IRB Brown Bag Special Series: eIRB Upgrade demo, July 23

IRB Brown BageIRB Upgrade demo

Presented by Kelly Kidner, IRB Analyst

Thursday, July 23
11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
OHSU Hospital, 8th floor auditorium

Are you involved with human subjects research? Come to the eIRB Upgrade demo! During this brown bag we will be giving an overall demonstration of the new eIRB system. You can see a presentation of the new initial submissions process, the modifications and CRQs and the new Reportable New Information (RNI) system. This brown bag session will be open for questions and answers.

New online platform for submitting limited submission applications and more

OHSU has a new online Competitive Application Portal (CAP) for managing applications and review. Sponsored by the Office of the Senior Vice President for Research, in collaboration with the Knight Cancer Institute and OCTRI, this platform streamlines the process of applying for the following types of funding:

  • Limited Submissions
  • AwardsCapture
  • Bridge Support
  • Pilot Grants
  • Other OHSU-sponsored funding

Who will be using it? You will, if you apply for limited submissions, OHSU bridge funding, and several other OHSU-sponsored awards (e.g. pilot funds from OHSU institutes or centers, fellowships). You will also use it if you’re reviewing for these opportunities. Finally, if you yourself are an OHSU sponsor–let’s say you have a T32 program and you want to make it available to OHSU applicants and even those outside the institution–you may want to use this tool.

CAP allows applicants to see upcoming funding competitions, track deadlines, access application materials, and receive automatic notifications on application status. It also provides automatic routing to reviewers, streamlined communications, and tracking of award information (e.g. success rates, number of  applicants per competition) through its reporting function.

Please note: CAP is not in any way connected to, or a replacement for, InfoEd. (It’s licensed by InfoReady, which is a different company.) All grant applications will continue to be submitted through existing channels.

Please contact with questions or if you would like to set up a competition.

Who’s new at OHSU? Meet Larisa Tereshchenko, M.D., Ph.D.

Members of the lab, from left to right: Muammar Kabir, Ph.D., postdoctoral fellow; Elyar Ghafoori, M.S., research assistant; Larisa Tereshchenko, M.D., Ph.D.; Lauren Hawkins, B.S., research assistant; Charles Henrikson, M.D., M.P.H., director of  Clinical Electrophysiology program, KCVI

Members of the lab, from left to right: Muammar Kabir, Ph.D., postdoctoral fellow; Elyar Ghafoori, M.S., research assistant; Larisa Tereshchenko, M.D., Ph.D.; Lauren Hawkins, B.S., research assistant; Charles Henrikson, M.D., M.P.H., director of the clinical electrophysiology program, Knight Cardiovascular Institute

Meet Larisa Tereshchenko, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor, cardiac electrophysiology, School of Medicine, Knight Cardiovascular Institute. She’s a new faculty member at OHSU, heading up a lab focused on prediction, prevention, and treatment of sudden cardiac death.

Where were you before coming to OHSU?
I was born and raised in Omsk, a small town in southwestern Siberia, where my parents were physicians. For me, there was no question but that I would go to medical school. At Omsk and Novosibirsk Medical School in the industrial city of Novosibirsk, Siberia, I studied math, science and engineering and got an M.D. Ph.D. degree, completed a clinical fellowship in cardiology and cardiac electrophysiology, and then worked as an assistant professor of medicine at Tyumen Medical School. My first mentor in cardiology died suddenly from ventricular fibrillation at age 51, which inspired me to focus on sudden cardiac death prediction and prevention. I look at the electrical side of things.

