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Faculty Commons, July 13 - 26, 2017
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College News


Genome at the Health Museum: The NHGRI-Smithsonian exhibition, Genome: Unlocking Life's Code, has arrived in Houston as part of its North American tour. Through interactive displays, specimens, artifacts and replicas, the exhibit explores how genomic science is influencing people's lives, and the impact it is having on science, medicine and nature. See Genome at The Health Museum through Sept. 11. Show your Baylor I.D. at the admissions desk to get the museum’s special partner rate of $5 per ticket. Photo courtesy of Donald E. Hurlbert and James Di Loreto, Smithsonian.


Academic Council: Dr. Oluyinka Olutoye, new chair of the Faculty Senate, introduced new Senate officers Dr. Laila Woc-Colburn, chair-elect, and Dr. LeChauncy Woodard, secretary, to the Council at the July 10 meeting. Dr. Mary Dickinson now holds the position of past chair. Of the 34 Senators elected by faculty in May and June, 50 percent are new to the Senate and 50 percent are returning incumbents, demonstrating increased faculty engagement in the governance body.

  • Provost Alicia Monroe reported on the school's next task for the LCME accreditors: An update on faculty awareness of the Faculty Senate and the Institutional Policy Committee. Faculty will receive a four-question survey in July to gauge their knowledge and satisfaction with the Faculty Senate as an effective venue for faculty participation in College governance and with the Institutional Policy Committee as an effective venue for faculty participation in policy development for the College.
  • Assistant Provost Nancy Moreno presented proposed guidelines for faculty appointments and promotions (FAP) developed by an ad hoc committee of the FAP and endorsed by the Faculty Senate. The committee addressed the following areas: Guidelines within existing non-tenure and tenure tracks for quality and safety, academic leadership, and innovation and business development; explicit inclusion of faculty with degrees other than M.D. or Ph.D.; guidelines for a new patient care mission pathway on the non-tenure track; and new standards for voluntary clinical faculty. The Academic Council will review the presentation and vote on the FAP guidelines at the August meeting.
  • Professionalism Director Ellen Friedman introduced a pilot program to boost faculty satisfaction and engagement. Developed with Karla Heath, assistant vice president for clinical ambulatory operations, the program will invite physicians and scientists to have “Lunch with the Boss” (Dr. Klotman) and network with “PEEPS” (Professionalism and Engagement Elevating Physician Satisfaction) at happy hours. Administrators will have the chance to “Walk in My Shoes,” shadowing Faculty Group Practice members during clinic hours.
  • The Council voted to approve endowed position nominations for the following faculty members: Dr. Yingbin Fu to the Sarah Campbell Blaffer Chair in Ophthalmology, and Dr. Steven J. Ludtke to the Charles C. Bell, Jr. Chair in Structural Biology. The Board will vote on them at its next meeting.

Genetic Counseling Program: The Board of Trustees has approved a new Genetic Counseling Program that will award a Master of Science degree through the School of Allied Health Sciences. The program will include foundational courses as well as clinical rotations throughout the Texas Medical Center and will allow students to sit for the American Board of Genetic Counseling Certification Exam upon completion of the program. The inaugural cohort for the program will consist of eight students. More information is available on the program’s website.

Policy Updates: Eleven new and revised policies recently were published in the College's Policy and Procedures Manual. They address employee relations issues concerning standards of conduct, absenteeism and progressive discipline, compliance topics involving vendor interactions and protected health information, administrative changes to policies on authorship and Graduate Medical Education, and functions of the Office of the Ombudsman. For more information, please see the summary of policy updates. All Baylor College of Medicine policies may be found in the Policy and Procedures Manual.

Faculty Kudos

imageDr. Arthur Beaudet, Henry and Emma Mayer Professor of molecular genetics and pediatrics, will be honored with the 2017 Victor A. McKusick Leadership Award by the American Society of Human Genetics during its annual meeting in October. The award recognizes individuals whose professional achievements have fostered and enriched the development of human genetics and its assimilation into the broader context of science, medicine and health.


imageDr. James H. Bray, associate professor of family and community medicine, was re-elected as a representative to the American Psychological Association Council of Representatives for a three-year term beginning Jan. 1, 2018. The Council of Representatives is the governing body of the American Psychological Association and approves all policies for the Association. Dr. Bray was elected to represent the Society of Addiction Psychology in the APA Council and previously served as president of the APA in 2009.


imageDr. O.H. "Bud" Frazier, professor of surgery, was honored with the 2017 Crystal Heart Lifetime Achievement Award at the New Orleans Conference. The annual cardiology conference recognized Frazier for dedicating his life to the care of the cardiovascular surgical patient and for his innovative contributions to the field. He also is chief of transplant services at Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center and chief of cardiopulmonary transplantation at Texas Heart Institute.


