CUIMC Update - August 16, 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.


VP&S and CDM Class of 2027 White Coat Ceremonies
Incoming students at VP&S and the College of Dental Medicine donned their white coats for the first time, a significant milestone in their educational journeys. Read more.

Fatal Drug Overdoses Affect Health Care Workers in Large Numbers
Research from the Mailman School of Public Health led by Mark Olfson, MD, professor of epidemiology, shows that behavioral health and health care support workers are at significantly greater risk for drug overdose death compared to non-health care workers. Read more.

CUIMC Emergency Preparedness Readies for Extreme Weather
After catastrophic flooding in clinical and research spaces last winter, CUIMC’s emergency management team has been implementing new measures to respond to future flooding and increase public safety. Read more.

Source of Hidden Consciousness in ‘Comatose’ Patients Found
A team of researchers led by Jan Claassen, MD, associate professor of neurology at VP&S, has identified brain circuits that may underlie hidden consciousness, a puzzling phenomenon in which brain-injured patients appear unconscious despite having some level of awareness. Read more.

Adult Aggression May Have Roots in Adolescent Brain
Brain development during adolescence may set the stage for aggressive and impulsive behaviors in adulthood, a study in mice has found. Read more.


Film Works Alfresco at Haven Plaza: "Hidden Figures"
Aug. 18, 7 p.m., Haven Plaza, Haven Avenue between Fort Washington Avenue and 169 Street
Learn more.

Panel Discussion with CUIMC International Students
Aug. 18, 10 a.m., online
Register here.

Cervical Cancer National Patient Advocacy Day
Aug. 19, 11 a.m.,  Irving Cancer Research Center, 1130 St. Nicholas Ave., Room 114
Learn more.

Electronic Medical Records Boot Camp
Aug. 21, 10 a.m., online
Register here.

ColumbiaDoctors Outreach With Nurse Practitioner Group
Aug. 22, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Haven Plaza, Haven Avenue between Fort Washington Avenue and 169 Street
Learn more.

ColumbiaDoctors Outreach With Dentistry and Children's Health
Aug. 29, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Haven Plaza, Haven Avenue between Fort Washington Avenue and 169 Street
Learn more.

Request for Applications: TL1 Postdoctoral Fellow Program
Aug. 31, online
Learn more.

Request for Applications: Reach for the First RO1 Workshop
Sept. 1, online
Learn more.



Biana Roykh, DDS: $500,000 over one year from the Mother Cabrini Health Foundation for "Bridging Disparities in Vulnerable Populations and People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (I/DD)."


Anne Nigra, PhD, Environmental Health Sciences: $677,000 over four years from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences for "Environmental Health Research for Teachers and High School Students (EARTH) in the Great Northern Plains."


Miguel Arce, PhD, Sergievsky Center: $747,000 over three years from the National Institute on Aging for "Factors of Resilience to Alzheimers Disease and Related Dementias among Latinx: The Role of Bilingualism."

Evelyn Attia, MD, Psychiatry: $300,163 over one year for a subaward from the New York State Office of Mental Health for "Comprehensive Care Center for Eating Disorders - Metropolitan Region."

Adam Brickman, PhD, Taub Institute: $5,239,271 over five years for a subaward from the National Institute on Aging for "Education and Cognitive Functioning in Later Life: The Nation's High School Class of 1972."

Guy Garty, PhD, Center for Radiological Research: $628,890 over two years for a subaward from the Army Research Institute for "ARCHitecture for Effects of Low doses ON Skin (ARCHELONS)."

Mohsen Khosravi Maharlooei, MD, Medicine: $452,375 over one year from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases for "Delineating mechanisms underlying the enhanced stability and functionality CD2-KO Tregs and chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) Tregs and their applications in transplantation and xenotransplantation."

Konstantin Petrukhin, PhD, Ophthalmology: $2,500,680 over four years from the National Eye Institute for "Polypharmacological approach to treatment of Stargardt disease."



Kellie Bryant, DNP, was named Nurse of the Year - Community Service by the National Black Nurses Association.


Ana Cepin, MD, Obstetrics & Gynecology, and Sandra Harris, LMSW, Government & Community Affairs, were selected as honorees by the National Dominican Day Parade.

Gordana Vunjak-Novakovic, PhD, Biomedical Engineering, received the Rosalind Franklin Society Award in Science.



TODAY Show (video)
Groundbreaking ‘domino' heart surgery saves two babies’ lives
Aug 8, 2023 - The Skaats and Civil families are a part of the world’s first domino heart transplant in infants. They, alongside Dr. Marc Richmond from New York Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital and Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons, sit down with TODAY to talk about the groundbreaking transplant that saved their babies’ lives and how one heart became gold for their families.

Andrew B. Goldstone, MD, PhD, assistant professor of surgery at VP&S, was also featured in this story.

In the Know (video)
Here’s why you should care about your future fertility if you want kids
Jul 31, 2023 - Understanding fertility and how it works is essential for everyone — not only those trying to start a family. Whether you’re hoping to have kids now, someday or not at all, fertility is a topic that impacts us all. In this episode of ITK: Hack the Cycle, host Nadya Okamoto sits down with fertility expert Dr. Iris Insogna to dive deeper into the issue and shed some light on common questions. Dr. Insogna shows Nadya the embryology lab of Columbia University’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology Fertility Center.

The Washington Post
What new parents need to know about groundbreaking postpartum treatment
Aug 5, 2023 - An important caveat is that the clinical trials have primarily included women with severe postpartum depression, not those experiencing the more common range of symptoms that are more mild or moderate, said Catherine Monk, a professor of medical psychology at Columbia University. For that latter group, Monk said nonmedical interventions like therapy and lifestyle changes aimed at lowering anxiety levels may be more suitable.