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Opoid Overdose Training

Empowering Students to End the Cycle of Addiction

There is no question that the opioid crisis in Maryland has reached epidemic proportions. In the first three quarters of 2016, the state reported 1,468 unintentional deaths caused by substance abuse, with a majority of the fatalities attributed to heroin and fentanyl. In the same period, there were approximately 500 deaths reported in Baltimore City alone, an increase from approximately 300 the previous year. With overdose numbers this staggering, individuals working in public health and clinical health care have started to wonder what more can they do to address this problem.

Through the Emerging Leaders program, I met an individual from the School of Nursing who invited me to join the planning committee for the Baltimore Area Health Education Center’s (BAHEC) Interdisciplinary Training on Opioid Overdose. We organized an event called “Empowering Students to End the Cycle of Addiction,” which took place on April 8, 2017. Students, staff, and faculty, representing the Graduate School and the Schools of Law, Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, and Social Work at the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB), came together to learn about the opioid epidemic in Baltimore City and to discuss their professional and personal roles in reducing opioid overdoses. Attendees also left the training certified to administer naloxone – a lifesaving drug that can reverse opioid overdoses.

Preparing Students to Save Lives

The day began with an eye-opening presentation from David Richard Fowler, MD, chief medical examiner for the state of Maryland, in which he presented data on the number of overdose deaths. He discussed the implications that this public health crisis is having on his office, noting that the increase in fatalities has caused a huge strain on his office’s human resources.

Next, Miriam Alvarez, the opioid education and naloxone distribution (OEND) outreach program coordinator at Behavioral Health Systems Baltimore, provided an inspired naloxone training. She engaged the audience by asking questions about their knowledge of opioids and their ability to recognize the signs of an opioid overdose. She stressed that while opioid misuse was once considered a low income, inner-city problem, it affects individuals from all walks of life, and we should all be prepared to respond in the event that we witness an overdose.

Representing the School of Pharmacy, Fadia Shaya, PhD, MPH, professor and vice chair for academic affairs in the Department of Pharmaceutical Health Services Research (PHSR) and director of the Behavioral Health Research Team, discussed the pharmacist’s role in preventing opioid overdose. She spoke about Maryland’s naloxone standing order, which allows registered pharmacists to dispense naloxone without a prescription and discussed different measures that pharmacists and pharmacies can take to ensure that they are actively involved in preventing opioid misuse, including an explanation of the risks of prescription opioids with patients and querying the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) before filling a prescription. Shaya closed her presentation by mentioning a variety of public health prevention programs on which her team works related to this issue.

Making the Discussion Hit Home

Following the presentations, faculty from the medical, dental, and social work schools presented students with a case study that profiled a young man who began misusing prescription opioids following a sports injury, and subsequently developed a dependency on heroin. Faculty encouraged students to identify areas of health care intervention, which sparked a lively discussion among attendees. The event closed with Mellissa Sager, JD, staff attorney at the School of Law, presenting an overview of the Good Samaritan Law and an update from a Baltimore City Health Department representative, who described the city’s response to the opioid overdose epidemic.

This training proved to be a huge success, with more than 55 students attending the Saturday morning training to take action on this important issue. Considering the interest in this event and the urgency of this public health epidemic, the BAHEC plans to host another training in the fall. Everyone at UMB has a role to play in reducing opioid overdoses, and this event provided an opportunity for students, faculty, and staff to become more empowered to do so.

  
Marianne Gibson Clinical Care, Collaboration, Community Service, Education, For B'more, Global & Community Engagement, People, UMB News, University Life, USGAApril 24, 20170 comments
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Women in Bio Pop Up Meeting

Women in Bio Baltimore Pop Up Meeting

Don’t miss the Women in Bio Baltimore May pop-up meeting. The meetings are free! Network and develop possible collaborations, while learning how to develop your career. May’s speaker will be Christy Wyskiel, advisor to the president of Johns Hopkins University.