image imageDr. Lisa Kahalley, assistant professor of pediatrics - psychology, and Dr. Elisabeth Wilde, associate professor and director of research for physical medicine and rehabilitation, were awarded a $2.1 million RO1 grant from the National Cancer Institute to study white matter toxicity and neurocognitive outcomes in pediatric brain tumor patients treated with proton beam radiation.


imageDr. Michael Y. Lee has been named executive vice chair of physical medicine and rehabilitation. In that role he will have broad leadership responsibility for the operations of the department. Lee was founding chair of PM&R at UNC Chapel Hill prior to joining the Baylor faculty this month. Dr. John Harrell, associate professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation, has been named vice chair of education in the department, where he will serve a critical role for UME and GME programs


image imageThe Department of Surgery celebrated faculty members as well as residents and fellows at its Graduation and Awards Ceremony last month. Dr. Scott LeMaire, professor of cardiothoracic surgery, received the Michael E. DeBakey Distinguished Service Award and Dr. Ken Mattox, Distinguished Service Professor, was honored with the George P. Noon Award for Professionalism by Dr. Todd Rosengart, chair of surgery. Dr. Avo Artinyan, associate professor, and Dr. Ramyar Gilani, assistant professor, received Gene A. Guinn Faculty Teaching Awards. Dr. Stephanie Gordy, assistant professor, accepted the medical student award for best teaching faculty, while assistant professors Dr. George Van Buren II, Dr. Jose Gregorio Casar, Dr. Masahiro Ono and Dr. Kim de la Cruz, and Dr. Panos Kougias, associate professor, received resident awards for surgery faculty.


imageDr. Jordan Orange, professor of pediatrics – rheumatology, received a three-year, $404,000 grant from the Arthritis Foundation for his project targeting cellular stress points and immune priming to relieve symptoms associated with COPA Syndrome, an autoimmune disease characterized by severe lung disease and arthritis.


imageDr. Massimo Pietropaolo, McNair Scholar and professor of medicine – endocrinology, received a five-year, $3.4 million R01 grant from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases for his study on enhancement of biomarkers for type 1 diabetes.

College Events

Retirement Reception: You are invited to attend a reception honoring Dr. Gayle Slaughter, senior associate dean for graduate education and diversity, on her retirement after 38 years of service to the College, from 3 to 5 p.m. Friday, July 21, in the Alkek/DeBakey Lobby, main Baylor.

Faculty Opportunities

Curriculum Committee: Nominations are open for an at-large faculty member position on the curriculum committee. Candidates should be current Baylor faculty members from any discipline and have a strong interest in promoting and strengthening the medical student curriculum. The committee meets the first and third Mondays of every month from 3:30 to 5 p.m. Nominations including a personal statement, CV and brief letter of support from the department chair are due to Jamie Smith no later than close of business July 28. For more information, see the job description or contact committee chair Dr. Frank Gannon at (713) 798-4340.

Scholarship Abstracts Sought: The BCM Annual Showcase of Educational Scholarship will be held Sept. 29, and abstracts are being accepted until Aug. 1. The Showcase is the College's premier venue for highlighting scholarship within medical education using a peer-reviewed format, offering the opportunity for conversation and collaboration with colleagues. Find more information online.

Physician-Scientist Grant: The Burroughs Welcome Fund has launched a $25 million initiative to help institutions address the shortage of physician-scientists and is accepting planning grant proposals from medical schools to create programs that increase opportunities for the physician interested in a research career. Proposals are due by Sept. 28. The planning grant will allow 25 institutions to develop full proposals for the program award, which will go to up to 10 institutions for five-year funding of $2.5 million to create the new initiatives. Materials are now available online.

Faculty Resources

Faculty Commons is heading to the mountains for a summer break. Look for a new issue of your favorite BCM faculty e-newsletter on Thursday, July 27.

For a Good Cause

Blood Drive: The Baylor St. Luke's blood drive held here in June was a success with 16 whole blood donors. When those blood units are separated into red cells, platelets and plasma, it means that 48 patient lives were extended or saved by these generous donors. Mark your calendars for the next blood drive on Aug. 15 at main Baylor.

Attention Clinicians: See Clinical Calendar

Clinical Notice

Required Training for New Providers: The New Provider Education policy, 31.3.04, requires all new BCM providers to attend a mandatory Billing Compliance Education session within 45 days of notification from the Billing Compliance Department. Providers are notified via their BCM e-mail within two weeks of their hire date. New provider education classes are available each month at various days and times. The schedule for classes and registration information may be found here. Failure to complete new provider education within the time period outlined in the policy can result in suspension of billing until the required education is completed. The Institutional Policy Committee and Executive Compliance Committee have endorsed this policy and approval by the Board of Trustees is pending.

