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|Your body on technology|
|The night of the triple transp...|
|A test for gene doping|
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|Life in the fast lane|
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|Table of Contents|
Make room for Fido
Meet the moneymakers
Back to Africa
Six months in Sierra Leone
Small gift, big reward
A blood bank for animals
College of Nursing partners with VA to tackle nursing shortage
Your body on technology
The night of the triple transplant
A test for gene doping
Curbing violence among youth
Life in the fast lane
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A.. a aa e R s r ch
DENTITRY3MEDCINC 3 P C HEAL AND 3 EALH PS V NARY M
On the Cover
Once upon a time, a patient who lost a limb had two
choices: peg leg or hook. Now, some patients receive
robotic arms and hydraulic legs. Still, science can't
replicate the human body, in terms of performance.
No computer can function as well as a human brain.
No machine can work as well as a real heart. But
science and technology are edging closer in some
cases, UF experts say. Across several disciplines at
UF, researchers are working on finding better ways to
fix your body when it breaks.
Table of Contents
0 Administration: Meet the moneymakers
* Extraordinary Person: Back to Africa
0 Patient Care: Six months in Sierra Leone
* Patient Care: A blood bank for animals
0 Cover Story: Your body on technology
Q Patient Care: The night of the triple transplant
Q Research: A test for gene doping
Q Jacksonville: Curbing violence among youth
9 Grants: Center studies aging
0 Profile: Life in the fast lane
SIn Memoriam: Remembering a legend
More room for Fido
UF receives approval for small animal hospital expansion
By Sarah Carey
U F College of Veterinary Medicine officials
are moving forward with plans to build a
new Veterinary Education and Clinical
Research Center, a $58 million facility that will
include a major expansion of UF's small animal
Officials anticipate hiring an architect for the
90,000-square-foot facility by fall, with
groundbreaking likely to occur in September 2008.
At the end of their regular session in May, state
legislators approved capital outlay dollars and state
matching funds to supplement what the college
raised in private donations, giving the project the
"A new small animal hospital has been a dream
of the college for many years, and much work went
into the campaign to obtain private support, as
well as to gain high priority for this project within
the university," said Glen Hoffsis, D.V.M., the
The original hospital opened in 1978 and has
not undergone major renovation in 25 years.
"The case for the need for the hospital was
compelling, and this resulted in more than $4
million in private gifts," Hoffsis said.
The new hospital will likely be a three-story
building located immediately north of the existing
small animal hospital, located at 2015 S.W. 16th
Ave. The building will triple the existing hospital
square footage and will occupy nearly all of the
present small animal patient parking area, officials
said. Since the new facility is adjacent to the
existing hospital, there will be seamless operations
in all hospital functions.
Hospital client access and patient examination
rooms all will be housed on the first floor. Separate
waiting areas will be designed for dogs and cats.
Within close access to these areas will be an
intensive care unit and separate spaces for satellite
digital radiography and ultrasonography, and for
the hospital pharmacy.
The building also will include a surgical
operating suite, a rehabilitation/physical therapy
suite, an endoscopy suite, office space, meeting
rooms and areas for anesthesia preparation,
monitoring and recovery. 0
The UF College of Veterinary Medicine recently received
approval from the state to build a new education and
research building. The new building will include an
expansion of the center's small animal hospital, giving UF
veterinarians more room to teach students and treat
patients like this dog, a canine cancer patient being
treated by veterinary oncology resident Dr. Karri Barabas.
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events.
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Saying goodbye ...
II. Mike Dunne, a native of New Orleans and a resident of Baton Rouge, died
July 8 after a long battle with throat cancer. Dunne was featured along
with his wife, Freda Yarbrough Dunne, in the recent POST cotjver story on
problems caregivers of cancer patients struggle with, "Who holds the
helping hand?" Dunne was an award-winning newspaper reporter and
editor who earlier this year received the firstAmerica's Wetland
Conservationist of the Year award for stories on threats to Louisiana's
coast. Dunne a nd photographer Bevil Knapp are the authors of "America's
Wetland: Louisiana's Vanishing Coast." Dunne is survived by his wife and
sons Dylan and Brad.
sons Dylan and Brad.
Meet the fundraisers who help turn
UF's biggest dreams into reality
By Ann Griswold
Florida Tomorrow, the third capital campaign
in UF's 154-year history, will formally kick
off Sept. 28. The fundraising extravaganza
will help support a record number of research
initiatives, endowed professorships and
scholarships to attract the brightest minds from
around the world. UF's last capital campaign
concluded in 2000 with total gifts in excess of
"We're working to establish a stronger tradition of philanthropy, to educate
the next generation and recruit and retain the best faculty members," says
Ann Braun, senior director of development for the College of Medicine.
The campaign has been in "silent" mode since July 2005, during which
time development officers have worked behind the scenes to raise as much as
half of their overall campaign goals from the university's closest supporters.
"One of our charges is to make people understand that the smallest gifts
matter," says Braun, who oversees a staff of 10 development officers in the
College of Medicine. "I have a five-year pledge to the College of Medicine
that I've made at the $3,000 level. But across the university, there have been
conversations of very large gift commitments, mega-gifts from people who
have the capacity to make something happen in the world that might not
happen otherwise. We really work with people to make an impact today or to
make an impact over a long time, such as through endowments."
The campaign's public phase begins this month with a series of events
around the Health Science Center complex and other parts of the UF campus
and an invitation-only gala at the Stephen C. O'Connell Center. The overall
campaign goal for the entire university, as well as individual colleges, will be
announced at that time.
"Unfortunately, we could use three O'Connell Centers and we don't have
that," Braun said, noting it was difficult to narrow down the guest list for the
kickoff gala. "So we had to select folks that are representative of the donors,
as well as faculty members who are benefiting from those gifts."
Funds generated at the HSC through 2012 will contribute to endowed
professorships, student scholarships, research fellowships, a new health
sciences education building, a pediatric dental facility in Collier County and
a veterinary student teaching laboratory with state-of-the-art patient
simulators all of the things that seem to magically appear when we need
them the most ... or so it seems.
As it turns out, there's very little magic involved, but a lot of laughter,
lively discussions and hard work. Here are the perspectives of some of the
Health Science Center's most experienced development officers, the behind-
the-scenes fundraising experts who are at the heart of Florida Tomorrow.
lIf1 .1i0 9'-7II
The Jigsaw-Puzzle Solver
Meg Hendryx, College of Nursing
Hendryx says she enjoys witnessing the 1
transformation that takes place in a donor as well
as in the UF campus when each gift adds another
piece to the puzzle. Her first major gift, the
Pettengill Nursing Resource Center, was funded by
an anonymous donation in honor of retired public
health nurse lona M. Pettengill.
"I barely held it together, just saying how ec al o o
that process, that I was able to make that link," Hendryx recalls. Now
the room lives in her memory, and that is really what this is all about"
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events.
Dr. and Mrs. George Singleton recently worked
with College of Medicine development officer
Jennifer Heesacker, right, to establish an
endowed professorship in the department of
otolaryngology. Singleton is the retired chair of
THE CAMPAIGN FOR THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
For more information on HSC kickoff
events scheduled for Sept. 28 visit:
The Relationship Builders
Ann Braun, College of Medicine, Gainesville
Sandy Melching, College of Medicine, Jacksonville
"Most people who are in development are service-oriented folks,
people who get a personal satisfaction out of making a
Ann Braun contribution," Braun said. "Our No.1 purpose is to serve faculty
members, to serve grateful patients."
V V Melching agrees, saying, "I've been in this business 23 years,
and I've done it based on relationships. That's the only way."
The Investment Adviser
Sandy Melching Carlee Thomas, College of Public
Health and Health Professions
Thomas says her job involves coordinating the
dreams and goals of potential donors with the work
being done by researchers, faculty and students.
"They don't feel as though they're donors they
feel like they're investors, partnering with us to help create tomorrow's
health professionals," Thomas said. "When you can say at the end of the
day that that's what you do, it's such a wonderful feeling."
The Seed Planter
Zoe Haynes Seale, College of Veterinary Medicine
Seale enjoys planting ideas in the heads of grateful clients often
people whose pets have been treated by UF alumni and
watching these ideas flourish over the years.
"One of our alumni was visiting a client, treating some of her
cattle, and he mentioned how grateful he was to the vet school
for his education," Seale said. "He said, 'When I die, I'm going to leave my
money to support the vet school.' Well, about 10 years later, he was out with
again and she asks him what foundation he had mentioned. She documented
in her will and died about two months later. You plant these seeds, and you
The Helping Hand
Catherine Jenkins, College of Dentistry
Jenkins' biggest thrill so far has been the $5.6
Million gift that the College of Dentistry
received last year from the Naples Children &
Education Foundation. The award, which rose
to $8 million after being matched by state
funds, will be used to build a new dental clinic
in Collier County to benefit disadvantaged children.
"It was exciting to be part of an effort that will affect so many
children, most at 200 percent below the poverty level," Jenkins said.
The Road Warrior
Kelley Markey, College of Pharmacy
At the beginning of each year, Markey
plans out where she's going and who needs
to be seen. Her travels have taken her all
over the world, most recently to Munich,
where she met with the Global Gators, a
European contingency of alumni from UF's
College of Pharmacy.
"Pharmacy is always in a campaign mode," she said. "I
her don't think we ever stop. We're just pushing a little harder,
Iit getting out and traveling more, meeting a lot more people. Our
ust goal is finding the right people for the right project, and
funding it at the right time."
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events. 5
EXTRAORDINARYR A ER
Audiologist answers her calling
New graduate hopes to establish much-needed services in South Africa
Recent audiology graduate
Sinah Seoke, left, meets with
patient Cindy Normand at
the Hearing Center at the
UF&Shands Hampton Oaks
Medical Plaza on Aug. 15.
Seoke left the country the
following day, bound for her
new position in South Africa.
Sinah Seoke has big plans.
