The University of Arizona Health Sciences


Dr. Gmitro Delivers 2016 Founders Day Lecture, 'Optics, MRI, and Good Luck'

Arthur F. Gmitro, PhD, the 2016 Founders Day lecturer at the UA College of Medicine – Tucson, says it was a stroke of good luck that he has had great collaborators and students to work with throughout his career, which spans decades and disciplines at the University of Arizona.

Dr. Gmitro is a professor of Medical Imaging and Optical Sciences; professor and head of the Department of Biomedical Engineering; and the Fenton Maynard...

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UA Steele Children’s Research Center Receives $1.73M Grant to Explore Triggers of Autoimmune Disease

The University of Arizona Steele Children’s Research Center has been awarded a five-year, $1.73 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to determine what triggers autoimmune disease.

Approximately 24 million Americans suffer from about 80 different autoimmune diseases, such as type 1 diabetes, celiac disease, inflammatory bowel disease, autoimmune encephalopathy, rheumatoid arthritis and lupus, among others. Autoimmune disease prevalence and incidence rates are on the rise in the Western world.

Autoimmune disease develops when the body’s immune system produces an immune response against healthy cells rather than attacking pathogens to defend against disease.

This novel research study will be led by principal investigators Pawel Kiela, DVM, PhD, associate professor with the Department of Pediatrics and the Steele Center, and Fayez K. Ghishan, MD, professor and head, Department of Pediatrics, and director of the Steele Center.

“In this study, we essentially are asking what happens during the very early stages of an autoimmune disease,” Dr. Kiela said. “How does autoimmune disease...

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Daniel Spaite, MD, Receives Best Abstract Award at AHA Resuscitation Science Symposium

Congratulations to Daniel W. Spaite, MD, on receiving the Best Abstract Award of the Resuscitation Science Symposium at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions. Dr. Spaite is the Virginia Piper Distinguished Chair of Emergency Medicine and Director of EMS Research Collaboration.

Dr. Spaite presented on the "Evaluation of Prehospital Hypotension Depth-duration Dose and Mortality in Major Traumatic Brain Injury." During the presentation, Dr. Spaite said “this is the first time, to our knowledge, that anyone has been able to link detailed, timed prehospital blood pressured and comprehensive hospital data on injuries and outcomes in a large number of patients.”

The Resuscitation Science Symposium features the latest groundbreaking research in resuscitation science for both basic science and clinical audiences. Learn more from Science News coverage of AHA’s Scientific Sessions 2016.

UA Public Health Professor Awarded Fulbright Scholarship to Nigeria

John Ehiri, PhD, MPH, MSc, professor and chair of the Department of Health Promotion Sciences at the University of Arizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, has received a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program grant to Nigeria.

Dr. Ehiri will be at the University of Lagos College of Medicine in Nigeria as part of a research project to reduce HIV stigma among health personnel who provide services for prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of HIV using a cluster-randomized trial at health centers in Lagos, Nigeria.

Nigeria is one of 21 priority countries in Africa that along with India account for 90 percent of pregnant women infected with HIV. It also is one of only four of the 21 priority countries with a HIV testing rate of less than 20 percent among pregnant women, accounting for 26 percent of all new pediatric infections in the 21 priority countries in 2014.

“The benefits of intervention to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV are well-established. It reduces transmission of HIV from mother to child during pregnancy, labor, delivery or breastfeeding from...

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UA Valley Fever Center for Excellence Celebrates 20th Anniversary with New Website Launch

This year the University of Arizona Valley Fever Center for Excellence celebrates its 20th anniversary since its establishment in 1996. The center was created by the Arizona Board of Regents to further advance the research and eradication of Valley Fever as well as to develop public awareness for the disease. The incapacitating, sometimes-fatal respiratory illness is caused by the Coccidioides species of fungus, endemic primarily to soils of the U.S. Southwest and border states in Mexico.

The Center, housed at the UA BIO5 Institute, has been successful in both endeavors. Achievements include progress in the development of both a possible cure and a vaccine, the free distribution of Valley fever tutorials to anyone interested in learning more about the disease and, most recently, the launch of a new website ( just in time for the 14th Annual Valley Fever Awareness Week, Nov. 12-20.

With new features designed for the public and medical professionals, the website is adaptable to mobile devices and features a much improved organization of data, images, videos...

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UA Cancer Center Joins National Clinical Trials Network

The University of Arizona Cancer Center is increasing its clinical trials portfolio and translational research capabilities: the Center has been accepted into a national clinical trials research group spearheaded by the NRG Foundation.

The group, NRG Oncology, is a cooperative group recognized by the National Cancer Institute as a National Clinical Trials Network (NCTN) and is a coordinated effort of the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project, the Radiation Therapy Oncology Group and the Gynecologic Oncology Group.

