CUIMC Update - April 26, 2023

CUIMC Update is a weekly e-newsletter featuring medical center news and the accomplishments of our faculty, staff, and trainees. Please send your news, honors, and awards to Grants are provided by the Sponsored Projects Administration office.


Columbia University Launches Center for Precision Psychiatry & Mental Health
The Stavros Niarchos Foundation Center for Precision Psychiatry & Mental Health will catalyze the scientific innovation and clinical implementation of precision medicine to advance the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of mental illness. Established with a $75 million grant from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, the center represents a collaborative effort by the VP&S Department of Psychiatry and Columbia’s Zuckerman Mind Brain Behavior Institute. Read more.

VP&S Neurologist Creates a Paradigm Shift in Parkinson’s Disease Education
Parkinson’s disease is the world’s fastest-growing neurological disorder. Because people do not realize that the disease can strike any gender, race, or ethnicity, diagnosis is often delayed, especially for Black and brown patients. Columbia neurologist Hiral Shah, MD, helped create the “The PD Movers,” a booklet written by Black people with Parkinson's for Black people with Parkinson's. Read more.

Mailman Expert on What Science Says About the Health Risks of Gas Stoves
Since the Consumer Product Safety Commission suggested it may consider regulating indoor air pollution from gas stoves, families have begun questioning the safety of gas burners. A Mailman School of Public Health study led by Darby Jack, PhD, associate professor of environmental health sciences, found that Harlem households with induction stoves experienced a 35% reduction in daily NO2 concentrations compared with those that used gas stoves. Read more.

What You and Your Teenager Should Know About Cannabis, According to a Columbia Pediatrician
Research shows cannabis use is increasing in the United States among people of all ages. Columbia pediatrician Sarah Anderson, MD, PhD, an expert in adolescent medicine, discusses what is known about the impact of cannabis use on teen health and how parents can best protect the health of young people curious about using marijuana. Read more.

Columbia Nursing Postdoc Builds Novel Screening Tool for Early-Stage Dementia
Artificial intelligence analysis of voice recordings could offer a quick, inexpensive way to screen home care patients for mild cognitive impairment and early dementia, according to new research from Columbia Nursing led by postdoctoral researcher Maryam Zolnoori, PhD. The new screening tool would require no additional clinical training to perform and would make screenings less time-consuming by using recordings made in the normal course of care. Read more.

Celebrate Earth Day at CUIMC Friday
Join your colleagues for an upcoming Earth Day celebration Friday, April 28, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Haven Plaza. Stop by for games and prizes, get to know sustainability leaders on campus, recycle old materials and electronics, and learn about green transportation, recycling, waste management, and volunteer opportunities in the community. Learn more.


Sun Smarts: How to Keep Kids Healthy and Safe this Spring and Summer
April 26, 6 p.m., online
Register here.

Disability Etiquette, Awareness and Customized Employment
April 27, 11 a.m., Vagelos Education Center, 104 Haven Ave., Room 1402/1403
Register here.

The John Lindenbaum Memorial Lecture Series: Expanding Underrepresented Minority Participation in STEM and Medicine
April 27, 4 p.m., Black Building, 650 W. 168 St., Alumni Auditorium
Register here.

Turning the Tide: Combatting Misinformation in Public Health
April 28, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Faculty House, 64 Morningside Drive
Register here.

Columbia Science and Health Equity Lecture Series: Health Equity Requires Action
April 28, 12:30 p.m., Vagelos Education Center, 104 Haven Ave., Room 1202
Register here.

Symposium on Segregated Healthcare: Redesigning Care for Equity
April 28, 1 p.m., Vagelos Education Center, 104 Haven Ave., Room 201
Register here.

The Dr. Thomas Q. Morris Symposium on Medical Education: "Healing Our Profession for Our Patients and Ourselves"
May 1, 5 p.m., Black Building, 650 W. 168 St., Alumni Auditorium and Schaefer Awards Gallery
Register here.

Coping with the Pandemic Using Digital and Community Solutions
May 2, 8:30 a.m., The Forum at Columbia University, 601 W. 125th St.
Register here.

Ethics Grand Rounds: Medicalizing and Criminalizing of Mental Health
May 2, 12 p.m., online
Register here.

Tissue Talks: David Scadden, Harvard
May 3, 3 p.m., online
Register here.

FORWARD Fellows Equity Showcase
May 4, 9:30 a.m., Allan Rosenfield Building, 722 W. 168 St., Room 532
Register here.

Community De-Implementation: Feeding Practices in Early Care and Education
May 5, 12 p.m., online
Register here.

Why Is There Confusion About Whether Masks Prevent COVID-19?
May 9, 6:15 p.m., online
Register here.

Tissue Talks: Jeanette Wing, Columbia Data Science Institute
May 10, 3 p.m., online
Register here.



Barun Mathema, PhD, Epidemiology: $3,782,475 over five years from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases for "Emergence of bedaquiline, pretomanid and linezolid resistance after implementation of new drug-resistant tuberculosis regimens in South Africa."


Alejandro Chavez, MD, PhD, Pathology & Cell Biology: $1,480,500 over three years from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke for "Methods to rapidly explore combinatorial diversity and their application to CRISPR-Cas9 systems."

Jeanine Marie D'Armiento, MD, PhD, Anesthesiology: $4,281,291 over four years from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute for "Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Disease Cohort: Longitudinal Biomarker Study of Disease."

Serge Przedborski, MD, PhD, Neurology: $800,000 over four years from the Silicon Valley Community Foundation for "In vivo CRISPR to uncover determinants of neurodegeneration (CP2-Przedborski)."

Melissa Stockwell, MD, Pediatrics: $749,267 over two years from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for "Pediatric COVID-19 Vaccination in Young Children RCT (Contributing Site 2)."

Giuseppe Tosto, MD, Neurology: $7,117,882 over five years for a subaward from the National Institute on Aging for "Recruitment and Retention for Alzheimer's Disease Diversity Genetic Cohorts in the ADSP (READD-ADSP) Core B."

Chaolin Zhang, PhD, Systems Biology: $4,313,684 over five years from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences for "Complexity and evolution of splicing-regulatory networks."



Maureen George, PhD, was awarded the Fulbright U.S. Scholar award for 2023-24 in partnership with the University of the West Indies in Trinidad and Tobago.


Maria Rahmany, PhD, Columbia Technology Ventures, has joined the New York City Economic Development Corporation's inaugural cohort of advisors of The Women.NYC Network.



The New York Times
Could Certain Foods Help With Hot Flashes?
Apr 20, 2023 - There’s some evidence that a diet high in sugar and fat is associated with worse hot flashes. Beyond that, doctors often suggest avoiding certain foods and drinks that seemingly trigger a hot flash, said Dr. Hoosna Haque, an OB-GYN at Columbia University Irving Medical Center, such as “spicy food, caffeine, alcohol, and also really high-concentrated sugary foods and highly processed foods.”

Does COVID-19 During Pregnancy Lead to Neuro-developmental Problems in Babies?
Apr 18, 2023 - “Our evidence of a negative result is really reassuring,” said lead author Dr. Dani Dumitriu, a newborn hospitalist and neuroscientist at Columbia University. The babies were enrolled from two ongoing studies tracking COVID-19 and mother-and-baby outcomes led by Dumitriu.

The Bump
What Does Baby’s Apgar Score Mean?
Apr 14, 2023 - “It’s simple, and it gives a general idea of how the newborn is [faring] in the very early period after they’re delivered,” adds Anna Penn, MD, chief of the neonatology division at NewYork-Presbyterian/Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital in New York City.