After graduating last month with a doctorate in
audiology and a certificate in public health, Seoke, a
Botswana native, is headed back to Africa, where she hopes to
develop audiology programs for underserved areas. Along the
way, she plans to earn a master's degree in public health and a
doctorate in public health systems so she will have the
knowledge necessary to build a service infrastructure from the
This will be no small feat, particularly in Botswana, where
there are few audiology programs and no other professionals
with her training.
As a child Seoke didn't have to look far to see how the
absence of hearing services could affect individuals.
"My father has a hearing impairment and there were no
services to help him. He has never received a diagnostic
evaluation and intervention," Seoke said. "Growing up I didn't
know there was a field called audiology, but I knew I wanted to
help people with communicative problems."
Although Botswana's only university didn't offer majors in
the health sciences, Seoke's grades in her first two years as an
undergraduate qualified her for the government of Botswana's
study abroad program, which placed her at the University of
Northern Iowa, where she completed a bachelor's
Degree in communicative disorders. She went on
to earn a master's degree in communication
science and disorders from Howard University
before starting the UF Au.D. program in 2004.
Her audiology studies have given her a greater
appreciation for her father, Seoke said.
"My father is a retired reverend and it's
important for him to be able to communicate.
When I started to learn what people with
hearing loss go through, I thought, 'Wow, I can't
believe that he's accomplished this much and he
has never complained,"' said Seoke, who believes
her father has significant hearing loss.
Seoke will be one step closer to her goal of
developing audiology programs in Botswana and
other developing countries in Africa when she
begins her position in September as a full-time
lecturer, clinician and researcher at the
University of Pretoria in South Africa, about 200
miles from Seoke's hometown of Mochudi,
"The faculty position Sinah has accepted at
the University of Pretoria a premier audiology
program in South Africa and really the entire
African continent is a wonderful beginning to
her career in audiology," said James Hall III,
Ph.D., an associate chair and clinical professor
in the College of Public Health and Health
Professions' department of communicative
disorders, and a visiting professor at the
University of Pretoria.
Through the University of Pretoria's programs, Seoke
expects to work on several projects in her home country,
including the development of hearing test materials in multiple
languages and a universal newborn hearing screening
program. She also plans to collaborate with Hall on a research
project on HIV/AIDS and hearing loss. Botswana has the
world's second-highest rate of HIV infection.
"We need to do research on the effects of the infection and
highly active retrovirus therapy on the auditory system, and how
we can extend services to the people who need it," Seoke said.
With these experiences and more education in public health,
Seoke hopes that someday she will be directing the
development of comprehensive audiology services for the
people of Botswana.
"I want to be able to sit down with people in government,
health-policy makers and finance administrators and explain
how a program will benefit people and how to run it
effectively," she said. "There isn't much money available for
health care in developing countries unless it is for life-
threatening conditions. In public health you need to be able to
use the little money you have." 0
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events.
UF doctor spends six
months in Sierra Leone with
Doctors Without Borders
Dr. Keith Stone, a UF professor of obstetrics and gynecology in the College of Medicine, spent six months in Sierra Leone working for Doctors Without
Borders, known as M6decins Sans FrontiBres in most parts of the world.
By April Frawley Birdwell
another patient was hemorrhaging.
Keith Stone, M.D., sprinted through Magburaka to get to the
hospital. Running along the town's dirt roads past light poles still
lacking electric lines five years after the war, he thought of the two pregnant
women who died the day before. Stone began to wonder what, if anything, he
was accomplishing in Sierra Leone, one of the world's poorest countries.
Then, she stopped him. The teenager blocked his path and pointed her finger
to his chest. "I have your blood in me," she said.
He recognized the words. He'd said something similar a few months earlier.
He was performing an emergency procedure on a young girl. She needed blood.
With no blood bank at the hospital and no family members to donate to the girl,
he donated his own.
When she was well, he told her, "You have my blood in you," and asked her to
make two promises not to get pregnant again and to finish school. Now,
months later, she stood in front of him. Still in school. Still not pregnant.
"That was a memorable moment for me because usually I didn't see them
again," said Stone, a UF professor of obstetrics and gynecology, who returned to
UF in July after spending six months in Sierra Leone working for Doctors
Without Borders. "You assume things turn out all right. You try not to think
about the fact that one out of every four babies you deliver will die before the
age of 5. You try to think they'll be OK. But you never know because you never
see them again. But I saw her, and it made me feel good. It made me think
maybe there are a lot of other people out there like her who are going to be OK."
Sitting in his office on the third floor of the Medical Sciences Building, Stone
flipped through a photo album of images he took in Sierra Leone. He paused at
a snapshot of a woman.
She lies on a bed, looking uncomfortable, sweaty, in the labor and delivery
ward of the hospital where he and other Doctors Without Borders volunteers
worked in Sierra Leone.
"Her baby died," he said, pointing to another photo of greenish gunk in a bag.
"We drained these herbs out of her stomach. Most babies do deliver in the
villages, but for the ones who are obstructed, they'll give them those herbs and
the uterus ruptures. They'll do things like stand on the abdomen to push the baby
out or take sticks to push across the upper abdomen to push the baby out."
Five years have passed since the country's civil war a conflict stemming
from the country's lucrative diamond trade ended. But Sierra Leone remains
poverty-stricken and has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the
world. About 1,300 of every 100,000 mothers die during live births there,
according to UNICEF. Some estimates push that number even higher.
There are few hospitals, and most people who live there can't afford to go to
them anyway. To get to the hospital where Stone was, which was free for
patients, many people traveled for hours, often on the backs of motorcycles.
While there, Stone was responsible for the deliveries of 90 to 100 babies each
month, performing a Cesarean section almost every day. Some days he didn't
have time to eat. Other days he was in the hospital from early in the morning
until the wee hours of the next morning. He lost 25 pounds. He never took a
vacation. He never even took a day off. Not even for malaria. Although he and
other Doctors Without Borders volunteers took medication to prevent malaria,
most contracted a strain of it at some point.
"I kept operating," he said. "They would give me oral fluids so I wouldn't pass
out. I kept seeing patients. It wasn't that the team wouldn't cover for me. My
responsibility was at the hospital and that's where I worked.
"(Doctors Without Borders) was the hardest thing I have ever done in my
life," said Stone, who recently stepped down as chair of the obstetrics and
gynecology department. "The last two months I was on call every night for
obstetrics and every other night for general call. So I didn't just deliver babies
and do C-sections, I did abdominal laparotomies, appendectomies, whatever
came along. We did amputations, too."
Stone had been thinking about working with Doctors Without Borders, a
medical humanitarian organization also known as M6decins Sans Frontieres,
for seven years. Having helped patients in other countries on other medical
outreach trips and during his 32 years with the U.S. Army, he likes the
organization's philosophy. It doesn't have a political agenda and it reports any
human rights violations its members see, a principle known as witnessing. Not
all groups report these violations, out of fear they'll be thrown out of a country,
He doesn't think he'll take another Doctors Without Borders assignment for
a couple years, though. It's difficult to take six months away from his clinical
and education duties. In the meantime, he wants to keep helping people in
Third World countries. But sometimes that's difficult, he said. Money and aid
don't always reach the people who need it.
"I want to do something to help people in the Third World, but the bottom
line for me is they also have to do something," he said. "I can't change the
political situation, I'm just a doctor. But I want to help those people on the road
to creating their own democratic, independent countries." O
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events. I 7
could save lives in
By Ann Griswold
Amalia de Paz, M.D., a professor of medicine at
the National University of El Salvador and chief
of pulmonary medicine at the National Hospital
Rosales, spoke the words to no one in particular
as she stood in a Shands at UF conference room
and inspected a long flexible hose fitted with a tiny
video camera at one end.
"She says it's a beauty," said Michael Lauzardo, M.D., an assistant professor
of pulmonary, critical care and sleep medicine at UF's College of Medicine and
principal investigator of the Southeastern National Tuberculosis Center.
The simple, unpretentious hose a bronchoscope valued at over $25,000
- was presented as a gift to de Paz and her colleague, Leticia de Amaya, M.D.,
dean of medicine at the National University of El Salvador, during a July visit to
UF. The scope will be the only one of its kind at the medical school in El
Salvador, dramatically improving the doctors' ability to inspect every nook and
cranny of their patients' lungs in search of tuberculosis.
Lauzardo initiated a partnership between the two schools last year during a
medical outreach trip organized by Alba Amaya-Burns, Ph.D., a UF professor of
public health. Lauzardo says he was struck by the progress the country's
From left, Dr. Amalia de Paz and Dr. Leticia de Amaya examine a new bronchoscope that UF
professor Dr. Michael Lauzardo secured from the Olympus Corp.
medical professionals have made in the fight against tuberculosis, despite
financial difficulty and a recent civil war.
"The stories that they told me were hair-raising," Lauzardo said. "To hear
what they've gone through, how the war came right to their doorsteps. It was
just a horrible story. So even though it's been 15 years since the hostilities
ended, they're still reeling."
After returning to Florida, Lauzardo decided to send a letter to officials at
Olympus Corp., the company that manufactures the scopes, and ask if they
would consider donating one to the National Hospital Rosales. He wasn't
hopeful, considering the exorbitant cost of the equipment. But much to his
surprise, the company enthusiastically agreed.
"They have been waiting for this for a long time," Lauzardo said, adding that
the entire community depended on one bronchoscope until last year, when it
stopped working. In a country where about 1,800 people have tuberculosis -
and 2,894 cases remain undetected a year is a long time to wait.
In El Salvador, a Latin American country roughly equivalent to Massachusetts
in land size and population, tuberculosis is about 10 times as common as in the
entire United States. The World Health Organization estimates that even more
undiagnosed cases exist in El Salvador, because the rates of detection are lower.
Lauzardo says the bronchoscope may help change that.
"With Florida being the gateway to Latin America, it makes sense for the UF
College of Medicine to be involved in Latin America and to collaborate more,"
Lauzardo said. "We talk about a globalized economy health-care is globalized
as well. And I think the more partnerships and collaborations we have, the
better off we'll all be." 0
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events.
