Marshall University student researcher presents at national conference

HUNTINGTON, W.Va.—Mohit Harsh,a research student at the Marshall University Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine and an entering first-year medical student, presented his team’s findings last month during a poster session at the 16th International Congress of Endocrinology in Chicago.

The research was done in the laboratory of Dr. Nader G. Abraham, one of the foremost researchers on the topic of obesity and metabolic syndrome in the world, as well as the Vice Dean for Research for the School of Medicine.  The study focused on fructose and a metabolic by-product of fructose metabolism called uric acid and their effects on bone marrow-derived stem cell development.  The use of fructose is becoming increasingly popular as a sweetener in western society and has been linked to worsening obesity and obesity-related complications like diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

Mohit Harsh - Former Biomedical Sciences, M.S. Medical Sciences Student

“This was significant study because it’s the first study to demonstrate that fructose treatments on stem cells increase the development of fat cells and actually decrease the secretion of adiponectin, a hormone known to have cardio-protective properties,” Harsh said.“Our results may provide an avenue for our better understanding of diet-induced obesity and obesity-related cardiovascular complications.”

Harsh worked with fellow students Jordan P. Hilgefort, a second- year medical student, and George E. Banks V, also a second-year medical student.  Faculty members on the team include Zeid J. Khitan, M.D.; Joseph I. Shapiro, M.D., dean of the Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine;  Komal Sodhi, M.D.;  Luca Vanella, Ph.D.; and Abraham.

“Obesity is preventable and can be achieved by controlling calorie intake and physical activity,” Abraham said. “Our goal is to empower our community with science-based information about what can be done to prevent child and adult obesity and how an increase in fructose intake can be detrimental on body weight gain and heart disease.”

The research was supported by the National Institutes of Health and the Brickstreet Foundation.

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Contact: Leah C. Payne, Director of Public Affairs, Schools of Medicine and Pharmacy, 304-691-1713

 

Marshall University Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine releases the spring edition of its Professional Enhancement Newsletter (PEN)

Link to PENMarshall University Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine has released the spring edition of its Professional Enhancement Newsletter (PEN). It is extremely informative about happenings in the fields of both clinical medicine and basic science research at Marshall University.

Twenty-five (25) Marshall University School of Medicine basic science faculty and biomedical sciences graduate students (and a few of our former faculty and students) are highlighted in this edition. They are recognized for numerous reasons ranging from winning teaching and/or service awards to receiving grant funding to publishing their research.

As you read the newsletter, look specifically for our BMS faculty and students; they are listed below in order of appearance in the newsletter:

Lora Beth Fetty, M.D. – former Medical Sciences’ student
Aaron Dom – former Medical Sciences’ student
Beverly Delidow, Ph.D. – BMS faculty
W. Elaine Hardman, Ph.D. – BMS faculty
Jung Han Kim, Ph.D. – BMS faculty
Miranda Carper – Ph.D. candidate
Sarah Sexton – former Medical Sciences’ student
Richard M. Niles, Ph.D. – Vice Dean for Biomedical Sciences Research
Elsa I. Mangiarua, Ph.D. – BMS faculty
Maria A. Serrat, Ph.D. – BMS faculty
Uma Sundaram, M.D. – BMS faculty
Matt Christiansen, M.D. – former Medical Sciences’ student
Todd L. Green, Ph.D. – Director of Graduate Studies, BMS
Sasha N. Zill, Ph.D. – BMS faculty
Mitchell Berk, Ph.D. – retired Anatomy professor
Susan Jackman, Ph.D. – BMS faculty
Monica A. Valentovic, Ph.D. – BMS faculty
Pier Paolo Claudio, M.D., Ph.D. – BMS faculty
Hongwei D. Yu, Ph.D. – BMS faculty
Wei-ping Zeng, Ph.D. – BMS faculty
Joseph I. Shapiro, M.D., F.A.H.A., F.A.C.P., F.A.S.N. – School of Medicine Dean
Piyali Dasgupta, Ph.D. – BMS faculty
Travis Salisbury, Ph.D. – BMS faculty
Jiang Liu, M.D., Ph.D. – BMS faculty
Nader G. Abraham, Ph.D., Dr. H.C., F.A.H.A. – Vice Dean for Research