May Meeting

“Revitalizing East Baltimore Through Entrepreneurs in Science: Update on Impact of FastFoward & JHU Ventures on Baltimore Neighborhoods”
Johns Hopkins
1812 Ashland Bldg., Ground Level
May 11, 2017,  8 to 9:30 a.m.

  
Karen Underwood Collaboration, Education, People, ResearchApril 19, 20170 comments
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Lunch and Learn Flow Cytometry

The UMGCCC Lunch and Learn Lecture Series

On May 11, the University of Maryland Greenebaum Comprehensive Cancer Center (UMGCCC) Flow Cytometry Lunch and Learn Lecture Series with Transnational Laboratory Shared Services will present “Advanced imaging cytometry for high throughput cell, colony, and spheroids analysis.”

The UMGCCC Lunch and Learn Lecture Series is a great way to network, learn about new technologies and/or procedures, and make possible collaborations. The event is free. Registration required.

REGISTER NOW

  
Karen Underwood Clinical Care, Collaboration, Education, Research, TechnologyApril 19, 20170 comments
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Earth Day Celebration

Celebrate Earth Day with URecFit and CulinArt at the SMC Campus Center!

We’re all caretakers of the Earth. Learn how to empower others as well as yourself to make a positive impact on the planet.

Become more environmentally friendly by joining URecFit and CulinArt on Thursday, April 20, at noon in the lobby of the SMC Campus Center.

Take Action on Earth Day!

  • Bring in three plastic grocery bags and receive a recycled grocery tote
  • Bring in three water bottles and receive a recycled 25 oz. water bottle
  • Participate in the 5K walk/run and receive a mini herb garden
  • Learn about and sign up for the Green Office Program
  • Enjoy some edible dirt
  
Julia Wightman Bulletin Board, Collaboration, Community Service, Education, For B'more, Global & Community Engagement, People, UMB Go Green, University Administration, University Life, USGAApril 17, 20170 comments
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School of Social Work All Gifts Count Campaign

The School of Social Work celebrated another successful All Gifts Count Campaign, a month-long giving initiative held in March. At the close of the campaign, the School had raised $15,780 from 200+ donors, surpassing their goals of $15,000 from 150 donors.

Coinciding with National Social Work Month, All Gifts Count jointly celebrates the work and commitment of social work professionals, and helps raise funds to improve UM SSW’s effort and its impact.

Thanks to all alumni, students, faculty, staff, and friends who supported this campaign!

  
Lisa Vuolo Bulletin Board, Collaboration, People, UMB News, University AdministrationApril 17, 20170 comments
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National Black Nurses Association

New Downtown Chapter of National Black Nurses Association

A new chapter of the National Black Nurses Association (NBNA) is finally here at the UMSON, Baltimore campus! We are very excited to form a collaboration among nursing students, faculty, and staff in order to establish an extensive impact here on campus and throughout the Baltimore area.

Members can expect to take advantage of participating in various events, fundraisers, and community service opportunities throughout the semester. For more information on our organization and becoming a member, please email us at nbna.umson@gmail.com.

  
Ashley FosterBulletin Board, Collaboration, Education, People, UMB NewsApril 11, 20170 comments
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Health Information Resources for Culturally Diverse Patients

Between 1990 and 2013, the U.S. population identified as having limited English proficiency grew 80 percent, from nearly 14 million to 25.1 million. Cultural diversity within the U.S. continues to increase.

If you provide care for patients or clients with limited English proficiency, do you know the library provides access to a range of quality multilingual, multicultural health information resources? If you’d like to know more about these resources, come to our Health Information Resources for Culturally Diverse Patients workshop.

Learn where to locate patient education resources, including medication information, available in other languages as well as those written in easy-to-read English.

Discussion will include the potential impact utilizing health literacy resources can have on patient adherence, safety, and satisfaction. Visit the Library’s Spring 2017 Workshop Schedule to register.

