SOM Dean's Letter

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March 2019

Thanks to all who joined the State of the School of Medicine address on March 5. If you were unable to attend, watch the video. Or simply check out the image above, created for those of you who wanted the one-minute version of my talk. 

I want to thank each and every one of you who sent in questions and topic ideas before the event. I spoke of connectivity and engagement as two of the values that are important to me and to the work we're doing together. Those values require a commitment to listening, and I hope you will continue to share what's on your mind. 

Vikas P. Sukhatme, MD, ScD

Match makers

Meet some of the fourth-year medical students who participated in this year’s national residency match program, and catch a glimpse of the match day madness on video. Congratulations to all our students who will graduate this spring!

Read the story

Emory Revisited

During Emory Revisited weekend, underrepresented minority students who have been accepted to the School of Medicine returned to campus to meet faculty and students and take a closer look at the school. More than 40 students enjoyed breakfast with Dean Sukhatme and other faculty and staff leaders during this year's event. Programs like Emory Revisited play a critical role in the SOM's efforts to recruit, develop, support, and engage diverse learners. 

Learn more about our focus on diversity, equity and inclusion

Innovation of the Year goes to SOM faculty

Emory celebrated faculty entrepreneurs and their innovative discoveries at the annual Celebration of Technology and Innovation on March 21. During this year's event, held by the Office of Technology Transfer, Adam Marcus (hematology and medical oncology) and Thota Ganesh (pharmacology and chemical biology) won Innovation of the Year for "alexidine and analogs to treat lung cancer." 

View more award recipients

Reducing harm from vehicle accidents focus of study at Grady

Injuries from motor vehicle accidents are the No. 1 trauma seen at Grady Memorial Hospital, resulting in thousands of crash victims each year. 

Emory and Grady researchers hope that a new study of accident victims in the metro Atlanta area will result in car designs that better protect drivers, pedestrians, and motorcyclists, and reduce the severity of injuries in the event of a crash. 

The Crash Injury Research and Engineering Network (CIREN) study is being conducted by Emory’s Injury Prevention Research Center, along with Grady’s emergency department and engineering experts at the University of Michigan. 

Read the story in Emory Medicine

Wellness challenge: accepted

Our gynecology and obstetrics team recently participated in ACOG Wellness Week, a national effort challenging women’s health providers to focus on five areas of wellness: physical, emotional, spiritual, environmental, and social. With a week of fun events led by department wellness ambassador Cherie Hill (gynecology and obstetrics) and the resident wellness committee, the department's faculty, learners and staff were able to dedicate extra time to boosting their health and well-being.   

View highlights from the week

DRIVe teams up with academic research consortium on software to provide early warning of sepsis

The DRIVe Solving Sepsis initiative is partnering with Emory to further validate an interoperable machine learning software for early prediction of sepsis in hospital intensive care units that will provide physicians with actionable information. The project will leverage a multicenter consortium (Emory SOM, Massachusetts General Hospital, University of California San Diego School of Medicine and Grady Health System) for retrospective validation utilizing a secure cloud architecture and will also execute a prospective deployment of the real-time predictive algorithm.

DRIVe (Division of Research, Innovation, and Ventures) aims to achieve solutions to health security challenges through collaboration and supporting the development of innovative products and approaches. DRIVe is an initiative of BARDA (Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority), part of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

The deep learning algorithm currently in use in the Emory Healthcare system processes high-resolution vital signs and laboratory measurements in real time to produce prediction scores and has the potential to warn health professionals of the impending development of sepsis in patients four to six hours in advance.

Shanim Nemati (biomedical informatics) and Ashish Sharma (biomedical informatics) are leading the sepsis consortium in collaboration with Andre Holder (medicine), Daniel Wu (emergency medicine),  Greg Martin (medicine) and leaders from the other participating institutions. The research team brings together in-depth expertise in critical care medicine and sepsis, electronic health records interoperability, cloud computing, machine learning and artificial intelligence.

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Joey Bahng PGY-1 received the 2019 Outstanding Transgender Advocate of the Year Award during Emory’s Pride Awards. 

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Christine Dunham (biochemistry) won the Cozzarelli Prize from the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences for work on ribosomal frameshifting, a perturbation of the factories that assemble proteins.

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Mandy Ford (surgery) received the 2019 Basic Science Investigator Award from the American Society of Transplantation, given to recognize investigators who have made substantial contributions to the field and show great promise for future impact.

Ira Horowitz (gynecology and obstetrics) has been appointed Executive Associate Dean (EAD) of Faculty and Clinical Affairs. Horowitz has been serving as EAD of Faculty Affairs and Professional Development for the past 3 years.

Holly Lewis, 17PhD 19M received the Chesnut LGBTQ Person of the Year Award during Emory’s Pride Awards.

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Carolyn Meltzer (radiology and imaging sciences), has been appointed Executive Associate Dean of Faculty Academic Advancement, Leadership and Inclusion. 

Preetha Nandi, 19M 19PH was named Student Leader of the Year during the Emory Women of Excellence awards.

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Jean O’Connor was appointed program director for the Center for Affordable Medical Innovation (CAMI), a new health sciences center focused on developing affordable, effective, and safe medical treatments.
Nanette Wenger, 59MR, was named Outstanding Alumna of the Year during the Emory Women of Excellence Awards.

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E. Reid Willingham has been named administrator for the Department of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery. Willingham has served as interim administrator since May 2018.

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