School of Medicine

Wayne State University School of Medicine
Karmanos releases cancer clinical trials iPhone and iPad app for physicians
In Headlines on August 19, 2013
The Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute today announced its new app to help physicians and health care professionals become aware of cutting-edge cancer clinical trials, often available only at Karmanos. The KCI Trials App is free and available on the App Store℠ for the iPhone® and iPad®.

“It is important that physicians are familiar with new treatment options available through our Clinical Trials Program,” said Connie Claybaker, associate center director, Research Administration, Karmanos Cancer Institute.

Claybaker said Karmanos’ clinical trials portfolio includes some of the most exciting new investigational agents for cancer patients. The scientific advances Karmanos researchers make every day bring safe and groundbreaking treatments from the laboratory bench to the patient’s bedside, defining the new standards of cancer care.

“The ultimate goal is to make it as easy as possible for referring physicians and other health care professionals to find a clinical trial that may benefit their patients,” said Karmanos’ Anthony Shields, M.D., Ph.D., associate center director, Clinical Sciences and professor of internal medicine and oncology for the School of Medicine. “With this app, a physician could be meeting with the patient and quickly identify a clinical trial that offers a possible new treatment for consideration.”

The app allows users to search for cancer clinical trials by disease site, keyword, protocol number, phase, or principal investigator. The information displayed for each trial includes the title, objective, principal investigator, disease sites, drugs involved and eligibility criteria. Users have the option to save protocol information to their “favorites” and email protocol information to a colleague or patient directly from the app.

Additional features include buttons to call and email Karmanos Cancer Institute directly, information about Phase I studies offered and links to National Cancer Institute resources about cancer.

The KCI Trials app is now available on the App Store℠ and users may search KCI Trials to download the app. An Android version is expected to be available by early 2014. For more information, please visit or call 1-800-526-6266.
Graduate Student Research Day scheduled for Sept. 19
In Headlines on August 13, 2013
Johanna Joyce, Ph.D.

Johanna Joyce, Ph.D.

Graduate students will have the opportunity to present their research and network during the 17th annual Graduate Student Research Day at Wayne State University.

Graduate Student Research Day, this year scheduled for Sept. 19, is a student-organized, all-day event that consists of two poster sessions and three oral presentation sessions, followed by a keynote address. Cash prizes will be awarded to the top speakers in the oral session and poster sessions.

The event is intended to promote interaction among Wayne State University departments and students within the biomedical research field. In addition, the day serves to increase awareness of research activities performed by fellow graduate students.

The keynote speaker will be Johanna Joyce, Ph.D., a cancer biologist at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Center. Her research focuses on the role of non-tumor stromal cells in cancer progression and response to therapy.

Abstracts, which are due Sept. 4 by 5 pm.., can be submitted at

For more information about the event, visit
First Kathryn Cramer Orthopaedic Visiting Professor Lecture set for Sept. 18
In Headlines on August 12, 2013
Carole Copeland, M.D.

Carole Copeland, M.D.

Berton Moed, M.D.

Berton Moed, M.D.

The Detroit Medical Center Department of Orthopaedic Surgery will launch an annual lecture series in honor of a Wayne State University School of Medicine associate professor who died after a battle with breast cancer.

The inaugural Kathryn E. Cramer, M.D., Detroit Receiving Hospital Orthopaedic Visiting Professor Lectureship is set for Sept. 18 at the Kresge Eye Lecture Theater at the Kresge Eye Institute in Detroit.

Dr. Cramer, a WSU professor of orthopaedic surgery, was 44 when she died of breast cancer in 2005. A 1986 graduate of the WSU School of Medicine, she joined the faculty in 1998 as a clinical specialist in orthopaedic trauma. She practiced at Detroit Receiving Hospital and Children's Hospital of Michigan until illness forced her retirement in 2003.

In addition to being an outstanding clinician and educator, Dr. Cramer was an inspirational role model to female medical students, especially to those considering careers in orthopaedic surgery. She achieved preeminence in the specialty during an era when female orthopaedists were a rarity.

“We have a paucity of women who are applying to orthopaedic surgery and would like to promote orthopaedic surgery and women’s achievements in orthopaedic surgery,” said Rahul Vaidya, M.D., surgeon in chief of orthopaedic surgery for the Detroit Medical Center. “Kathy Cramer was a prominent orthopaedic surgeon from our institution and we wanted to do something in her honor.”

The annual lectures, Dr. Vaidya said, will highlight prominent women in orthopaedic surgery.

The lecture will begin with a 7:15 a.m. introduction by Berton Moed, M.D., professor and chair of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and residency program director of orthopaedic traumatology at the Saint Louis University School of Medicine.

