THE ITM INVESTIGATOR Year in Review Issue I

 
THE ITM INVESTIGATOR Year in Review Issue I
THE ITM
        INVESTIGATOR
Year in Review										   2013 - 2014
Issue I
THE ITM INVESTIGATOR Year in Review Issue I
Letter
                        From the Directors
Dear investigators and friends of the ITM,

Just as we wrapped up another successful grant year, the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) released its first
annual report in which it highlighted ITM for our collaborative South Side diabetes program led by Monica Peek, MD; Marshall Chin,
MD; and Deborah Burnet, MD, in partnership with the Merck Foundation, the American Diabetes Association, the American Heart
Association, and others.

We’re proud to be recognized on the national stage. But we have far more work to do.

For example, consider the following related to drug development:

•        For every 5,000 to 10,000 compounds that enter the development pipeline, only one makes it into the nation’s medicine chest.
•        Many thousands of diseases plague our patients. However, only about 500 have any treatment approved by the Food and Drug
         Administration.
•        It takes about 14 years to go from discovering a therapeutic target to getting approval for a new drug.
•        More than 95 percent of the above projects fail.
•        It can cost $2 billion or more to create an approved, successful treatment.

NCATS director, Christopher P. Austin, MD, said he views the CTSA Consortium’s mission in terms of the “3-Ds.”

“Develop new approaches, technologies, resources and models; demonstrate their usefulness; and proactively disseminate the data, analy-
sis and methodologies so that other scientists can implement them,” Austin wrote in the report.

That’s what we’re doing at the ITM to change some of those statistics and convert biomedical research into health improvement. In this
inaugural Year in Review, you’ll see how ITM investigators are developing ways to prevent transplant recipients’ bodies from rejecting
their new organs, learn how our investigator’s innovative violence intervention models are impacting Chicago, and read how an investi-
gator’s program that disseminates the latest life-saving treatment methods to urban communities has grown to encompass groups across
the Chicagoland region – and more.

And as we all work to make this next grant year even stronger than the last, please don’t hesitate to reach out to any of the ITM team
members for information about our funding, education, and research resources. We’re here to help you make discoveries and apply those
findings in cutting-edge ways. As British mathematician and science philosopher Alfred North Whitehead once said, “Ideas won’t keep.
Something must be done about them.”

Keep exploring,

Julian Solway, MD &                  Lainie Ross, MD, PhD
ITM Director			                      ITM Co-Director
                                                                       ITM Director Julian Solway (L), NCATS Director Christopher P. Austin (C), and ITM Co-Director Lainie Ross
                                                                                                         (R), meet in Washington, D.C., in July.

                                                                   2
THE ITM INVESTIGATOR Year in Review Issue I
TABLE OF CONTENTS
                       Researchers collect samples at UChicago laboratories.       Medical images are just one of many things being        ITM investigators gather to discuss the latest in 3-D
                                     Photo by Sara Serritella.                 analyzed at UChicago labs like those of ITM investigator   printing from NorthShore University HealthSystem in
                                                                                     and medical physicist Maryellen Giger, PhD.                      June. Photo by Sara Serritella.
                                                                                              Photo by Sara Serritella.

                    LETTER FROM THE DIRECTORS..............................................................................................2

                    ITM PILOT AWARDS.....................................................................................................................4

                    ITM PILOT AWARDEE UPDATES................................................................................................5
                    Piotr Witkowski: Working to cure autoimmune diseases and organ transplant rejection.............................................5
                    Jared Greenberg: Immune dysfunction as risk factor for long-term mortality from Staphylococcus aureus Bacteremia..........6
                    Harold Pollack: UChicago Crime Lab reduces youth violence and secures millions in funding....................................7
                    Daniel Johnson: ECHO-Chicago expands geographic reach and training opportunities............................................9

                    NEW ITM AWARDEES.................................................................................................................11
                    New Pilot Awardee Spotlight....................................................................................................................12
                    Thank You to Reviewers............................................................................................................................13

                    ITM INVESTIGATORS MAKING HEADLINES.........................................................................14

                    CLUSTER NEWS...........................................................................................................................16
                    		Biomedical Informatics.................................................................................................17
                    		Clinical Resources.......................................................................................................18
                    		Clinical Trials.............................................................................................................19
                    		Population Sciences.....................................................................................................19
                    		Education.................................................................................................................20
                    		Community..............................................................................................................22

                    ITM LEADERSHIP NEWS...........................................................................................................24

                    ITM EVOLUTION........................................................................................................................26

                    INNOVATION ON CAMPUS......................................................................................................27

                    ITM INVESTIGATOR PUBLICATIONS.....................................................................................29

                    LOOKING AHEAD.......................................................................................................................31

                                                                                       3
THE ITM INVESTIGATOR Year in Review Issue I
ITM PILOT AWARDS

    ITM AWARDS MORE THAN $650,000 IN PILOT
            FUNDING IN 2013 - 2014
The ITM gave $681,763 in Pilot           and allow trainees or researchers to         Awards (CTSA) consortium that             totaling more than $2.75 million.
Award funding to more than a             generate preliminary data critical to        helps convert biomedical research
dozen investigators in the last fiscal   securing subsequent funding from             into health improvement.                  Since 2007, total funding for the
year, which ran from July 2013 to        the National Institutes of Health                                                      ITM exceeds $50 million from
July 2014.                               (NIH) and other organizations.               During the last eight years, the ITM      the NIH’s National Center for
                                                                                      has connected more than 1,800             Advancing Translational Sciences
The ITM’s Pilot Award Program            The ITM also supports projects that          investigators with funding, training,     (NCATS) CTSA grant numbers
awards investigators seed funding        will stimulate community-engaged             and other resources while forging         UL1 TR000430, KL2 TR000431,
four times a year for promising          research and improve clinical de-            connections across departments,           and TL1 TR000432, and from the
translational and clinical research      sign, biostatistics, ethics, informat-       universities, and patient advocacy        University of Chicago Medicine
projects.                                ics, or regulatory pathways.                 groups.                                   and Biological Sciences.

This program supports projects that      The ITM is a member of the NIH               Between 2008 and 2011 alone, the                    Learn more by visiting
promote early career development         Clinical and Translational Science           ITM awarded 60 Pilot Award grants                     itm.uchicago.edu.

                ITM LAUNCHES NEW PILOT FUNDING
                  MECHANISM FOR TECHNOLOGY &
                   COMMERCIAL DEVELOPMENT
                                                                                      This past fiscal year the ITM             Applications are evaluated based
                                                                                      launched a new Pilot Award in             on:

                     DON’T MISS                                                       partnership with UChicagoTech to
                                                                                      provide up to $40,000 to research
                                                                                                                                •   The novelty, innovation, and
                                                                                                                                    multidisciplinary aspects of

                     UPCOMING                                                         projects that could lead to
                                                                                      commercialization.                        •
                                                                                                                                    the project.
                                                                                                                                    The likelihood the proposal

                    ITM FUNDING                                                       Submitting an application is a
                                                                                                                                    will result in future outside
                                                                                                                                    funding or a partnership with

                     DEADLINES                                                        win-win situation for investigators,
                                                                                      who have the benefit of receiving         •
                                                                                                                                    a commercial organization.
                                                                                                                                    The potential the proposed
                                                                                      detailed feedback from both inter-            research has for impacting
                                                                                      nal academic reviewers and external           the diagnosis or treatment of
                          PILOT AWARDS:                                               reviewers, such as entrepreneurs,             human disease.
                            Up to $40,000                                             representatives from pharmaceutical
                             October 15                                               companies, venture capitalists, and       Awardees may be assigned one or
                                                                                      others.                                   two industry members to provide
                             January 15                                                                                         ongoing consultation.
                                                                                      “This is a unique mechanism to
                        CORE SUBSIDIES:                                               support early translational research      “We’re not just pushing the science
                                                                                      that’s leading towards a develop-         forward, but we’re also making sure
                          Up to $5,000                                                ment of a product or service,” said       the technology is advancing toward
                            Rolling                                                   Heather Walsh, assistant director         the marketplace,” Walsh said.
                                                                                      of UChicagoTech. “It’s designed
                                                                                      for investigators to get that vital       The first recipient will be
              COMMUNITY MINI-AWARDS:                                                  external feedback earlier in the pro-     announced soon, and the next
                   Up to $5,000                                                       cess so they can focus on the right       deadline for applications is Oct. 15.
                     Rolling                                                          experiments.”
                                                                                                                Visit ITM’s website for details or reach Heather Walsh
                                                                                                                            at hwalsh@tech.uchicago.edu.

