MSSRP available projects - 2015

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MSSRP available projects - 2015



We will post available projects for 2015 starting in January.  Please check back then.

 


Faculty:  Craig S. Nunemaker, PhD
Department:  Medicine
Phone:  924-0229
Title: Title: Inflammatory factors that disrupt insulin-producing cells in early type 2 diabetes
Abstract: Type 2 diabetes is a devastating metabolic disorder that affects more than 25 million Americans and is characterized by insulin resistance and declining insulin production. A key element in the progression of diabetes is the destruction of insulin-producing cells in pancreatic islets called beta-cells. Our hypothesis is that a key trigger of beta-cell dysfunction is chronic exposure to fat-derived inflammatory mediators such as cytokines, reactive oxygen species, and lipid factors. For this project, students will learn to use fluorescence microscopy techniques to examine possible underlying causes of beta-cell dysfunction in mouse models of obesity and diabetes at the level of the pancreatic islet. Specifically, students will assess the effects of pro-inflammatory factors on isolated islets by the following endpoints: (a) glucose-stimulated insulin secretion, (b) glucose-stimulated calcium changes, (c) cell death, and (d) islet metabolism measured by mitochondrial activity. Though not guaranteed, MSSRP students sometimes secure co-author status on a peer-reviewed publication.

 

Faculty:  Mohan Nadkarni, MD
Department:  Medicine, Division of General, Geriatric, Palliative, and Hospital Medicine
Phone:  924-5608
Title:  Improving Care for Undeserved Patients with Chronic Illness
Abstract:  The University Medical Associates  (UMA) Insulin Titration Program. The student will join faculty, medical students and pharmacists in expanding the UMA Insulin Titration program which provides enhanced clinical care to underserved patients with diabetes to improve medical outcomes. Students contact patients on a weekly basis to help motivate and coach patients for lifestyle changes that help improve outcomes in those with chronic illnesses as well as work with patients during regular clinic visits.  The student, with direction from Drs. Helenius and Nadkarni, will help design and implement an expansion of this successful program for patients. Students will participate in Data collection and analysis and presentation of results of the program.

 

Faculty:  Aditya Sharma/ MBBS  (2 students requested)
Department:  Cardiovascular Medicine
Phone:  982-4661
Title:  Fibromuscular dysplasia international registry
Abstract:  In this study we will collect clinical characteristics, imaging findings and outcomes of patients with fibromuscular dysplasia through chart review.

 

Faculty:  Bradford B. Worrall
Department:  Neurology
Phone:  924-2783
Title:  Brain and Aortic Aneurysm Screening (BAAS) Study
Abstract:  We are currently studying non-atherosclerotic vasculopathies and cerebrovascular disease. We cover a broad range of phenotypes including intracranial aneurysms (IA), cervical artery dissections, fibromuscular dysplasia, and moyamoya as well as related phenotypes of aortic aneurysms (AA) and those related to known genetic connective tissue disorders (vascular Ehlers-Danlos, Marfan’s, Loeyz-Dietz, etc.). The specific project will be tailored to the students interest. Past projects have looked at cost effectiveness of screening for AA in patients with IA, cost effectiveness of screening for IA in patients with AA, and characterization of the clinical population presenting with AA and having intracranial imaging (establishing estimates of coprevalence of IA and AA. We have SoM funding to do reciprocal screening that is underway. This summer we may be able to begin to look at the available data.

 

Faculty:  Margaret Plews-Ogan, MD  (2 students requested)
Department:  Division of General, Geriatric, Palliative and Hospital Medicine
Phone:  924-1685
Title:  Phronesis project
Abstract:  We have two summer projects that can be done independently by 2 students, but we encourage the students to communicate with each other and collaborate when feasible. The Phronesis project is a new UVA medical student curriculum based in the framework of wisdom formation. For the first 2 years, student groups meet with a physician mentor in a weekly seminar focused on professional formation.  Each student is also assigned 2 patients -- an adult patient in the general medicine clinic and a complex care pediatric patient -- whom they follow for all four years.  The students become an essential part of the care team for their patients.  Project #1 will inform the potential redesign of UVA's 3rd year clerkship: conduct a literature review on longitudinal clerkship programs; interview key people in clerkship programs in North America that have developed innovative 3rd year clerkships; potentially visit some of these programs; identify successful elements; synthesize findings and present recommendations for a 3rd year clerkship redesign at UVA. The summer project should result in a publication.

The second project involves qualitatively capturing the experience of the first year Phronesis students. How did this learning opportunity change the way they see themselves as doctors and students? Did it change the way they see their patients? How did their relationships with their patients evolve over time, and what impact did these relationships have on their learning? How do the Phronesis students think the program could be improved? This student researcher will work with the project directors to develop the methodology, but we envision collecting the interview data in a way that reflects the spirit of the Phronesis project. The end result will be a journal publication, as well as a presentation to Phronesis faculty and other UVA SOM audiences.

 

Faculty:  Spencer B. Gay M.D.
Department:  Radiology
Phone:  989-8800
Title:  Case-Based Medical Imaging Educational Website
Abstract:  This project involves manipulating PowerPoint files that from the basis of the images and questions. These files are then prepared for web distribution by converting them using Captivate. The website then calls each file and displays in a question and answer case-based format. The website should prove beneficial for students and residents in Radiology and Medical Imaging. Experience with some computer work is valuable, especially web development or Captivate.

 

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