  
Everly Brown Clinical Care, Collaboration, Community Service, Education, PeopleApril 11, 20170 comments
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Regulatory Science Students at FDA

Regulatory Science Graduate Students Go Behind the Scenes at FDA

Nearly 40 graduate students from the MS in regulatory science program at the School of Pharmacy had an opportunity to visit the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in White Oak, Md., and met with top scientists in the Division of Cardiovascular and Renal Products (DCaRP) on March 28. Norman Stockbridge, MD, PhD, director of the Office of Drug Evaluation I in DCaRP; Michael Monteleone, MS, associate director for labeling in DCaRP; Edward Fromm, RPh, chief of project management staff in DCaRP; Thomas Papoian, PhD, supervisory pharmacologist in DCaRP; Senatore Fortunato, MD, medical officer in DCaRP; and Lori Wachter, RN, BSN, safety regulatory project manager in DCaRP, spent more than 90 minutes engaged in a panel discussion with students, answering questions about a wide range of topics, such as:

  • Drug safety assessment
  • New preclinical models
  • Labeling
  • Areas of dialogue between FDA and sponsors

Devi Kozeli, a current student in the MS in regulatory science program and senior regulatory health project manager and consumer safety officer at the FDA, organized the panel discussion. “I am thrilled that I was able to help my classmates gain a better understanding about how FDA teams represent the disciplines that we study in class. Scientists with backgrounds in clinical research, pharmacology/toxicology, post-marketing safety, labeling, and regulatory management all work together to review new drugs,” he said.

 Student Insights

Following the panel discussion, I had an opportunity to debrief with students and ask their thoughts about the experience. In addition to expressing their appreciation to the FDA for granting our program this unique opportunity, the students shared their thoughts about the aspects of the experience that they found most enjoyable.

“It was fascinating to learn how the FDA review process is a truly collaborative one that involves scientific exchange among numerous reviewers with different perspectives,” said Laura Murphy, MT, MPH, manager of pharmacovigilance at C.B. Fleet Company and recipient of the School’s Ellen H. Yankellow Scholarship. “A common theme that seemed present throughout the panel discussion was the application of basic science in problem solving. I particularly enjoyed how Dr. Papoian emphasized this concept, as there isn’t always a simple checklist that we can run through to solve these real-world problems.”

“I learned so much from this experience,” added Grishma Patel, MS, quality assurance specialist at Tishcon Corporation. “Safety and efficacy are topics that we discuss every day at work. While classes in the MS in Regulatory Science program address a wide range of approaches that we can use to evaluate efficacy and safety, it was wonderful to gain some additional understanding and learn that the tools currently available to measure safety are not necessarily the same tools that you would use to measure efficacy. Safety evaluation seems much more heuristic than the evaluation of efficacy.”

Keisha Hines-Harris, quality analyst specialist II at Leidos Biomedical and the National Cancer Institute, also noted, “I enjoyed listening to the individual perspectives of each reviewer, which sometimes differ from the general consensus, even though both share the common goal to protect the public health. I also enjoyed the opportunity to meet my classmates, which is rare for programs based exclusively online.”

Learn More

Visit this webpage for more information about the Division of Cardiovascular and Renal Products at the FDA. More information about the MS in regulatory science program is available on the School of Pharmacy’s website.

By James Polli, PhD
Shangraw/Noxell Endowed Chair in Industrial Pharmacy and Pharmaceutics
School of Pharmacy

  
Clare BanksABAE, Collaboration, Education, People, Research, UMB News, University LifeApril 10, 20170 comments
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SOM Gala

University of Maryland School of Medicine Gala

The annual School of Medicine Gala is more than a night of cocktails, dinner, and dancing. It also provides critical funding for basic science and translational research and clinical initiatives at the School of Medicine.

For more information or to purchase tickets, please contact Becky Herman at rherman@som.umaryland.edu or 410-706-5057.