Lending a helping paw
Blood donors help other animals in need
By Meredith Woods
When critically ill
patients at the UF
Center need transfusions,
veterinarians are ready
no matter whether the
patient meows, neighs or
barks. The center maintains
a canine blood bank
stocked with a variety of
blood products for dogs
and keeps cat and horse
blood donors on standby .
at the college to donate to
patients when needed.
The canine volunteer blood bank opened
in 2000 in response to increased demand "
for blood products to treat dogs at the
center. Six retired racing greyhounds had -
supplied the center's canine blood needs ,
until then. But as demand increased, the
internal group couldn't keep up.
UF began it's animal blood bank with 20
donors dogs. Seven years later, there are 83,
and clinicians expect that number will rise The UF Veterinary Medical Cente
to 100 soon. 2000 to meet increased demand
The blood bank works like a human technicians Alison Fitzwater and
blood bank, said Cynda Crawford, D.V.M., while veterinary technician Kim S
Ph.D., the medical director for the canine
volunteer blood donor program.
Volunteer dogs donate every eight weeks
and workers take about the same amount of blood from a dog as they would from
a human. The blood is collected and prepared in the same way, too. The main
difference is donating doggies must be neutered, meet certain age and weight
criteria and have a spleen requirements human blood banks usually don't
Many of the donor dogs belong to students, faculty and staff at the UF College
of Veterinary Medicine, although some come to the program through referrals or
by word of mouth, said Kim Seitz, a certified veterinary technician and blood
Managing the blood bank's day-to-day operations involves more than just
taking blood, too. Seitz and blood bank technicians Alison Fitzwater and Rachel
Nelson handle about 12 donation appointments per week drawing blood and
r opened its own canine blood bank in
is for blood. Here, from left, veterinary
Rachel Nelson hold a blood donor dog
eitz prepares to draw blood.
then processing it. Each unit collected is
used to make two or three different
blood products, such as plasma,
cryoprecipitate and packed red blood
cells, so each donor may help up to three
canine patients in need.
Not every dog can give blood, even if
the animal meets the criteria. They must
pass a tryout first to make sure they will
be comfortable and nonaggressive when
blood is drawn, Seitz said.
"We've turned away perfectly nice dogs
who are simply not comfortable being in
the hospital," Seitz said.
Although the blood bank occasionally
produces surplus blood products that it
sells commercially rather than discarding
it, the program is not a commercial blood
bank, Crawford said.
"Our main mission is to provide blood
products for our canine patients," she
said. "Even as enrollment in the program
increases, we are still using more and
more canine blood products here. Once
the critical care specialty service gets up
and running, we anticipate an even
greater demand for blood products."
UF's canine blood bank program is on
the cutting edge of such programs
nationally, Crawford said, because of the
thorough screening process all donated
blood undergoes and because of the
variety of blood products made from
Aside from saving fellow canines, there
are a few perks for dogs who donate
blood, namely a free exam, routine
vaccinations, a bag of dog food and free
blood should they ever need it.
UF also houses a closed colony of eight
blood donor cats in the small animal
hospital. This environment ensures the cats stay clear of infectious agents, ticks
and fleas, which could cause the donor cat to become ill and contaminate the
donated blood. Unlike the canine blood bank, blood from feline and equine donors
is only collected as needed. UF's nine horse donors graze the pastures flanking the
college when not donating blood to critically ill patients. UF veterinarians give
about 10 transfusions each year to horses. Because of the space and multiple blood
types for horses, the equine donor collection continues to operate on an as-needed
basis. But there are future plans to establish regular collection and storage of feline
blood products, said Crawford.
After their service period, blood donor cats are adopted into private homes,
"They make very friendly pets," she said. O
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events. o 9
By Tracy Brown Wright
Se UF College of Nursing has expanded
its class size and will add faculty
members through a new partnership with
the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs designed
to address the nation's severe nursing shortage.
UF was one of four universities the VA recently selected to form the VA
Nursing Academy, a five-year, $40-million pilot initiative. The VA-UF
partnership which will allow UF to expand nursing enrollment in its
baccalaureate program by 28 students this semester and 10 more nursing
students in its accelerated bachelor's degree program beginning next May
- links the College of Nursing with the nursing service at the North Florida/
South Georgia Veterans Health System to form the VA-UF Nursing Center of
The partnership also will fund new faculty, who will give students more
opportunities to gain clinical experience. In the first year of the partnership,
five new faculty members will come on board, two UF-based, two VA-based
and one who will serve as an evidence-based practice nurse coordinator.
The program's goals include increasing nursing educational opportunities,
enhancing clinical activities, promoting nurse recruitment and retention,
improving nursing practice environments and ultimately improving patient
"We are very excited to be able to partner with a world-class health-care
system such as the VA to address vital nursing and health-care issues," said
Kathleen Ann Long, Ph.D., R.N., dean of the UF College of Nursing. "It is
also an incredible testament to our College of Nursing and our VA system that
we were chosen as part of such a select group of schools nationwide to take
part in this initiative."
The new faculty members will be embedded in four model nursing units at
local VA hospitals. The program will implement and evaluate these innovative
nursing units, which will provide evidence-based nursing care for patients
while utilizing more clinical supervision and encouraging staff development
UF and the North Florida/South Georgia Veterans Health System have partnered on a number of
educational initiatives, including the College of Nursing's Clinical Nurse Leader program and the
new UF-VA Nursing Academy. Above, Charlotte Birkenfield, a VA nurse and nursing student, works
at the VA hospital as part of her residency for the Clinical Nurse Leader program. Pictured with
Birkenfield in each photo from left are: patient Ronnie Mullins; Mullins and Lisa Maree, a clinical
nurse leader at the VA; and VA pharmacy workers Sophia Mueleman and Lisa Zomberg, at right.
to boost recruitment and retention of nurses.
"It is our hope that through this partnership, we can not only increase the
number of baccalaureate-prepared nurses and enhance their educational
experiences but also improve nurse satisfaction and work environment as well
as achieve the ultimate goal of a higher level of patient care," said Maxine
Hinze, Ph.D., R.N., co-director of the VA-UF Nursing Center of Excellence as
well as a clinical assistant professor and department chair in the College of
Data will be collected before and after these model units are implemented
to measure patient and nurse satisfaction, educational outcomes, student and
faculty satisfaction, and other factors. Increases in recruitment and retention
of baccalaureate-trained nurses in North Florida's VA health system will also
The partnership also will create an advanced residency program to support
new graduates during the transition to professional practice and an internship
program aimed at improving recruitment and retention of new graduates.
In addition, UF and VA faculty members will implement a skin and wound
healing education and research program and a perioperative and intensive
care clinical and research program.
"I believe the VA selected us based on the comprehensiveness of our plan,
which included not only the VA-UF partnership but also establishing the first
Nursing Center of Excellence in the VA," said Maude Rittman, Ph.D., R.N.,
VA director and chief nurse for research at the regional VA health system.
"Our nurses will definitely benefit from the expertise of the UF faculty, and
we anticipate that the evidence-based practice projects will greatly enhance
our clinical practice and patient care."
To address the ever-growing nursing faculty shortage, the center will also
establish a faculty development program for those nurses hired to be joint UF
and VA faculty members. These faculty members will be assigned a UF
faculty mentor and participate in a teaching preparation program to prepare
them to continue to pursue a career in nursing education. VA staff nurses also
will have the opportunity to participate in the college's nursing resource
center, assisting with the teaching of clinical skills to help meet the learning
needs of the additional students admitted to the program. 0
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events.
A new type of nurse
UF graduates nurses geared to guide
patients through health-care maze
By Tracy Brown Wright
In the increasingly complicated world of patient care, a typical hospital stay might include visits from
several physicians, a rotating team of staff nurses and input from specialists, nutritionists, social
workers, pharmacists and nursing administrators. The bevy of new faces and new technologies can be
bewildering for patients.
The "pioneering" graduates of UF's Clinical Nurse Leader program have learned to make sure this
complicated system does not hinder the delivery of patient care. UF's first class of CNL students
graduated this summer and is ready to blaze a trail in patient care.
"Clinical nurse leaders were a missing piece in patient care," said Amanda Brown, a CNL graduate now
working at Wolfson Children's Hospital in Jacksonville. "There are so many technologies and services
available to patients now, and the CNL will integrate care from all of those resources. I follow each patient
to personalize and coordinate his or her care. Every patient I care for as a CNL will see me every day.
They and their families will know I am their 'point person' in the maze of hospital personnel."
The Clinical Nurse Leader program at UF was established after the American Association of Colleges
of Nursing identified the need for a new kind of nursing professional one who is educationally
prepared to coordinate, manage and evaluate care for groups of patients in complex health systems.
"This is a role that was lacking before leadership at the bedside by an expert nurse who will focus on
the patient," said Jane Gannon, M.S.N., C.N.M,. coordinator of the Clinical Nurse Leader program. "It
allows our highly educated nurses to stay in the forefront of patient care. What we have found is that this
role improves communication greatly among the entire health-care staff, including fellow nurses as well as
physicians and other professionals, which we anticipate will impact the quality of patient-care delivery."
The UF College of Nursing was one of 77 schools nationwide that piloted the new CNL program. To
offer it and allow students to complete intensive residencies at the end of their training, the college
partnered with Shands at UF, Shands AGH, Shands Jacksonville, Malcom Randall Veterans Affairs
Medical Center, Wolfson Children's Hospital in Jacksonville and Baptist Medical Center in Jacksonville.
The next step for UF and other programs is to measure the outcomes of the pilot program, including
indicators of patient and nurse satisfaction and reduction of medical errors. Graduates face one more
challenge before they begin practicing, too a national certification examination.
