Friday, September 10, 2010

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September Med School Cafe - "A Parent's Guide to Safety on the Internet"

The September Med School Café lecture will feature Dr. Thomas Martinko, associate professor of pediatrics at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine.

His lecture, titled “A Parent’s Guide to Safety on the Internet,” will take place September 24, 2010, at the Mobile West Regional Library at 5555 Grelot Road in Mobile. Lunch will be served at 11:30 a.m., and the presentation begins at noon.

Dr. Martinko will lecture on Internet safety for children and teens. Although the Internet is a tremendous resource, it is important for parents to know the dangers of technology. During the talk, Dr. Martinko will provide information on how parents can manage and monitor their children’s time spent on the Internet, as well as other technologies.

Dr. Martinko is board certified in adolescent medicine and brings more than 20 years of experience in dealing with adolescent issues. A retired U.S. Army colonel, he taught residents and medical students in several military teaching hospitals before moving to Mobile to start an adolescent clinic and teach residents and students at USA.

The Med School Café lecture and lunch are provided free of charge, but reservations are required. For more information or to make reservations, please call Kim Barnes at (251) 460-7770 or e-mail

Med School Café is a free community lecture series sponsored by the USA Physicians Group. Each month, faculty from the USA College of Medicine share their expertise on a specific medical condition, providing insight on the latest treatment available.

Women's Imaging Conference Set for Oct. 9

The University of South Alabama department of obstetrics/gynecology will host the third annual Women's Imaging Conference on Oct. 9, 2010, from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Atlantis Room in the CWEB II building.

The conference will update healthcare community professionals about the ever-changing field of women's imaging. Participants will be able to identify current topics of relevance impacting the field of sonography and women’s health, as well as utilize new information in the clinical practice of sonography.

Conference speakers and their presentations include: Dr. Susan Baker, Ventral Wall Defect; Dr. Stacy Black, Breast Imaging; Dr. Lynn Batten, Fetal Cardiology; Dr. Sheri Owens, Adnexal Masses; Dr. Botros Rizk, Ultrasound Assisted Reproductive Therapy; Dr. Brad A. Steffler, Interventional Radiology; Dr. Robert Stauffer, Growth Restriction; and Cherie Pohlmann, Ultrasound Standards.

The registration fee is $75 for sonographers, radiographers and nurses; $100 for physicians; and $50 for students and residents. After Sept. 15, the registration fees will go up. The fee includes educational materials, breaks and meals.

The USA College of Medicine designates this educational activity for a maximum of eight American Medical Association (AMA) credits. Society of Diagnostic Medical Sonography (SDMS) credits approval is pending.

To register, contact Missy McCreary at (251) 415-1563.

Dr. Joseph W. Brewer Awarded NIH Grant

Dr. Joseph W. Brewer, associate professor of microbiology and immunology at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine, has been awarded a federally funded research grant by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The four-year award totals $1,277,010.

Dr. Brewer’s project is titled “Homeostasis of the ER in Differentiating B-cells.” His research focuses on how cells in our body protect us from infection.

“This research project will help us better understand how to more effectively treat infection,” Dr. Brewer said. “In addition, the project will provide excellent training experiences for graduate students in the Biomedical Sciences Ph.D. program and medical students within the USA College of Medicine.”

The human body is protected by armies of cells, including B-cells, that fight infection. According to Dr. Brewer, B-cells fight infection by producing large amounts of special proteins called antibodies that can bind to germs and block these invaders from causing disease.

In this research project, Dr. Brewer is studying the processes that allow B-cells to rapidly and effectively produce large amounts of antibodies. “While B-cells produce antibodies that protect the body against infection, B-cells can malfunction and cause major health problems,” Dr. Brewer said. “These health problems can include deadly cancers such as multiple myeloma and autoimmune diseases such as lupus. Sadly, current treatments for such diseases are limited and inadequate.”

Because this research seeks to understand processes that control B-cell function, Dr. Brewer believes the findings may contribute to the development of new treatments for diseases caused by faulty B-cells.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH), a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is the nation’s medical research agency -- making important medical discoveries that improve health and save lives. NIH is the largest source of funding for medical research in the world.

USA Student Health Center Welcomes Dr. Suzana Sogorovic

Dr. Suzana Sogorovic recently joined the University of South Alabama Student Health Center.

Dr. Sogorovic received her medical degree from the Medical School of Tuzla University in Tuzla, Bosnia-Herzegovina, where she also completed post-graduate studies in general medicine. After an internship at the University of Tuzla, she served there as a primary care physician and resident physician in ophthalmology.

Prior to her residency, Dr. Sogorovic served as a research associate II in the department of medical genetics at USA. Dr. Sogorovic completed her residency training in internal medicine at USA in June 2010.

To make an appointment with Dr. Sogorovic at the USA Student Health Center, call (251) 460-7151.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

This Week's DSS - Dr. Danny Welch

This year's first Distinguished Scientist Seminar at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine will be presented by Dr. Danny Welch, a senior scientist in the University of Alabama at Birmingham Comprehensive Cancer Center.

His seminar, titled “Kiss1 Metastasis Suppressor Mechanisms of Action and Therapeutic Implications,” will take place on Sept. 9, 2010, at 4 p.m. in the Medical Sciences Building auditorium on USA’s main campus.

Dr. Welch, who holds the Leonard H. Robinson Professorship of Pathology, also serves as associate director for graduate student programs and director of the graduate biomedical science curriculum of the cancer biology graduate program. He is also director and principal investigator of the Howard Hughes Med-into-Grad Graduate Program.

Dr. Welch is a nationally known expert in the biology and genetics of cancer metastasis. His work focuses on the mechanisms behind the process of metastasis by determining which cancer cells will metastasize and how to control that process.

Prior to joining the UAB faculty in 2002, Dr. Welch was an associate professor of pathology at the Jake Glitten Cancer Research Institute at the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of California-Irvine, and his doctorate from the University of Texas-Houston.

For more information on Dr. Welch’s research, click here.

On a rotating basis, basic science departments at USA invite distinguished scientists from other academic institutions to present seminars describing their latest research findings. Interested faculty, staff, and students are encouraged to attend the Distinguished Scientist Seminars. For the full schedule of seminars, click here.