The Scoop: A Publication of the University of Texas Medical School at Houston

The Houston Geriatric Education Center offers new courses

Houston Geriatric Education Center logo

The Houston Geriatric Education Center is offering two 40-hour course options on geriatric best practices. Principles of Geriatric Care: A Certificate Program for Health Care Professionals will help increase participant knowledge and skills in geriatrics/gerontology, with heavy emphasis on pathophysiology and complex patient management.

The course will be held twice a month (Tuesday evenings) for 2 to 2.5 hours, September 2011 through June 2012. The recommended audience for this course is health care faculty or practitioners. Physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, and pharmacists may find this course especially applicable to their practices.

Participants may also choose to attend individual topics, if they cannot commit to the entire 40-hour course certificate program.

Please visit the website for more information.

Post Comment

Albert and Ethel Herzstein Charitable Foundation awards geriatric studies grants

Albert and Ethel Herzstein Charitable Foundation logo

Through a generous gift from the Albert and Ethel Herzstein Charitable Foundation, the UTHealth Consortium on Aging has awarded four pilot grants to junior faculty this year.

The goals of the Albert and Ethel Herzstein Charitable Foundation Geriatric Studies for Junior Faculty program are to integrate geriatrics studies across all the schools of the UTHealth Science Center, increase collaboration and cooperation between school faculties, instill geriatrics studies into all student curriculum, and foster future geriatrics practitioners.

Grants Awarded in 2011
Project Name The South Asian Aging Experience
Award $13,500
Principal Investigator Dr. Nasiya Ahmed, assistant professor, Division of Geriatric and Palliative Medicine
Collaborators Dr. Joan Engebretson, School of Nursing
Dr. Myriam Fornage, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
Dr. Akhtar Alam, Medical School
Dr. Nahid Rianon, Medical School
Project Name Treatment Efficacy of Multi-Component Fall Prevention Programs for Community Dwelling Older Adults
Award $4,000
Principal Investigator Dr. Pei-Fen Chang, assistant professor, School of Occupational Therapy, Texas Woman's University
Collaborators Dr. Gayle Hersch, Texas Woman’s University
Carolyn Kelley, PT, DSc, NCS, Texas Woman’s University
Project Name Novel assessment of admission sarcopenia and nutritional adequacy in the injured elderly requiring ICU admission
Award $11,000
Principal Investigator Dr. Laura Moore, assistant professor, Department of Surgery
Collaborators Dr. Rosemary Kozar, Medical School
Dr. Charles Wade, Medical School
Dr. Carmel Dyer, Medical School
Dr. Gregory Press, Medical School
Dr. Marina Mourtzakis, Waterloo University
Ruth Van Houten, RD, Memorial Hermann Hospital
Dr. Daren Heyland, University of Kingston
Project Name Determining prevalence of serum vitamin D testing and vitamin D deficiency in patients 65 years or older undergoing treatment for osteoporosis, osteopenia, vertebral fracture or hip fracture in the UTHealth outpatient Family Medicine and Geriatrics clinics between January 2009 and December 2010
Award $11,950
Principal Investigator Dr. Nahid Rianon, assistant professor, Department of Family and Community Medicine
Collaborators Dr. Beatrice Selwyn, School of Public Health
Dr. Kathleen Murphy, School of Nursing

Post Comment

Burroughs Wellcome Fund seeks nominations for career awards

Burroughs Wellcome Fund logo

The Burroughs Wellcome Fund has announced a call for nominations to its Career Awards for Medical Scientists program. The awards “foster the development and productivity of physician-scientists who are early in their careers and help them make the critical transition to becoming independent investigators.”

