Universtiy of Miami Miller School of Medicine Graduate and Postdoctoral Programs

News 2018

Miami sunset.

Can Cities Keep Their Cool?

July 19, 2018

Laurence S. Kalkstein, Ph.D., a bioclimatologist and voluntary faculty member with the Miller School of Medicine’s Department of Public Health Sciences, has spent the past 30 years studying the impact of weather on human health. He’s the director of the Synoptic Climatology Laboratory, whose research explores a vast array of meteorologic and environmental factors on plants, animals, people and disease.

Read more about the Synoptic Climatology Lab »

Researchers compared disparities in cancer risk and mortality among diverse populations in New York with those found in Florida in earlier studies.

Distinct Racial and Ethnic Differences in Cancer Mortality Revealed in Published Study

July 19, 2018

Expanding on previous work highlighting disparities in cancer risk and mortality among diverse populations in Florida, a research team from Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center analyzed almost 250,000 people who died from cancer between 2008 and 2014 in another state with a diverse population: New York. Results of this new study were published on July 19 in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.

Read more about the research findings »

Camillo Ricordi, M.D.

New Study Explores Effects of Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Vitamin D in Type 1 Diabetes

July 17, 2018

Scientists from the Diabetes Research Institute are launching a new clinical trial that will assess the impact of high-dose omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin D supplementation on halting the progression of type 1 diabetes. The study will compare the effects of the proposed intervention in children and adults newly diagnosed and in those with longer-standing type 1 diabetes to evaluate any benefit of early and late interventions.

Read more about the clinical trial »

In an upcoming phase two human study, researchers will use nine outcome fields — cognitive, behavioral, psychosocial, sleep, pain, sensorimotor, cardiovascular, inflammatory biomarkers, and neuroimaging studies — to evaluate the drug’s efficacy.

‘Concussion Pill’ Shows Promise in Pre-Clinical Pilot Study

July 10, 2018

Researchers at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine and The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, along with their partners at Scythian Biosciences, are one step closer to finding a new treatment for concussion. In 2016, the multidisciplinary Miller School team embarked on a five-year study to examine the effects of combining CBD with an NMDA antagonist for the treatment of traumatic brain injury and concussion.

Read more about the concussion pill pilot study »

Visual impairment is associated with cognitive decline in aging adults.

Miller School Study Links Visual Impairment to Cognitive Decline in Seniors

June 28, 2018

A population-based study led by public health researchers at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine has revealed that visual impairment is associated with cognitive decline in aging adults. The collaborative study, “Longitudinal Associations Between Visual Impairment and Cognitive Functioning,” was published in JAMA Ophthalmology, a journal of the American Medical Association, on June 28.

Read more about the research findings »

Robert J. Myerburg, M.D.

Dr. Robert Myerburg Explores Genetic Links to Sudden Cardiac Death

June 26, 2018

Cardiologist Robert J. Myerburg, M.D., at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, and colleagues in Finland have uncovered genetic links that offer new explanations for some sudden cardiac deaths in young people. Myocardial fibrosis — scarring of the cardiac muscle — is a common postmortem finding in such cases. There is no known single cause, and in some individuals, there is no identifiable cause at all.

Read more about Dr. Myerburg's papers »

Isaiah Hankel, Ph.D., founder of Cheeky Scientist, offered tips for transition to careers in industry.

Symposium for Graduate and Post-Doctoral Students Offers Valuable Information on Career Options

June 21, 2018

The University of Miami Career Development Committee, a Ph.D.-student-run branch under the Biomedical Graduate Student Government and the Office of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies, hosted its first annual Graduate Student/Post-Doc Career Symposium on May 30. The goal of the symposium was to provide Ph.D. and post-doctoral students with a comprehensive workshop on career options and skill sets needed to obtain career goals.

Read more about the career symposium »

Alberto J. Caban-Martinez, D.O., Ph.D., M.P.H.