Along with Brown, students Charlotte Birkenfeld, Danita Burch, Christine Cobb, Sara Gravelle and
Dana McCrone graduated at the end of the summer semester. Rhea Broyles, Amy Escalera and Kathleen
Grady will graduate in the fall. 0
The Liaison Committee on Medical Education
recently granted continued accreditation to the UF
College of Medicine, noting the excellence of its
administrators, faculty and curriculum. Here, UF
neuroscience professor Louis Ritz teaches first-year
medical students about the brain during a medical
neuroscience lab. Labs like these give first- and
second-year students a solid grasp of anatomy and
medical science before they enter a clinical setting.
An 'A' school
College of Medicine receives
By April Frawley Birdwell
If accrediting agencies sent home grade cards, the
UF College of Medicine would have a solid A.
Maybe even a gold star.
The Liaison Committee on Medical Education, the
accrediting body for U.S. medical schools, again gave
its stamp of approval to the college this summer after
completing an exhaustive evaluation.
In a report of its findings, the committee noted the
college's deans and administrators are outstanding,
the curriculum is top-notch and UF students and
faculty are proud of the college's excellence. The
committee periodically evaluates medical schools to
ensure they are meeting established standards.
The preliminary evaluation from the committee's
February visit was the best the college had ever
received, said Robert Watson, M.D., senior associate
dean for educational affairs.
"The largest number of LCME standards are
related to the education program itself, and these are
the LCME standards most often cited during
accreditation visits," he said. "The college was not
cited for a single education standard. In my
experience with the LCME, this is extremely rare."
The committee did note in its final report that the
college needs more space for medical student
education, but that did not surprise college leaders. A
new health sciences education building is already a
goal for HSC and College of Medicine leaders.
"That difficulty is why we recognized the need for a
new education facility before the LCME visit and why
we are working to make it a reality," Watson said. 0
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ul .edu/ for the latest news and HSC events. =I Io 11
rebuild c oul 1 Do
we really have
We just might,
O n cilu r0 a 1i 1. lilim i i- 111 b r- I ,) I tl ,e l i ., '; il 11i; 1
Parl i61I11 s EV lul l 'l l iJin iili .drl ,li : ,ilih li( ll. 1 l0 ll)
t rtit'l l I I 1 11 1 u ll'i i r ll. i" lll ni htl l '1
l avi a l il il '.1l -,- J i '.i i ^ in a ,l,'I .,1 a '^ 1
l[ l ll r lll'l.rll lj.I ll l v 1"-- 1" 1"I 1:61 ""''
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Vl nellrll e slj r .xI..l 11-v ll" : ln Vlll:v l l l 'lIl l)
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*.tittlniilj i:i-(l3ili hl3ittl'-li.
E:\ lApiil Frawley Birdwell
Tie brain sort of sounds like a
h:)wl of Rice Krispies. A neuron
flies. Pop. Then another. And
an ithier. Pop. Pop. Pop. Pop. Soon, a
chli I Lus of neurons crackles and snaps.
"\\. a1I it the music of the brain," says Justin Sanchez,
I'h I). .i ending next to a computer in his lab, where he's
pli \ nri a recordingg of the brain in action. "We can record
I ..m a hundred neurons simultaneously and have to
i niL pi ri sgnals like this and decode that into what the
p, .n i I trying to do. There are some sophisticated cues
in h M patterns of firings that tell us whether he's
i h n k in left or thinking right."
'a ne h /, a UF assistant professor of pediatric neurology
in Ihe ( .liege of Medicine, is working with four UF
nIir nc ing professors to build a tiny device that uses
hi in ,i n als to drive another device, like an artificial
rmbh. i. J.. what the brain wants. With a $1.6 million grant
I I. rrm i h National Institutes of Health, they're designing a
Iupi .rmaill chip that can be implanted in a rat's brain
jan L Ii t that could lead to similar devices in humans
I .. .. rnl I prosthetic limbs, or perhaps even treat
S.rnJi I I..rn such as epilepsy and paralysis.
"II V'.. cLan do this, we'll have the technology to really
..I~, n v'. -iptions for patients," Sanchez says.
In ja a\, it seems like science fiction, like watching
I.u k k \ walkerr use a robotic hand as if it were his own in
',i ji \\'ji ." But it isn't as far-fetched as it sounds.
I' I, n I. ho come to UF are already benefiting from
i h r n.. ..i v that interacts with the brain or nervous
.\ 'Irn I actorsrs can stimulate the brain to treat
JhiliI, l ing diseases such as Parkinson's. And cochlear
ri mpln i store hearing to patients who have lost it.
I h e aren't the only ways science, medicine and
nrIirnLi ing have merged to offer new ways to rebuild a
hi ..kr n h. ,dy. UF researchers will soon test gene therapy in
hlin r pji iints. UF surgeons are using ventricular assist
JL' I i improve patients' heart function while they
i !i a plantation. The list goes on.
( n I upon a time, a patient who lost a limb had two
Lh.'i.L peg leg or hook. Now patients receive robotic
ji mr h\ J aulic legs and other types of prostheses.
kL.Lji. Lh rs can't fully replicate the body's own
I lL h nr .- v in terms of performance. No computer can
I unrLi i.n jr well as a human brain. No machine can work
j J L ja' real heart. Yet.
L i, nrL and technology are edging ever closer, says
S\\mI i rr 1 )itto, Ph.D., chair of biomedical engineering in
I h I I ( ..[lege of Engineering. The human body, version
2 '. .u Id eventually be just as good as the original.
S"lll rmately, we will get to the point where we're
b hi.. ng inLcring prosthetic limbs out of living material
j Im.r'I I \L [usively," Ditto says. "Someday. And I think
i h~i Ja\ i not all that far in the future."
I! -i ii 1- 'Fl i-'''*! I., iIIj F !-.~ i'' !- 11111111 -~'-1 ii' Iii- I'll- -I ii-~ .- *Ir '1 I-I.' 7 -iiI -
Tiny chip, huge challenge
Like many scientific endeavors, this tale begins in a rat cage.
"This is an epileptic rat," says Sanchez, peering at a rat with fine wires implanted into his head.
"We're trying to read out epileptic signals and deliver stimulation back to those neurons to tell them
to stop acting abnormally."
In another cage, students and postdoctoral associates in Sanchez's lab are trying to teach a rat to
move a robotic arm with its mind. A computer interprets what the rat is thinking using complex
algorithms that decode what it means when neurons fire a certain way, then delivers the message to
the robotic arm.
Packing that same power into a tiny chip is one of the challenges researchers face in developing an
implantable, wireless device capable of controlling prosthetic limbs and treating diseases.
"This is the most challenging project we've attempted," says Harris, the project's lead researcher.
"The ultimate goal is to develop a brain-machine interface that directly controls a robotic arm or a
computer cursor. It's very science fiction. (But) we're taking small steps in that direction."
Translating technology from rats to humans will bring its own set of challenges, beyond the
technology. Namely, pinpointing where in the brain to place the device, says Paul Carney, M.D.,
division chief of pediatric neurology. Treating epilepsy will pose unique difficulties because the 250
subtypes of the disease affect various parts of the brain, he said.
"If anyone can put in a neural interface and control epilepsy, it's us," says Carney. "There's a
commitment in pediatric neurology and engineering to take these technologies and knowledge to
patients within five to seven years."
Neurosurgeon Kelly Foote installs a deep brain stimulation
device in a patient with a movement disorder. The technique,
approved by the Food and Drug Administration for patient
use in 2002, involves mapping the brain and strategically
implanting small electrodes. Eventually, with additional
operations, the electrodes are connected to a small,
battery-powered unit implanted in the patient's shoulder that
provides electrical stimulation. The stimulation alters brain
activity without destroying brain tissue, thereby combating
symptoms of disorders such as Parkinson's disease.
N ow A cat yowls. A book hits the ground
with a thud. An overhead fan keeps
time to the tune of whir, whir, whir.
h a r Most of us take sounds like these for
granted. But a complex process has to
occur in our ears to stimulate the
th is brain to recognize them. If disease or
damage interfere, hearing worsens,
until finally it's gone.
Hearing aids often help, but they frequently stop
working as hearing loss grows severe, says Katie Gray,
Au.D., a UF audiologist and clinical assistant professor
in the College of Public Health and Health Professions.
Now patients have another option: the cochlear implant,
an implantable device that directly stimulates the
auditory nerve to send sound signals to the brain.
"It doesn't fix hearing or restore hearing," Gray says,
adding that 85 patients received a cochlear implant at UF
last year. "It's a different kind of hearing. People, at first,
say it sounds mechanical or computerized. (But) it's a
Researchers are also working on making speech
recognition technology more lifelike for hard-of-hearing
"Speech is one of the grand, challenging
applications," says electrical and computer engineering
professor John Harris, Ph.D. "We don't know how the
brain works so well. We can't build a computer to
recognize voices (the same way)."
UF researcher Justin Sanchez and doctoral students Jeremiah Mizelfelt, Babak
Mahmoudi and Jack DiGiovanna, shown here from left, are studying neural
interfaces in rats. UF researchers hope the technologies they are studying now will
eventually lead to devices capable of controlling artificial limbs and stimulating the
brain to treat diseases.
A ll h eaErt Earlier this year, Alexzander Wood got a new heart. That was his second
*ll miracle. The first came when UF cardiac surgeon Mark Bleiweis, M.D.,
connected the Berlin Heart, a biventricular assist device, to Wood's own
heart to keep it beating while the 9-year-old waited for a transplant.
Donor hearts are scarce, but assist devices like these can keep patients going for months, even years,
while they wait. In adults, they can even be implanted in the body, allowing patients to leave the hospital
something Wood couldn't do while attached to the Berlin Heart, a large machine he pulled with him
when he walked through the hospital.
But a UF-developed device could help change that. UF engineering students, in collaboration with UF
cardiac surgeon Charles Klodell, M.D., and other researchers, built a smaller heart pump they hope will
be child-friendly. The device is currently in lab-based trials.
"When it finally rolls out, it should have a longer duration (than other assist devices)," Klodell says.
"The devices currently available typically wear out faster than patients do."