The ideal candidate will be two years away from becoming an independent investigator, have at least two years or more of postdoctoral research experience, and have a significant publication record. A select list of eligibility criteria include:

  • Candidates must hold an M.D., D.D.S., D.V.M., or equivalent clinical degree.
  • Proposals must be in the area of basic biomedical, disease-oriented, or translational research. Proposals in health services research or involving large-scale clinical trials are ineligible.
  • Candidates must be a clinical fellow, resident, or a postdoctoral researcher and have at least two years of postdoctoral research experience at the time of application.
  • Candidates with a clinical degree not awarded in the United States or Canada must be fully licensed to practice in the United States or Canada or have completed a residency in the United States or Canada.
  • Candidates must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States or Canada at the time of application.
  • Candidates with tenure-track appointments as an instructor or assistant professor at the time of application are not eligible.
  • Candidates that have faculty appointments with institutional start-up funds or hold an R01 grant from the National Institutes of Health are not eligible.

UTHealth is limited to five nominations under the terms of this notice. As such, Dr. George Stancel is requesting that eligible investigators submit a letter of interest to no later than Aug. 1.

For more information, please visit the website.

Post Comment

Student applications being accepted
for border rotation

STEER logo

The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UTHSCSA)—the UT medical school that serves the South Texas/Border Region—offers unique field experiences at the U.S.-Mexico border for medical students enrolled at the UTSOM and visiting students enrolled in U.S. MD/MPH, medical, public health, and other health professions degree programs. This four-week elective is presented by the South Texas Environmental Education and Research (STEER) program, which has been based in Laredo since 1996 and Harlingen since 2004.

Tuition is free for students in U.S.-accredited schools of medicine and public health. Housing is provided for $600 a month. Most students’ schools give credit for STEER, and some programs offer global health credit for STEER elective. Some students have chosen STEER to fulfill their public health practicum. Presenters are bilingual, and Spanish is not necessary.

At present, the STEER students do not cross into Mexico. Nevertheless, the Border provides a unique bicultural (90% Hispanic), bilingual learning environment, with a focus on the concerns of our nation’s border with Mexico—poverty, water and air pollution, immigration, sanitation, imports, the border “fence” and a medically underserved population threatened by infectious diseases such as dengue, tuberculosis, rabies, as well as high rates of obesity and diabetes.

STEER offers training in two locations along the U.S.-Mexico Border: Laredo and Harlingen.

For more information, please visit the website or contact via email.

Post Comment

Research on display

Pier-Anne Lachance presents her work to Dr. Zhiqiang An during the annual IMM Trainees' Research Retreat July 11.

Pier-Anne Lachance presents her work to Dr. Zhiqiang An during the first IMM Trainees' Research Retreat July 11.

— Dwight C. Andrews, Office of Communications, Medical School





Read and post comments on our articles.


Receive Scoop and other Medical School publications.

Events to know

July 20

Family & Community Medicine Grand Rounds: Dr. Thomas Smith, assistant professor of surgery, presents, “Urologic Emergencies.”
1–2 p.m., MSB 2.135.

July 26

New Postdoc Orientation: Information regarding Office of Postdoctoral Affairs, Postdoc Certificate Training Program, Postdoc Association, Travel Awards, Networking Opportunities.
9:30–10:30 a.m., MSB B.610.

Research Coordinator Forum: Mary Jane Hess, senior research nurse, Department of Neurology, presents, “Coordinating the Financial Aspects of NIH Trials.”
11:30 a.m.–1 p.m., MSB 2.135.
Lunch will be available for the first 50 attendees.


A 60-minute documentary on bipolar disorder called Madly Gifted, co-created by third-year psychiatry resident Dr. Nubia Lluberes, was screened in Hawaii at the American Psychiatric Association annual meeting.

Scoop is a weekly electronic newsletter providing timely information to the Medical School.

Submit event items or news tips for Scoop by noon on Thursday preceding the week of publication in which you would like your event or news to appear (seven days in advance).

To submit content for Scoop, send an email to

To find out more information about advertising on Scoop, please read this PDF.

Giuseppe N. Colasurdo, M.D.

Darla Brown
Director of Communications

Carlos Gonzalez
Web Developer II