CUIMC Update - October 18, 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.


Andrea Califano to Lead Chan Zuckerberg Biohub New York
Andrea Califano, Dr, former chair of the Department of Systems Biology, will lead the new Chan Zuckerberg Biohub New York, which brings together experts to engineer immune cells for early disease prevention, detection, and treatment. Read more about the CZ Biohub New York and read a Q&A with Califano.

Craig Smith Examines a Life of Service
Chair of the Department of Surgery and heart surgeon Craig R. Smith, MD, recently published his memoir, "Nobility in Small Things: A Surgeon’s Path." In an interview with Columbia Surgery, Smith discusses leadership, confidence, personal responsibility, and finding time to write.

CUIMC Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month on Haven Plaza
CUIMC hosted a community celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month Oct. 11 on Haven Plaza, featuring food, dance performances, games, and trivia. The event aimed to highlight the contributions of the Latinx community at CUIMC and in northern Manhattan.

How To Protect Yourself Against the Flu, COVID-19, and RSV
Vaccines are key to preventing respiratory illnesses like seasonal flu, COVID-19, and RSV. Stephen Ferrara, DNP, associate dean of clinical affairs at the School of Nursing, shares why vaccination is important and how the CUIMC community can access flu shots.

Are Cancer Rates on the Rise in Younger People?
Research suggests cancer appears to be on the rise for people under 50 years old in the United States. Two Columbia cancer experts, Katherine Crew, MD, and Joel Gabre, MD, discuss what could be driving this increase and the implications for cancer prevention. 



School of Nursing

  • Walter Bockting, PhD
    $3,358,619 over four years from the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities for "Social Connectedness and Health among Gender Minority People of Color."

Mailman School of Public Health

  • Seth Prins, PhD, Epidemiology
    $3,608,096 over five years from the National Institute on Drug Abuse for "Estimating the impact of the school-to-prison pipeline on adolescent health: racialized, spatial, disparities in policing, school discipline, substance use, and mental illness."
  • Miriam Rabkin, MD, ICAP
    $840,000 over one year for a subaward from the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria for "HIV Differentiated Service Delivery (DSD) Strategic Initiative."

Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons

  • Mark Ansorge, PhD, Psychiatry
    $549,260 over four years for a subaward from the National Institute of Mental Health for "Thalamo-prefrontal circuit maturation during adolescence."
  • Jose Gutierrez, MD, Neurology
    $536,995 over five years for a subaward from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke for "BBB dysfunction in post-stroke dementia."
  • Max O'Donnell, MD, Medicine
    $3,681,212 over five years from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases for "Rapid phenotypic detection of complex and emergent TB drug resistance using a next-generation nanoluciferase reporter phage."
  • Yufeng Shen, PhD, Systems Biology
    $2,249,740 over three years from the Simons Foundation for "Triangulation of missense variant impact through multimodal modeling and functional assays."
  • Michele Shirasu-Hiza, PhD, Genetics & Development
    $2,201,800 over five years from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences for "Circadian regulation of physiological functions."
  • Veli Topkara, MD, Medicine
    $2,789,922 over five years from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute for "Role of RNA helicase Ddx5 in pathological cardiac remodeling."


Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons

Social Media Snapshot


Not Getting Enough Sleep? Your Vascular Cells Are Drowning in Oxidants

Columbia Medicine (@ColumbiaMed)

A new @ColumbiaPS study on what happens to women’s’ bodies during mild chronic sleep deprivation “is some of the first evidence to show that mild chronic deficits cause heart disease.”

In the News Highlights