Of course, the goal for some scientists is to eliminate the need for heart transplants, period. Researchers
have already developed artificial hearts, but current models still don't match the real heart's performance.
Still, Klodell says building an artificial heart that works as well as the real thing is possible.
"I think that will probably happen in our lifetime," Klodell says.
- I I ,
A new way to treat epilepsy
UF neurologist Kimford Meador, M.D., takes a ruler from his desk and measures a
sleek, silver medical device. About 2 inches long, an inch wide and whisper-thin, the
machine is the centerpiece of the NeuroPace RNS System, an experimental treatment for
epilepsy the third most common neurological disorder in the United States.
"It's smaller than an MP3 player," Meador says, "but it is not flat. It's contoured to fit
beneath the scalp."
Once implanted within the skull by neurosurgery professor Steven Roper, M.D., the
device connects to one or two wires that reach into the areas of the brain where seizures
- disturbances in normal electrical activity begin. After detecting a seizure's onset, the
machine delivers brief mild electrical stimulations to short-circuit it.
The treatment is a drastic departure from traditional approaches that involve
medications or brain surgeries to remove seizure-producing areas. Meador is leading a study
at UF one of only 28 centers across the country participating to further evaluate its
safety and effectiveness. "We don't take this surgery lightly," Meador says. "It has to have a
great chance of helping and a very low chance of being harmful."
If you're reading this, thank a tiny pen tip-sized area in your retina. There,
photoreceptor cells are packed tightly together, giving your vision the
resolution you need to see words on a page, says UF ophthalmologist Shalesh
Kaushal, M.D., Ph.D.
This compactness is one reason why scientists haven't been able to create a
device that allows you to see clearly once the retina has been damaged, Kaushal
j V says. But restoring sight could someday be as simple as giving an injection.
In 2001, UF and University of Pennsylvania researchers made a
breakthrough. Using gene therapy, UF researcher William Hauswirth, Ph.D., and colleagues
restored sight to dogs with the degenerative eye disease Leber congenital amaurosis. Now the
scientists are preparing to conduct a clinical trial of the treatment in people.
UF researchers also are studying how to use bone marrow stem cells to repair retinal
damage, Kaushal says. A drug that releases a protective protein in the eye could prove to be
another novel treatment, he adds. The drug is in clinical trials at other institutions.
"Those are the major novel areas where there is some evidence they could be used in
humans," Kaushal says.
New ears for Jorden
UF creates prosthetic ears for Olympic athlete's son
By Lindy McCollum-Brounley
For the past week, 5-year-old Jorden Flowers, hands flashing through the air, has
excitedly signed the words as he arrives at the UF College of Dentistry: "New ears!"
One of a set of fraternal twins born 10 weeks prematurely and weighing less
than 3 pounds, Jorden had no ear canals or auditory nerves, leaving him completely
deaf. Small skin flaps appeared where his ears should have been.
The son of Olympic bobsled champion Vonetta Flowers the first black athlete from
any nation to win a gold medal in the Winter Olympics logged his own entry in the
record books Sept. 5 as one of the youngest patients to receive prosthetic ears anchored
by implanted posts. UF medical artists have fashioned them out of silicone, casting them
from his twin brother's ears and coloring them to match Jorden's skin tone.
"He treats them like a new pair of shoes," Flowers said. "He thinks that the only
time he should wear them is when he's going out and he wants to take them off as
soon as he gets home."
Two years ago, Jorden underwent auditory brain stem implant surgery in Italy. He's
since gone from being 100 percent deaf to being able to hear and is learning to speak.
His new prosthetic ears will support the processor for Jorden's auditory brain stem
implant and will provide him with a more natural appearance. They are embedded
with magnets that help affix the ears to metal posts surgically placed in his skull at
Children's Hospital of Alabama.
141 el0 90Ei
What will medicine be able to accomplish 100 years from
now? Will blindness be a disability of the past? Will
brain-machine interfaces be old news? Will secret
government agencies really be able to rebuild you after a car
accident, like The Bionic Woman?
"It's not completely science fiction that we'll be able to
augment the human body," Ditto said. "I'm not so much
worried it's going to happen. I'm a little more concerned
with doing it properly. As people start to modify things,
what's natural and what isn't? It's going to get complicated."
UF bioethicist William Allen, J.D., M.Div., says people seem
to draw a line between using technology as a therapeutic tool
and using it to boost function. They may be more sensitive
about technologies involving the brain and genetics because
these parts make us the most distinctively human, he adds.
"I don't think we can draw any neat lines," Allen says.
"Any new technology always raises these questions."
When future generations look back on medicine today,
they may view it the same way we view the Civil War era,
Ditto says. Why? Genetics. Stem cells. Gene therapy.
Nanotechnology. And the fusion of medicine and biomedical
"If you go forward 25, 30 years you're going to come to a
day when doctors are simply going to know your genetic
structure," Ditto says. "They will know what drugs work,
what drugs won't. In the same way that medicine is going to
personalize medicine, engineering solutions are going to go
that way, to fit the needs of your body." 0
Jorden Flowers, 5-year-old son of Olympic bobsled champion Vonetta Flowers,
smiles up at his mom, as dad Johnny Flowers and UF clinical anaplastologist
Robert Mann look on during Jorden's follow-up visit Sept. 5. Jorden's ears were
fashioned in Mann's laboratory from casts of his twin brother's ears.
"He's starting school, and the prosthetic ears will help Jorden feel and be treated
just like any other child," said Glenn Turner, D.M.D., director of the UF College of
Dentistry's Maxillofacial Prosthetic Services and one of the few maxillofacial
prosthetic specialists nationwide.
Jorden started kindergarten this week at a Jacksonville school that specializes in
speech training for hearing-impaired children.
"A couple of weeks ago, Jorden spontaneously said, 'I love you' to his mom," said
Johnny Flowers, Jorden's dad. "That, to us, is worth any of the effort that we've put
forth, and any of the effort that anybody else has put forth."
"We know that when we tell him we love him, he can hear us," Flowers said. O
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events.
yOU F .
Call UF and Shands
f teams pull together
0 to perform
du y transplants
By Melanie Fridl Ross
ansplant surgeons are used to living
minute to minute, tethered to pagers and
cell phones that beckon at a moment's
notice. But even at that, one recent night will be
remembered for a long time to come.
Call it the night of the triple transplant.
About midnight Aug. 1, after a long day of business-as-usual in the
operating room, more than 30 people joined in to simultaneously perform
three thoracic transplants: a heart and two lungs. Not exactly your average
day or night, for that matter in the OR.
It all came together in the last 45 minutes before the first incision was
made, after nearly a day of trying to coordinate all the logistics amid the
usual caseload of surgeries, said donor coordinator Janet Davis, whose job
at Shands at UF is akin to air traffic control for transplantation. Davis
busily worked the phone to help assemble the cadre of experts needed to
pull it off.
When the first word came that the organs were available, only one
attending surgeon was on call, as is customary. Davis spent the next several
hours mobilizing the procurement team and three transplant teams
necessary for the operations, as the nursing staff scrambled to make sure
they had enough hands on deck in the intensive care unit to care for the
patients once they were out of the OR.
Performing three simultaneous transplants is a relatively rare occurrence
and it's a labor-intensive undertaking.
Before long, six attending UF surgeons had volunteered to assist, along
with at least four residents, three perfusionist teams, three teams from
cardiac anesthesiology and countless other OR personnel, including room
circulators, scrub nurses and experts in the intensive care unit all on a
night when only two or three of these folks were on any kind of call at all.
"I think it shows the dedication of a lot of people who were not on call to
come in and make this happen," said Mark Staples, M.D., an associate
professor of thoracic and cardiovascular surgery who participated in one of
the lung transplants. "And we all do it because we love to do this, and
because we know it helps patients out. We enjoy helping people and getting
them better. So we're willing to pitch in at odd times and work together to
make it happen."
Charles Klodell, M.D., an assistant professor of thoracic and
cardiovascular surgery who was part of the heart transplant team, pointed
out that there probably wasn't another place in the country that had eight
M.D.s working on simultaneous transplants at midnight that night.
"I think everybody was excited about it," Klodell said. "We've had two
transplants at once, that's not infrequent, but I don't remember a day where
we had three. People realized the opportunity it was to impact a lot of
Janet Davis, an organ transplant coordinator for Shands at UF, spent hours on the
phone assembling teams of surgeons, doctors, nurses and other health workers -
about 30 people to perform three simultaneous thoracic transplants Aug. 1.
patients simultaneously. It's nice to see the patients all do well from it."
The all-night affair also served as a chance for Klodell and colleague
Philip Hess, M.D., also an assistant professor of thoracic and
cardiovascular surgery, to pass along a little of what they had once learned
from Staples himself to two new faculty surgeons they teamed with.
In addition to Staples, Klodell and Hess, the teams included clinical
associate professors David Wyatt, M.D., and Wade Stinson, M.D., and
Peter Mikhail, M.D., an assistant professor of surgery along with
numerous other health practitioners, including members of the donor
team, who facilitate the arrival of the donor organs to the medical facility.
"It was an illustration of what a busy transplant center has to be ready to
do," said Curt Tribble, M.D., vice chairman of UF's department of surgery
and chief of its division of cardiothoracic surgery. "I have been told that
our relatively busy lung and relatively busy heart program in combination
makes the University of Florida one of the top five thoracic transplant
centers in the country, if you add up all the lungs and all the hearts."
Last year the center logged more than 100 thoracic transplants.
"We had three good organs and three recipients that needed them," Davis
said. "People who didn't even end up in the OR said, 'If it doesn't work out
and you can't find someone call me back later and we'll work it out.'
"It was a difficult day with a nice outcome." 0
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events. I o 15
Just say no ...
UF, French researchers seek ways to detect athletes who
use genes to boost performance
By Ann Griswold
G ene doping has the potential to
spawn athletes capable of out-
running, out-jumping and out-
cycling the strongest of champions. But
research under way at UF could help level
the playing field by detecting the first cases
of gene doping in professional athletes
before the practice enters the mainstream.
