OCTRI announces 2016 Catalyst Award recipients

The Oregon Clinical & Translational Research Institute (OCTRI) is pleased to announce the 2016 Catalyst Award recipients. This grant is designed to support novel, collaborative research initiatives at OHSU.  David Ellison, director of OCTRI, says, “This year, the RFA encouraged proposals to develop novel research methodologies that may have generalizable applications.”

Click here to read project abstracts.

OCTRI’s Catalyst program receives institutional support from the School of Medicine’s Research Roadmap initiative and the Office of the Senior Vice President for Research. For more information about Catalyst and other pilot award programs, visit the OCTRI funding opportunities web page.

Congratulations to the 2016 Catalyst Award winners:

Allison Hill, Ph.D.

“An automated, multi-modal tool for quantifying the autism phenotype”



Sandra Rugonyi, Ph.D.

“Predicting treatment outcomes of infants with cyanotic heart disease using computational modeling”



Takahiro Tsujikawa, M.D., Ph.D.

“Practical and cost-effective multiplexed immunohistochemistry for comprehensive immune complexity analysis of solid tumors”



Nicole Weiskopf, Ph.D.

“Development and evaluation of an EHR data quality assessment tool”



For more information on OCTRI’s resources and services, please visit: www.octri.org.

Mining the funding data: two more important analyses of NIH trends

Is it true that NIH funding is a) really declining and b) driving scientists out of research? Two new analyses show that both appear to be true. DataHound has been using R to sort out whether the number of unique PIs declined from 1985-2014 and whether having a K99 gave postdocs any funding traction in subsequent years. He also looked more broadly at all contact PIsDrugmonkey sums up his findings in more detail, but basically it looks like yes, it’s really declining; this has paradoxically meant that at this particular moment it’s a tiny bit easier to get funded because there is less competition; and cohorts of K99 recipients are getting progressively less successful at the R01 stage. There seems to be a problem with all junior faculty getting their second R01 (or first one if you count the Roo as equivalent).

Of note: this is not NIH’s problem to tackle alone. A new article in Science Translational Medicine outlines two major threats to the biomedical enterprise: the loss of federal investment in science and the loss of clinical revenues as health care changes. They assert that this loss in investment is creating a “hostile work environment” for researchers when we need their insight more than ever to combat threats to health such as a rapidly aging population and climate change. The authors–who are deans from schools of medicine from across the U.S.–argue that we need systemic change, and that scientists, federal officials, administrators, and policymakers must collaborate to find a solution that will protect our vast national investment in biomedicine.

Are you interested in starting a company? Read this.

If you’re a researcher who wants to start a technology or other company, you may want to know how to do that within the context of OHSU. For example, is it ok to ask your lab staff to help write the STTR grant? (No! It is not!) Are there resources here to help you navigate the startup process? (Yes! There are!) The OHSU Startup Guide is a new handbook that provides an overview of the processes for forming a startup company at OHSU. You’ll find information about OHSU policies  that faculty, students, and staff need to know. It also provides local entrepreneurial and community resources that may aid faculty, students, or staff  through startup development and launch.

The office of Technology Transfer & Business Development (TTBD) is the primary contact for guidance and answers regarding inventions, intellectual property, licensing, patenting, and other related topics. View the 2015 OHSU Startup Guide today, and visit the TTBD website to learn more about OHSU startup companies.

Recap: Spring MedTech Alliance event

The MedTech Alliance program is a platform for investors, industry representatives, and community partners to stay up to date on early-stage collaboration and investment opportunities at OHSU. The goal of the MedTech Alliance is to facilitate collaborations and investment opportunities in order to advance OHSU innovations.

On May 6, the MedTech Alliance held its second annual spring meeting. The event featured discussions on four different technologies created at OHSU. Technologies highlighted included:

From left to right: Presenters – Trina Voss, Dorota Shortell, Andrew Chitty. Moderator – Akana Ma

  • Bioabsorbable dural clips (presented by Neil Roundy, M.D., and  Rachel Dreilinger)
  • New generation of dental composites (presented by Carmem Pfeifer, D.D.S., Ph.D.)
  • Accurate in-home collection of blood samples (presented by Andrew Chitty, MBA; Dorota Shortell, MSME; Trina Voss)
  • Antithrombotic drugs without bleeding side effects (presented by Andras Gruber, M.D.)