Carole Copeland, M.D., associate professor of orthopaedic surgery and orthopaedic trauma at the Penn State College of Medicine and the Penn State Hershey Bone and Joint Institute, will present the first Kathryn E. Cramer Detroit Receiving Hospital Visiting Professor Lecture in orthopaedic trauma at 7:45 a.m.

At 9 a.m., Dr. Moed will present “Exam Under Anesthesia for Acetabular and Pelvic Fractures," followed by resident case presentations at 9:45 a.m.

For more information, email
Medical student wins grant to present at American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry annual meeting
In Headlines on August 9, 2013
Class of 2015 medical student Harinder Rai will present at the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry annual meeting in October, using a grant from the organization.

Class of 2015 medical student Harinder Rai will present at the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry annual meeting in October, using a grant from the organization.

Harinder Rai, 24, has just less than two years left of medical school, but already he is garnering national recognition for his efforts in child and adolescent psychiatry research.

His most recent accolade is the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Life Members’ Mentorship Grant for Medical Students, which provides a total of 14 students an introduction to child and adolescent psychiatry, networking opportunities with distinguished psychiatrists and up to $1,000 for travel expenses to attend the AACAP’s annual meeting, set for Oct. 22-27, 2013, in Orlando, Fla.

“This meeting brings together some of the best clinicians, researchers and mental health advocates from across the country. I'm thankful that an organization and meeting of such high caliber would award me this grant,” Rai said. “I'm particularly excited to receive this grant because AACAP is an organization that represents much of what excites me about the field of child and adolescent psychiatry. It is an organization that is nonprofit and aims to promote not just great clinical practices and research but also advocacy for the mentally ill in social and political life.”

Rai was born in Punjab, India, and immigrated to Michigan at age 2. He is a Detroit resident and third-year medical student expected to graduate in 2015. He began working in the Wayne State University School of Medicine’s Division of Brain Research and Imaging Neuroscience in 2011, the summer before his first year of medical school. This is his second major national award in 2013. He won a competitive trainee travel award to attend the annual Wisconsin Symposium on Emotion in April.

Rai studies under Vaibhav Diwadkar, Ph.D., associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral neurosciences and co-director of the BRAIN lab.

His research involves functional magnetic resonance imaging projects, which look at brain network interactions in children and adolescents. He will present the study, “Disordered brain network salience for faces during emotional memory and appraisal in children at risk for schizophrenia: Neural bases in the pre- morbid adolescent state,” during a poster session at the AACAP meeting. His poster presentation will explore the stress-diathesis model, one of the dominant theories for the emergence of mental illness.

“This essentially posits that certain individuals may be genetically less resilient to social and emotional stressors in their life. This may reflect vulnerability of their brain network’s ability to function properly, and thus cause certain individuals to (become susceptible to) symptoms such as flattened affect or mania,” Rai said. “This is why in the BRAIN lab we chose to study the adolescent children of schizophrenia patients, as this is a group well established to be at higher risk for a whole host of illness from bipolar to depression. During this key juncture of development we wanted to look at how their brains may be dysfunctioning when processing emotions, so we had them do a task that required them to appraise the emotions displayed by various faces and to remember those emotions as well.”

The study is the first of its kind to look at network differences in at-risk adolescents involving both emotional appraisal and memory, and provides a very early glimpse into how network dynamics may differ in those at higher risk for mental illness, he added.

“The award, I think, reflects the AACAP's implicit understanding of the value of this approach as represented in Harinder's work and also their perception of his promise as a researcher of the future,” Dr. Diwadkar said. “This approach toward understanding mechanisms of dysfunction is precisely what is now being touted by the National Institute of Mental Health as the path forward.”

NIMH Director Thomas Insel, Ph.D., announced in April that the institute’s Research Domain Criteria will be the new standard by which the NIMH will assess funding proposals. He wrote that it launched the RDoC project to transform diagnosis by incorporating genetics, imaging, cognitive science and other levels of information to lay the foundation for a new classification system. The approach assumes, among other things, that mental disorders are biological disorders involving brain circuits that implicate specific domains of cognition, emotion or behavior, and that mapping the cognitive, circuit and genetic aspects of mental disorders will yield new and better targets for treatment.

Rai didn’t always plan for a medical career in child and adolescent psychiatry. While the field certainly interested him before medical school, his work in the BRAIN lab grew that interest into something more.

“I’m thankful to have found a field that has genuinely captured my passion and curiosity,” he said.

I really want to thank Dr. Diwadkar for being an amazing mentor throughout my medical school experience,” he added. “I'd also like to thank all the faculty and administration at the School of Medicine. The medical school has provided me many opportunities to distinguish myself, from the summer research fellowship to the annual competitive research symposium, which have allowed me to convey to the selection committee how invested I am in the future of child and adolescent psychiatry.”
Dr. Jena publishes book on advances in nano cell biology
In Headlines on August 9, 2013
Bhanu Jena, Ph.D.