Dr. Alberto Caban-Martinez Reappointed to NIOSH Construction Sector Council

June 18, 2018

Alberto J. Caban-Martinez, D.O., Ph.D., M.P.H., assistant professor of public health sciences and deputy director of the Miami Occupational Research Group, has been reappointed to the Construction Sector Council of the National Institute for Occupational Health and Safety. Its goal is to stimulate innovative occupational health and safety research, and improve workplace practices and well-being.

Read more about Dr. Caban-Martinez's reappointment »

Bromeliad with retained water.

Miller School Study Confirms Ornamental Bromeliads Contribute to Zika Mosquito Breeding

June 13, 2018

A new study led by public health researchers at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine has shown that ornamental bromeliad plants contribute to breeding of the Aedes aegypti mosquito — a key culprit in the Zika virus outbreak that hit Miami-Dade County and other areas of Florida and the Americas in 2016. In addition to Zika, bites from the Aedes aegypti mosquito can spread dengue, yellow fever and chikungunya.

Read more about bromeliads' connection to Zika virus »

Dr. Robert Myerburg Contributes Editorial to JAMA on ECG Screening and Cardiac Risks

June 12, 2018

Robert J. Myerburg, M.D., professor of medicine and physiology and the American Heart Association Chair in Cardiovascular Research at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, was invited to contribute an editorial to the Journal of the American Medical Association about new recommendations from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force regarding the use of electrocardiogram screening for cardiovascular disease risk.

Read more about Dr. Myerburg's editorial »

Jessica MacIntyre, M.S.N., ARNP, helps patient Althea Chung try on one of the new hoodies.

Donated Hoodies Help Sylvester Patients and Staff by Adding Convenience and Comfort

May 29, 2018

Patients at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine are the first in the country to receive new specially designed hoodies donated by Oscar de la Renta, LLC. In place of a long zipper down the middle, these hoodies have two shorter diagonal zippers that make it easier for nurses to access chemotherapy chest ports, while helping patients stay warm.

Read more about the donated hoodies »

From left, keynote speaker Edward V. Nunes, M.D., with symposium co-organizer Viviana Horigian, M.D.

Medication-Assisted Treatment Can Lower Risk of Opioid Addiction Relapses

May 23, 2018

Medication-assisted treatment may be the most effective strategy for preventing potentially fatal relapses for individuals recovering from opioid addictions, according to national experts at a University of Miami Miller School of Medicine symposium held May 21. “Medication strategies work for many people with opioid abuse disorder,” said Edward V. Nunes, M.D., professor of psychiatry at the Columbia University Medical Center.

Read more about the opioid addiction symposium »

From left, Cindy L. Munro, Ph.D., RN, Otto Yang, M.D., Michael Weinstein, Julio Frenk, Jorge Saavedra, M.D., M.P.H., M.H.P.M., José Szapocznik, Ph.D., Hansel Tookes, M.D., M.P.H., Adriane Gelpi, Ph.D., M.P.H., Sunil Rao, Ph.D., Andrea Calo and Mitzi Tanaka.

Partnership to Tackle Research and Advocacy on Global Health Issues

May 17, 2018

To pursue critically needed scientific knowledge on global health issues, the University of Miami and the AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) recently announced the launch of the AHF Global Public Health Institute at the University of Miami. The partnership will allow researchers to generate objective evidence that can lead to improvements in public health policy at the global, regional, national and local levels.

Read more about the partnership »

From left, Luis Chiappy, AXA Advisors, Mary Bartlett Bunge, Ph.D., and Chris Dudley, Advancement Associates, Inc.

UM Researcher, Transplant Surgeon and Sylvester Trustee among 2018 Health Care Heroes

May 15, 2018

For nearly 30 years, Mary Bartlett Bunge, Ph.D., worked tirelessly as a neuroscientist with The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. Her pioneering work in the area of nervous system regeneration and her decades-long dedication to finding ways to repair spinal cord damage earned Bunge the 2018 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce.

Read more about the Health Care Heroes Award event »

Marjana Tomic-Canic, Ph.D.