I came to the U.S. in 2004 as a visiting research associate at Washington University in St. Louis, and then became a postdoc in electrophysiology at Johns Hopkins in 2007. I conducted studies to build on the technology of implantable cardioverter defibrillators—to make these devices smarter and better able to predict and respond to irregular heartbeats. The same year I came to the U.S., in 2004, Hungarian soccer player, Miklos Feher, suffered sudden cardiac death during a game and died instantly. It’s a dramatic example of why we need to do this work. How can we predict how deaths like this happen? How can we tell if someone is at risk when they have none of the traditional markers of cardiac arrest? Much research has been done to trace cardiac arrest from its obvious origins: plaque buildup in the arteries, a history of stroke or heart attack, or genetics. But who’s at risk for sudden cardiac death in the general population? There’s no way to save them unless we know who’s at risk. In 2013, I received an R01 to look at who’s at risk for sudden cardiac death in the general population.

What brought you to OHSU?
I joined the Knight Cardiovascular Institute that same year to grow and expand my program in order to advance prediction, prevention and treatment of the cardiac arrhythmias. At the Knight Cardiovascular Institute, we work closely together with the clinical electrophysiology group under director Charles Henrikson, M.D. Close collaborations with Dr. Henrikson help us to work on clinically important questions and implement the results of our research findings in clinical practice, to improve patient care. I am working to identify the risk factors that lead to sudden cardiac death and underlying cardiac arrhythmias: ventricular arrhythmia, paroxysmal atrioventricular block, and atrial fibrillation.

What specific avenues of research are you exploring?
I am aiming to redesign the electrocardiogram analysis approach, developing a method to reveal and quantify unapparent ventricular conduction, variability in repolarization, and other electrical abnormalities. I am using non-invasive mapping to engineer models that display the body’s electrical activity, measure arrhythmia and ultimately identify predictors of cardiac arrest. We study the risk of arrhythmia in different groups of patients: heart failure patents, kidney failure patients on dialysis, and those who have rare diseases with a high risk of arrhythmias.

So far, our work has yielded two patent-pending inventions designed to measure and map electrical activity. We are looking at these measurements of heart function, overlapping them with other organ functions, to show more detail than an electrocardiogram ever could. We have three-dimensional bodies, so we should be looking for three-dimensional answers.

I am also conducting two ongoing clinical studies at OHSU that are actively enrolling patients. I am the principal investigator of a randomized controlled trial, called “aCRT ELSYNC,” which has the goal of determining the best treatment approach for heart failure patients. Another study is observational: we try to find the best way to record and analyze electrocardiograms to determine if subcutaneous defibrillators would be a suitable treatment option for those patients who might need it.

Also, recently I initiated and organized an electrophysiology patient council, a group of patients with cardiac arrhythmias who advise us how to conduct clinical research, which questions they consider important, and how they would like us to address those questions. This is a completely novel approach that put patients at the center of clinical research. The Patent-Centered Outcome Research Initiative (PCORI) inspired this revolutionary clinical research, and I am glad to be part of this effort.

Tell us something about your career that’s not on your CV?
I want to grow my team! I am looking for M.D.-Ph.D. students, postdocs, residents, cardiology and electrophysiology fellows, and, specifically, anyone with an electrical or biomedical engineering background. The work in my lab is translational research. Our lab-generated information is helping answer some very important clinical questions.

What do you like to do for fun?
I like to travel. This summer, I am going to Iceland to go snorkeling with my son. He’s an M.D.-Ph.D. student at the University Of Iowa Carver College Of Medicine.

More information
Tereshchenko’s team’s paper –Electrocardiographic Deep Terminal Negativity of the P Wave in V1and Risk of Sudden Cardiac Death: The Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) Study” – was  published in the Journal of the American Heart Association in November 2014.


Reminder: register for the NRSA Application Workshop, June 30

If you’re planning to apply for a pre- or post-doctoral NRSA fellowship from the NIH in the near future, we encourage you to attend this workshop to learn about essential, non-research elements of your fellowship application. Topics covered include elements needed for an InfoEd proposal, how to develop a budget, how to manage reference letters, biosketches and PMCID numbers,and elements of a great training plan.

This workshop is led by Johanna Colgrove, M.D., Ph.D., program coordinator; Jerry Robertson, grants and contracts administrator; and Rachel Dresbeck, Ph.D., director of research development.