  
Becky Herman Collaboration, Education, Research, Technology, UMB News, University LifeApril 10, 20170 comments
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President's Message April

April President’s Message

Check out the April issue of The President’s Message. It includes Dr. Perman’s column on the Neighborhood Spring Festival, a story on the generous gift of Drs. Richard and Jane Sherman, an invitation to Dr. Perman’s State of the University Address on May 10, a recap of Frank Bruni’s and Goldie Blumenstyk’s lectures, part of our President’s Panel on Politics and Policy, a look ahead to the next lecture in that series, Matt Hourihan on the federal budget on May 2, a story on our CURE Scholars, who advanced in the Maryland Science Olympiad, a roundup of student, faculty, and staff achievements, and a safety tip on not texting and driving.

  
Chris Zang Clinical Care, Collaboration, Community Service, Contests, Education, People, Technology, UMB News, University Life, USGAApril 10, 20170 comments
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zspace

Explore VR at HS/HSL With zSpace

The zSpace VR (virtual reality) station is located at the HS/HSL Innovation Space and available for use on a first-come, first-served basis.

ZSpace VR station allows a user wearing a pair of the 3-D glasses to manipulate a digital object with a stylus. The zSpace VR station is connected to a large LCD screen to display the 3-D view of the object to a group of viewers who are not wearing the 3-D glasses at the same time. The zSpace VR station is equipped with Visible Body, Studio, and zView.

Come explore VR at the HS/HSL Innovation Space today!

Modernization projects such as the Innovation Space initiative are made possible by the generosity of donors through the UMB Foundation. If you would like to support projects such as these please visit our Giving site or contact us at (410) 706-7545.

  
Everly BrownBulletin Board, Collaboration, Education, People, Research, Technology, UMB NewsApril 6, 20170 comments
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Stroke Study

Study Links Gene Mutation to Increased Risk for Stroke

Patrick Wintrode, PhD, associate professor in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences (PSC) at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy, recently collaborated on a large, multinational study that linked a single amino acid variant in the protein coding gene SERPINA1 to an increased risk for large artery stroke. Published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), the study leveraged Wintrode’s expertise in hydrogen-deuterium exchange mass spectrometry to characterize the amino acid substitution, which occurs in the protein alpha-1 antitrypsin (AAT) and was previously believed to be a “silent” mutation with no association to any disease in the body.

“Previous research has shown that stroke, particularly the atherosclerotic form large artery stroke, is a highly heritable condition,” says Rainer Malik, PhD, postdoctoral researcher at the Institute for Stroke and Dementia Research at Klinikum der Universität München in Munich, Germany and lead author of the study. “However, the mechanisms surrounding how an individual’s risk for stroke is passed down from generation to generation remain unclear. The goal of this study was to identify new genes that could potentially indicate whether an individual is at an increased risk for suffering a large artery stroke during his or her lifetime.”

Inheriting Risk

According to the study published by Malik and his colleagues, stroke is the leading cause of long-term disability and the second most common cause of death worldwide. The American Stroke Association reports that large artery strokes occur when a large artery feeding the brain becomes blocked. These blockages often occur as a result of atherosclerosis (hardening and narrowing of the arteries), when the plaques that contribute to the hardening and narrowing of the arteries rupture and break off to travel to another part of the body – in this instance, the brain. Malik and his colleagues note that large artery strokes exhibit the highest heritability of all stroke subtypes, with an estimated 40 to 66 percent of individuals inheriting their risk for stroke from their parents.

For this study, researchers used an innovative exome chip strategy to compare the genomes of 3,127 patients from across Europe, Australia, and South Asia who suffered a large artery stroke with the genomes of 9,778 disease-free patients. The team found two genome-wide variants: one in the gene HDAC9, an already established risk factor for large artery stroke, and another in SERPINA1. A closer inspection of SERPINA1 revealed that a single amino acid substitution in AAT placed individuals at an increased risk for experiencing a large artery stroke. Following this discovery, Malik reached out to Wintrode for assistance characterizing the substitution using hydrogen-deuterium exchange mass spectrometry.