The meeting’s 80 guests included representatives from:

  • 27 industry and investor partners
  • 7 community partners
  • 5 OHSU startups
  • 13 OHSU institutions

The next MedTech Alliance event is scheduled for fall 2015 (date TBD).  For news and updates, please visit the MedTech Alliance webpage.

OHSU’s MedTech Alliance was founded by OHSU’s Office of Technology Transfer & Business Development and the Oregon Clinical & Translational Research Institute. For questions or inquiries regarding the MedTech Alliance program, please contact Trish Pruis, Ph.D., business development associate, at pruist@ohsu.edu.   

Share your thoughts to help improve Research Week

Let us know what you thought of Research Week 2015. Because Research Week is intended to showcase OHSU’s research efforts, it is important for us to get feedback from you – the research community.

We kindly ask that you take this short survey, which will be of great help as we strive to keep Research Week relevant, informative, and collaborative. The survey should take no more than 5 minutes.

Take the survey now.

Your participation by June 5 is greatly appreciated!

International fellowship will help OHSU fight cervical cancer in Ethiopia

Through a multi-disciplinary effort between Charles Thomas, M.D., of the Knight Cancer Institute, and Rahel Nardos, M.D., of the Center for Women’s Health, the Women’s Health Research Unit and the Global Health Center’s Footsteps to Healing initiative, OHSU will have the opportunity to help conquer cervical cancer in Ethiopia.

Rahel Nardos, M.D.

With the help of Thomas and Nardos, Kibrom Hagos, M.D., a radiation oncology resident from Mekelle University in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, has been awarded a 2015 Long-Term International Fellowship (LIFe) award from the Conquer Cancer Foundation of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. Under the mentorship of Thomas, Hagos will spend a year at OHSU, continuing his research and completing a fellowship on radiation and chemoradiation side effects in patients with cervical cancer. This award will allow Hagos to train at OHSU, then return to practice at a new cancer center that is currently being built at Mekelle University in northern Ethiopia. This cancer center will be one of only two centers in the country where radiation therapy will be available, cutting down the current 8-to-12-month wait for radiation therapy for cancer patients.

Charles Thomas, M.D.

Hagos is currently finishing his radiation oncology residency in Addis Ababa under the sponsorship of Mekelle University, which is where OHSU’s Ethiopian international work is based. Thomas and Nardos collaborated on supporting this fellowship opportunity for Hagos; they are interested in efforts in Mekelle, in light of the high cervical and breast cancer load in Ethiopia.

OHSU’s global collaboration in Ethiopia
Cervical cancer is the most common cancer among Ethiopian women. It is also the leading cause of cancer mortality. According to the WHO/ICO Information Centre on HPV and Cervical Cancer, of the nearly 22 million Ethiopian women over the age of 15, approximately 7,600 are diagnosed with cervical cancer, and roughly 6,000 women die of the disease each year. Compare that to the U.S., where thanks to preventative screenings, cervical cancer does not make the top 10 list for cancers that affect women. The  vast majority of new cervical cancer diagnoses and related deaths occur in underdeveloped or developing countries, affecting poor and vulnerable women at the prime of life. Cervical cancer is preventable and, in many cases, curable, if caught in its early stages.

OHSU’s Footsteps to Healing initiative was established to improve women’s health in Ethiopia through partnerships dedicated to clinical service and health care capacity building. It does this through:

  • Collaborating annually with Gimbie Adventist Hospital, a rural hospital in Western Ethiopia, to provide over 200 pelvic organ prolapse surgeries
  • Partnering with Mekelle University and the Hamlin Fistula Center as well as other stakeholders to strengthen their capacity to provide surgical and clinical care for women with pelvic floor disorders
  • Helping build one of the strongest educational, clinical and research institutions in sub-Saharan Africa through an obstetrics and gynecology residency program at Ayder Referral Hospital at Mekelle University College of Health & Sciences in response to the shortage of ob/gyn providers


Searle Scholars career development program; internal deadline July 24

The Searle Scholars Program is a highly competitive program designed to support exceptional, new junior faculty. It supports research in biochemistry, cell biology, genetics, immunology, neuroscience, and pharmacology, as well as related areas in chemistry, medicine, and the biological sciences. The program does not ordinarily support purely clinical research but has supported research programs that include both clinical and basic components. Applications are evaluated on the potential of the applicant to make innovative and high-impact contributions to research over an extended period of time. Awardees receive $100,000 per year for three years.

