Emphysema therapy webSurya Bhatt, MD (left) and Mark Dransfield, MD (right) maneuver valve with a bronchoscope.A new emphysema therapy has demonstrated significant positive results, according to findings from a multi-site study. Lead investigator, Mark Dransfield, MD (Professor) and Surya Bhatt, MD (Assistant Professor) in Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care are investigating the Zephyr® endobronchial valves, one-way valves inserted into the lungs of patients with emphysema to reduce the volume in a minimally invasive procedure. The study has shown that patients with this valve had a significantly lower rate of respiratory failure and reduction in COPD hospitalization.

More Good News for June 13, 2018

The Alabama/Mississippi Regional American College of Physicians meeting was recently held at Ross Bridge. There were multiple UAB winners: The Jeopardy Team Brent Bermingham, MD (PGY-2), Page Axley, MD (PGY-2), and Zac Doegg, MD (PGY-2) took the trophy and will represent the state at the national meeting next year. Seema Kumar, MD (PGY-1) won Best Oral Vignette for her case of "Spontaneous HIT" and will represent the state at the national meeting next spring as well. Chad Colon, MD (PGY-2) won Best Resident Vignette Poster.

The Tinsley Harrison Internal Medicine Residency Program had an excellent ACGME annual resident survey this year. We had a 91% response rate from the 117 residents that completed the survey in April 2018. The survey asks about duty hours, faculty support, evaluations, educational content, resources, and patient safety/teamwork. The resident's overall evaluation of the program was exceedingly positive, and well above the national mean.

Venkateshwar Mutyam, PhD (Instructor, Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care) has received funding for a grant entitled “Novel therapeutic approaches for treatment of CF patients with W1282X premature termination codon mutations.” Emily’s Entourage is a nonprofit organization committed to finding a cure for rare CF mutations. Congratulations, Dr. Mutyam!

Pankaj Arora, MD (Assistant Professor, Cardiovascular Disease) was invited to co-author an AHA scientific statement alongside experts throughout the country on how genomic medicine can transform cardiovascular care from "reactive" to "proactive." The statement is an excellent illustration of how to practice precision medicine.

Under the interim leadership of Ayman Saad, MD (Associate Professor, Hematology and Oncology) the Cell Therapy Lab (CTL) has received full accreditation which will put it ahead of similar facilities in other elite cancer centers in the nation. Congratulations to all the CTL personnel on this accomplishment!

 In a review published in the Journal of Palliative Medicine, Alayne Markland, DO (Associate Professor, Gerontology, Geriatrics and Palliative Care) found that palliative care and hospice interventions in patients with decompensated cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma can reduce HRU (total cost of hospitalization, number of emergency department visits, hospital and critical care admissions) and improve symptoms. Co-authors include Sandhya Mudumbi, MD (Fellow), Marie Bakitas, DNSc (Professor, Nursing) and Cynthia Brown, MD (Professor and Director).

Mohamed Khass, PhD (Instructor, Clinical Immunology and Rheumatology) has been selected to receive a $100,000 Arthritis National Research Foundation grant for his proposal entitled "The influence of the surrogate light chain protein λ5 on bone health and arthritis in aging.” Kudos, Dr. Khass!

Jason Morris, MD (Associate Professor, General Internal Medicine) has been named the inaugural Gustavo R. Heudebert, MD, MACP, Endowed Faculty Scholar, and he was recognized at a reception on June 14 from 4:00-5:30 p.m. in the Edge of Chaos at Lister Hill Library.

Congratulations to Jodie Dionne-Odom, MD (Assistant Professor, Infectious Diseases) who has been awarded an $841,000 K23 grant from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development of the National Institutes of Health. The award will fund a new antibiotic regimen to prevent malaria and other infections during pregnancy among women living with HIV in Cameroon.

Sara Hannum (Educational Liaison, Preventive Medicine) was selected as the DOM Employee of the month for April. Sara’s responsibilities include coordinating intervention activities for on-going lifestyle intervention trials for weight management and developing new intervention content. Sara is very efficient, dependable, and she has an amazing ability to communicate effectively, whether with a participant or fellow staff member. Rich Searles (Information Systems Specialist, Preventive Medicine) was selected as the Department of Medicine Employee of the month for May. Rich assists employees with their many technology needs, from weekly video conferences for faculty development discussions, to monthly seminar series, and overall assistance with hardware and software. He completes his tasks with efficiency and skill and is great to work with due to his calm, confident manner. Mozella Kerley (Administrative Associate, Nephrology) has been selected as the Department of Medicine Employee of the month for June. Mozella is very outgoing, reliable, and efficient. She is a motivator of others, proficient in her work, and committed to ensuring each job is completed in a timely and professional manner. Congratulations, Sara, Rich and Mozella! Thank you for going above and beyond!


  • Medical Grand Rounds will take a Summer Break for the next 10 weeks and will resume Wednesday, August 29. Enjoy your summer!

  • Register Now for RIME Fellows Workshops. Workshops will enhance fellows’ teaching effectiveness: Teaching pearls, cognitive science principles, learning theory, and panel discussion with experts. The 8th Annual Research and Innovations in Medical Education (RIME) Week celebrates excellence in medical education.

  • Save the Date: The UAB Comprehensive Cardiovascular Center’s7th Annual Symposium: Focus on Heart Failure will take place September 6-7, 2018 at the Double Tree by Hilton Hotel. The two-day update in cardiovascular disease will feature keynotes from Thomas J. Wang, MD, Physician-in-Chief at Vanderbilt Heart and Vascular Institute, and Douglas L. Mann, MD, Cardiologist-in-Chief at Barnes Jewish Hospital. Submit abstracts to Megan Pickering.

View this week's slides