In the wake of recent Tour de France drug violations and with
the 2008 Olympics looming the need to stay ahead of the game
has never been more evident. That's why the Montreal-based World
Anti-Doping Agency, or WADA, charged with monitoring the
conduct of athletes, is working with investigators around the globe
to develop a test that would bust competitors for injecting
themselves with genetic material capable of enhancing muscle mass
or heightening endurance.
"If an athlete injects himself in the muscle with DNA, would we
be able to detect that?" asked Philippe Moullier, M.D., Ph.D., an
adjunct professor of microbiology and molecular genetics at UF and
director of the Gene Therapy Laboratory at the Universite de
Nantes in France.
Right now the answer is no, he said. But the UF scientists are
among several groups collaborating with national and global
anti-doping organizations to develop a test that could detect
evidence of "doped" DNA.
"WADA has had a research program in place for some years now,
to try to develop tests for gene-based doping," said Theodore
Friedmann, M.D., head of the agency's panel on genetic doping and
director of the gene therapy program at the University of California,
It sounds futuristic, but experts say it's only a matter of time.
Unscrupulous athletes began showing an interest in gene doping in
2004, when University of Pennsylvania researchers published the
first reports of muscle-boosting therapies in mice.
Since then, several potential targets of gene doping have emerged,
including the gene for erythropoietin, or EPO. A bioengineered
version of the hormone currently on the market increases red blood
cell production in patients with anemia and boosts oxygen delivery
to the body. In athletes, this translates to enhanced stamina and a
But because WADA prohibits synthetic hormones such as EPO
and drug tests detect them, performance-driven athletes have
begun searching for stealthier and more powerful alternatives.
"The next variation of boosting red blood cell production is to
actually inject the EPO gene itself, which would cause increases in
red blood cells," said Richard Snyder, Ph.D., an assistant professor
of microbiology and molecular genetics in the UF College of
Medicine and director of UF's Center of Excellence for
Regenerative Health Biotechnology. "So the idea is to develop a test
that could detect the gene that's administered."
The task isn't easy the researchers are faced with a myriad of
uncertainties, such as which tissues in the body to sample and how
to distinguish a "doped" gene from a naturally occurring one.
Ultimately, the test will compare how many copies of the EPO gene
are found in an athlete's body to levels found in the average person
who has not been doping.
Gene therapy has progressed in leaps and bounds over the years,
but the field has proved anything but predictable. Scientists say gene
doping will be no different. Current technologies could prove
ineffective or even lethal in humans. When the EPO gene was
first introduced into macaques, for example, the animals produced so
many red blood cells that their veins clogged, and many eventually
died after developing massive allergic responses to the therapy.
"I think many athletes know of the technology," Friedmann said.
"They're aware and they're concerned. WADA's aware and
concerned. One can overestimate the urgency, or one can be sort of
blind to it. But the technology is relatively straightforward and
people involved in gene therapy studies could very well see how it
could be applied to sport doping." 0
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events.
"The idea is
to develop a
test that could
- Richard Snyder, Ph.D.
A fungus among us
UF leading efforts to fight deadly fungus
By Melanie Fridl Ross
and mold might leap to mind. But UF
is about to house the nation's first
research repository for one species that has
nothing to do with pizza toppings or marbling
blue cheese: aspergillus, which increasingly
poses a major health threat to cancer patients
and transplant recipients.
The National Institutes of Health has
awarded $9 million over the next seven years
to the effort. UF researchers are collaborating JHN WINGARD, M.D
with colleagues at Duke University, Brigham
and Women's Hospital in Boston and the
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, who will funnel patients' respiratory, urine
and blood samples to UF. The repository will support research aimed at
learning more about the fungus and efforts to develop more accurate tests to
detect it in patients.
"Aspergillus is everywhere, particularly in the air we breathe; all of us
breathe it in all the time," said principal investigator John Wingard, M.D.,
director of UF's blood and marrow transplant program and deputy director
of the UF Shands Cancer Center. "On a windy day, especially in a dusty
environment or every time some dirt gets moved around, lots of these
organisms get aerosolized."
The number of people contracting Aspergillus infections jumped
enormously in the 1990s, Wingard said, and those with weakened immune
systems are particularly susceptible. Aspergillosis is the leading cause of
death from infection in bone marrow transplant and leukemia patients, as
well as among those who receive certain other solid organ transplants, he
said. About 15 percent of all bone marrow transplant patients, for example,
will develop an infection from Aspergillus; of those, about two-thirds die.
"We haven't had good treatments, we haven't had good prevention
methods and, most importantly, we haven't had good diagnostic methods to
identify which patients have these infections," Wingard said. "Since we often
don't recognize that patients have aspergillosis until very late in the course
of the infection, by the time we try to treat the infection it is often so
advanced we have very poor prospects of bringing it under control." 0
weigh heavy on
By April Frawley Birdwell
A parent's struggle with stress or
depression can lower a child's
quality of life and it could
hinder a youngster's attempts to lose
weight, too, UF researchers say.
Parent distress, peer bullying and
childhood depression can propel a cycle
that makes it more difficult for children
who are overweight to adopt healthier
lifestyles, UF researchers reported in the
July issue of the journal Obesity. D D J
Understanding more about factors that
affect a child's well-being could help
health-care professionals better treat kids struggling with obesity,
said David Janicke, Ph.D., a UF assistant professor of clinical and
health psychology in the College of Public Health and Health
Professions and the lead author of the study.
Tending to the needs of distressed parents could help some
children, Janicke said. Having supportive parents is vital for
children to be able to make the lifestyle changes needed to lose
weight. Often, children only have access to food at home, so what a
parent puts on the table usually determines what the child eats,
Janicke said. Also, the behaviors a parent models affect the lifestyle
choices a child makes, too.
"Looking at how parents are doing themselves, how they are
doing socially and emotionally and how they are coping with the
stresses in their lives, is really important too," Janicke said. "It's
important for them to take time out to take care of themselves."
More than 33 percent of children and adolescents in the United
States are overweight or obese, according to the National Center for
Health Statistics. Prior studies conducted elsewhere have shown
that children who are overweight have a poorer quality of life than
normal-weight peers. UF's study is one of the first to examine how
factors such as parent distress, depression and bullying affect a
child's well-being, giving researchers a better understanding of
how to help overweight children. The researchers surveyed 96
children who were obese or overweight and their parents,
comparing how these factors related to each child's quality of life.
"Sometimes it's hard to change peer interactions, but just giving
the child an ear can be very powerful," Janicke said. "Helping
parents take care of themselves and be effective listeners is a
starting point." 0
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events. I ; 17
An ounce of prevention
Jacksonville forum to address youth and domestic violence
By Patricia Bates McGhee
When Miren Schinco, M.D., sat on
a panel with a Harvard University
youth-and-violence expert at a
conference in November, she had an "Aha!"
"The speaker was not only incredibly eloquent and well-versed in the
topic, but she brought it down to a level where you realize that violence
in youth is not just something that happens to other people. It's
something we need to address now," said Schinco, division chief and
associate professor of trauma and critical care surgery in the UF College
The speaker was Deborah Prothrow-Stith, M.D., associate dean and
a professor of public health practice at the Harvard School of Public
Health. After hearing her, Schinco took the message home and starting
thinking of ways to address the youth-and-violence issue.
"I just thought that we, as medical professionals, should think about
these problems on a community level, personalize them a bit and discuss
them with community leaders and citizens," Schinco said. "Violence is
UF associate professor Dr. Miren Schinco has spearheaded a one-day community
forum on youth and domestic violence, which will be held Sept. 20 at the Omni
not just happening to drug dealers and people we don't necessarily
associate with it's happening to our young people."
Schinco's concerns have evolved into a one-day community forum, "Youth and Domestic Violence: A Community
Epidemic," with Prothrow-Stith as the keynote speaker. The event will be held Sept. 20 at the Omni Jacksonville Hotel.
Considered one of the foremost authorities on youth violence prevention, Prothrow-Stith was one of the first experts
to recognize violence as a public health problem. But instead of regarding it as a problem that solely belongs to adults
and men, Prothrow-Stith thinks of violence as a disease of young people, especially young women and preteen girls.
And the disease is spreading as girls become more violent.
"When I heard her speak about female violence, that idea had never really crossed my radar screen even though,
retrospectively, I realize I see these girls in the trauma center," Schinco said. "And when you're confronted with those
kinds of examples, it's becoming an acceptable societal thing for young women to be that violent."
Jacksonville's statistics are sobering. Violent deaths killed 35 teenagers in 2002, 21 percent of youth arrests are for
violent crimes and fighting is the most common violent act in Duval County schools, according to a 2006 Jacksonville
Children's Commission report.
Schinco sees this every day.
"Homicides in Jacksonville are on the rise, and our penetrating trauma rate has gone up 20 percent within the last
eight months to a year for girls in the low teens to high teens," she said. "Girls also participate in more violent acts now.
They're using weapons instead of scratching and kicking, and they're picking up knives and using guns, which makes
it a little bit more dicey."
Schinco, also the mother of a 10-year-old daughter and a son in high school, thinks it's time to address these
"We need to think about where we're going and what we need to do," she said.
Aside from Prothrow-Stith, other speakers and their topics include Joan Huffman, M.D., a UF assistant professor of
trauma surgery, "Intimate Partner Violence 2007 Update"; Christine Rasche, a University of North Florida associate
professor of criminal justice, "Domestic Homicides"; Kamela Scott, Ph.D., a UF associate professor of surgery and
psychological services program director, "Turning Point: Rethinking Violence"; and James Vallely, Ph.D., a Child
Protection Team psychologist, "Internet Violence."
Schinco said she hopes the forum attracts people in the community who want to make a difference.
"Anybody we can touch who may be in a leadership position or can work as an individual to take some of these ideas
and effect some change would be awesome," she said. "Change happens at the grass roots." 0
WHEN: 8:30 a.m. to
3:30 p.m., Sept. 20;
Registration at 7:30 a.m.