Candidates should have begun their first appointment as an independent investigator at the assistant professor level on or after July 1, 2014. The appointment must be a tenure-track position (or its nearest equivalent).

Internal deadline: July 24, 2015
Sponsor deadline: September 25, 2015

Limited Submission: This opportunity requires internal coordination because OHSU is limited to only submit one application. If you intend to apply, complete the Limited Submission Form by the internal deadline. Click here to learn more about OHSU’s Limited Submission process.

Research Administration: Effort and salary cap classes in June

The end of yet another effort cycle occurs on June 30, 2015. Get a jump on your effort tracking, reporting process, and salary cap coordination with these upcoming classes:

Effort Certification
Tuesday, June 2
2 to 4 p.m.
Center for Health & Healing, 3181 1B

Examine not only the federal requirements that shape institutional policy but also details of OHSU’s Effort Certification procedure. This class is for department Effort Coordinators and those supporting or overseeing certification of Effort. Enroll via Compass using your network credentials.

DHHS Salary Cap
Tuesday, June 9
2 to 4 p.m.
Center for Health & Healing, 3181 1B

Gain tools for navigating the complex process of budgeting and managing salaries affected by the DHHS Salary Cap. It’s recommended that participants have attended Effort Certification before this class. Enroll via Compass using your network credentials.

These and other classes are described in more detail on the Research Administration Training & Education (RATE) site. For more information, please contact Margaret Gardner.

OCTRI Community Research Coalition Grant Funding

OCTRI is offering a new funding opportunity targeting health-related concerns identified by communities within three regional research coalitions.

OHSU believes community-academic research coalitions are essential for asking and answering questions that address regionally specific health concerns throughout Oregon. These collaborations improve local health outcomes by supporting research best practices and data driven decision-making. The grant pairs a principal investigator from one of the community research coalitions with an academic collaborator from OHSU.

Due date: June 30, 2015
Award amount: Up to $20,000
The complete Request for Applications may be found here.

For more information about OCTRI Awards and the Community Research Coalition Grant funding opportunity, please visit the OCTRI website.

OHSU faculty honored for leadership, teaching, research and more

At OHSU, the passion we bring to our work leads to discoveries, educational opportunities and patient successes that literally change the world. At the heart of our success are faculty members that bring this devotion, creativity and energy to everything that we stand for. This makes a difference not only in the eyes of other faculty members, but to students and patients as well. It is a great honor to be recognized by fellow faculty members for the many contributions that are sometimes thought as unseen.

Congratulations to this year’s Faculty Senate Awards finalists and winners (highlighted in blue).

Affiliated Units/Institutes and School of Public Health
Research Award
Rochelle Fu, Ph.D.
Christopher D. Kroenke, Ph.D.
Louis J. Picker, M.D.
Bradley Tebo, Ph.D.

School of Dentistry
Teaching Award
Juliana da Costa, D.D.S., M.S.
Mark Malloy, D.M.D., M.S.
Harjit Sehgal, B.D.S., M.S.
Brian Whitten, D.D.S.

School of Medicine
Collaboration Award
Judith A. Guzman-Cotrill, D.O.
Joel Nigg, Ph.D.
David A. Pollack, M.D.
Ujwal P. Shinde, Ph.D.

School of Nursing
Leadership Award
Juliana C. Cartwright, Ph.D., R.N.
Launa Rae Mathews, M.S., R.N., C.O.H.N.-S.
Deborah C. Messecar, Ph.D., M.P.H., R.N., G.C.N.S.-B.C.
Peggy Wros, Ph.D., R.N.

College of Pharmacy
Service Award
Mark Leid, Ph.D.
Jessina C. McGregor, Ph.D.
Craig Williams, Pharm.D., B.C.P.S., F.N.L.A.
Ann Zweber, R.Ph., B.S. Pharm.

Welcome to the Research News Blog

Welcome to the Research News Blog

OHSU Research News is your portal to information about all things research at Oregon Health & Science University. Visit often for updates on events, discoveries, and important funding information.

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