Dr. Marjana Tomic-Canic Appointed to NIH Arthritis, Connective Tissue and Skin Study Section

May 15, 2018

Marjana Tomic-Canic, Ph.D., vice chair of research and professor in the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine’s Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery, was recently appointed to a four-year position on the Arthritis, Connective Tissue and Skin (ACTS) Study Section at the National Institutes of Health Center for Scientific Review.

Read more about Dr. Tomic-Canic's appointment »

BC-3 cells were stained with DAPI, anti-vFLIP, anti-CADM1, and cholera toxin B conjugated with red fluorescence to detect GM-1 and subjected to confocal microscopy.

Sylvester Researchers Identify Protein that Triggers Virus-Mediated Chronic Inflammation and Cancers

April 25, 2018

Viruses are linked to approximately 12 percent of all cancers and are associated with chronic inflammation. Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center researchers Noula Shembade, Ph.D., Richard Hunte and colleagues honed in on what activates that process. They found the human protein CADM1 interacts with Kaposi’s sarcoma viral proteins and promotes inflammation that can result in development of certain cancers.

Read more about the research findings »

From left, Ashok, Saluja, Ph.D., Vrishketan Sethi, M.B.B.S., and Vikas Dudeja, M.D.

A New Take on Immunotherapy: Gut Microbes and Tumor Growth

April 24, 2018

Investigating the microbiome has provided new insights into infection control, metabolism and mental health. It may also play a significant and surprising role in cancer. Scientists at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center have shown that depleting the gut microbiome reduces tumor growth and metastases in models of pancreatic cancer and melanoma and slows metastases in colon cancer.

Read more about the research findings »

With Grand Prize check, from left, Marianna Makri, Ph.D., Entrepreneurship Programs faculty director, Joseph Cioffi, Andrew Richardson, M.B.A., and Elliot Smerling, Entrepreneurship Advisory Board member.

Miller School Team Wins Big in Entrepreneurship Competition

April 23, 2018

A pair of Miller School students took home the Grand Prize in the Graduate/Alumni Track — and a check for $10,000 — in the 2018 University of Miami Business Plan Competition, sponsored by the UM Business School. They also walked away with a separate check for $1,500 for the Best Presentation in the Graduate/Alumni Track. The competition’s final presentations and award ceremony took place on April 11.

Read more about the business plan competition winners »

From left, Antonio Barrientos, Ph.D., with Rui Zeng, Ph.D.

Researchers Use Yeast to Discover New Links between Cellular Energy Production and Human Diseases

March 29, 2018

Researchers at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine have used yeast to gain new understanding of the molecular pathways that allow the cells to build the machinery they need to undergo respiration and aerobic energy production. This knowledge will contribute to a better understanding of the development of mitochondrial diseases and cancer in humans.

Read more about the research »

From left, Ivonne Schulman, M.D., with Lina Shehadeh, Ph.D.

Miller School Researcher Receives $1.5 Million Grant to Study Role of Osteopontin in Heart Failure

March 29, 2018

A Miller School of Medicine researcher has received a $1.5 million grant from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute to study a potential new strategy for treating an intractable form of heart failure. “Prior studies have shown that lowering the level of a protein called osteopontin can ameliorate heart failure with reduced ejection fraction,” said Lina Shehadeh, Ph.D., assistant professor of medicine.

Read more about the research grant »

Systems Biology and Data Science Symposium attendees. Photo credit: Carlos Enchenique.

Systems Biology and Data Science Symposium Presents Cutting-Edge Advances

March 20, 2018

Prominent speakers from Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center and other departments and centers at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine came together with invited experts from the National Institutes of Health and other leading national scientific organizations for an interactive two-day symposium on systems biology and data science preceded by a Data Science Hackathon.

Read more about the symposium »

Miller School of Medicine Rises in NIH Research Grant Funding

March 15, 2018

The Miller School of Medicine received $120.7 million in research grants from the National Institutes of Health in Federal Fiscal Year 2017 — a $9.5 million increase over the school’s FFY 2016 total. According to the national rankings of medical schools based on data compiled by the Blue Ridge Institute for Medical Research, that total made the Miller School the No. 1 NIH-funded institution in Florida.

