Momentum propels the new academic year

And then, in a rush, it’s July already. Welcome to the last half of calendar 2021, the new fiscal year, and a new academic year. Yesterday was our interns’ first day on the job as freshly minted doctors. I am already hearing reports from faculty on just how impressed they are with our newest members. Earlier this week, the fifth annual Objective Structured Clinical Evaluations (OSCEs) provided proof that we recruited an outstanding class of residents to join us. I am grateful to all the evaluators, including some recently departed Chief Residents, who gave up a morning or an afternoon, or both, to participate. Your efforts help us provide training that is tailored specifically to our interns’ needs. A special thanks as well to Vice Chair for Education Dr. Manish Suneja and Education Development Director Jane Rowat. Your vision for the OSCEs now covers a full third of all new interns starting this week at University of Iowa Health Care. Soon, if early indications bear out, these will be the standard practice for residency programs nationwide.  But there is more in store for our new class. Jane and Manish recently published the outcomes of their curricular innovations to not only enhance learning, but to increase the skills of our trainees as teachers. Their recent publication in BMC Medical Education about our new Teaching Skills Curriculum revealed a number of astonishing pieces of data. Residents who had completed the entire longitudinal course reported higher levels of confidence in their own teaching abilities. But more important, the medical students they taught exceeded the national average by nearly 5 percentage points in their satisfaction with their clerkship experience. Before the new curriculum? Only two-tenths of a point separated them from the national average.

Welcome, new interns, you have joined one of the most innovative and influential programs around! I was sorry to miss the cookout and ice cream on Tuesday night, but I look forward to joining you all at other informal social events in the coming months. There was strong representation by many members of the Education Leadership team. Such faculty investment is not atypical in our residency. Everyone is committed not just to providing top-notch training, but to knowing the individuals, meeting their families—or their dogs!—and building a base familiarity, trust, and community. Transitions on such an outstanding team of educators are rare, but a strong bench has been developed. As was recently revealed when she received the resident-determined Faculty Teacher of the Year Award, it was also announced that Dr. Gwen Beck is stepping down from her position as Associate Program Director after many years of service to the department and the program. Dr. Krista Johnson, who has guided and strengthened our quality improvement instruction, will succeed Dr. Beck. You can read about the rest of the leadership team’s additions and learn more about them in this post.

One of many qualities that distinguishes our faculty is how often and early we involve trainees in scholarship. We say it often, but it bears repeating: Residents do not graduate from this program without multiple opportunities to add more than one or two publications to their CV. Beyond the obvious boost that evidence of scholarship gives to their fellowship applications, it also shapes the direction of their future careers as practitioners, educators, researchers, or academic physicians. To test this hypothesis, we conducted a PubMed query on our residents for the months of March, April, and May. We found five publications with residents as first authors, and three additional publications to which they’ve contributed, in a variety of areas from infectious diseases and endocrinology to oncology and palliative medicine. Congratulations to these scholars and thanks to our faculty mentors who continue to tirelessly build the foundation for tomorrow.

First Authors:

Vather-Wu, Naomi, et al. Vitamin D Level Stability in Dystrophinopathy Patients on Vitamin D Supplementation. J Neuromuscul Dis. 2021 Apr 1.

Hung, Chermaine, et al. Anorexia Nervosa and Osteoporosis. Calcif Tissue Int. 2021 Mar 5.

Winward, Jason, et al. Republished: Case of relapsing sulfasalazine-induced hypersensitivity syndrome upon re-exposure. Drug Ther Bull. 2021 May 24

Chen, Benjamin, et al. Native joint septic arthritis due to Kingella kingae in an adult. IDCases. 2021 Mar 31.

Rieth, John, et al. Melanoma Brain Metastases in the Era of Targeted Therapy and Checkpoint Inhibitor Therapy. Cancers (Basel). 2021 Mar 24;13(7):1489

Contributing Authors:

Genova, Rachel, et al. A mouse model of Bardet-Biedl Syndrome has impaired fear memory, which is rescued by lithium treatment. PLoS Genet. 2021 Apr 22;17(4):e1009484

Chen, Benjamin, et al. Palliative care consultation in patients with Staphylococcus aureus bacteremia. Palliat Med. 2021 Apr;35(4):785-792

Elhag, Dean, et al. Comprehensive review of chromophobe renal cell carcinoma. Crit Rev Oncol Hematol. 2021 Apr;160:103287

With faculty as productive as ours, it is little surprise that opportunities abound for our residents to engage in scholarly work. A few weeks ago while browsing our department’s Recent Publications page—which is updated twice a month with two weeks’ worth of publications and keeps a rolling five years’ worth of credits available along the sidebar—I quickly categorized what I was seeing. Just for the month of May, and only those with our faculty as either first or senior author, I found all the publications below. With output from seven of our nine divisions, more than a dozen publications run the spectrum from basic science to clinical to outcomes research. Well done!