                                                                                  4
THE ITM INVESTIGATOR Year in Review Issue I
ITM PILOT AWARDEE UPDATES
                            INVESTIGATOR WORKING TO CURE
                              AUTOIMMUNE DISEASES & END
                             ORGAN TRANSPLANT REJECTION
                                                                                                                      “We need to show those agencies               team uses leukapheresis to acquire
                                                                                                                      that we are capable of manufac-               Tregs from patients’ blood at the
                                                                                                                      turing those cells in a safe and              sampling stage, whereas Trzon-
                                                                                                                      reproducible way, meeting all their           kowski and Bluestone collect 500
                                                                                                                      standards,” said Witkowski, who is            milliliters of blood per patient and
                                                                                                                      also the director of the University           isolate the Tregs afterwards.
                                                                                                                      of Chicago Medicine’s Pancreatic
                                                                                                                      and Islet Transplant Program. “It’s a         “Although it’s optimized, the whole
                                                                                                                      long process to get the approval.”            process is not stable because it’s
                                                                                                                                                                    based on the way the cells grow
                                                                                                                      One of Witkowski’s collaborators              outside the body, in artificial
                                                                                                                      in Europe, Piotr Trzonkowski, MD,             conditions,” he said. “Cells are like
                                                                                                                      PhD, of the Medical University of             human bodies: Sometimes they
                                                                                                                      Gdansk, implemented the world’s               respond, sometimes they don’t re-
                                                                                                                      first successful human therapy based          spond…We are starting with higher
                                                                                                                      on ex-vivo Treg cell expansion. The           numbers at the beginning, so we
                                                                                                                      duo is also working with Jeffrey              could get more consistent results.”
(L - R): Piotr Witkowski, MD, PhD; Karolina Golab, MS, PhD student, Treg project specialist; Sabarinathan Ram-
 achandran, PhD, director of the islet isolation laboratories; Zehra Tekin, MD, postdoctoral research scholar; Omid   Bluestone, PhD, a well-recognized
Savari, MD, postdoctoral research scholar; Randall Grose, PhD, Treg project specialist; Paulina Langa, MS, visiting   immunologist and Treg leader who              And the extent of the expansion
           PhD student from the lab of Piotr Trzonkowski, MD, PhD, overseas. Photo by Sara Serritella.
                                                                                                                      is also the executive vice chancellor         matters because of the different
                                                                                                                      and provost at the University of              applications.
             By Sara Serritella                           autoimmune diseases and the body
                                                                                                                      California, San Francisco (UCSF).
                                                          from rejecting organ transplants. As
                                                                                                                      Bluestone, who previously served              Witkowski’s collaborators are focus-
Between 14 to 22 million people                           part of this ex-vivo process, he col-
                                                                                                                      as the director of the University of          ing on patients who were recently
in the United States suffer from                          lects the blood, separates the white
                                                                                                                      Chicago’s Ben May Department for              diagnosed with diabetes and still
autoimmune diseases, such as type                         blood cells through leukapheresis
                                                                                                                      Cancer Research, recently complet-            have some healthy groups of cells,
1 diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and                       and grows the number of Tregs to
                                                                                                                      ed a Phase 1 clinical trial using Treg        known as islets, that are producing
rheumatoid arthritis, according to                        1,000 times the sample size in his
                                                                                                                      expansion technology in patients              insulin. Their goal is to protect
the National Institutes of Health                         laboratory.
                                                                                                                      with new-onset diabetes using Treg            those remaining healthy islets from
(NIH), with the medical cost of
                                                                                                                      expansion technology.                         complete destruction by infusing
treating type 1 diabetes and mul-                         “Those cells have great potential,”
tiple sclerosis alone topping more                        Witkowski said. “Once the produc-                                                                                                       ...Continued on page 6.
                                                                                                                      While they are
than $7 billion each year.                                tion of the Tregs is optimized and
                                                                                                                      all collaborat-
                                                          they’re available for clinical appli-
                                                                                                                      ing, each of
But with the help of an ITM Pilot                         cation, we can test it for different
                                                                                                                      them developed
Award, Piotr Witkowski, MD,                               autoimmune diseases. So this is a
                                                                                                                      slightly different
PhD, is one step closer to curing                         big window of opportunity.”
                                                                                                                      Treg processing
those conditions – and ending the
                                                                                                                      procedures look-
body’s rejection of organ trans-                          His goal is to use the data gathered
                                                                                                                      ing for optimal
plants.                                                   from the ITM Pilot Project to gain
                                                                                                                      conditions to
                                                          approval from the U.S. Food and
                                                                                                                      achieve the same
In November 2010, Witkowski and                           Drug Administration and Institu-
                                                                                                                      end product:
his team initiated the development                        tional Review Board (IRB) so they
                                                                                                                      pure and stable
and optimization of expanding the                         can collect Tregs, expand them in
                                                                                                                      Treg cells in suf-
number of regulatory T cells (Tregs)                      his laboratory setting, and transfer
                                                                                                                      ficient numbers.
outside the body in his laboratory.                       those multiplied Tregs into the
                                                          patients they originated from as one
                                                                                                                      For example,
Tregs are cells that hold the im-                         of the first U.S. clinical trials of its
                                                                                                                      Witkowski’s              Members of Witkowski’s lab are trying to cure autoimmune diseases.
mune system in balance, preventing                        kind.                                                                                                   Photo by Sara Serritella.

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THE ITM INVESTIGATOR Year in Review Issue I
ITM PILOT AWARDEE UPDATES
...Continued from page 5.

patients with their own Tregs that        But the doctors still have to use the
were expanded in the laboratory.          same immunosuppressant medi-
                                          cations normally prescribed after
In contrast, Witkowski is planning        whole organ transplantation to
to use Tregs to protect transplanted      protect the donor islets from being
pancreatic islets.                        rejected, Witkowski said. So the
                                          Tregs and their immunoprotective
He retrieves those islets from a          ability could act as an effective,
deceased donor’s pancreas and             less toxic alternative because the
transplants them into “brittle” type      expanded cells would originate from
1 diabetic patients whose own islets      the bloodstream of the patient.
vanished years ago from the disease.
Islet transplantation is a new, alter-    Witkowski said the ITM Pilot
native procedure to transplanting         Award was one of many necessary
the whole pancreas.                       pieces that came together to help
                                          him apply for the next research
“Instead of a big operation with a        stage, as the testing and certifica-
high rate of complications, we’re         tion behind clinical grade reagents                       Witkowski’s research team meets in his laboratory. Photo by Sara Serritella.

giving patients a similar outcome         makes them far more expensive                could proceed and get to the point                    Grant, NP; and a team of nurses
just by infusing those islets into the    than basic research reagents. His            where I am now.”                                      from the ITM’s Clinical Research
bloodstream as a minimally invasive       team is currently generating its data                                                              Center (CRC), has been optimizing
procedure,” Witkowski said.               and will be applying for approval            Witkowski, together with a team of                    islet transplantation procedures
                                          for clinical trials from the FDA this        diabetologists that include: Louis                    that Witkowski said he is looking
And his patients’ lives have been         year.                                        Philipson, MD, PhD, and director                      forward to combining with the new
changed, allowing most of them                                                         of the University of Chicago Kovler                   Treg therapy.
much better control over their            “It takes time and money to imple-           Diabetes Center; Silvana Pannain,
blood glucose levels - and at least       ment the technology and optimize             MD, Assistant Professor of Medi-                                Reach Piotr Witkowski at
half go off insulin injections within     the production,” Witkowski said.             cine; Colleen Flynn, MD, Assistant                          pwitkowski@surgery.bsd.uchicago.
five years.                               “And thanks to ITM’s support, I              Professor of Medicine; Tiffany