Bhanu Jena, Ph.D.

A Wayne State University School of Medicine professor has published a book that covers new advances in nano cell biology, nano medicine and imaging modalities.

“NanoCellBiology: Multimodal Imaging in Biology & Medicine,” (Pan Stanford Publishing) was written and co-edited by Bhanu Jena, Ph.D., the George E. Palade University Professor and Distinguished Professor of the Wayne State University School of Medicine’s Department of Physiology. Dr. Jena’s co-editor is Douglas Taatjes, Ph.D., professor of pathology at the University of Vermont College of Medicine.

The 400-page book discusses novel approaches and applications that have unraveled a new understanding of the cell and its impact on biology, medicine  and health care. The book, according to the publisher, is intended to familiarize readers with major developments in the field of nanotechnology, novel imaging methods and new discoveries related to understanding the cell.

The book also provides a comprehensive understanding of the discovery of a new cellular structure identified as the porosome. Discovered by Dr. Jena 15 years ago, the porosome is the universal secretory machinery in cells. Secretion is a fundamental cellular process that occurs in all living organisms. Cell secretion is responsible for numerous activities, including neurotransmission and the release of hormones and digestive enzymes. Secretory defects are responsible for a number of debilitating conditions, including growth defects, diabetes and neurological disorders.

Dr. Jena’s work has focused primarily on the molecular machinery and mechanism underlying cell secretion. His discovery of the porosome has revolutionized understanding of the secretory process in cells. He and his team have further determined the structure and dynamics of the porosome, its isolation and composition, and its functional reconstitution in lipid membrane. His studies demonstrate for the first time that, following a secretory stimulus, membrane-bound secretory vesicles transiently dock and fuse at the base of porosomes present at the cell plasma membrane to release intravesicular contents as opposed to the commonly held belief that during cell secretion, secretory vesicles completely merge and collapse at the cell plasma membrane. His discoveries explain the presence of partially empty secretory vesicles in cells following secretion.
Golden Gala organizers launch ticket giveaway on Pinterest website Aug. 9
In Headlines on August 7, 2013

Need a night out on the town? The Wayne State University School of Medicine is giving away a pair of tickets to its upcoming black-tie Golden Gala and a one-night stay at the MGM Grand Detroit Hotel to use on the event date, Oct. 12.

To enter, follow the School of Medicine on the social media website, at Then create a Wayne State Golden Gala board and pin at least five gold-themed items from the School of Medicine’s 2013 Golden Gala board, or any other board. To be eligible, you must email your board address to (subject: “Pin to Win”) or tweet your board address to @WSU_Med_School on Twitter.

Pinterest, founded in 2010, is a global bulletin board-style social photo and video sharing website that allows its estimated 70 million users (as of July 2013) to create, manage and follow theme-based image collections such as recipes, fashion, events, interests, hobbies and more. Users can browse other “pinboards” for inspiration, re-pin images to their own collections of interest or “like” photos. Pinned photos usually link to websites and blogs that host the photo and accompanying information, such as a recipe, project directions or event information.

The contest will run Aug. 9-Sept. 10, with the winner announced Sept. 12. The total prize package is valued at $389. The winner will be randomly selected and must be a resident of the United States or Canada. The winner is responsible for transportation to and from the hotel.

This year’s gala is themed “Solid Gold ’60s,” and will feature a reception with a plated dinner, an award ceremony and afterglow. Popular party band Fifty Amp Fuse will provide the evening’s entertainment, performing hits of the late 1950s, 1960s and early 1970s. For more information on the Golden Gala, visit at

Wayne State University employees, independent contractors, agents, members or representatives of the School of Medicine’s advertising, promotion and fulfillment agencies and/or legal advisors, or their immediate family members or persons living in the same household are not eligible. Students are eligible. To view official rules, visit

The event will honor five individuals who have contributed to the school’s legacy and assisted the community, and celebrate the generosity of donors whose support has helped WSU maintain its distinction as one of the most respected medical schools in the nation. This year’s honorees include Southeast Michigan Regional Transit Authority Director Paul Hillegonds; WSU School of Medicine Board of Visitors member and Lumigen Inc. founder A. Paul Schaap, Ph.D; School of Medicine alumnus and NASA astronaut Jerry Linenger, M.D. M.S.S.M., M.P.H., Ph.D.; Professor of surgery and critical care physician Robert Wilson, M.D.; and Professor of surgery and physiology Allen Silbergleit, M.D., Ph.D.

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