college, and director of the LINCC faculty development program in the Iowa Institute for Clinical and Translational Sciences. 

Welcome and recognition reception

All UI Health Care faculty, staff, and students are invited to a reception to welcome the new head of Neurology, George Richerson, MD, PhD, and recognize Robert Rodnitzky, MD, for his service as head of the department since 2005. The reception will be from 3 to 4 p.m. Wednesday, September 1, in the MERF Atrium, with remarks at 3:30.

Carver gifts support biochemistry and proteomics

Leaders of the Roy J. Carver Charitable Trust of Muscatine, Iowa; UI Health Care; and the UI Foundation last week announced two gifts from the Carver Charitable Trust: A $2 million gift will establish the Roy J. Carver Chair in Biochemistry, to be filled by Charles Brenner, PhD, professor and head of biochemistry.

“It is a great honor to receive the Roy J. Carver Chair in Biochemistry,” said Brenner. “I am humbled to have this opportunity to help carry on Mr. Carver’s legacy of visionary support for research at the University of Iowa.”

Brenner’s laboratory studies the normal functions of tumor suppressor genes, a class of genes that are inactivated in cancer development, and is uncovering links between metabolism and factors that control cellular aging.

Another $2 million gift will establish a core facilities operational endowment for proteomics in the UI Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine. Proteomics involves the use of mass spectrometry to study proteins.

“We are deeply grateful to the leaders of the Carver Charitable Trust for their support of our proteomics facility,” said Michael Apicella, MD, senior associate dean for scientific affairs at the UI Carver College of Medicine. “This approach has become one of the most powerful discovery techniques in biomedical science.”

Seminar features surgical options for weight loss

Mohammad Jamal, MD, clinical assistant professor of surgery, will discuss surgical options to weight loss in a free, public presentation “Lose the Weight. Find Your Life.” at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 26, at UI Health Care - Muscatine, 3465 Mulberry Ave. in Muscatine.

Registration for the presentation is encouraged. For details, call 319-384-1743 or 877-MED-IOWA, or click here.

Ride raises funds for cancer research

The 2010 Courage Ride honoring the courage of Seth A. Bailey and others affected by sarcoma and other types of cancer is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 28. All proceeds from the ride support research at the Holden Comprehensive Cancer Center at The University of Iowa.

The ride begins at the Iowa Mennonite School, located 15 minutes southwest of Iowa City at 1421 540th St. SW near Kalona, and features trip lengths of 19, 27, 53, 70, and 98 miles on beautiful countryside routes. If you don’t want to ride, come listen to good music and entertainment and cheer on the riders at the North English City Park, east of Casey’s General Store on Highway 149, North English.

Register here in advance or on Aug. 28 starting at 6 a.m. at Iowa Mennonite School. The registration fee is $50.

Healthy Kids Run Sunday

Join in the fun of the inaugural Get Moving for Healthy Kids 5K Run/Walk on Sunday morning, August 29, at the Iowa City West High School track. Events include a men and women’s 5K, a youth 5K, a youth mile, a youth 400-meter dash, and a youth 100-meter dash. University of Iowa Health Care is a sponsor of this family-fun event to benefit the Healthy Kids Community Care school-based health clinics. Register online here.

Comments and Suggestions

Please share your comments and suggestions via e-mail at vpma@uiowa.edu.

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