Message from the Vice Chair for Research

Nabil J. Alkayed, MD, PhD

Vice Chair Nabil J. Alkayed, MD, PhD

Welcome to the Research Division of the Department of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine (APOM), one of the top academic Anesthesiology departments in the nation. The Research Division supports the department’s academic mission of first-rate clinical care, innovative teaching and state-of-the-art translational biomedical research. The Division is comprised of several extramurally-funded full-time scientists as well as clinician-scientists.

Areas of focus in basic science research include tissue ischemia, with available expertise in cerebral, myocardial and renal ischemia, endothelial cell biology, neurodegeneration, neuroinflammation, neuroplasticity and repair, anesthetic toxicity, and the biological basis and developmental origins of sex differences in ischemic injury. The state-of-the-art research facilities are fully equipped for molecular biology, cell culture, histology and microscopy, electrophysiology, microvascular surgery, anesthesia, hemodynamic monitoring and neurobehavioral assessment, as well as facilities for breeding, genotyping and maintenance of genetically altered mice.

In addition to departmental cores, faculty members have access to university shared resources, including advanced imaging (MRI and two-photon laser-scanning microscopy), high-throughput sequencing, mass spectrometry-based metabolic profiling, genomics, proteomics and bioinformatics. Clinical research includes department- and industry-sponsored clinical trials and comparative effectiveness research on pain, pediatric, regional and cardiac anesthesia, patient safety, airway management and neurocritical and perioperative care. To promote an academic culture and to inspire interest in scientific research, Anesthesiology residents and fellows rotate through departmental laboratories. Those interested can spend up to six months (nine months for fellows) engaged in research projects with a faculty mentor working alongside full-time research faculty, postdoctoral fellows and graduate students, and learning about technical skills, scientific approaches and critical thinking at the bench and in weekly research conferences, laboratory meetings, focus groups and journal clubs.

The Department of Anesthesiology at OHSU is also the first Anesthesiology program in the nation approved by the ACGME to offer the Oregon Scholars Program, an innovative 48-month curriculum supported by a NIGMS T32 training grant that allows scholars to complete the core anesthesiology residency while also receiving advanced training in research. Senior faculty members provide guidance for junior faculty and trainees in developing their academic career, including appropriate goal setting, requirements for promotion and tenure, and mentorship in research, manuscript writing and grant development.

Finally, the Research Division has a strong collegial culture that encourages sharing of resource, takes advantage of the rich academic environment at OHSU and promotes interdisciplinary, intra- and cross-departmental collaborations. Our faculty members are engaged in multi-PI and programmatic grants with investigators within the Vollum Institute for Advanced Biomedical Research, the Divisions of Cardiovascular Medicine and Pediatric Endocrinology, and the Departments of Neurology, Neurosurgery, Biomedical Engineering and Physiology and Pharmacology.

I invite you to read more about our talented faculty and staff and their cutting edge, exciting research, and to familiarize yourself with the research opportunities, resources and the collaborative, nurturing environment in the Department of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine at OHSU.