FELLOW IDENTIFIES IMMUNE DYSFUNCTION
AS A RISK FACTOR FOR LONG-TERM MORTALITY
FROM STAPHYLOCOCCUS AUREUS BACTEREMIA
             By Sara Serritella           tients who are at the highest risk for       bacteremia at the University of
                                          long-term mortality after sepsis.            Chicago hospital and found that
Each year more than 650,000 U.S.                                                       clinical immunosuppression prior
patients are affected by severe sepsis,   “We’re trying to figure out why              to infection was a risk factor for
a process by which an infection           people who survive a severe infec-           31- to 90-day mortality, but not
leads to deregulated inflammation         tion have a higher mortality than            30-day mortality. He is now using                             Jared Greenberg, MD. Photo provided.
throughout the entire body. About         their counterparts,” Greenberg said.         the ITM Pilot award to measure
20 percent of these patients - more       “While there are algorithms to treat         immune markers among a group of                       Additionally, clinical trials for pa-
than 120,000 - die in the hospital.       sepsis in the first 24 hours, there          prospectively enrolled patients with                  tients with sepsis may have greater
                                          is really no way to identify people          Staphylococcus aureus bacteremia.                     chance of success if they only enroll
Among those who survive the initial       who are going to have complica-                                                                    high-risk patients.”
hospitalization, about 25 percent         tions afterward.”                            “I’m hoping to be able to use
die within the following year.                                                         clinical and biochemical factors to                   Greenberg became interested in
                                          Greenberg chose to focus on Staphy-          risk stratify patients who survive an                 the immunosuppressed population
ITM awarded Jared Greenberg, a            lococcus aureus bacteremia because it        infectious process,” Greenberg said.                  during his residency at Emory
University of Chicago Medicine            is a common infection that typically         “Clinicians could use this informa-                   University in Atlanta, a region
Fellow in the Section of Pulmonary        causes a systemic inflammatory               tion to have heightened vigilance                     where there was a large population
and Critical Care Medicine, a Pilot       response. He initially reviewed 237          for clinical changes among patients                   of people infected with HIV.
Award to investigate the types of pa-     patients with Staphylococcus aureus          with a high risk for poor outcomes.                                                  ...Continued on page 7.

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THE ITM INVESTIGATOR Year in Review Issue I
ITM PILOT AWARDEE UPDATES
 ...Continued from page 6.

 “I found it really interesting that                     Greenberg was the first author on a                              in July and plans to work on a K23                      “Without the ITM Pilot Award
 when patients with HIV would                            paper highlighting his                                           grant application.                                      money, it would be difficult to do
 come to the Intensive Care Unit,                        Staphylococcus aureus bacteremia                                                                                         this initial research.”
 they would often be sick with in-                       findings that was published in Feb-                              “It’s going to be very important
 fections associated with prolonged                      ruary 2014 by the Public Library of                              when I apply for my K Award to                               Connect with Jared Greenberg
 healthcare exposure instead of                          Science (PLoS One).                                              have this preliminary data,”                                              at
 unusual, opportunistic infections,”                                                                                      Greenberg said.                                            Jared.Greenberg@uchospitals.edu.
 he said.                                                He said he returned to clinical work

                   UCHICAGO CRIME LAB REDUCES
                     YOUTH VIOLENCE & SECURES
                  MILLIONS OF DOLLARS IN FUNDING
             By Sara Serritella       “If kids don’t stay engaged, they
                                      have a high probability of dropping
The University of Chicago Crime       out, and once they drop out they
Lab has been busy since receiving     have a high probability of being
its ITM Pilot Award in 2012,          either victims or perpetrators of
evaluating strategies to reduce youth crime,” said Harold Pollack, PhD,
violence in Chicago and receiving     co-director of the Crime Lab and
a combined $7 million from the        associate director of the ITM.
National Institutes of Health (NIH)
and the John D. and Catherine T.      “The kids have to be tough. They
MacArthur Foundation.                 don’t have a lot of margin for error,
                                      academically or in many other areas
That work is addressing a huge        in their lives, and so we want to give
problem. Between September 2008 them a realistic way to follow a road
and April 2010, more than 610         map.”
Chicago Public School students
were shot. Only about half of high That “road map” took the form                                                          Harold Pollack, PhD, co-director of the UChicago Crime Lab and associate director of the ITM.
school students in major cities grad- of targeted interventions over the                                                                                   Photo by Kyle Zimmerman.
uate, and by the time many of those course of six months for 106 male
children reach high school they can 9th and 10th graders on Chicago’s                                                     Students’ math scores also improved                     helped the Crime Lab quickly add
be up to seven grade levels behind    South Side - and it led to a decrease                                               by the equivalent of about three                        the second prong – an intensive
in subjects like math.                in school misconduct, course fail-                                                  years’-worth of learning.                               math tutoring component based
                                      ures, absenteeism and violent crime.                                                                                                        on the model of Boston’s Match
                                                                                                                          The interventions involved a two-                       Education.
                                                                                                                          pronged approach.
                                                                                                                                                                                  “The ITM Pilot funding really
                                                                                                                          The non-academic prong was the                          allowed us to take that next step to
                                                                                                                          Becoming a Man (BAM) program,                           see what we could get by including
                                                                                                                          developed and implemented by                            this tutoring,” Pollack said. “What
                                                                                                                          Chicago nonprofit Youth Guidance,                       we found were very significant
                                                                                                                          which focuses on social-cognitive                       benefits to the pilot intervention
                                                                                                                          skills and is based on cognitive be-                    and dramatic improvement in kids’
                                                                                                                          havioral therapy (CBT). BAM also                        school performance, which provid-
                                                                                                                          included an after-school sports pro-                    ed the basis for an NIH grant. This
                                                                                                                          gram, offered in partnership with                       grant will support the expansion of
                                                                                                                          nonprofit World Sport Chicago.                          the BAM and Match programs as
                                                                                                                                                                                  well as our current larger-scale study
                                                                                                                          Pollack said the ITM’s funding                          of these programs, in turn growing
Students participate in a deep breathing exercise as they learn about self-control and relaxing during their weekly
          BAM session at a Chicago Public School. Photo by Robert Kozloff/University of Chicago.                                                                                                              ...Continued on page 8.

                                                                                                                      7
THE ITM INVESTIGATOR Year in Review Issue I
ITM PILOT AWARDEE UPDATES
...Continued from page 7.
the impact of this work to benefit                       unique is that it is evaluating its in-
not only Chicago but also other                          terventions using the same rigorous                                              WATCH THE VIDEO
cities as well.”                                         methods applied to clinical trials in
                                                         medical research.                                                                Hear about the impact the University of Chicago
The P01 grant from the NIH’s Eu-                                                                                                          Crime Lab is having in the words of the student
nice Kennedy Shriver National In-   And the data speaks for itself.                                                                        participants and tutors by watching this video.
stitute of Child Health and Human
Development awarded the Crime       The interventions increased expect-
Lab $6 million and Chicago Public   ed graduation rates by about 50                                                 attended per year – all of which               ITM really helped make possible,”
Schools pro-                                                                                                               researchers said would have             Pollack said, with publications like
vided the BAM                “The kids have to be tough.                                                                   an impact on violence.                  The New York Times covering the
and Match                                                                                                                                                          project and U.S. and international
programs with            They don’t have a lot of margin for                                                                  Based on an almost 70                agencies reaching out to collaborate.
$4 million. The                                                                                                               percent reduction in school
Crime Lab also          error, academically or in many other                                                                  misconduct in a compara-             While the research team got a lot
earned $1 mil-
lion as one of
                         areas in their lives, and so we want                                                                 tive trial, researchers predict
                                                                                                                              a decrease in violent crime
                                                                                                                                                                   of credit for the data, Pollack said
                                                                                                                                                                   there were many other people in-
seven nonprof-          to give them a realistic way to follow                                                                arrests over the next two            volved in the schools who changed
its worldwide                                                                                                                 years by an estimated 50 to          the students’ lives.
recognized with                     a road map.”                                                                              60 percent and a drop in
a 2014 MacAr-                                                                                                                 drug-related arrests by about        “Our partners just did an amazing
thur Award for                    - Harold Pollack, PhD                                                                       40 to 50 percent.                    job implementing the intervention,”
Creative and                                                                                                                                                       Pollack said. “They deserve to see
Effective Institutions.             percent, decreased course failures                                              “We got a lot of attention for the             the value of their work noted.”
                                    by about 60 percent and resulted                                                results that we achieved with our
What makes the Crime Lab’s work     in about 2.5 more weeks of school                                               pilot, and that was something the              Those collaborators included the
                                                                                                                                                                   Crime Lab’s multidisciplinary
                                                                                                                                                                   team of economists, public health
                                                                                                                                                                   researchers, psychologists and edu-
                                                                                                                                                                   cation experts, along with Chicago
                                                                                                                                                                   Public Schools, the Chicago Police
                                                                                                                                                                   Department, the City of Chicago
                                                                                                                                                                   and nonprofit partners Match Edu-
                                                                                                                                                                   cation and Youth Guidance.

