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Faculty Commons, Sept. 28 - Oct. 4, 2017
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College News


In Memoriam: Baylor College of Medicine will hold a public memorial service for Dr. William T. Butler, chancellor emeritus, at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 3, in Cullen Auditorium, with a reception following in Rayzor Lounge. Butler, who established the immunology program when he joined the faculty in 1966, served as the second president of the College from 1979 to 1996, leading a period of substantial growth, especially for the research mission. He served a second term as president from 2008 to 2010, providing thoughtful and stable leadership during a time of transition at the College. Butler also chronicled the history of the College and is pictured with the official Texas Historical Commission designation of the Roy and Lillie Cullen Building, the first building in the Texas Medical Center. Read more about his life and legacy and share your memories online.


Memorial Service Traffic Plan: Please note that the circular drive in front of main Baylor will close at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 3. Those who are picked up in the circular drive at the end of the day are advised to arrange pick up at the Jewish Institute for Medical Research (JIMR) Building. Deliveries in front of the Cullen Building will not be allowed starting at 4:30 p.m. The Baylor shuttle will continue regular service, but will pick up and drop off passengers in front of the JIMR Building.

Cybersecurity: The Information Technology office has prepared step-by-step instructions and videos to assist you in installing the MDM and MFA apps on your devices to protect Baylor data. Get hands-on help at a support session offered at various locations through October. See the website for details. The deadline to install the apps is Oct. 23.

Flu Shots: Baylor experts are predicting a severe flu season. Protect yourself and the community by getting your flu vaccine by Nov. 30, as required by Baylor policy. The Occupational Health Program continues to offer flu shots across campus. Check the OHP schedule for times and places. Don’t forget to complete the online form to verify you have gotten your shot.

Faculty Kudos

imageDr. Sandra Haudek, assistant professor of medicine – cardiovascular sciences and director of peer coaching for educators, is featured in this week’s Meet Your Senator article on the faculty intranet portal. She represents the interests of the faculty at large on the Faculty Senate.


imageThe Center for Cell and Gene Therapy at Baylor College of Medicine, Houston Methodist Hospital and Texas Children’s Hospital has received an $11.5 million, five-year renewal grant from the National Cancer Institute to devise and test novel forms of first-in-human cellular immunotherapy mediated by T-cells and natural killer T-cells to treat non-Hodgkin lymphoma or Hodgkin lymphoma. Dr. Helen Heslop, director of the Center for Cell and Gene Therapy and professor and Dan L Duncan Chair, serves as co-principal investigator along with Dr. Malcolm Brenner, the center’s founding director and professor and Fayez Sarofim Chair. Both also are members of the Cancer Cell and Gene Therapy research program in the NCI-designated Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center at Baylor.


imageDr. Peter J. Hotez, dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine and professor of pediatrics and molecular virology and microbiology, has been honored with the Raymond and Beverly Sackler Award for Sustained National Leadership for his far-reaching work in the areas of neglected tropical disease research and vaccine development. He will accept the award at the Research!America Advocacy Awards Dinner March 14, 2018, in Washington, D.C.


imageDr. Mothaffar Rimawi and Dr. Rachel Schiff, associate professors in the Lester and Sue Smith Breast Center, have received a $4 million grant from the Department of Defense to develop a molecular classifier and test it in a clinical trial to determine which patients with HER2-positive breast cancer can safely omit chemotherapy. Rimawi is medical director of the center, part of the NCI-designated Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center.


imageDr. Susan Rosenberg, professor and Ben F. Love Chair in Cancer Research, was awarded one of 10 inaugural grants from the Translational Research Institute, headquartered at the College, for game-changing research in astronaut health. Her project focuses on the discovery of human radiation-protection genes and pathways.


imageDr. Meng Wang, associate professor in the Department of Molecular and Human Genetics and the Huffington Center on Aging and a faculty senator, will receive the 2017 Early Career Life Scientist Award from the American Society for Cell Biology in December. The award honors an outstanding scientist who has been an independent investigator for seven or fewer years.

College Events

Doc Talk: Dr. Alireza Nazeri, assistant professor of medicine - cardiology, discusses "Atrial Fibrillation: The Most Common Arrhythmia" at noon today, Sept. 28, in Conference Room B, Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center McNair Campus. DocTalk is an informal series of lunchtime talks where Baylor experts offer information on a variety of health topics. Eligible attendees will receive BCM BeWell Vitality points.

Harvey T-Shirts: Show your support for Baylor families affected by Hurricane Harvey by wearing your Harvey Relief Fund T-shirt this Friday, Sept. 29. Don’t have a shirt yet? Buy one on Friday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the E hallway by the cafeteria at main Baylor. Shirts are $25; pay on site or pre-order and pay online. Proceeds benefit the Harvey Relief Fund for students, trainees, faculty and staff who have suffered loss due to the storm.