CONTACT: For more
information and advance
registration call 904-
244-7427 or e-mail julia.
181 i* MUI Ii Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events.
Girl lives on through grant
Money will help children, teens at UF's Rainbow Center
By Patricia Bates McGhee
U F's Rainbow Center for Women, Adolescents, Children
& Families at Shands Jacksonville was awarded the
third annual Tarsha Butler grant by Voices for Children
of the First Coast.
Named in memory of Butler, the $5,000 grant is designed to
help children and teens coping with the effects of AIDS lead
Formerly known as First Coast Child Advocates Inc., Voices
for Children is a nonprofit board that supports the Guardian ad
Litem program in Clay, Duval and Nassau counties. The
Guardian ad Litem program ensures that children in the
dependency system have an independent advocate working on
their behalf in court.
"With the $5,000, the Rainbow Center will be able to enrich
the lives of children and teenagers who are living with AIDS
- and we are very excited about helping them live life to the
fullest extent possible," said John Wagener, the Voices for
Children board president.
The Rainbow Center is the only comprehensive HIV and
AIDS program in North Florida.
Tarsha Butler contracted AIDS while she was in foster care.
As a result, Guardian ad Litem won a suit against the Florida
Department of Children & Families on behalf of Tarsha and in
the name of First Coast Child Advocates. Unfortunately, Tarsha
died before she could benefit from the money. Voices for
Children now serves as guardian of the trust and only children
with AIDS are able to receive funds or benefit from it.
"Tarsha was a lovely child who, to her death at a very young
age, always had a smile despite how sick she was," said Mobeen
Rathore, M.D., the Rainbow Center's director and a professor
and chief of pediatric infectious diseases and immunology at
the College of Medicine-Jacksonville. "Tarsha's smile continues
to light up lives now, thanks to this grant that we received in
UF Rainbow Center staff members join center director Dr. Mobeen Rathore, Voices for
Children board member Bob Anderson and board president John Wagener in the
center's rainbow-colored waiting room for presentation of the Tarsha Butler grant award.
Standing, from left, are Anderson, Carol Fulton, Kathy Letro, Monica Sanders, Johanna
Tous, Dr. Steven Matson, Glen Edwards, Elizabeth Harkey, Sue Osborne, Laura
Singleton, Jessica Joyce and Wagener. Shown kneeling, from left, are Dr. Rathore and
her memory, which will bring smiles to many young HIV-
infected patients who are going through the same illness and
fortunately transitioning to adulthood."
Rathore said the grant will provide a transitional support
group for adolescents living with HIV or AIDS, allowing them
to gain skills needed to transition to adulthood.
"The Tarsha Butler funds will support a case manager as well
as provide social activities, outings and speakers that otherwise
are difficult to fund through traditional grants," he said. 0
A home for research
The UF Health Science Center-Jacksonville celebrated the
opening of the campus' new research facility July 11. Dr.
Alan Berger, assistant dean for research in the College of
Medicine-Jacksonville, unveiled two plaques at the
celebration honoring Dr. Robert C. Nuss, dean of the
regional campus and associate vice president for health
affairs, and Nancy D. Frashuer and Louis "Andy" Frashuer,
who donated $25,000 to establish the Mrs. Mary D.
Frashuer Memorial Endowment Fund in support of cancer
research. Pictured from left are M. Peter Pevonka, UF
senior associate dean for research affairs; Nancy Frashuer,
Andy Frashuer, Dr. Nuss and Dr. Berger.
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events. o L 19
COLLEGE OF MEDICINE
Ph.D., a research assistant
professor of oncology in the
University of Florida College
of Medicine's department
of surgery, has received a
$300,000 grant from the
Susan G. Komen for the Cure
breast cancer foundation.
The grant will fund her Golubovskaya
research into two proteins associated with breast
cancer development and spread. Golubovskaya
will analyze how the two proteins interact, an
association that has never been studied in the
breast cancer cell-biology field.
WAYNE K. GOODMAN,
Ph.D., chairman of the
department of psychiatry, has
taken a leave of absence to
serve as acting director of the
National Institute of Mental
Health's division for adult
translational research through
June 2008. Mark S. Gold, Goodman
M.D., psychiatry's associate
chairman for education and chief of addiction
medicine, is serving as acting chairman of the
STAN WILLIAMS, M.D., the
Harry Prystowsky Professor
of Reproductive Medicine
and chief of the reproductive
endocrinology and infertility
division, has been named
interim chair of the department
of obstetrics and gynecology.
Williams already had been
serving as the acting chairman Williams
of the department since early 2007, when former
chair I. Keith Stone, M.D., left for a six-month stint
with Doctors Without Borders.
COLLEGE OF PHARMACY
JEFFREY HUGHES, Ph.D.,
an associate professor of
pharmaceutics, has been
appointed to the editorial
advisory board of The Open
Drug Delivery Journal, a new
peer-reviewed journal. The
online journal was created
for scientists and researchers Hug
worldwide to keep abreast
of the latest developments through immediate
access to quality articles. Bentham Science
Publishers plans to publish more than 300 peer-
reviewed open access journals this year. For more
information, go to http://www.bentham.org.
ISSAM ZINEH, Pharm.D.,
an assistant professor of
pharmacy practice, has
received a $30,000 grant
from the American College of
Clinical Pharmacy for his work
in cardiovascular disease. The
ACCP 2007 Frontiers Career
Development Research Award
will support Zineh's work Zir
examining the effectiveness of
fibrate drugs in controlling elevated triglycerides
and inflammation linked to cardiovascular disease.
The nationally competitive Frontiers awards
support previously unmet or underserved areas of
pharmacy-based health services research, clinical
research or translational research.
PUBLIC HEALTH AND HEALTH PROFESSIONS
LYNNE THOMAS GORDON,
M.B.A., a nationally
executive, has been named
an executive in residence
for the department of
health services research,
management and policy.
Thomas Gordon has
more than 25 years of
management experience in various health-care
settings, including as director of operations at
Shands AGH and, more recently, as vice president
and chief operating officer at Children's Hospital
of Michigan in Detroit.
JAMES HALL III, Ph.D., an
associate chair and clinical
professor in the department
of communicative disorders,
was a keynote speaker at the
conference "Building Bridges
in Africa: Early Childhood J
Development for Children Hall
with Hearing Loss," held
last month in Johannesburg,
MAGGIE HORN, a student in
the doctor of physical therapy
and certificate in public
health programs, received
a 2007 graduate student
scholarship from the Florida
Public Health Association. Horn
She was honored at the
association's annual awards
luncheon in Tampa last
KRISTIN DAY, a student in
the rehabilitation science
doctoral program, received
the Best Poster Research
Award for Doctoral
Students at the pre-
conference symposium of Day
the International Society for Posture and Gait
Research's biennial conference held in July. 0
201 I@ Ei
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events.
UF's Institute on Aging is one of 10 centers across the country to be
named a Claude D. Pepper Older Americans Independence Center. UF
will receive $3.9 million over the next five years to fund aging research
and related projects. Here, recent UF College of Medicine graduate
Nasrin Aldawoodi is shown working with a patient during her geriatrics
rotation at the Malcom Randall Veterans Affairs Medical Center.
New UF center to help keep older folks healthy and independent
By Ann Griswold
I t's no secret the Sunshine State is a popular retirement destination Florida's mild winters and sunny
beaches have attracted the shuffleboard set for generations. Now, a newly awarded Claude D. Pepper Older
Americans Independence Center at UF's Institute on Aging promises to improve the quality of life for these
Floridians, ensuring that their golden years are more enjoyable than ever before.
UF is one of 10 centers in the country to receive the prestigious Pepper award
from the National Institute on Aging, which will provide $3.9 million over the next
five years to fund aging research and career development.
Created and named in honor of Pepper, a former U.S. senator and state
representative from Florida who dedicated his legislative career to improving the
lives of older Americans until his death in 1989, Pepper centers focus on one
common fear people have about growing older the loss of independence. As the
American population ages, the research conducted at the Pepper centers becomes
increasingly important, especially in Florida, where 17 percent of the population is
"Our goal is not merely to extend life expectancy, but to increase quality of life
- to make those extra years healthy, fulfilling and independent," said Marco
Pahor, M.D., in July at a gathering at the UF president's house to celebrate the
multimillion dollar award.
Each of the nation's 10 Pepper centers focuses on a specific area of emphasis
beyond its basic role in research and training. UF's central mission addresses the
problem of muscle loss, a process called sarcopenia. Research programs at the UF
Pepper Center are organized around several core areas that bring together an
interdisciplinary team of researchers, geriatricians and educators to prevent and
rehabilitate physical disabilities resulting from muscle loss.
"Over time, muscle shrinks as fat expands," said Pahor, director of UF's Institute
on Aging and chair of the College of Medicine's department of aging and geriatrics.
"We are looking for novel ways to slow this process, but right now nothing beats the
benefits of physical activity."
The grant will support UF research on the biological changes that accompany
aging. Scientists are in the midst of studies to determine the role of genetic,
behavioral and environmental factors in age-related disability. Basic science
projects, as well as clinical and translational studies, are under way to investigate
the effects of oxidative damage on the body's energy use, develop ways to measure
the extent of age-related disability and explore the benefits of diet, exercise and
other interventions on muscle quality.
Crossing institutional and departmental boundaries, UF's Pepper Center unites
researchers from seven UF colleges, as well as personnel from Shands at UF and
the Malcom Randall Veterans Affairs Medical Center, in an effort to improve the
quality of life for older persons.
"Our award positions the University of Florida Institute on Aging as a national
leader in discovering a healthier, stronger and more independent future for our
parents, ourselves and for future generations," Pahor said. 0
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events. I o 21
UF establishes state office on disability
Dr. Elena Andresen is the director of the new
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention-
funded Office on Disability and Health, the
state's first centralized program to coordinate
Florida's disability programs and services.