                                                                                                                                                                   The results of the 2012-2013 study
                                                                                                                                                                   were published by the National
                                                                                                                                                                   Bureau of Economic Research in
                                                                                                                                                                   January 2014, and the Crime Lab is
                                                                                                                                                                   currently running a large-scale study
                                                                                                                                                                   based on the pilot in 21 Chicago
                                                                                                                                                                   Public Schools.

                                                                                                                                                                   “The most important thing for peo-
                                                                                                                                                                   ple to note is that we have effective
                                                                                                                                                                   interventions that can help,” Pollack
                                                                                                                                                                   said. “No one of these interventions
                                                                                                                                                                   is going to be the polio vaccine
                                                                                                                                                                   that’s going to end youth violence.
                                                                                                                                                                   But if we methodically pursue evi-
                                                                                                                                                                   dence-informed interventions, we
                                                                                                                                                                   can really make a difference for kids
                                                                                                                                                                   in Chicago and in every other city
                                                                                                                                                                   across the United States.”
                                                                                                                                                                          Reach Harold Pollack at
                            A BAM counselor congratulates students and hands out T-shirts as they pass the halfway mark in the program.
                                                        Photo by Robert Kozloff/University of Chicago.
                                                                                                                                                                          haroldp@uchicago.edu.

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THE ITM INVESTIGATOR Year in Review Issue I
ITM PILOT AWARDEE UPDATES

                                                      ECHO-CHICAGO EXPANDS
                                                       ITS GEOGRAPHIC REACH
                                                       & TRAINING OFFERINGS
                                                                                                                           for new knowledge to       practice nurses, and social workers.
                                                                                                                           trickle out. We’re able    And its educational offerings have
                                                                                                                           to reduce that time by     expanded from three to five subjects
                                                                                                                           bringing state-of-the-     taught over 12 sessions.
                                                                                                                           art care to community
                                                                                                                           providers at the speed     Those subjects now cover resistant
                                                                                                                           of light.”                 hypertension, pediatric ADHD,
                                                                                                                                                      risk-based approach to women’s
                                                                                                                           ECHO stands for            health, hepatitis C, and pediatric
                                                                                                                           Extension of Com-          obesity and comorbidities.
                                                                                                                           munity Healthcare
                                                                                                                           Outcomes, and its goal     Finicia Graham, MD, practices
                                                                                                                           is to provide innovative   family medicine at Beloved Com-
                                                                                                                           medical training using     munity Family Wellness Center in
                                                                                                                           videoconferencing tech-    Robbins, IL, and has participated
                                                                                                                           nology to break down       in more than 30 ECHO-Chicago
                                                                                                                           the divisions between      sessions.
                                                                                                                           primary and specialty
                                                                                                                           care.                      “ECHO has been an invaluable
                                                                                                                                                      resource for me, as it has provided
Andrew Aronsohn, MD, (L) leads an ECHO-Chicago telehealth session about hepatitis C with transplant pharmacist             The first ECHO project     a link to experts in the field and a
                         Lindsey Pote, PharmD, BCPS (R). Photo by Sara Serritella.
                                                                                                                 was born at the University of New    chance to discuss common clinical
            By Sara Serritella                                                                                   Mexico School of Medicine, and       questions with colleagues,” Graham
                                                                                                                 ECHO-Chicago is one of 39 tele-      said.
Patients who receive care at com-                        awardee ECHO-Chicago is
munity health centers often have                         changing that by expanding what                             “It normally takes years for new
limited access to subspecialists,                        started as medical training for six
research shows, and ITM Pilot                            federally qualified health centers on                       knowledge to trickle out. We’re...
                                                                      Chicago’s South Side
                                                                      to working with 22
                                                                                                                   bringing state-of-the-art care to com-
                                                                      different organizations
                                                                      across Chicagoland.
                                                                                                                          munity providers at the
                                                                                                                              speed of light.”
                                                                        “We’re translating the
                                                                        changes in medicine                                              - Daniel Johnson, MD
                                                                        more rapidly out to
                                                                        community pro-                           ECHO hubs that run in 22 states      And that’s part of the beauty of
                                                                        viders,” said Daniel                     and six countries.                   the ECHO model, according to
                                                                        Johnson, MD, the                                                              Johnson.
                                                                        principal investigator                   But Chicago’s project is the first
                                                                        for ECHO-Chicago,                        one to apply the model to an         “It gets people talking,” he said.
                                                                        associate professor of                   urban setting and continues to be    “Because you’re in a virtual confer-
                                                                        pediatrics and chief                     the most successful urban ECHO.      ence room, it gives you the ability
                                                                        of the Section of                                                             to look at people. When you can
                                                                        Academic Pediatrics                      Over the past five years             look at people, you can read body
                                                                        at the University of                     ECHO-Chicago has trained             language. When you can read body
                                                                        Chicago Medicine. “It                    more than 250 providers, which       language, you’re more likely to
           Daniel Johnson, MD, is the principal investigator for        normally takes years                     includes physicians, advanced        speak. The person becomes more
            ECHO-Chicago. Photo by UChicago Medicine.
                                                                                                                                                                       ...Continued on page 10.

                                                                                                           9
THE ITM INVESTIGATOR Year in Review Issue I
ITM PILOT AWARDEE UPDATES

                                                                                                                                   A GOOD THING GROWS
                                                                                                                               Since the ITM awarded Daniel Johnson a Pilot Award for
                                                                                                                               ECHO-Chicago in 2012, the program has grown to secure
                                                                                                                               more than 17 times that funding for a total of more than
                                                                                                                               $876,000 in support from the following organizations:

                                                                                                                               •          Grant Healthcare Foundation
                                                                                                                               •          Lloyd A. Fry Foundation
                                                                                                                               •          Baxter International Foundation
                                                                                                                               •          VNA Foundation
                                                                                                                               •          Aetna Foundation
                                                                                                                               •          Illinois Department of Public Health
                                                                                                                               •          American Cancer Society – Illinois Division
                                                                                                                               •          Northern Trust Charitable Trust
          ECHO-Chicago brings top training to urban providers using videoconferencing. Photo by Sara Serritella.
...Continued from page 9.

familiar to you and it provides a real                   hepatitis C, which is very prevalent                      UChicago’s program now has a              Johnson said the ECHO-Chicago
opportunity for working together.”                       in the United States and is going to                      waitlist of providers who would like      would not be where it is today
                                                         be better treated in a primary care                       to join in the telehealth sessions,       without the early financial support
The ITM attended a recent session                        setting, is going to make a huge                          which are limited to less than 10         it received from the ITM’s Pilot
on hepatitis C, where about                              impact on treating the disease,”                          sites at a time – and it will be cover-   Award.
six medical providers from the                           Aronsohn said at the end of the                           ing even more topics next year.
Chicagoland region listened to a                         session.                                                                                            “The funding was spectacular,”
presentation on new treatment                                                                                      ECHO-Chicago just came to an              Johnson said. “It helped us to
methods from UChicago Medi-                              Researchers are already seeing those                      agreement with the American               underwrite infrastructure so that we
cine’s Andrew Aronsohn, MD, an                           results.                                                  Academy of Pediatrics to launch           could reach more providers.”
assistant professor, gastroenterolo-                                                                               a program focused on pediatric
gist and hepatologist. Then they dis-                    According to a 2011 study pub-                            seizures, and there are plans to start
                                                                                                                                                                      To get involved with
cussed the best ways to apply that                       lished in the New England Journal                         another addressing the best ways
                                                                                                                                                                    ECHO-Chicago, contact
new information to treat specific                        of Medicine, ECHO has enabled                             to integrate mental health care into
                                                                                                                                                                      Daniel Johnson at
patients.                                                community primary care provid-                            the normal stream of health center
                                                                                                                                                               djohnson@peds.bsd.uchicago.edu.
                                                         ers to offer chronic disease care at                      activities.
“Empowering primary care doctors                         almost the same level as universi-
to be able to treat something like                       ty-based subspecialists.