NRSA Application Workshop
Tuesday, June 30, 2015
11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Biomedical Research Building 381

Open to both researchers and administrators. Registration now available on Compass.

Maintaining integrity in peer review: new NIH guidelines

Do you know someone on the study section reviewing your NIH application? Do you want to give them a friendly call to update them on your current results? The NIH says DON’T! Because the research community is inherently small, investigators within the same field often have contact with the very people who may be reviewing their NIH applications. How then should confidentiality be maintained? What are the parameters? Last week, the NIH issued new guidelines for Applicant Responsibilities in Maintaining the Integrity of the NIH Peer Review that provide answers to these questions as well as possible consequences of unethical behavior.

In a recent guest posting on Sally Rockey’s Rock Talk blog, Richard Nakamura, Ph.D., director of the NIH Center for Scientific Review, wrote: “We understand that professional interactions need to continue while your application is undergoing peer review. However, as a PI, you cannot attempt to influence the outcome of the review…You cannot provide new information or data on your application directly to reviewers… You also cannot contact reviewers to get your scores or critiques.”

More specifically, the new guideline state that applicants:

  • Should not contact reviewers on the study section evaluating his or her application to request or provide information about the review or to otherwise attempt to influence the outcome. The only acceptable process for such communication is through the Scientific Review Officer (SRO) who is managing the study section.
  • Should not send information or data directly to a reviewer on the study section evaluating his or her application. The only acceptable processes for submitting post-submission materials are outlined in NOT-OD-10-115, NOT-OD-12-141, and related notices.
  • Should not attempt to access information related to the review of that application in secure NIH computer systems.

Maintaining the integrity of the scientific review process is perhaps more important than ever. Attempts to influence this process can erode public confidence, drain limited federal resources, and diminish the level of trust within the scientific community. As such, the new guidelines clearly outline the repercussions of engaging in this type of behavior:

The NIH may defer or withdraw an application if it determines that a fair review is not feasible because of a breach of these guidelines. Additional steps to ensure the integrity of the peer review process may be taken, including but not limited to:

  • Notifying or requesting information from the applicant institution or the individual’s institution
  • Pursuing a referral for government-wide suspension or debarment
  • Notifying the NIH Office of Management Assessment (OMA) with possible referral to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (OIG)

Still in doubt about what constitutes a violation? Further details, including information about reviewer violations, can be found on the NIH’s updated website, “Integrity and Confidentiality in NIH Peer Review.”  In addition, the FAQs on Confidentiality in Peer Review provide scenarios to help you evaluate potential breaches.


IRB Brown Bag Special Series: eIRB Upgrade demo, June 25

IRB Brown BageIRB Upgrade demo

Presented by David Holmgren, IRB Manager

Thursday, June 25
11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
OHSU Hospital, 8th floor auditorium

Are you involved with human subjects research? Come to the eIRB Upgrade demo! During this brown bag we will be giving an overall demonstration of the new eIRB system. You can see a presentation of the new initial submissions process, the modifications and CRQs and the new Reportable New Information (RNI) system. This brown bag session will be open for questions and answers.

OHSU researchers Peter Barr-Gillespie and Kateri Spinelli featured in NIH Director’s Blog

Micrograph of sensory hair and supporting cells in the inner ear of a chicken

Micrograph of sensory hair and supporting cells in the inner ear of a chicken

NIH director, Francis Collins, posted a blog entry this week showcasing the work of Peter Barr-Gillespie, Ph.D., professor of otolaryngology in the OHSU School of Medicine and associate vice president for basic research at OHSU. The post provided a snapshot of Barr-Gillespie’s research and also featured an image of sensory hair cells captured by Barr-Gillespie and Kateri Spinelli, Ph.D., at the time a student in Barr-Gillespie’s lab.


Peter Barr-Gillespie

Peter Barr-Gillespie

You may recall the image from a previous post announcing that the two researchers were among the winners of the 2014 BioArt competition.

