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Student research showcased at 31st Annual Research Day

More than 100 students and post-doctoral, residents and fellows participated in the 31st Annual Marshall University Health Science Research Day Friday, March 22, at the Marshall University Medical Center.

Organized and sponsored by the Marshall University Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine, the Health Science Research Day also partners with the School of Pharmacy and the College of Health Professions to highlight original research and educational innovations by undergraduate, medical, pharmacy, nursing and other health professions students, as well as graduate students and postdoctoral trainees in medicine, biomedical sciences, and clinical and translational sciences.

“Over the last several years we have seen a dramatic change in the Research Day presentations,” said Uma Sundaram, M.D., vice dean for research and graduate education at the Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine. “More graduate and medical students are doing research, the quality of the research has greatly increased and the research that is being done is very relevant for the health issues West Virginians face.”

This year’s keynote address was delivered by Bishr Omary, M.D., Ph.D., of the University of Michigan, where he serves as research advisor to the dean, professor of molecular and integrative physiology, professor of internal medicine and the H. Marvin Pollard Professor of Gastroenterology. During his keynote, Omary, the incoming president of the American Gastroenterological Association, presented on the intermediate filament cytoskeleton in health and disease.

The daylong symposium also featured oral and poster presentations in the areas of clinical science, basic science, case studies, medical education and quality improvement. More than 25 faculty members from the Schools of Medicine and Pharmacy served as judges and selected the best abstracts in categories of basic science, clinical research, education and case study.

Listed below are the 2019 Marshall University Health Science Research Day winners.

Basic Science

  • Poster Abstract:  Lexie Blalock/Biomedical Sciences on a systematic approach to identifying the immunogenic proteins of the unculturable intestinal commensal, segmented filamentous bacteria
  • Poster Abstract:  Timothy Adkins/Biomedical Sciences on Inhibition of Mitochondrial Protein Synthesis to Stimulate the Effect of 4-Hydroxy Tamoxifen in ER(+) Cell Lines
  • Oral Abstract:  Taylor Boggess/Biomedical Sciences on Investigating the role of astrocytes in the development of synaptic connectivity in neonatal abstinence syndrome
  • Oral Abstract:  Molly Butts/Clinical and Translational Science on the unique regulation of ethanol on sodium-dependent glutamine cotransport in intestinal epithelial cells

Clinical Research

  • Poster Abstract – Student:  Emma Nellhaus/Division of Addiction Sciences, Family and Community Health on inclusion of positive self-reporting by mothers of substance-exposed neonates increases the predictability of NAS severity over toxicology alone
  • Poster Abstract – Post-Doctoral: Henry Heisey/Psychiatry on multimorbidity among adults with intellectual or developmental disability
  • Oral Abstract – Student:  Cecilia Nease/Pediatrics on obesity and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD): When epidemics collide- a longitudinal study of body mass index (BMI) patterns in pediatric patients with ADHD treated with stimulant medication
  • Oral Abstract – Post-Doctoral: Meghan Pauley/Pediatrics on physician compliance with obesity guidelines and related complications

Case Study

  • Poster Abstract – Student: Taylor Maddox/Family and Community Health on neonatal withdrawal following in utero exposure to kratom
  • Poster Abstract – Post-Doctoral: Tamara Murphy/Psychiatry on two ankylosing spondylitis patients treated with adalimumab associated with ParietoOccipital cerebral abscesses and neuropsychiatric sequelae


  • Poster Abstract:  Emily Sloane/Obstetrics and Gynecology on using patient satisfaction questionnaire as an assessment and feedback tool for medical students in third-year clerkship