Basic Science articles:

Samuel Stephens (senior author). Mitochondrial efflux of citrate and isocitrate is fully dispensable for glucose-stimulated insulin secretion and pancreatic islet β-cell function. Yumi Imai, Samuel B Stephens, et al. Diabetes. 2021 May 26;db210037. Division of Endocrinology

Anil Chauhan (senior author) Integrin α9 regulates smooth muscle cell phenotype switching and vascular remodeling. Prakash Doddapattar, Nirav Dhanesha, Anil K Chauhan, et al. JCI Insight. 2021 May 24;6(10):147134. Division of Hematology, Oncology, and Blood and Marrow Transplantation

Xiaopeng Li (senior author) Transduction of Pig Small Airway Epithelial Cells and Distal Lung Progenitor Cells by AAV4.  Raul Villacreses, Mahmoud Abou Alaiwa, David A Stoltz, Joseph Zabner, Xiaopeng Li, et al. Cells. 2021 Apr 25;10(5):1014. Program in Bioinformatics and Computational Biology

Renata Pereira (first author); E. Dale Abel (senior author) OPA1 deletion in brown adipose tissue Improves thermoregulation and systemic metabolism via FGF21.  Renata O Pereira, Eric Thomas Weatherford, Rhonda A Souvenir, Kamal Rahmouni, E Dale Abel, et al. Elife. 2021 May 4;10:e66519. Division of Endocrinology

Manasa K Nayak (first author) Loss of diacylglycerol kinase ε causes thrombotic microangiopathy by impairing endothelial VEGFA signaling.  Manasa K Nayak, Anil K Chauhan, Chou-Long Huang, Massimo Attanasio, et al. JCI Insight. 2021 May 10;6(9):146959. Division of Hematology, Oncology, and Blood and Marrow Transplantation

Alejandro Pezzulo (senior author) Differential gene expression analysis for multi-subject single cell RNA sequencing studies with aggregateBioVar.  Alejandro Pezzulo, et al. Bioinformatics. 2021 May 10;btab337. Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Occupational Medicine

Clinical article:

Alejandro Comellas (senior author) Discordant Quantitative and Visual CT Assessments in the Diagnosis of Emphysema.  Amy M J O’Shea, Spyridon Fortis, Alejandro P Comellas, et al. Int J Chron Obstruct Pulmon Dis. 2021 May 3;16:1231-1242. Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Occupational Medicine

Outcomes Research articles:

Martha Carvour (first author) Visualizing complex healthcare disparities: proof of concept for representing a cyclical continuum of care model for a retrospective cohort of patients with musculoskeletal infections. Martha Carvour, et al. BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2021 May 21;22(1):465. Division of Infectious Diseases

Daniel Livorsi (first author); Heather Reisinger (senior author) The feasibility of implementing antibiotic restrictions for fluoroquinolones and cephalosporins: a mixed-methods study across 15 Veterans Health Administration hospitals.  Daniel J Livorsi, Aaron M Scherer, Michihiko Goto, Eli N Perencevich, Heather Schacht Reisinger, et al. J Antimicrob Chemother. 2021 May 20;dkab138. Division of Infectious Diseases; Division of General Internal Medicine

Avraham Levin (senior author) Comparative effectiveness of five fecal immunochemical tests using colonoscopy as the gold standard: Study protocol. Richard M Hoffman, Avraham Levin, et al. Contemp Clin Trials. 2021 Jul;106:106430, Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology

Michelle Mengeling (senior author) Understanding VA’s Use of and Relationships With Community Care Providers Under the MISSION Act. Michelle A Mengeling, et al. Med Care. 2021 Jun 1;59(Suppl 3):S252-S258. Division of General Internal Medicine

Michelle Mengeling (first author) Partnership Forum: The Role of Research in the Transformation of Veterans Affairs Community Care. Michelle A Mengeling, et al. Med Care. 2021 Jun 1;59(Suppl 3):S232-S241. Division of General Internal Medicine

Jack Stapleton (senior author) Characterization of performance and disinfection resilience of nonwoven filter materials for use in 3D-printed N95 respirators. Jack T. Stapleton, et al. J Occup Environ Hyg. 2021 Jun;18(6):265-275. Division of Infectious Diseases

Loreen Herwaldt (senior author) The impact of workload on hand hygiene compliance: Is 100% compliance achievable? Marin L Schweizer, Heather Schacht Reisinger, Loreen Herwaldt, et al. Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol. 2021 May 14;1-3. Division of Infectious Diseases

About E. Dale Abel, MD, PhD

E. Dale Abel, MD PhD Francois M. Abboud Chair in Internal Medicine John B. Stokes III Chair in Diabetes Research Chair, Department of Internal Medicine Director, Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Research Center Director, Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism Professor of Medicine, Biochemistry and Biomedical Engineering

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