                                                                                                                                    LOOKING AHEAD
                                                                                                                    ECHO-Chicago is in the process of analyzing millions of electronic
                                                                                                                    records it has obtained through a partnership with Illinois’ Healthcare
                                                                                                                    and Family Services (HSF), which administers Medicaid. Its goal is
                                                                                                                    to analyze the prescribing habits of providers who have gone through
                                                                                                                    ECHO-Chicago training and compare them to those who have yet
                                                                                                                    to go through it – in turn, measuring the outcome it has on patients
                                                                                                                    directly.

                                                                                                                    Additionally, the program submitted a grant application to the Centers
                                                                                                                    for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for about $7 million to
                                                                                                                    make use of the ECHO-Chicago structure and develop a surveillance
                                                                                                                    mechanism for identifying and tracking the outcomes of Chicagoland
                                                                                                                    patients with hepatitis C.

                                                                                                                    It also helped organize MetaECHO, the first international ECHO
                                                                                                                    conference that took place Sept. 11 - 13 in New Mexico.
       ECHO-Chicago’s program now has a waitlist of providers who want to join in the telehealth sessions.
                                        Photo by Sara Serritella.

                                                                                                              10
NEW ITM AWARDEES

              ITM CONGRATULATES ITS AWARDEES
                                               JULY 2013 - JULY 2014
                                                             Pilot Awards
         Investigator                        Project Title                               Investigator                    Project Title

Konstantin G. Birukov, MD, PhD   Discovery of a Novel Class of Synthetic              Kate Keenan, PhD         Depression Prevention Effects on
                                 Phospholipids for Treatment of Acute                                          Neural Processing of Emotion and
                                              Lung Injury                                                              Reward Stimuli

 Julie Chor, MD                   Conceptualizing the Full-Spectrum                   Dorit Koren, MD         Sleep Habits in Adolescents and Type
		                                         Doula Model                                                                 2 Diabetes Risk

 Emil F. Coccaro, MD             Neurobehavioral Correlates of Central                Yanchun Li, PhD          Vitamin D Regulation of Systemic
			                               Pro-Inflammatory Cytokines in Hu-                                           Inflammation in Mice and Humans
                                            man Aggression

     Tina N. Drossos, PhD        Emotional Intelligence and Regulation             Jeremy Marks, MD, PhD      Defining Characteristics of Epileptic
                                    in Patients with T-2 Diabetes                                                      Human Cortex

     Nickolai Dulin, PhD          Regulation of Myofibroblast Differ-               Patrick Singleton, PhD     Peripheral MOR Antagonism as a
                                 entiation and Pulmonary Fibrosis by                                           Potential Therapeutic Strategy for
                                     Cardiotonic Steroid, Digoxin                                                        Lung Cancer

  Andrea B. Goldschmidt, PhD       Executive Function in Overweight                    Bret Ulery, PhD        Mixed Antigen/Adjuvant Micelles for
                                      Children at Risk for Eating                                             Single Administration Streptococcus
                                               Disorders                                                                 Vaccination

   Christopher Gomez, MD         Screening for Small Molecule Inhibi-           Samuel Volchenboum, MD, PhD   Automated Scoring of MIBG Scans
                                 tors of a Novel Pathogenic Cistron to                                         for Patients with Neuroblastoma
                                           Treat SCA6 Ataxia

  Nicholas Hatsopoulos, PhD        Incorporation of Natural Censory                Amittha Wickrema, PhD      Mobilization of Chemokine Receptor
             and                   Feedback to Improve Control of a                                             CXCR4-Expressing Erythroid
     Derek Kamper, PhD             Crain-Cachine Interface for Grasp                                                 Progenitors in Blood

                                                                SPIRiT Awards

                                 Theodore Karrison, PhD          Imaging and Inflammatory Biomarkers in
                                 		                              Anti-Retroviral Neuro-Intensification

                                                             K Appointees
            CTSA                              Oncology                                     Oncology                       Oncology

       Lea K. Davis, PhD                Manish Sharma, MD                           Hongtao Liu, MD, PhD             Swati Kulkarni, MD

     Vladimir Liarski, MD                Jane Churpek, MD                             Hae Kyung Im, PhD            Tatyana Grushko, PhD

        Julie Chor, MD                Linda Patrick-Miller, PhD                      Daniel Catenacci, MD                LungOmics

  Andrea G. Goldschmidt, PhD            Raymon Grogan, MD                                                        Gabrielle Lapping-Carr, MD

                                                                           11
NEW ITM AWARDEES
NEW PILOT                                       ANDREA G. GOLDSCHMIDT
SPOTLIGHTS:                                     NICKOLAI DULIN

             Andrea G. Goldschmidt, PhD, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral                             Nickolai Dulin, PhD, Associate Professor, Section of Pulmo-
            Neuroscience and Co-Director of the Eating Disorders Program. Photo provided.                                 nary and Critical Care Medicine. Photo provided.
Project Title:                                                                                   Project Title:
Executive function in overweight children at risk for eating disorders.                          Regulation of myofibroblast differentiation and pulmonary fibrosis by
                                                                                                 cardiotonic steroid, digoxin.
Pilot Project Goals:
About 30 percent of weight loss treatment-seeking children also report                           Pilot Project Goals:
binge eating. The project sets the stage for understanding the mechanisms                        There are no drugs currently available to treat idiopathic pulmonary fibro-
behind the binge eating so that effective interventions can be developed.                        sis, a deadly disease characterized by a progressive scarring of the lung tissue.

No one has really looked at these children’s brains while they lose control,                     “People breathe air, but their lungs cannot exchange the oxygen, and this wors-
Goldschmidt said, so the project uses functional magnetic resonance imag-                        ens with time. From the time of diagnosis, they have about two to three years to
ing, or fMRI, to see what is going on when they do.                                              live, so it’s a bad one. We’re trying to understand the mechanism of the disease,
                                                                                                 and through this find something that could at least prolong their lives.”
“We have such a poor understanding of the mechanisms involved in binge
eating with kids right now that it’s almost like developing interventions would                  Pilot Award Path:
be putting the cart before the horse….That’s where the cognitive piece comes                     About two years ago, Dulin made an observation that differentiation of
in, because inhibitory control is one factor that seems to go awry in these kids                 myofibroblasts, the pathologic cells driving pulmonary fibrosis, was blocked
and could lead to binge eating. They just can’t stop themselves from eating, even                by cardiac glycosides, including digoxin - the FDA-approved drug for
when they don’t want to be eating.”                                                              treating heart failure and cardiac arrhythmias. He translated this observa-
                                                                                                 tion into his current Pilot Award project: testing whether digoxin can also
ITM Impact: K Scholar                                                                            be used to treat pulmonary fibrosis. Dulin is working with cultured human
Goldschmidt received a Pilot Award shortly after becoming part of the K12                        lung fibroblasts and with mouse models of pulmonary fibrosis that the
program. She said it jump-started her career by increasing her knowledge in                      ITM funding supports. In preliminary experiments he found that digoxin
cognitive neuroscience, an area in which she had no prior training, and giv-                     administered at lower therapeutic dose levels drastically reduced pulmonary
ing her dedicated time for research and networking with important faculty                        fibrosis in the mouse models.
members in her field.
                                                                                                 “We aim to establish the protective effect of digoxin and to understand the
“The K12 is the training piece and the Pilot Award is the implementation                         mechanism by which it works. The first part is clinically relevant, the second
piece... It’s great that these funds are available, especially to junior investigators,          is scientifically relevant. But once we know the mechanisms, we can think of
because it is so hard and such a long process to get NIH funding – and you often                 maybe even better drugs that work the same way.”
need preliminary data to put in your grant application.”
                                                                                                 Pilot Project Traction:
K Scholar Traction:                                                                              Dulin applied for an NIH R01 grant in June, 2014, and plans to submit his
Goldschmidt has already been first author on three articles published while                      first manuscript on this subject in September or October 2014.
funded by the K12 program: Latent Profile Analysis of Eating Episodes in
Anorexia Nervosa, Predictors of Child Weight Loss and Maintenance Among                          “The ITM funding is a huge help, especially with the limited funding from the
Family-Based Treatment Completers, and Ecological Momentary Assessment of                        NIH nowadays. And the ITM reviewers’ comments were very helpful, not only
Eating Episodes in Obese Adults. She also applied for an NIH K Award in                          to improve this study but also to prepare for a more expanded R01 application.”
June.
                   Collaborate with Andrea Goldschmidt by emailing her at                                            Collaborate with Nickolai Dulin by emailing him
                                  agoldscm@bsd.uchicago.edu.                                                                at ndulin@medicine.uchicago.edu.