U F researchers received a $1.6 million grant from the Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention to establish the state's first centralized program to coordinate Florida's disability
programs and services.
Florida is one of 16 states to receive the five-year State Disability and Health Program award, which
is being used to create the Office on Disability and Health at UF.
"Florida has strong disability-related programs, but disability issues are often compartmentalized
into groups focused on advocacy, service, health care, Medicaid, education or chronic disease
prevention," said Office on Disability and Health Director Elena Andresen, Ph.D., a professor and
chair of the department of epidemiology and biostatistics at the College of Public Health and Health
Professions. "To be effective, all groups need to come to the table with their own expertise."
Compared with the national average of 19 percent, more than 22 percent of the state's population
- or 3 million Floridians report having a disability, according to the 2000 U.S. Census. An
increase in the number of residents over the age of 65, from 2.8 million in 2000 to a projected 4
million by 2015, is expected to significantly raise the prevalence of disabilities in Florida.
Among the issues facing the disability population are higher rates of secondary conditions such as
joint pain and obesity, lower quality of life and limited health-care access, Andresen said.
"In 2005, twice as many people living with a disability reported that they could not see a doctor
because of cost compared to people without a disability," she said.
The Office on Disability and Health at UF will design, implement, monitor and evaluate state and
community programs and services for people with disabilities. The office will also provide technical
assistance to ensure best practices and use standardized methods and tools for data collection.
"Because disability is likely to impact all people at some time, it is important to have a sound
framework for addressing disability and health issues, since they are truly population issues,"
Andresen said. 0
A meeting of the minds ...
By Linda Homewood
he UF College of Pharmacy played host to pharmacists and pharmacy educators from the
southeastern United States who traveled to Orlando for the National Association of
Boards of Pharmacy and American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy annual meeting
The College of Pharmacy developed this year's program and co-hosted the event along with
the Florida State Board of Pharmacy. More than 80 members from the association's District III
region attended the three-day meeting that examined some of today's most relevant topics in
pharmacy. Educational sessions, offering continuing education credit, provided an opportunity
for pharmacy professionals to exchange knowledge and information.
Professional leaders and educators in pharmacy shared their expertise on issues relevant to
the pharmacy industry and education, such as: ensuring product quality and standards,
Medicare Part D implications for pharmacy practice, and sociocultural and communication
barriers faced by internationally educated pharmacists working in North America.
Mitchel Rothholz, R.Ph., M.B.A., chief of staff for the American Pharmacists Association,
also highlighted the importance of understanding media relations. Rothholz discussed factors
that draw media attention to an issue, identified top pharmacy news issues and talked about
how to discuss key messages about the pharmacy profession during an interview.
A three-member panel, focused on e-learning and international education programs,
discussed development and approval processes of pharmacy education and curricula, and new
accreditation standards for online and international education.
Hosted each year by one of eight District III colleges in the southeastern states, the annual
meeting provides an opportunity for pharmacy colleges and schools and state boards to discuss
regional and national issues. 0
Association leaders and presenters gather at the National Association
of Boards of Pharmacy and American Association of Colleges of
Pharmacy District III pharmacy meeting in August. Michael McKenzie,
the senior associate dean for professional affairs and a professor of
pharmacy practice, stands second from left with Rebecca Poston,
Carmen Catizone and Peter Vlasses.
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events.
Joseph L. Riley III, jockeys for position in his No. 15 Formula Ford racecar during the South Atlantic Road Racing Championships Invitational Championship
Race, held Sept. 24, 2006 at Roebling Road Raceway in Savannah, Ga. Riley, on the winner's podium at right, placed third during the final race, but still
took home the SARRC championship. (Photos courtesy of Joseph Riley)
UF dental researcher lives in the rC1C7
By Lindy McCollum-Brounley
ne might take a look at clinical psychologist
Joseph L. Riley III, Ph.D., an associate
professor of community dentistry and
behavioral science in the College of Dentistry, and
think he'd be a sedate, quiet sort of fellow with a
sedate, quiet sort of hobby ... like clipping Bonsai to
the lilting sounds of classical music.
Think again. Riley's hobby is all
about speed, the smell of hot asphalt,
and the roar of 117 horses chomping at
the bit to burn rubber on a fast course.
We're talking Formula Ford car racing,
baby, and at speeds up to 140 mph, it's
not for the faint of heart.
For 56-year-old Riley, who owned a
chain of foreign auto part stores in the
Orlando area for 20 years before
entering academia, Formula Ford auto
racing seemed the perfect hobby to
occupy his spare time.
"Cars are kind of my thing," Riley
said. "In my youth, I wanted to be a
professional racecar driver and started
racing when I was 21. But I blew up the
engine in my car after about a year,
started a business and put racing on
the back burner. So in some ways, this
is unfinished business."
Formula Ford cars are open-wheel,
single-seaters slung low and without
the aerodynamic wings seen on the
Formula One cars. The newer car
chassis have springs and shocks that
are covered by the car body to reduce
drag, but Riley's car is a classic 1975
Titan chassis with outboard suspension
that places him at a 5 mph
disadvantage at higher speeds a
disadvantage that disappears below 100
mph. So his competitive edge at lower
speeds is driving skill and the
mechanical preparation he puts into
the car before a race.
"My car is in my garage and I do all
the work on it," Riley said. "I don't
actually build the engine itself, I send
it off to a professional engine builder,
but I put it in my car and do all the
maintenance, all the setup work on the
chassis, put the car on my trailer and
drive it to the race."
Riley must be doing something right.
He won the 2006 championship for the
Southeastern Division of the Sports Car
Club of America, competing against
drivers with newer, more aerodynamic
cars, called Swifts. The Swifts have
covered springs and shocks, and are the
cars to beat at Formula Ford races.
"The good news is that the guys who
have Swifts didn't run enough races
and they were unreliable," Riley said
with a laugh. "The young guys are
crazier, they go off track ... So they
had won some races, but I had won six
races before I went to the championship
race, and I only had to finish fourth to
be series champion."
Riley placed third, his Titan keeping
pace with the newer Swifts to take
home the SCCA Southeastern Division
Formula Ford Championship.
Although he's modest about his
achievement, Riley is accustomed to
being at the top of his game. In what he
calls "another life," Riley was a
nationally ranked triathlete. Now, he's
the recipient of dentistry's University
Research Foundation Professorship
Award, which consists of a one-time
$3,000 grant to support his ongoing
research and $5,000 each year over the
next three years as a salary supplement.
Riley and his wife, Denise, a nurse
practitioner in the department of
neurology, are delighted with the
recognition, and Riley plans to use the
award to support his research on
cultural differences in pain management
behaviors, a subject he finds even more
exciting than car racing.
"Research is just as thrilling as an
auto race," Riley said. "If you put in
the preparation time and pay attention
to details the payoff is exciting your
paper is published, your grant is
funded or you win a race." 0
Visit us online @ http://news.health.ufl.edu/ for the latest news and HSC events. l I o 1 23
Former dentistry dean passes away
By Lindy McCollum-Brounley
ose E. Medina, D.D.S., former dean of the UF College
of Dentistry and UF assistant vice president for facilities
planning and operations, died July 19. He was 81.
Medina, who arrived at the College of Dentistry in 1967 as associate dean and a
professor of clinical dentistry, served as dean from 1969 to 1974, the college's formative
years. He supervised the development of an innovative, self-paced dental curriculum
and spearheaded faculty recruitment initiatives. Under Medina's watch, the college's
first class of dental students was admitted in 1972 and, in the summer of 1974, three
members of that charter class were the first students in state history to deliver dental
care to Florida residents.
Medina helped shape the character of the Health Science Center campus. He was
appointed director of health center space planning and utilization in 1974, and was
promoted to UF assistant vice president for facilities planning and operations in 1976, a
position he held for 10 years. Medina was instrumental in guiding facilities planning
and implementation during the historic "Project I" expansion of the Health Science
Center campus. Project I encompassed construction of the Dental Sciences Building,
the Communicore Building and facilities to house the College of Veterinary Medicine.
He retired from the university in 2000 as a professor of operative dentistry.
Medina was born in Santurce, Puerto Rico, in 1926 and entered undergraduate
studies at The Johns Hopkins University in 1942 as a gifted 16-year-old. He was accepted
by the Baltimore College of Dental Surgery at the University of Maryland in 1944 and
graduated cum laude in 1948. He joined the Baltimore College of Dental Surgery faculty
after graduation, eventually attaining the position of assistant dean and professor of
operative dentistry before leaving to join UF.
Medina's teaching career spanned more than 50 years, and he was a mentor to
students, practitioners and dental educators worldwide. 0
: H- ~ "" 1R -.. .-
:I- .' .
-r .. .. ..-- -- ,-
.... r .--' .... *
Dean Jose Medina, right, and Edmund Ackell, then provost for health
affairs, break ground for the Dental Sciences Building on May 22, 1971.
UF Health Science Center
Office of News & Communications
Senior Vice President,
Douglas J. Barrett, M.D.
Director, News &
April Frawley Birdwell
Melanie Fridl Ross, John Pastor
April Frawley Birdwell, Tracy Brown,
Sarah Carey, Anney Doucette, Linda
Homewood, Lindy McCollum-
Brounley, Patricia Bates McGhee, John
Pastor, Jill Pease, Melanie Fridl Ross
Amelia Beck, Meredith Woods
Cassandra Jackson, Beth Powers,
The POST is the monthly internal
newsletter for the University of
Florida Health Science Center, the
most comprehensive academic
health center in the Southeast,
with campuses in Gainesville
and Jacksonville and affiliations
throughout Florida. Articles feature
news of interest for and about HSC
faculty, staff and students. Content
may be reprinted with appropriate
credit. Ideas for stories are welcome.
The deadline for submitting items to
be considered for each month's issue
is the 15th of the previous month.
Submit to the editor at afrawley@ufl.
edu or deliver to the Office of News &
Communications in the Communicore
Building, Room C3-025.
F Health Science Center
UF UNIVERSITY of FLORIDA