Dr. Nalini Santanam selected to present at World Congress on Endometriosis

Nalini Santanam, Ph.D., M.P.H.

An abstract by Nalini Santanam, Ph.D., of the Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program has been selected for oral presentation at the 11th World Congress on Endometriosis. The World Congress on Endometriosis is held once every three years to focus on new developments in the field of Endometriosis. This year, the Congress will take place from September 4 – 7 in Montpelier, France.

Endometriosis is a clinical condition that afflicts 10-15% of women of reproductive age (mainly diagnosed between the ages of 25 and 35), posing a major cause for infertility and chronic pain. Since the etiology of this disease is still unknown, very few treatment options are available. Surgery is currently the best treatment; however, due to a high recurrence rate, the disease commonly returns within three to six months post-surgery. The conference provides attendees the opportunity to present and discuss new research relating to the condition. The meeting promotes exchange between biologists, scientists, endocrinologists, and gynecologists in order to disseminate information and promote research in the treatment and pathogenesis of the condition. Most attendees at the Congress are scientists and clinicians, and new findings are presented from both perspectives.

Each abstract that is submitted to the Congress undergoes a rigorous selection process, and only the top five abstracts in each category are accepted for oral presentation. In the “pain mechanisms” category, Dr. Santanam’s abstract, entitled “Pain sensitive microRNAs in women with Endometriosis,” was one of the five abstracts selected for oral presentation. The abstract presents recent research from Dr. Santanam’s lab identifying biomarkers called “microRNAs” that are not only altered during endometriosis, but also correlated with patients’ pain symptoms. Dr. Santanam also submitted a second abstract, “Oxidized lipids and pain in endometriosis,” that was selected for a poster presentation. This study investigates the role of oxidative stress in the etiology of pain associated with endometriosis.

Dr. Santanam has been involved in endometriosis research for the past 15 years and has been a biomedical researcher at Marshall since 2007. Her laboratory research focuses on identifying unique biomarkers that could assist in either the diagnosis or treatment of endometriosis. There are many collaborators who Dr. Santanam would like to thank for the success of her research. She expresses gratitude for her collaboration with the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Marshall University and Cabell Huntington Hospital. In particular, she would like to single out her collaboration with Dr. Brenda Dawley, Dr. Robert Nerhood, Dr. David Jude, and Ms. Sandra White. She is excited to be attending the Congress in order to present some of the fascinating data that she has recently generated in her laboratory with the help of Marshall undergraduate and graduate students. Students and lab personell who participated in the data collection include: Johannes Fahrmann, Holly King, Courtney Crain, and Carla Cook.

Congratulations, Dr. Santanam, on the success of your research!

You can learn more about the World Congress on Endometriosis from their website: http://www.wce2011.com/.