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News for BCM Faculty, Nov. 11, 2021
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College News

Image of the Month

Image of the Month: Visualization of an easier, more effective way to study gene function in the fruit fly. Image courtesy of the study's authors, "Multiplexed drug-based selection and counterselection genetic manipulations in Drosophilia," Cell Reports, September 2021.

Baylor College of Medicine is now ranked first in Texas for academic institutions funded by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. Across the U.S., Baylor ranks 11th of all NIEHS-funded institutions of higher learning. Baylor's joint partners in the Gulf Coast Center for Precision Environmental Health, University of Texas Medical Branch-Galveston and UTHealth, rank seventh nationally in total NIEHS-funding, according to the National Institutes of Health Reporter.

Baylor College of Medicine has been designated as a National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) Rare Disease Center of Excellence, joining a highly selective group of 31 medical centers. The innovative network seeks to expand access and advance care and research for rare-disease patients in the U.S. Offering a transformative approach to care, the program will help fuel an era of faster diagnoses, new treatment guidelines, best practices and knowledge sharing.

Faculty performance assessment: The faculty self-review deadline is extended to Nov. 15. If you are a full-time or part-time faculty member, your form is available in your Performance Management System inbox. The process covers fiscal year 2020-21 (July 1, 2020 - June 30, 2021) and is an opportunity for you to reflect on the past year and what you want to do to move your career along. For questions, email facultyevaluation@bcm.edu. See training modules. If you have forgotten your Baylor ECA (username), password or have other technical issues, please call Baylor IT at (713) 798-8737.

Faculty Kudos

Dr. Hsiao-Tuan ChaoDr. Hsiao-Tuan Chao, assistant professor in the Department of Pediatrics-Neurology, Molecular and Human Genetics and Neuroscience, will speak at noon on Nov. 19 on a virtual panel about her part in "STAT Wunderkinds: 5 Years of Progress." The STAT Wunderkinds program is for early career researchers in health and medicine. Chao is a McNair scholar for the McNair Medical Institute at the Robert and Janice McNair Foundation and investigator in the Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute at Texas Children's Hospital.

Dr. William GranberryDr. William Granberry, associate professor in the Department of Orthopedics and section chief of orthopedic surgery at Baylor St. Luke's Medical Center, will serve as interim chair of the Department of Orthopedic Surgery. The role will go into effect Dec. 1. He has held several leadership positions at Baylor St. Luke's, including chief of staff from 2016-2020. He is involved in the board of directors of Catholic Healthcare Professionals of Houston, the board of directors of Paradisus Dei and the board of visitors of the Cameron School of Business at the University of St. Thomas. Dr. Todd Rosengart, chair of DeBakey Department of Surgery, will chair the search committee for the chair of orthopedic surgery.

Dr.  Flor MunozCOVID-19 vaccine clinical trial results: This week, the results of the clinical trial evaluating Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine in children 5-11 were published in the New England Journal of Medicine. Dr. Flor Munoz, associate professor of pediatric infectious diseases, serves as principal investigator of the Baylor/Texas Children's Hospital trial site and is a co-author of the paper. The study found that a two-dose vaccine administered 21 days apart was 90.7 percent effective. Learn more about the study results. The FDA recently granted emergency use authorization for the Pfizer vaccine in children 5-11.

Faculty Opportunities

Mental health: "Self-Care: Building Healthy Habits for Resilience Through Breathing and Mindfulness Techniques" will be hosted from noon to 1:15 p.m. on Nov. 15. The free virtual presentation will be hosted by Department of Family and Community Medicine. Register online. For more information, email Ashley Silver.

Telenovela Scriptwriting Hackathon: The University of Houston School of Communication is hosting a Telenovela Scriptwriting Hackathon from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Nov. 13. Participants will write three telenovela (soap opera) scripts for a chance to win up to $5,000. No prior experience is required, but experience in scriptwriting or creative writing, as well as familiarity with Latinx customs and communities, are a plus. Participants must be at least 18. For more information, email Dr. Jennifer Vardeman.

J. David Holcomb Student Research Day for the School of Health Professions will be Dec. 1. The virtual program will feature recorded poster presentations from students in all four programs, as well as a live session with presenter panels. Judges will have access to poster presentations starting Nov. 29 and can take up to two days to view and judge. The top three student presenters from the Physician Assistant and Orthotics and Prosthetics program win prize money and recognition at the school's Awards Day. To sign up to serve as a poster judge, email Jeannette Adams.

Off Script: Stories on homebound: Join the virtual storytelling event from 6 to 7 p.m. on Nov. 18 to hear stories from the Texas Medical Center community on "homebound" – a time when "home" was redecorated, overpopulated, underappreciated or abandoned altogether. Sponsored by the Center for Medical Ethics and Health Policy's Narrative Medicine Program. Register online.

Funding available: The Cancer Research Institute is requesting letters of intent for its Technology Impact Award to fund work addressing the gap between technology development and clinical application of cancer immunotherapies. The program is designed to encourage collaboration between technology developers and clinical cancer immunologists to advance technologies that can speed up developing immunotherapies that are effective for all cancer patients. Applications must hold a faculty appointment as a tenure-track assistant professor or higher at the time of award activation. Deadline is Nov. 15. Learn more.

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.

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