Former BMS Medical Sciences’ student honored by state senate

Matthew Q. Christiansen “Matt” joined Marshall’s School of Medicine Biomedical Sciences, M.S. Medical Sciences Program as a student in 2008 with the determination to become more competitive to enter medical school. This goal was quickly accomplished as he was accepted into and entered Marshall University’s Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine in fall 2009.

The story below is being shared to help further recognize one of our most successful former students, Dr. Matthew Q. Christiansen. We are not surprised at his continued success, and note that great contributions to society will continue to come from Dr. Christiansen. _________________________________________________________________________

Health policy fellows honored by state senate

Matthew Q. Christiansen, M.D.Calling their service commendable, the West Virginia State Senate on March 6 adopted a resolution honoring School of Medicine resident physicians for their work at the Legislature providing physician resources through the Paul Ambrose Health Policy Fellowship Program. Dr. Kimberly R. Becher, a third-year resident from Sissonville, W.Va., Dr. Matthew Q. Christiansen, a first-year resident from Spencer, W.Va., and Dr. Kane A. Maiers, a third-year resident from Short Gap, W.Va., were honored by the resolution authored by Sen. Robert H. Plymale of Wayne County.The resolution also names Dr. Tracy Hendershot, MUSOM class of 2008, who served as the first Ambrose fellow. “Our physicians have worked diligently to help our lawmakers explore and vet dozens of issues that affect the health and well-being of the citizens of West Virginia,” said Dr. Stephen M. Petrany, co-director of the health policy track at Marshall and chairman of the department of family and community health.  “One of the goals of this program is to help young physicians fine-tune their leadership skills so they can effectively contribute to the health policy process. They have committed many hours to the process and we are very proud of their efforts.” Both Becher and Maiers have served in the program for three years and tackled such topics as this year’s catastrophic water crisis in central West Virginia and the Methamphetamine Lab Eradication Act. The Ambrose Health Policy Program was started at Marshall University in 2010 and is believed to be the only such program of its type in the country. It is a partnership of Marshall’s department of family and community health, Robert C. Byrd Center for Rural Health, and the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission.    It was inspired by namesake Paul Wesley Ambrose, a Marshall medical alumnus whose life and dynamic health policy career were cut short on September 11, 2001. ———————- Photo: Marshall University Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine Ambrose Health Policy Fellows are, from left, Dr. Kimberly Becher,  Dr. Kane Maiers and Dr. Matthew Christiansen. Photo by Martin Valent, West Virginia Legislative Photography, 2014. 

MU biomedical students showcase research

BILL ROSENBERGER
The Herald-Dispatch

HUNTINGTON — Medical research that has an opportunity to affect the health and well-being of the general population should be celebrated, which is one of the reasons for the showcase at Pullman Plaza Hotel.

More than a dozen projects by Marshall University biomedical science graduate students and faculty members showcased their work as part of the ninth annual Biomedical Sciences Retreat. The event gives graduate students in the university’s biomedical sciences program an opportunity to share their research, including projects to study the effects of drugs on the kidney, obesity and type 2 diabetes, and how neurons respond to different patterns of neural activity.

Elsa Mangiarua, a professor in the Department of Pharmacology, Physiology and Toxicology, said Ph.D. students get to share their work with each other, while newly admitted Ph.D. students get to see some of the research they will be getting into.

“There are a lot of good projects with positive results in translational research,” said Rachel Murphy, who is a first-year student from Kansas. “It sets the bar high to help medical science advance to the next step. It’s definitely inspiring.”