“Although the mutation was clearly associated with an increased risk for large artery stroke, it did not appear to result in significantly impaired function or protein misfolding,” says Wintrode, whose previous research has examined AAT deficiency and been supported by organizations such as the Alpha-1 Foundation, which provides support for AAT-deficient patients. “Because my team at the School of Pharmacy has published numerous studies on AAT and other proteins in the same family, Dr. Malik and his colleagues reached out to us for assistance with comparing the mutation’s properties to the more common variant.”

Solving a Mystery With Mass Spectrometry

At the School of Pharmacy, Wintrode’s research – which he often conducts using the cutting-edge equipment in the School’s Mass Spectrometry Center – focuses on protein folding and misfolding, as well as the role of protein dynamics in function and allosteric regulation. Although the mutated AAT displayed no structural abnormalities, Wintrode and his team – Daniel Deredge, PhD, postdoctoral fellow in PSC, and Anirudh Sivakumar, undergraduate summer research intern in PSC – found that it caused portions of the protein to become less stable. He notes that the increased structural fluctuations associated with the mutated AAT might interfere with the protein’s ability to interact with other proteins.

“Other proteins in the same family as AAT are often recruited to specific locations, such as clots or plaques, through interactions with other proteins or carbohydrates,” says Wintrode. “Concentrating these proteins at these locations enhances their function. However, in addition to being more flexible, the AAT mutation identified in this study interacts more weakly with lipoproteins than the more common variant of this gene. This could result in less AAT being concentrated at atherosclerotic plaques.”

Malik and his colleagues agree that the findings from this study emphasize the importance of every amino acid change that occurs in the body, noting that even those substitutions that do not directly influence a protein’s function can still affect the way in which those proteins interact with and bind to other molecules.

“One of the most interesting aspects of our research is that the amino acid substitution we identified commonly occurs in humans, but has never before been associated with disease,” says Malik. “We are excited to take our findings to the next level and further explore the role of AAT and AAT-neutrophil elastase (NE) complexes in the development and progression of atherosclerosis. In the future, it is our hope that drugs designed to treat patients with AAT deficiency might also be beneficial to patients who have been diagnosed with other conditions in which AAT has been shown to play an important role, including large artery stroke.”

  
Malissa Carroll ABAE, Collaboration, Education, People, Research, UMB NewsApril 3, 20170 comments
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Research Data Management

HS/HSL Services in Research Data Management

The HS/HSL is debuting new services in research data management.

Consult with a member of the HS/HSL team for assistance with:

  • Developing a data management plan
  • Locating, describing, storing, and sharing data

Many funding agencies are requiring that data management plans be submitted with grant applications. An effective plan to collect, share, reproduce, and preserve data may increase the impact of your research.

The HS/HSL also offers workshops in data management including Data Management 101 and Creating a Data Management Plan with the DMP Tool.

  
Everly Brown Clinical Care, Collaboration, Education, People, Research, TechnologyApril 3, 20170 comments
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Employee of the Month

SON’s Voytek Named Employee of the Month

Donors feel appreciated, nursing students feel hydrated, visitors to the Living History Museum feel nostalgic, and colleagues feel like chirping — all thanks to the efforts of Lorrie Voytek.

Voytek, assistant director of development at the School of Nursing, was surprised on March 20 when what she thought was a group picture at the President’s Office with her development colleagues Laurette Hankins, Stacey Conrad, and Cynthia Sikorski turned into an Employee of the Month celebration for her.