Clinical Opportunities

Assistant Program Director, Genetic Counseling: The assistant program director works with the program director to administer the Master of Science degree program in Genetic Counseling. An M.S. degree or higher in genetic counseling or a field related to administrative and teaching responsibilities of the position is required and the applicant must be knowledgeable in human genetics. Responsibilities include supporting the program director to complete the Accreditation Council for Genetic Counseling accreditation processes and ongoing institutional reviews, and to effect other aspects of program functions as assigned to ensure excellence and efficacy of the program's organization, administration, budget proposals and management, planning, assessment, development and implementation and continuous review. The assistant program director will work with administration and teaching faculty across the College including the Department of Molecular and Human Genetics. A complete job description is available on the Faculty Opportunities intranet page. To apply, please email a statement of interest (one page maximum) and your BCM-formatted CV to program director Dan Riconda. Please contact him for more information.

Medical Director, Genetic Counseling: The program medical director serves as a critical member of the faculty team, participating in the organization, administration, planning, and evaluation of the 21-month Master of Science degree program in Genetic Counseling. The medical director is a Baylor College of Medicine faculty member with a background in clinical genetics and the training of genetics professionals who holds a medical degree and is certified in clinical genetics by the American Board of Medical Genetics or Canadian College of Medical Geneticists and Genomics. Responsibilities include providing guidance and oversight to ensure that the medical components of the didactic and clinical curricula support development of the required competencies. A complete job description is available on the Faculty Opportunities intranet page. To apply, please email a statement of interest (one page maximum) and your BCM-formatted CV to program director Dan Riconda. Please contact him for more information.

H&P Preceptor for MS2: Clinical faculty members are invited to participate as preceptors for the Undergraduate Medical Education Clinical PPS3 Course (Patient, Physician and Society). This course helps prepare second-year medical students to function effectively in a clinical setting by improving their patient history and physical (H&P) exam skills, as well as their communication skills. In this course students practice these skills with hospitalized patients. Ten preceptor sessions (five per group) are scheduled from Aug. 2 through Nov. 8 and the time involved to precept two groups of students is approximately 20-30 hours. Read the Faculty Opportunities listing for more details. Please let course coordinator Colleen McCampbell know of your interest in precepting before July 31.

Attention Researchers: See Research Calendar

Research Event

Lab Technology: Representatives will demonstrate the Labstamp technology for permanent, automated mouse I.D. at 10 a.m. Wednesday, July 19, in Room N302, main Baylor. New technologies for pup identification and small RFID chips for animal I.D. also will be presented.

Research Opportunities

Mentor Training: Faculty research mentors are invited to attend a four-hour workshop focused on skill-building activities in the mentoring competencies of aligning expectations, maintaining effective communications, fostering independence and resilience and promoting professional development. The workshop curriculum is based on materials generated by the NIH-funded National Research Mentoring Network but will be tailored to research mentors at the College. Four workshop dates are offered; to attend, please select your preferred date in this Doodle Poll by Aug. 1. For more information, contact Anna Marie Sokac, NRMN master facilitator of mentor training.

Research Resources

DNA Sequencing Price Change: The DNA Sequencing Core has a new pricing policy of $8 per reaction. The lab performs Sanger DNA sequencing on a 3130XL Genetic Analyzer from Applied Biosystems and is located in R630, with a sample drop off cabinet at R651, main Baylor. For information on sample submission, see the lab website or email Hsiao-Ju Lee.

Genetically Engineered Mouse Core: This Advanced Technology Core Lab provides essential mouse services to Baylor investigators and their collaborators. GEM Core microinjects mouse ES cells, transgene DNA constructs, and CRISPR sgRNA/Cas9/donor DNA into mouse embryos to generate genetically engineered founder mice. GEM Core also performs cryopreservation of mouse embryos and sperm for long-term storage of mouse lines; mouse line rederivation to remove pathogen contamination, re-establish mouse colony, or help importation of mouse lines into the Baylor facilities; in vitro fertilization; and mouse colony expansion. For more information about any of the cores visit the ATC website or download the catalog.

From the Labs: Read how Dr. Derek O’Neil, a postdoctoral fellow in Dr. Kjersti Aagaard’s lab, has found clues that it’s all connected: Circadian clock, microbiome and response to diet. You can receive weekly articles on research at Baylor as they are posted in our newsletter by going to From the Labs and entering your email address in the box on the right. Or get a digest at the end of the month with links to the articles posted that month by emailing science writer Ana Rodríguez with “Subscribe me to From the Labs” in the subject line.

Funding Opportunities: See the Office of Research's list of privately funded awards currently accepting applications for July.

Questions or Comments?

Faculty Senate: Please contact your Senator for faculty-related questions or suggestions.

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