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Media Contact: Holly Korschun 30 November 2006
  hkorsch@emory.edu    
  (404) 727-3990   Print  | Email ]
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Emory Research Appreciation Day Recognizes Scientists, Features National Leaders
Emory University's Woodruff Health Sciences Center will recognize and show appreciation to its research community on Wednesday, Dec. 6 with a Research Appreciation Day. The daylong celebration also aims at raising awareness of the importance of biomedical research for the health of the nation. The theme for Research Day is "Transforming Health Through Discovery."

Research Appreciation Day will welcome national healthcare leaders to campus, feature displays from Health Sciences Center schools and centers, and offer tours of research laboratories. Food (including lunch) and commemorative t-shirts will be available for faculty, staff, and visitors on the Plaza level of the Woodruff Health Sciences Center Administration Building (WHSCAB). The entire Emory research community is invited.

Research Day speakers will include Dr. Darrell G. Kirch, president of the AAMC (Association of American Medical Colleges), Dr. Steven Wartman, president of the Association of Academic Health Centers (AAHC), and Dr. William Brody, president of Johns Hopkins University. Dr. Brody's talk is part of the Health Sciences Center's Future Makers lecture series.

In his address to the annual meeting of the AAMC in October, Dr. Kirch asserted that the nation is at a "tipping point" in academic medicine, in which federal support for biomedical research is losing ground from inflation, and academic medical centers are "struggling to support the people and facilities needed to advance science over the long term." We must restore our national commitment to 'the public good,' including higher education, scientific discovery, and health care, Dr. Kirch pointed out.

Future Makers lecturer Dr. William Brody will speak at 4:00 p.m. in the WHSCAB auditorium on "Uncommon Sense and Innovation," including insights on how to differentiate landmark research discoveries. Dr. Brody is himself an innovator in imaging sciences, having founded three medical device companies and made contributions in medical acoustics, computed tomography, digital radiography, and magnetic resonance imaging. The Future Makers lecture will be followed by a reception on the WHSCAB Plaza.

"The research conducted within the nation's academic health centers is essential to the ongoing health of our citizens," said Michael M.E. Johns, MD, CEO of the Woodruff Health Sciences Center and chairman of Emory Healthcare. "We are extremely proud of the work of our research faculty and their laboratory and support staffs. This day was designed to demonstrate our admiration and appreciation.

"We also want to remind the public that without continuing support from federal and private sources for these dedicated medical scientists and our young researchers of the future, many of the medical treatments and public health breakthroughs we take for granted today would not be available, nor will bioscience advancements in the future. In addition, our ability to compete globally in science and medicine, as well as economically, are dependent on a strong national commitment to support of biomedical research."

Displays on the WHSCAB Plaza will feature Emory University School of Medicine, Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing, Rollins School of Public Health, Yerkes National Primate Research Center, the Winship Cancer Institute, Emory's Clinical Trials Office, the General Clinical Research Center, Office of Technology Transfer, the Graduate Division of Biological and Biomedical Sciences, and the Georgia Cancer Coalition, among others.

Laboratory tours in the morning and the afternoon will feature a brain bank where researchers study Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and other neurological disorders; a molecular screening center with high-throughput robotics equipment that can screen hundreds of thousands of molecules for their potential use in new drug compounds; a laboratory where insulin-producing islets are harvested from donor pancreases; the Yerkes National Primate Research Cente r; and the General Clinical Research Center in Emory University Hospital. The Woodruff Health Sciences Center includes more than 2,200 faculty members, many of whom, along with more than 3,700 students and medical residents, conduct basic or clinical research in the WHSC schools, centers, and healthcare facilities.

Last year Emory University researchers attracted $354 million in funding, including $331.4 million in the Woodruff Health Sciences Center. More than 250 clinical investigators currently are conducting 820 clinical trials at Emory.

For more information about Research Appreciation Day and a schedule of events, visit http://www.whsc.emory.edu/researchday or call 404-778-4553.

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