UMB President Jay A. Perman, MD, mentioned Voytek’s work at the museum and on sustainability with GreenSON. “I also know getting back to donors is a point of emphasis with you,” he said. “And making sure that the students who benefit from the donors get to meet them and vice versa. I always tell a story about a donor at Northwestern University [Louise Ploner] who enabled me to go to medical school. I’m forever grateful to her, of course. But I never got to meet her. I never got to say thank you. So I particularly understand the importance of doing that, and I’m grateful you do, too.”

As UMB’s March Employee of the Month, Voytek received a plaque and an extra $250 in her next paycheck. Asked about the award later, she shared the plaudits with the development team (“Cynthia, Stacey and Laurette – that is our team”) and explained why she thought the group picture ruse was totally legit.

“We had 81 endowments that were created when the UMB Foundation offered a 50 percent match, which was the most of any of the UMB schools,” Voytek said. “So I thought the president wanted to thank us for that. I remember thinking ‘why isn’t Dean [Jane] Kirschling here?’ Because she is such an integral part of our success. She hand-writes thank you letters, which I think has made a tremendous impression.”

Voytek also is known for going above and beyond. Before the interview the quasi curator gave a tour of SON’s Living History Museum on the second floor just above the main security desk. The state’s only museum dedicated to nursing, it chronicles the continuing story of the profession.

Voytek, who manages the museum docents and gives tours herself, pointed out the wall of history on the left, education in the back, and research on the right. A 1928 “Flossie cap” is on display that was designed from a pattern given the school by Florence Nightingale, Voytek pointed out, adding how they were starched and fluted. “The new nurses like the antiquated instruments like the Texas Instruments calculator,” on the research wall, she added.

She shrugs off praise for her museum work, saying it falls into “other duties as assigned.” Yet that list has been growing in recent years after some cuts in the development staff. Hankins in her nomination said Voytek “has taken on approximately 50 percent of the duties of the other coordinator position, cheerfully becoming our ‘go to’ person for ordering supplies, paying invoices, reimbursing travel expenses, and helping with our many events.”

Voytek insists she’s just doing her part and is privileged to serve the students, staff, and “amazing” leadership at SON. Putting the students in touch with the donors brings her particular delight. “Most of the students are more than happy to do so and are so appreciative,” she said. “It gives you insight into a group of nurses who are going out into the workforce. I feel very comfortable and confident that we’re in good hands.”

One of the ways Voytek has repaid the students is her work with GreenSON, the School’s sustainability organization, which she co-chairs. It was formed soon after she came to the school 4 ½ years ago. With a degree in conservation and resource development, seven years on the conservation committee in her previous development job at the National Aquarium, and working with the Piney Run Nature Center before that as a stay-at-home mom, Voytek found GreenSON to be a natural fit.

“I shared with them a lot of things we were doing at the National Aquarium that we could be doing here. Slowly but surely we have accomplished several initiatives that we’re pleased with.”

The biggest one is the bottle-filling station on the first floor, so students and employees don’t have to bring bottled water. Filtered water has replaced “those big bottled jugs that would kill your back to lift.” Triple station trash cans are planned to separate trash, one for the landfill, one for cans and bottles, and one for paper. Periodic office swaps allow groups to share supplies, cutting costs and helping the environment.

Voytek, who gets off the Metro and sticks fliers in bikes to promote SON’s third annual free bike repair with Joe’s Bike Shop on April 19 to celebrate Earth Week in the School courtyard, admits conservation “has always been a focal point of my life. It’s important to the students, too. The students are asking for it so we should be providing it.”

So why do Lorrie’s SON colleagues “chirp” their praise of her? “I am a birder, I love to go bird-watching,” Voytek says with a wide smile. “They’re always giving me pictures of birds, bird books. We’ll be having lunch outside and I’ll say ‘did you hear that ovenbird?’ since I can identify birds by their sound. So they get a kick out of that and I appreciate that it makes them more aware of their environment.”

— Chris Zang

  
Chris Zang Clinical Care, Collaboration, Community Service, Contests, Education, People, UMB Go Green, UMB News, University LifeApril 3, 20170 comments
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