Marcus_Terneus2013That was also the observation from Marcus Terneus, senior manager of global EH&S occupational toxicology at Mylan Pharmaceuticals. He is a 2006 graduate of the Marshall Ph.D. program and served as the afternoon’s keynote speaker.

“I’m very proud. It’s exciting to see the growth and what projects are going on,” Terneus said. “I keep close eyes on what students are doing.”

He also told the group that the education and research opportunities he received prepared him for what he’s seen during the past seven years.

“It’s given me what I needed to succeed,” he said.

The research also was noted as impressive because of how groundbreaking the results could be. Second-year student Justin Tomblin’s project centered on the link between obesity and breast cancer and how to block the growth of abnormal tissue.

In West Virginia, which has high obesity rates, that kind of research could help quite a few folks, he said.

“It definitely feels like you are doing something that may help friends or relatives,” Tomblin said.

John Maher, the vice president for research at Marshall and executive director of the Marshall University Research Corporation, said after hearing some presentations that Marshall has a very strong biomedical sciences program. He also noted that they are working on relevant and important problems pertaining to regional health care.

You are invited to enjoy the fall 2012 issue of “We Are…Bridging Medicine and Science”

Marshall University’s Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program invites you to enjoy reading the Fall 2012 | Issue 2 of We Are…Bridging Medicine and Science!

Click the publication’s front cover below to link to the magazine: 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nine former BMS students join the Marshall School of Medicine Class of 2015

Marshall University Medical School White Coat Ceremony 2011On Thursday night at the Keith Albee Performing Arts Center, 71 new medical students entering the Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine received their white coats and stethoscopes during the annual White Coat Ceremony. Nine of the new medical students joining the Class of 2015 who were honored that night were once students in the Medical Sciences Program, offered through the Marshall University Biomedical Sciences (BMS) Graduate Program.

The former BMS Medical Sciences students entering the Class of 2015 include: James T. Buchanan, Jesse R. Chaffin, Carrie E. Cox, Aaron M. Dom, Melinda D. Hodge, Joseph V. Russo, B. Trent Schambach, Sarah P. Sexton, and Brandon S. Shiflett. Diana Maue, Graduate Recruitment and Communication Coordinator for the BMS Graduate Program, is proud of these former students and sees this number as a reflection of the overall success of the program. According to Diana, “Students who are successful in the Medical Sciences Program have displayed an amazing level of determination, something that will serve them well in medical school. These students deserve our recognition.”

Marshall University’s Medical Sciences area of emphasis is a two-year, non-thesis degree in Biomedical Sciences. Students often select the Medical Sciences area of emphasis for its goal of improving the science foundation of students seeking admission into doctoral programs in medicine.

Congratulations to our former BMS students entering the School of Medicine Class of 2015! To learn more about the Medical Sciences area of emphasis, please review the following web page: http://www.marshall.edu/wpmu/bms/future-students/medical-sciences-masters-degree/

MU Biomedical Sciences Ph.D. alumna contributes to Parkinson’s study

Angela Ridgel earned her Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences from Marshall University in 2000 and is now Assistant Professor at Kent State University. She started studying walking in insects and robots in Dr. Sasha Zill’s lab (and as a postdoc at Case Western), but is now conducting research on walking in patients with Parkinson’s disease. She has found that they benefit greatly from intense exercise.

Cycling for a cure - assisted exercise shows positive benefits for Parkinson's patients

 

 

 

 

Her work was recognized and is featured on the cover of Kent State’s online magazine and on MSNBC. It currently can be found by clicking the links below:

MSNBC video about Ridgel’s research of tandem cycling and Parkinson’s disease patients

Please take a moment to read this amazing research completed by a Marshall University Biomedical Sciences Ph.D. alumna. Approximately 6,000,000 people are afflicted with Parkinson’s disease, and Dr. Ridgel’s research just might help alleviate some of their symptoms.

To learn more about Dr. Sasha Zill’s research, please visit the Marshall University School of Medicine’s Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program website.