CUIMC Update - Dec. 13, 2021

December 13, 2021

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.


Katrina Armstrong Appointed to Lead CUIMC
Columbia University President Lee Bollinger today named Katrina Armstrong as the next Chief Executive Officer of Columbia University Irving Medical Center, Executive Vice President for Health and Biomedical Sciences, and Dean of the Faculties of Health Sciences and Medicine. A distinguished physician, researcher, and educator, Dr. Armstrong is currently the Jackson Professor of Clinical Medicine at Harvard Medical School, Professor of Epidemiology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, and Chair of the Department of Medicine and Physician-in-Chief at Massachusetts General Hospital. Her tenure at CUIMC will begin on March 1, 2022. Read more.

Wednesday: Town Hall
The CUIMC community is invited to a year-end town hall on Dec. 15 at 4:15 p.m. on Zoom. The deans of VP&S, Mailman, Nursing, and CDM will celebrate 2021 accomplishments and share a look ahead to 2022. Register here.

What Are You Grateful For? New Video and Opportunity to Practice Gratitude from CopeColumbia
All CUIMC employees are invited to submit a photo or video of themselves expressing what they are grateful for, especially around the holiday season. Entries will be used for a year-end video showcasing gratitude among our employees, and everyone who participates will be entered into a contest to win a prize. Learn more and access a new video from CopeColumbia on gratitude here.

Columbia Primary Care Removes Barriers to Improve Mental Health
Behavioral health specialists are now located at all ColumbiaDoctors Primary Care locations and work alongside primary care providers to identify and care for patients with depression. Read more.

Mailman Research: Study Shows Success of New York City’s Clean Heat Program
A new study by Mailman researchers is the first to evaluate the impact of the New York City Clean Heat Program since it was implemented in 2012. Results showed that banning heating oil #6 was effective in reducing air pollution. Read more.

VP&S Research: Experimental Gene Therapy Can Reverse Sickle Cell Disease for Years
An experimental gene therapy for sickle cell disease restored blood cells to their normal shape and eliminated severe complications of the disease for three years in some patients, a multicenter study has found. Four of the 35 patients in the trial were treated at CUIMC. Read more.

In Case You Missed It: Campus Forum Update
Last week’s campus update forum for faculty, researchers, and staff shared information on the status of the pandemic and the omicron variant, as well as guidance about campus gatherings, travel policy, and the new year. View recording.



Munemasa Mori, MD, PhD, Medicine, and Moriya Tsuji, MD, PhD, Medicine, will receive $290,170 over seven months from Sharp Laboratories of America for “Investigating the SHARP Plasma Cluster Ion’s impact on human cells and its disinfection efficacy against COVID-19 transmission.”

Christine Rohde, MD, Surgery, will receive $960,696 over one year from the National Institute on Drug Abuse for a subaward of “Evaluation of Safety and Pharmacokinetics of Naltrexone Implant.”

Megan Sykes, MD, Medicine, will receive $264,761 over 10 months from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases for a subaward of “Identification of unique nitric oxide-expressing hematopoietic stem cells and their special vascular niche.”


Barun Mathema, PhD, Epidemiology, will receive $3,433,190 over five years from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases for “Targeting TB transmission hotspots to find undiagnosed TB in South Africa: a genomic, geospatial and modeling study (TARGET- TB).”


Laura Kelly, PhD, Division of Scholarship & Research, will receive $1,919,907 over four years from the Health Resources and Services Administration for “Behavioral Health Workforce Education and Training Program - American Rescue Plan.” Read more



Henry M. Colecraft, PhD, Physiology & Cellular Biophysics, will receive the 2022 Kenneth S. Cole Award from the Channels, Receptors and Transporters Subgroup of the Biophysical Society.

Next Avenue, a PBS digital platform, has named Justin Golub, MD, Otolaryngology/Head & Neck Surgery, a 2021 Influencer in Aging, one of 14 experts recognized for changing how we think about aging. He is one of three experts featured in a story about reimagining health care. Read more


The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene recently honored researchers at Mailman School of Public Health for their disease modeling and epidemiology work on COVID-19 that helped inform city policy. Read more


CUIMC HR and Employee Resource Group Events

  • Burnout Awareness and Prevention Training, Dec. 14, noon, register here.
  • Stress Management and Self Care, Jan. 11, noon, register here

CUIMC Annual Toy Drive, by Dec. 16, view drop-off locations.  

Columbia Commons IPE Day: Call for Abstracts, by Feb. 11, view guidelines

For more events, visit the CUIMC Events listing.