                                                                                            12
ISAP COMMITTEE MEMBERS & AD-HOC REVIEWERS

                     A SPECIAL THANK YOU TO OUR
                         SCIENTIFIC REVIEWERS
                                               JULY 2013 - JULY 2014
 We would not be able to support the more than 1,500 investigators who have utilized the ITM’s resources this past year without the prestigious
members of the ITM Internal Scientific Advisory Panel (ISAP) review committee and our ad-hoc reviewers who evaluated almost 200 submissions.
                       You have directly impacted vital research and countless careers by sharing your time and insights.

                    Atique Ahmed, PhD                      Jon Grant, MD, JD                 Mark Musch, PhD
                  Marisa Alegre, MD, PhD                 Siri Greeley, MD, PhD             Cathryn Nagler, PhD
                   John C. Alverdy, MD              Sandeep Gurbuxani, MD, PhD        Yusuke Nakamura, MD, PhD
                       Gary An, MD                       Christian Hansel, PhD             Jayasri Nanduri, PhD
                     Vineet Arora, MD                 Tong-Chuan He, MD, PhD           Marcelo Nobrega, MD, PhD
                     Issam Awad, MD                      Gavin Hougham, PhD              Olatoyosi Odenike, MD
                     Arshiya Baig, MD            Marion Hofmann-Bowman, MD, PhD              Aytekin Oto, MD
                    Cornelia Bailey, MS                    Elbert Huang, MD             Linda Patrick-Miller, PhD
                   Yamini Bakhtiar, MD                 R. Stephanie Huang PhD                 Jayant Pinto, MD
                      Lev Becker, PhD                     Bana Jabri, MD, PhD               Harold Pollack, PhD
                     Graeme Bell, PhD                     Daniel Johnson, MD                Victoria Prince, PhD
                   Eric Beyer, MD, PhD                      Loren Joseph, MD               Milda Saunders, MD
                    Michael Bishop, MD                  Theodore Karrison, PhD             Nancy Schwartz, PhD
                   Marc Bissonnette, MD                     Kate Keenan, PhD            Madeleine Shalowitz, MD
                    Matthew Brady, PhD                       Karen Kim, MD                 Manish Sharma, MD
                     Martin Burke, DO                       Andrea King, PhD              Howard Shuman, PhD
                   Deborah Burnet, MD                     Kristen Knutson, PhD            Patrick Singleton, PhD
                   Daniel Catenacci, MD                      Jay Koyner, MD                Sangram Sisodia, PhD
                    Chin-Tu Chen, PhD                      Stephen Kron, MD              Keyoumars Soltani, MD
                    Marshall Chin, MD                       Sonia Kupfer, MD                 Julian Solway, MD
                     Anita Chong, PhD                  John H. Kwon, MD, PhD                Anne Sperling, PhD
                    Emil Coccaro, MD                    James LaBelle, MD, PhD             Samuel Refetoff, MD
                    Ronald Cohen, MD                      Benjamin Lahey, PhD          Carrie Rinker-Schaeffer, PhD
                     Susan Cohn. MD                        Roberto Lang, MD                Connie Robinson, RN
                      Joel Collier, PhD                     Raphael Lee, MD               Lainie Ross, MD, PhD
                    Philip Connell, MD                     Younghee Lee, PhD               Gregory Ruhnke, MD
                      Nancy Cox, PhD                    Ernst Lengyel, MD, PhD             Andrey Rzhetsky, PhD
                    Sean Crosson, PhD                       Stacy Lindau, MD                   Vera Tesic, MD
                  John Cunningham, MD                        James Liao, MD              Gopal Thinakaran, PhD
                      Farr Curlin, MD                   Elizabeth Littlejohn, MD          Michael Thirman, MD
                    Juan de Pablo, PhD                      Hongtao Liu, MD                Matthew Tirrell, PhD
                    Harriet de Wit, PhD                       Hue Luu, MD               F. Gary Toback, MD, PhD
                   Douglas Dirschl, MD                     Kay Macleod, PhD                Vincent Turitto, PhD
                    Nickolai Dulin, PhD                   Tom MacTavish, MS             Wim van Drongelen, PhD
                  Stephanie Dulawa, PhD              Michael Maitland, MD, PhD             Michael Vannier, MD
                       Yun Fang, PhD                    Jeremy Marks, MD, PhD       Samuel Volchenboum, MD, PhD
                     Gini Fleming, MD                    Christopher Masi, MD               R. Parker Ward, MD
                      Aaron Fox, PhD                        Karl Matlin, PhD     Juliane Bubeck-Wardenburg, MD, PhD
                  H. Barrett Fromme, MD                  David McClintock, MD              Sydeaka Watson, PhD
                    Elliot Gershon, MD                   Daniel McGehee, PhD                 Steven White, MD
                   Maryellen Giger, PhD                David Meltzer, MD, PhD            Amittha Wickrema, PhD
                   Catherine Glunz, MD                     Doriane Miller, MD            Kristen Wroblewski, MS
                     Lucy Godley, MD                      Steven Montner, MD              Xiaoyan Wu, MD, PhD
                  Christopher Gomez, MD                Martha Clare Morris, ScD                 Ming Xu, PhD
                                                                                            Xiaoxi Zhuang, PhD

