UAB School of Health Professions Current News

Chandler-Laney joins Nutrition faculty

planeyThe UAB Department of Nutrition Sciences announces the addition of faculty member Paula C. Chandler-Laney, Ph.D. She transferred from a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Nutrition Sciences to an assistant professor. She earned a B.A. in psychology from the University of Auckland, in her native country, New Zealand. She went on to complete a B.S. in psychology at UAB in 2000. In 2006, she completed her Ph.D. in behavioral neuroscience at UAB.


OT alum comes back to teach

Deek_CunninghamAfter working as an occupational therapist in the private sector for 12 years, Deek Cunningham decided it was time to return to his alma mater, The University of Alabama at Birmingham, to teach in the Department of Occupational Therapy in the School of Health Professions.

“One of my goals was to teach in the OT program,” said Cunningham, M.S., OTR/L, ATP, “I always knew, however, I needed more clinical experience to bring to the table.”


HSA professor helps build national IT curriculum

eta_bernerUAB is one of the five curriculum-development centers that collaborated to develop a national health-information-technology curriculum that now is available to the public through the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC).


New Rehabilitation Science doctoral program offered at SHP

Rehab_ScienceTwo University of Alabama at Birmingham departments have joined forces to create a new doctoral program. The Department of Occupational Therapy and Department of Physical Therapy in the School of Health Professions is offering a Ph.D. in Rehabilitation Science this fall.


Lowering Fat Intake Might Stave Off Diabetes Even Without Weight Loss

Barbara_GowerBarbara Gower, Ph.D., professor in the Department of Nutrition Sciences at UAB and lead authorSmall differences in diet – even without weight loss – can significantly affect risk for diabetes, according to research from the University of Alabama at Birmingham published online May 18, 2011, by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

In this study, 69 healthy, overweight people who did not have diabetes — but were at risk for it — were placed on diets with modest reductions in either fat or carbohydrate for eight weeks.

“At eight weeks, the group on the lower fat diet had significantly higher insulin secretion and better glucose tolerance and tended to have higher insulin sensitivity,” said Barbara Gower, Ph.D., professor in the Department of Nutrition Sciences at UAB and lead author of the study. “These improvements indicate a decreased risk for diabetes.”


Demark-Wahnefried named to IOM forum

WendyDemark_WahnefriedWendy Demark-Wahnefried, Ph.D., professor in the Department of Nutrition Sciences and associate director for cancer prevention and control at the UAB Comprehensive Cancer Center, has been named to the Institute of Medicine’s National Cancer Policy Forum.

IOM forums are designed to allow government, industry, academic and other representatives to identify emerging high-priority policy issues to combat cancer and promote discussion about potential opportunities for action.

Wahnefried will serve a three-year term, with the possibility of an additional three-year term.

Nutrition Sciences professor receives grant for potential links of childhood fat and breast cancer

krista_casazzaA University of Alabama at Birmingham professor won a $40,000 grant through the 2011 American Cancer Society Award Cycle on the potential links of early childhood adiposity, fat found in the adipose tissue, and later development of breast cancer. Krista Casazza, Ph.D, an assistant professor in the Department of Nutrition Sciences in the School of Health Professions, also placed first in the UAB Comprehensive Cancer Center Junior Faculty Development Grant mechanism.


UAB Occupational Therapists Will Conduct Research in First Multi Sensory Environment in Birmingham

04-06-11_UCP-HIH_Sensory_Room021A trip to the store or the library is never simple for three-year-old Xavier Kurre. The Oak Mountain toddler has cortical vision impairment and autism which makes a “simple” trip out of the home very tense and over stimulating for him.

“His emotions are over the top when we are out in public,” said Nancy Kurre, Xavier’s mother. “There’s too much noise or lights and he can be very happy one minute or sad the next.”

But that changed the first time he entered the new multi sensory environment (MSE) at the United Cerebral Palsy of Greater Birmingham (UCP).


SHP Students & Faculty Volunteer During Relief Efforts

SHP_SPA_students1UAB Physician Assistant Students Laura Winn (2nd left) and Carrie Cole (middle).University of Alabama at Birmingham Assistant Professor Jerry King, in the Department of Clinical & Diagnostic Sciences, got a call Friday from the Emergency Management Control Center in Cullman, Ala. They were looking for respiratory therapy students to volunteer at a medical relief shelter opened for people on chronic therapy, CPAP and BiPAP. The shelter was also providing meals and water to residents without power as well as allowing tornado survivors to charge batteries to wheelchairs and other medical equipment.

“This was not a hard decision to make,” said King. “I knew our staff and students could make a difference to this community and help those in need.”