Kateri Spinelli, Ph.D. is now a post-doctoral researcher in the Department of Neurology at OHSU

Kateri Spinelli, Ph.D. is now a post-doctoral fellow in the Jungers Center at OHSU

One focus of  the Barr-Gillespie lab’s research is on sensory hair cell regeneration following damage, whether from noise exposure, injury, or disease. In humans, such damage can result in permanent hearing loss but the lab has found that in chickens, supporting cells have the ability to regenerate sensory cells within a couple of weeks and restore hearing. They are working to better understand these cells in the chicken to examine possible treatment options for hearing loss in humans.

Internal deadline for Gabrielle’s Angel Foundation Cancer Research Grants is fast approaching

Gabrielle’s Angel Foundation Cancer Research Grants provide support to promising young investigators who are conducting scientific research that can be applied to improving the treatment of patients with hematologic malignancies and cancer-related integrative medicine. OHSU has been asked to nominate two outstanding junior faculty members – one who is conducting mainstream or conventional research and one who is conducting complementary or integrative research. Detailed guidelines have been made for each category which can be found here. This award provides $75,000 per year for three years.

Note that this opportunity requires internal coordination as OHSU may only submit one application per category; therefore, limited submission guidelines apply. If you are interested in applying, submit an application via the Competitive Application Portal (CAP) by July 1, 2015. Please specify which category you are applying for in your proposal title. The external deadline for the final application to the Gabrielle’s Angel Foundation is August 15, 2015.

New insights on protein movement from the Chapman lab

chapman_1A study from the Michael Chapman lab titled “Parsimony in protein conformational change,” published in the journal Structure, provides a more complete picture of how proteins move. The researchers used nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy to better understand the dynamics of protein movement and thus get a better view of their normal functioning. The team designed a computer method that looks at two different snapshots of the same protein structures. Some of the findings: Minimal torsion angle rotations are a major characteristic of conformational change–and large changes are composed of smaller dihedral rotations.

The senior author, Michael Chapman, Ph.D., is professor of biochemistry and molecular biology, in the OHSU School of Medicine and a member of the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute. The study bridges a significant gap in knowledge that will help determine what – at the molecular level – causes disease and how best to treat those illnesses. The long-term results of this work may provide a foundation for the development of more effective drug treatments.

Read the OHSU media release here.



Postdoctoral fellowships from the Human Frontier Science Program

Attention Postdocs!

The Human Frontier Science Program encourages postdoctoral scientists to broaden their research skills by moving into new areas of study while working in a new country. The program provides awardees with approximately $50,000 per year for three years (with additional travel and child allowances) and invites applications for two international mechanisms that offer postdoctoral fellowships for basic research training:

Long-Term Fellowships – For applicants with a Ph.D. in a biological discipline to embark on a new project in a different field of the life sciences. Preference is given to applicants who propose an original study in biology that marks a departure from their previous Ph.D. or postdoctoral work so as to learn new methods or change discipline.

Cross-Disciplinary Fellowships – For applicants with a Ph.D. from outside the life sciences (e.g. in physics, chemistry, mathematics, engineering or computer sciences) who have had limited exposure to biology during their previous training. Applicants should propose a significant departure from their past research (e.g. changing from material science or physics to cell biology, from chemistry to molecular biology, or from computer science to neuroscience).

Registration deadline: August 13, 2015
Application deadline: August 27, 2015

Fellows must begin their fellowship between April 1, 2016 and January 1, 2017. To be eligible, the applicant must hold a research doctorate or a doctoral-level degree comparable to a Ph.D. with equivalent experience in basic research and the degree must have been conferred in the three years prior to the submission deadline or by December 31, 2016. Applicants must have at least one lead author paper either accepted for publication, in press or published, in an English peer-reviewed international journal. Applicants who have spent 12 or more months in their proposed host country or with their proposed supervisor are ineligible.

Learn more here. The registration site will be available in early July, so keep an eye out!

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