Academy Showcase: The annual Academy of Distinguished Educators Showcase of faculty scholarship, featuring 47 abstracts, takes place from noon to 3 p.m. Friday, Sept. 29, in Rayzor Lounge, main Baylor.

Diversity & Inclusion Week: You are invited to attend special events celebrating the College's culture:

  • Gruber Genetics Prize & Lecture: Dr. Steve Elledge, a Gregor Mendel Professor of Genetics at Harvard Medical School, will present the Gruber Lecture on “Microgenetics: What We Can Learn from Bits of Genes” from noon to 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 3, in Cullen Auditorium, main Baylor.
  • Compassionate Conversation: Two sessions led by Dr. Janice Sabin, research associate professor at the University of Washington School of Medicine, will focus on the book Blindspot: Hidden Biases of Good People. Both sessions are set for Wednesday, Oct. 4, at main Baylor; the noon - 1:30 p.m. session is in M100 and the 5:15 - 6:45 p.m. session is in M321.
  • Diversity & Inclusion Lecture: Dr. Chester Brown, professor and St. Jude Chair of Excellence in Genetics at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, will speak on “Leading to Promote Inclusion in a Diverse Work and Training Environment,” noon – 1:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 5, in Cullen Auditorium, main Baylor.

Faculty Opportunity

Alumni Award Nominations: Friday, Sept. 29, is the final day to nominate prominent BCM alumni and faculty members for 2018 Alumni Awards. Categories for every school and every training program at the College include: Distinguished Alumnus Award, Young Alumnus Award, Distinguished Faculty Award, Distinguished Service Award, Humanitarian Award and Lifetime Achievement Award. See the alumni website for nomination forms and past recipients. Contact the alumni office for more information.

Faculty Resources

Free Photo Session: Have your portrait taken for your bcm.edu bio when the Office of Communications hosts a free session from 1 to 3 p.m. today, Sept. 28, in the First Floor Lobby, Children’s Nutrition Research Center.

Early & Mid-Career Advancement: Sponsored by the Office of the Provost, the Office of Institutional Diversity, Inclusion and Equity and the Office of Faculty Development, the Career Advancement Series offers professional development opportunities in three categories for assistant professors, associate professors and individuals seeking to participate in an assistant professor women’s faculty group. More information and application instructions are available on the website. Deadline for applications is Oct. 15.

Advocacy Guidelines: The College supports the freedom of expression of its faculty, staff, students, residents and fellows. As a tax-exempt non-profit corporation, the College is required to comply with federal regulations regarding its involvement in legislative and political activities. If we fail to comply with these guidelines, the College is at risk for loss of its status as a federally tax-exempt organization. The College has created Advocacy Guidelines to provide members of the Baylor community with information on how you may participate in legislative debate and discussion and/or become involved in political campaigns without potentially impacting the College’s federal tax-exempt status. General Counsel Bob Corrigan encourages you to review these guidelines and to contact him if you have any questions. Baylor is a member of the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC). The AAMC has an advocacy section on its website where you may create an account and contact your elected officials at the federal level. This resource is a great way to express your opinion within the Baylor guidelines.

For a Good Cause

Diversity & Inclusion Donation Drive: Give infant items and school supplies to benefit Houston Diaper Bank, Casa De Esperanza and Baylor-affiliated elementary and middle schools through Friday, Oct. 6, at collection bins around campus. See the list of items needed and bin locations online.

BCM Wellness 5K: The sixth annual race/walk benefiting student wellness initiatives is Oct. 21 in the Texas Medical Center. This is a timed event, and runners can join as individuals or teams. There are lots of fun race-day activities and child care. T-shirts are included with adult registration and the first 50 kids signed up for the 1K event get a free shirt. Register online. Participants also can join the BCM Wellness fundraising team by creating a Reason2Race donation page and sharing it with friends and family for their support.

First-time dads and their babies are needed for a new study on the experience of fathering, to learn how a dad's brain responds to seeing his baby's smile. Enroll now and participate with your baby during the first year of life. Fathers will be compensated $150 for travel and parking and will receive a free CD video of their brain in action! This study is funded by the National Institutes of Health. To enroll or for more information, contact: Purva Rajhans at 713-798-0389.

Attention Clinicians: See Clinical Calendar

Clinical Conferences

Transition Medicine: Registration is open for the 18th annual Chronic Illness and Disability Conference: Transition from Pediatric to Adult-based Care, set for Thursday and Friday, Oct. 5 - 6, in Onstead Auditorium, 6767 Bertner Ave. The conference is open to healthcare providers and parents and caregivers; CME credits available. Register online by Sunday, Oct. 1.