                                                                      13
ITM INVESTIGATORS MAKING HEADLINES
        ITM CO-DIRECTOR AWARDED PROMINENT
                    FELLOWSHIP
                                                                co-director, a pediatri-            designing policies to achieve one        In the 1980s the Army evaluated
                                                                cian and an associate               goal and not realizing the other         a different approach to reduce
                                                                director of the Univer-             repercussions that occur,” Ross said.    exertional heat illness by modifying
                                                                sity of Chicago Medi-               “We often think about the direct         training for everyone – regardless
                                                                cine’s MacLean Center               effects, and this is all about the       of whether they possessed the trait
                                                                for Clinical Medical                indirect effects.”                       – to a safer, standard training using
                                                                Ethics - has received                                                        the wet-bulb globe temperature
                                                                numerous recognitions               For example, Ross described the          measurement to evaluate heat stress
                                                                and published more                  aftermath of a freshman Rice             during workouts. This prevented
                                                                than 200 papers in                  University football player’s death. In   exertional heat illness in all of the
                                                                scholarly journals in               2006, the young player fell uncon-       trainees, not just those at greater
                                                                addition to authoring               scious during training and died the      risk. And Ross said it did so with-
                                                                three books.                        next day from issues connected with      out having to screen and label any
                                                                                                    sickle cell trait. Individuals who are   trainees as “genetically different.”
                                                                She said this award                 “carriers” of the trait have one copy
                                                                was particularly                    of the sickle cell mutation, which       “We have to make sure that our
                                                                special.                            Ross said is known to increase the       policies are fair and that they
                                                                                                    risk of exertional heat illness and      protect people in all communities,”
                                                                      “My two mentors               sudden death in athletes.                Ross said. “There are just a lot of
                                                                      - basically the two                                                    unintended consequences in some
                                                                      people who shaped my          His parents sued the NCAA, and           of our policies…the goal of the
    Lainie Ross, MD, PhD, was awarded a John Simon Guggenheim
                  Fellowship in April. Photo provided.
                                                                      thinking about medi-          as part of a settlement a rule was       book is to help us make the policy
                                                       cal ethics - were Paul Ramsey, who           enacted to test all college athletes     implications more transparent in
                                                       was a Christian theologian at Princ-         for the sickle cell trait.               order to make better policy.”
             By Sara Serritella
                                                       eton, and Jay
                                                       Katz, who was a                                                                                    And as a matter of per-
The John Simon Guggenheim Me-
                                                       psychiatrist who    “We have to make sure that our                                                 sonal policy, the first
morial Foundation named Lainie
Ross, MD, PhD, as one of its 2014
                                                       worked at Yale
                                                       Law School, and
                                                                         policies are fair and that they protect                                          thing Ross did after the
                                                                                                                                                          official Guggenheim
fellows in April.
                                                       both of them           people in all communities.”                                                 Fellowship announce-
                                                       were former                                   - Lainie Ross, MD, PhD                               ment went out was to
“Lainie is one of our most excep-
                                                       Guggenheim                                                                                         send thank you notes
tional scholars, and I’m delighted
                                                       (recipients),”                                                                                     to the four people who
that she has earned this fitting rec-
                                                       she said. “So that was really very           Ross said some schools may respond       wrote the foundation letters on her
ognition of her incredibly import-
                                                       heartwarming for me.”                        to the policies by developing a more     behalf for her application.
ant work,” said Julian Solway, MD,
                                                                                                    gradual preseason training program
director of the Institute for Trans-
                                                       Starting in September, Ross will             for those with the trait – which         “I told them to read the New York
lational Medicine (ITM) and BSD
                                                       use the yearlong fellowship to write         would put them at a disadvantage         Times,” Ross said with a smile.
dean for translational medicine.
                                                       a book examining the unexpected              when it came time to physically
                                                       impacts of genetic policies. She said        evaluate and cut players.                Ross said she’ll also always remem-
Only 177 Fellowships were awarded
                                                       she’ll be traveling across the U.S.                                                   ber her two mentors who helped get
out of almost 3,000 applicants,
                                                       and around the world to examine              “Eight percent of all African            her there.
and Ross was the only applicant
                                                       cutting-edge programs and study              American athletes have sickle cell
honored for medicine and health.
                                                       the impact of genetic policies on            trait, and death from exertional heat    “They actually changed my whole
Sen. Simon Guggenheim started
                                                       various communities in order to              illness occurs in less than one ath-     career path,” she said about Katz
the Foundation in 1925 in memory
                                                       find diverse case studies for what           lete annually,” Ross said. “So many      and Ramsey. “I had dreamed of
of his deceased son, and each year
                                                       will be titled, “From Peapods to             athletes would do fine without the       being the orthopaedic surgeon for
it recognizes exceptional artists,
                                                       Whole Genomes: Incidental Find-              special treatment. One could say         the New York Yankees…Now I get
scholars and scientists with funding
                                                       ings and Unintended Consequences             the policy may be over-determined.       to follow in their footsteps.”
for their work.
                                                       in a Post-Mendelian World.”                  Alternatively, the Army took the
                                                                                                    approach that it was under-deter-                    Reach Lainie Ross
While Ross - who is the ITM’s                                                                                                                          at lross@uchicago.edu.
                                                “It’s looking at how we might be                    mined.”

                                                                                               14
ITM INVESTIGATORS MAKING HEADLINES

       John C. Alverdy, MD                      Suzanne D. Conzen, MD                         Maryellen L. Giger, PhD                     Karen E. Kim, MD
Alverdy, the Sara and Harold               Conzen, Professor in the Depart-              Giger, the A.N. Pritzker Professor       Kim, Professor of Medicine in the
Lincoln Thompson Professor of              ment of Medicine, Section of He-              of Radiology, is a co-founder and        Section of Gastroenterology, Hepa-
Surgery and executive vice chair           matology/Oncology, is developing a            scientific advisor to Quantitative       tology and Nutrition, was selected
of the Department of Surgery,              diagnostic tool to identify tumors in         Insights, a company creating a soft-     to serve as dean for faculty affairs
was named president-elect of the           patients likely to benefit from treat-        ware platform to help radiologists       in the Biological Sciences Division.
Surgical Infection Society in May          ment with a glucocorticoid receptor           make more accurate and efficient         Melina Hale, PhD, Professor in the
at the 34th annual Society meeting         antagonist. The project, Companion            breast cancer diagnoses. The compa-      Department of Organismal Biology
in Baltimore. He will assume the           Diagnostic for Treatment of Estrogen          ny was awarded $100,000 as a win-        and Anatomy, was also selected to
presidency in 2015. The Society has        Receptor Negative Breast Cancer, was          ter 2014 Innovation Fund Awardee.        serve in the same capacity. Kim
more than 550 members and pub-             awarded $55,000 as a winter 2014              The company also received $50,000        focuses on clinical faculty and Hale
lishes the journal, Surgical Infections.   Innovation Fund awardee.                      from the Innovation Fund in 2011.        on basic science faculty.

    Alexander Langerman, MD                     David Meltzer, MD, PhD                           Doriane Miller, MD                      Dana L. Suskind, MD
Langerman, Assistant Professor of          Meltzer, Professor of Medicine and            Miller, Associate Professor of           Suskind, Professor of Surgery and
Surgery, was a principal investi-          chief of the Section of Hospital              Medicine and director of the             Pediatrics, is the director of the
gator in one of the two proposals          Medicine at the University of Chi-            Center for Community Health and          University of Chicago Medicine
that won $50,000 from the new              cago Medicine, received the 2014              Vitality, presented a play she wrote     Thirty Million Words (TMW)
University of Chicago Medicine             John M. Eisenberg Excellence in               about the ripple effects of commu-       program that originated from an
Innovations Grant Program. His             Mentoring Award by the Agency for             nity violence at the international       ITM grant. The PNC Foundation
study, entitled “Prudence” Surgical        Healthcare Research and Quality               Community-Campus Partnerships            selected TMW to be part of a $19
Cost Reduction Initiative, explores        (AHRQ). Meltzer was also named                for Health Conference in Chicago         million initiative supporting early
ways to engage surgeons and staff in       as the speaker for the 520th Convo-           in May. “It Shoulda Been Me” was         childhood language development,
reducing operating room costs relat-       cation of the University of Chicago           written with funding support from        and the White House plans to high-
ed to disposable surgical supplies.        in August.                                    an ITM grant.                            light TMW at an upcoming event.

                                           Greene, the Virginia and D.K.                 tion Capture (S3C), is working to
                                           Ludwig Professor and Chair of the             develop a new tool for identifying
                                           Ben May Department for Cancer                 long-distance genomic interactions
                                           Research, is leading a project with           key to normal biological function
                                           Bourgo, a postdoctoral fellow in the          as well as diseases like cancer,
                                           Ben May Department for Cancer                 diabetes, and inflammatory and
                                           Research, that was awarded $70,000            autoimmune disorders. Their goal,
                                           as a winter 2014 Innovation Fund              which is already well underway, is
                                           awardee. The project, entitled                to streamline the assay into a kit for
                                           Simplified Chromatin Conforma-                researchers and drug developers.
     Geoffrey L. Greene, PhD                                                                                                            Ryan J. Bourgo, PhD

                                                                                    15
CLUSTER NEWS
                                                  ITM CLUSTERS
                                    The ITM served more than 1,500 investigators last year through targeted initiatives referred to as “clusters.”
                                    These clusters are led by distinguished faculty and administer support, training, and other services to move
                                    forward compelling translational research and community projects. The ITM clusters include: biomedical
                                    informatics, clinical resources, clinical trials, community, education, population sciences, and T1 research
                                    and technology. Cluster leaders meet with the ITM leadership every month to share their progress and
                                    identify areas for growth.