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) established National Clinical Trials Networks in 2014 in response to the emerging prevalence of targeted therapies and precision medicine in cancer care. NRG Oncology is one of five cooperative groups in the United States to be awarded NCTN classification. This cooperative group brings together many investigators from hospitals and academic research centers throughout the United States and beyond to conduct early and late-stage clinical trials as part of the NCI.

NRG Oncology has an international roster of more than 200 members. Its primary mission is “to improve the lives of cancer patients by...

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2016 Faculty Teaching Awards

The 37th annual Faculty Teaching Awards and the Vernon and Virginia Furrow Awards, presented by the Academy of Medical Education Scholars (AMES).

The mission of the AMES is to mentor and support outstanding educators, and to promote excellence in teaching and educational scholarship at all College of Medicine teaching sites. The Academy of Medical Education Scholars recognizes the College’s most outstanding educators and provides a forum for teaching faculty to work together to enhance educational programs.

The members of the Academy of Medical Education Scholars are:

Nafees Ahmad, PhD 
Professor, Immunobiology

Helen M. Amerongen, PhD 
Professor, Cellular and Molecular Medicine

John W. Bloom, MD 
Associate Professor, Pharmacology and Medicine

Conrad J. Clemens, MD, MPH 
Professor, Pediatrics

Sean P. Elliott, MD 
Professor, Pediatrics

Edward D. French, PhD 
Professor, Pharmacology

Deborah Fuchs, MD 
Associate Professor, Pathology

Paul R...

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Sarver Heart Center 30th Anniversary Lecture Series: “Beating Your Odds Against Stroke: An update on prevention, treatments and acting FAST to preserve your brain”

Every year about 800,000 people suffer a stroke in the United States. Significant risk factors include atrial fibrillation (a heart rhythm disorder) and hypertension (high blood pressure). Treating these conditions can significantly reduce the risk of first or recurrent stroke. What else should you do to lower stroke risks and what happens when a person has a stroke?

“A number of advances have improved treatment for stroke patients, but it remains critical for people to call 911 when a stroke is suspected and get to a stroke treatment center as soon as possible,” said Bruce Coull, MD, professor of neurology, Department of Neurology at the UA College of Medicine - Tucson. Dr. Coull is part of the Banner-UMC Tucson’s Stroke Program, which includes a multidisciplinary team of specialists, such as stroke neurologists, neurovascular surgeons, neuro-intensive-care physicians and neuroradiologists. These specialists provide evidence-based treatment for acute strokes, including a new Neurocritical Care Unit with specialty-trained personnel.

As part of the Sarver Heart Center’s 30th Anniversary, the...

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Sixth Annual ‘Kids of Steele’ Mini Golf Event Raises $91,000 for UA Steele Children’s Research Center

Kids of Steele raised approximately $91,000 for the University of Arizona Steele Children’s Research Center at its Sixth Annual Mini Golf Event  Oct. 23 at Golf N’ Stuff.

Kids of Steele, the family auxiliary of the Steele Center, is comprised of local families who want to teach their children about service and kindness, while raising awareness and funds for the UA Steele Center.

"It was truly amazing to see our community come together to raise funds for much-needed pediatric medical research, giving hope to patients and their families," said Jenny Horn, Kids of Steele event chair.  

The event continues to grow every year. This year’s event raised $20,000 more than last year.

“The support offered by our sponsors and attendees helps patients know that they are not alone and that there are many who care about them and want to help make their dream of a cure through research a reality,” said Horn.

About 500 children and adults participated in the event, which included miniature golf, bumper boats, go-karts, laser tag, batting cages, arcade...

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Banner Health helping veterans through ‘Hiring Our Heroes’ program

Banner Health is helping military veterans obtain meaningful employment through the Hiring Our Heroes program, a national organization associated with the U.S. Chambers of Commerce that works with veterans transitioning to civilian life.

Master Sgt.  Alen Schulze, a telecommunication operations chief at Fort Huachuca, Ariz., is one of two Hire Our Heroes corporate fellowship program graduates recently hired by Banner Health in Arizona. He starts his new civilian career Monday as a systems consultant at Banner – University Medical Group in Tucson after 20 years of service in the U.S. Army.

Schulze enlisted on his 19th birthday and has seen six combat tours -- three in Afghanistan and three in Iraq. He also participated in 13 drug interdiction deployments in Central and South America.

“This is a terrific opportunity for companies like Banner to recruit employees who have already demonstrated high character and have gone through rigorous training,” said Naomi Cramer, senior vice president, chief human resources officer at Banner Health.  “We feel fortunate to...

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