Metastatic Breast Cancer: Dr. Charles Perou, the May Goldman Shaw Distinguished Professor of Molecular Oncology at UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, will give the keynote talk at this annual medical conference that provides an update on the basic science, clinical advances and survivorship issues that relate to metastatic breast cancer. The conference is set for Oct. 12 -13 in Onstead Auditorium, 6767 Bertner Ave. Registration information is online.

Anatomic Pathology: Registration is open for the All-City Anatomic Pathology Symposium Oct. 19-21, sponsored by Baylor's Department of Pathology & Immunology. Target audience includes medical, graduate and allied health students, residents and fellows and other healthcare professionals such as histotechnologists. More than 20 speakers from BCM and other institutions will present at the symposium. Registration is free for BCM students and staff. This event may offer up to 20 ASCP CME credits for non-physicians.

Suicide Prevention: Dr. John Oldham, professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and the Barbara and Corbin Robertson Jr. Endowed Chair for Personality Disorders, is the activity director for this Advances in Clinical Psychiatry 2017 CME activity scheduled for Oct. 20 in Conference Rooms A & B, Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center McNair Campus. Register online by Oct. 15.

Women's Health & Fetal Medicine: Contemporary updates, controversies and collaborations in perinatal medicine, maternal-fetal surgical intervention, minimally invasive surgery, infectious diseases, prenatal genetics, reproductive psychiatry and medical ethics are among the topics for this conference set for Nov. 10 - 11 at the Hyatt Regency Houston Galleria. Register online by Nov. 5.

Clinical Resources

United Healthcare will adopt Medicare’s payment policy for consultation services beginning Sunday, Oct. 1. The specifics on what this means can be found on the website. If you have any questions, please contact BillingCompliance@bcm.edu or PBS at 713-798-2655.

Health Equity: The Center of Excellence in Health Equity, Training and Research seeks clinical fellows and junior faculty from underrepresented minority backgrounds to receive didactic, experiential and research instruction, personalized mentoring and compensation as COE Scholars during this academic year. Applicants should demonstrate commitment to promoting social justice and health equities and leadership in addressing educational, societal and healthcare needs of racial and ethnic minorities in the United States. Additional information and the application requirements are on the center’s website. The deadline to apply is Oct. 15.

HCMS Survey: Harris County Medical Society is conducting an independent survey to measure physician satisfaction with area hospitals. Your confidential responses will be aggregated into summaries and used to develop healthcare policy for improving the quality of care at hospitals in the Greater Houston area.

Attention Researchers: See Research Calendar

Research Conference

Data Analytics Workshop: Google Senior Fellow Jeff Dean will speak during the Technology Collaboration Center’s day of presentations on research data analysis, advanced analytics techniques and visualizations, machine and deep learning, generating hypotheses, tools for data-driven decision making, implementations, vendors and more, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 3, at the BioScience Research Collaborative. Register online to attend.

Call for Submissions

Reproductive Health Research: The Center for Reproductive Medicine is hosting an abstract and poster competition during the 2017 Reproductive Health Research Day, Nov. 7. Winners selected from the abstract submissions will give a talk during the meeting and receive a prize. The submission deadline is 5 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 5. Abstracts can be sent to Jyoti Patel. For more information, view the abstract submission guidelines.

CVRI Pilot Awards: Baylor's Cardiovascular Research Institute is accepting pilot award submissions for cardiovascular research that will promote collaboration between investigators and are likely to lead to externally funded grants in the foreseeable future. Proposal deadline is Wednesday, Oct. 4; find full guidelines online.

Research Resources

Research Mentor Training: Faculty research mentors are invited to attend a four-hour workshop focused on skill-building activities in four mentoring competencies: 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 (NRMN) but will be tailored to research mentors at the College. The workshop is set for 1 - 5 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 12. If you would like to attend, please contact Dr. Anna Marie Sokac, an NRMN master facilitator.

Protein and Monoclonal Antibody Production Core: This Advanced Technology Core lab provides custom services for construction of monoclonal antibody producing B-cell hybridomas and recombinant baculoviruses for expression of proteins in insect cells. Key core equipment includes 27°C BOD incubators and Applikon 5 liter oxygenated bioreactors for large scale growth of Sf9 insect cells, hollow-fiber bioreactors (FiberCell Systems) for large scale production of hybridomas, and MAbs in vitro and FPLC systems for MAb purification. For more information about any of the cores visit the ATC website.

From the Labs: Read how studying the “body builder effect” led Dr. Andrea Ballabio, professor of molecular and human genetics, to identify a novel pathway in cellular growth in this week’s issue. 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 Institutional Diversity, Inclusion and Equity’s list of funding opportunities for research on healthcare disparities and social determinants of health. The Office of Research offers a list of privately funded awards currently accepting applications for October.

Questions or Comments?

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

Institutional Policy Committee: Contact the Policy Committee to learn more about College policies and procedures.

Items for Faculty Commons: To submit items for this weekly email update for Baylor College of Medicine faculty, please contact us.

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