                                              2013-2014 ITM CLUSTERS

    Biomedical
Biomedical Informat- Informatics                             Clinical Resources                                      Clinical Trials
                   Leaders:                                            Leaders:                                             Leaders:
            Robert Grossman, PhD                                 David Ehrmann, MD                                     Susan Cohn, MD
       Samuel Volchenboum, MD, PhD                                                                                     Walter Stadler, MD
                                                      The ITM’s Clinical Resources Cluster offers
The ITM’s Biomedical Informatics Cluster works investigators services, education, and the Clinical The ITM’s Clinical Trials Cluster works closely
  in partnership with the University of Chicago     Resource Center (CRC) to support investigators’ with the University of Chicago Office of Clinical
Center for Research Informatics (CRI) to provide research. The CRC provides unique services and         Research to offer a full spectrum of services to
services and data management tailored to clinical research assets, such as bionutrition expertise, a investigators engaging in human subject research.
   and translational science, offer education and    metabolic kitchen, and specialized nursing and     It connects investigators with the Institutional
    training that investigators can apply to their  monitoring for clinical studies. The Cluster also  Review Board (IRB)and human subject protec-
  research, and collaborate with other scientists    runs the Core Laboratory, which administers      tion experts, study design consultants, and other
through data storage, sharing, and other resourc- specimen processing for blood, urine, saliva, and resources to help make the process of launching a
  es. Monthly, hands-on bioinformatics training                          stool.                             clinical trial as streamlined as possible.
     sessions are held at no cost to investigators.

              Community                                             Education                                   Population Sciences
                   Leaders:                                           Leaders:                                              Leaders:
             Deborah Burnet, MD                                Eric Beyer, MD, PhD                                   Lainie Ross, MD, PhD
               Karen Kim, MD                                  David Meltzer, MD, PhD                                  Ronald Thisted, PhD
             Doriane Miller, MD                          Olufunmilayo (Funmi) Olopade, MD
                                                                                                    The ITM’s Population Sciences Cluster provides
 The ITM’s Community Cluster connects South           The ITM’s Education Cluster facilitates the         support and education in study design,
Side leaders with health professionals and medical CTSA K12 Scholar Program that gives junior       biostatistics, epidemiology, research ethics, health
  researchers to improve healthcare delivery and     investigators protected time, mentoring, and    outcome analysis, and more. This last year more
  the quality of life of South Side residents. The funding for their research. The ITM administered   than 100 investigators utilized its biostatistics
   Cluster facilitates the Community Advisory      14 K Awards in 2013-2014. The ITM also works offerings, and it also offers year-round training
Review Council, Community-Based Participatory with the Center for Health and Social Services and CME credit with programs like the Essentials
Research (CBPR), and other resources to investi- (CHeSS) to run the Committee on Clinical and         of Patient-Oriented Research (EPOR) and the
gators while providing community members with Translational Sciences, a freestanding academic summer Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR)
health programs, counseling, and other outreach. unit that creates multidisciplinary curricula tar-                        series.
                                                       geting clinical and translational sciences.

                                                    T1 Research and Technology
                     Leaders: Graeme I. Bell, PhD; John Cunningham, MD; Maryellen Giger, PhD; Raphael Lee, MD, ScD, DSc

The ITM’s T1 Research and Technology Cluster provides training and access to enabling technological resources for T1 research. It also works in partner-
ship with the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation and the Illinois Institute of Technology to run the D4Lab, a workshop series and proj-
 ect-based training program that combines entrepreneurship education with human-centered design to solve problems in biomedicine and health care.

                                                                           16
CLUSTER NEWS - BIOMEDICAL INFORMATICS
CENTER FOR RESEARCH INFORMATICS OFFERS
     FREE BIOINFORMATICS TRAINING
            By Sara Serritella

While working on an epidemiology                       data, according to a CRI annual
research project, Amikar Sehdev                        report.
became interested in big data sets
and the bioinformatics needed to                       “Bioinformatics has become a
manipulate them. After attending a                     vital analytic tool for conducting
few Center for Research Informatics                    research, and we’ve made education
(CRI) bioinformatics training ses-                     an important part of CRI’s mission
sions, he said he decided to change                    to meet the needs of our research
his career trajectory and obtain                       community,” said Samuel Volchen-
bioinformatics certification.                          boum, MD, PhD, director of the
                                                       CRI and associate director of the
“CRI was the catalyst,” said Sehdev,                   ITM. “We’re working to expand
a third-year Hematology/Oncology                       our course offerings in partnership
fellow at the University of Chicago                    with the University of Chicago
Medicine.                                              Medical Center, ITM, and other                A classroom of students take a free, hands-on bioinformatics course in May offered by the Center for Research
                                                                                                                           Informatics and supported by the ITM. Photo by Sara Serritella.
                                                       affiliates so that we can build on
Sehdev is now using bioinformat-                       the excellent training that’s already         Other participants, like Shwu-Fan                         careers like Sehdev’s and research
ics in his own research comparing                      underway.”                                    Ma, PhD, go in having more expe-                          in general can’t be quantified with
DNA mutations in obese colorectal                                                                    rience in the field. Ma is a research                     a price.
cancer patients to those of colorec-                   Volchenboum said that training is             associate (assistant professor) at the
tal cancer patients who are not. He                    being led by Jorge Andrade, PhD,              University of Chicago Medicine’s                          The amount of data generated from
is also a significant bioinformatics                   CRI’s director of Bioinformatics.             Section of Pulmonary/Critical                             the benchside and bedside can run
contributor in the lab of Olufun-                      Andrade and Wenjun Kang, MS, a                Care and has attended at least five                       into the millions of entries and top
milayo Olopade, MD, associate                          CRI Bioinformatics Core scientif-             of CRI’s bioinformatics training                          hundreds of gigabytes, according to
dean of Global Health and director                     ic programmer, led a three-hour               sessions.                                                 Ma, making bioinformatics knowl-
of the Center for Clinical Cancer                      session in May that served as an                                                                        edge critical in moving toward
Genetics.                                              introduction to Linux, the primary            “The audience level is very broad,                        precision care.
                                                       operating system used in bioinfor-            and the instructors are very knowl-
The Center for Research Infor-                         matics.                                       edgeable,” Ma said. “After the first                      “Bioinformatics is essential now for
matics (CRI) has been hosting free                                                                   part of the lecture it’s up to the                        the future of medical research,” she
bioinformatics training sessions                       “Many of the people participat-               more advanced audience members                            said. “The large quantity of data
supported by the ITM each month                        ing do not have formal training               to raise questions and they will an-                      needs to be sorted and then quali-
since 2012. In its first year alone, it                in computer science or computer               swer for the specific needs. You can                      ty-controlled, and you just can’t do
taught more than 350 participants                      engineering, so this motivates them           always get something out of it.”                          that manually anymore.”
how to analyze complex biological                      to get interested and involved,”
                                                                 Andrade said.                       And that something
                                                                                                     comes at no cost –                                    IF YOU GO
                                                                Attendee Tunde Ade-                  which could translate                 Bioinformatics training sessions are held at
                                                                dokun, a University of               into saving thousands                   the end of each month. Check out CRI’s
                                                                Chicago Medicine student             of dollars.                           website for the latest dates and new learning
                                                                research assistant, said the                                                opportunities. Remember to register early
                                                                training was a great way to          “A training session on                 - because the classes are hands-on, there is
                                                                learn something useful to            Linux for three hours                     limited seating with computer access.
                                                                his career.                          will usually cost $300
                                                                                                     to $500,” Andrade
                                                                 “I’ve used Windows all my           said, “And more specific analysis                                  Want to learn more about
                                                                 life, so this opportunity           could go in the order of thousands.”                                    bioinformatics?
  Amikar Sehdev, PhD, attended several of CRI’s free
          bioinformatics training sessions.            is something that will be really help-                                                                             Reach Jorge Andrade at
              Photo by Sara Serritella.                ful,” he said.                                But the impact the training has on                             jandrade@bsd.uchicago.edu.

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