Read more about the Miller School NIH ranking »

From left, Paul Martin, M.D., Matthias Salathe, M.D., Jeremiah Faith, Ph.D., Eugene J. Sayfie, M.D., Alison Morris, M.D. ,and Roy Weiss, M.D., Ph.D.

4th Annual Eugene J. Sayfie, M.D. Research Day Celebrates Research and Creative Endeavors

March 07, 2018

The 4th Annual Eugene J. Sayfie, M.D. Research Day of the Department of Medicine at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine was held Wednesday, March 7, at the Miller School’s Mailman Center auditorium. The Eugene J. Sayfie, M.D. Research Day is a celebration of the research and creative endeavors of our undergraduates, graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, fellows and faculty.

Read more about Eugene J. Sayfie, M.D. Research Day »

Tatjana Rundek, M.D., Ph.D.

Dr. Tatjana Rundek Named Scientific Director of Evelyn F. McKnight Brain Institute

March 01, 2018

Tatjana Rundek, M.D., Ph.D., professor of neurology and public health sciences and executive vice chair for research and faculty affairs in the Department of Neurology, has been named scientific director of the Evelyn F. McKnight Brain Institute and Evelyn F. McKnight Chair for Learning and Memory in Aging at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.

Read more about Dr. Rundek's appointment »

Sylvester Researchers Discover New Pathway Linking Inflammation and Cancer

February 23, 2018

A team of researchers at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, collaborating with outside investigators, has discovered a new pathway of inflammation-driven cancer development. Their findings, “Initiation of Inflammatory Tumorigenesis by CTLA4 Insufficiency Due to Type 2 Cytokines,” were published online on January 26 by the Journal of Experimental Medicine.

Read more about the research findings »

Erin N. Kobetz, Ph.D., M.P.H., Jimmy Patronis, and Stephen D. Nimer, M.D. (from left in center), with fire department representatives.

Florida CFO Jimmy Patronis Tours Sylvester, Praises Firefighters Cancer Initiative

February 09, 2018

Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine welcomed the State of Florida’s Chief Financial Officer, Jimmy Patronis, on February 5, giving him a tour of its cancer-fighting technologies. Patronis also met with representatives from more than a dozen of South Florida’s fire departments whose members are collaborating with Sylvester’s Firefighters Cancer Initiative.

Read more about the Florida CFO's visit »

Researchers discovered a direct link between G protein-coupled receptors and DNA demethylation.

Link between Environment and DNA May Have Implications for Human Health and Diseases

February 06, 2018

Researchers from Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, the John P. Hussman Institute for Human Genomics and The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, in collaboration with colleagues from other institutions, have discovered a direct link between G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) and DNA demethylation — an important finding that could be implicated in human health and diseases.

Read more about the research findings »

Felicia Marie Knaul, Ph.D., making her grand rounds presentation.

Dr. Felicia Marie Knaul Addresses Global Women's Cancer Disparities

February 02, 2018

Felicia Marie Knaul, Ph.D., a member of Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, professor of public health sciences and director of the University of Miami Institute for Advanced Study of the Americas, described the challenges of global women’s cancer disparities in a grand rounds presentation Jan. 31, part of a lecture series presented by Sylvester’s Global Oncology and International Programs.

Read more about Dr. Knaul's presentation »

From left, Enrique A. Mesri, Ph.D., Consul General Marcelo Martin Giusto, Edward Abraham, M.D., and Stephen D. Nimer, M.D.

Argentina Consulate Celebrates Research Collaboration with Sylvester and CFAR

January 24, 2018

The Consul General of Argentina in Miami came to the medical campus last week to pay tribute to the consortium of researchers at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, the University of Miami Center for AIDS Research (CFAR) and institutions in Argentina that was awarded a prestigious National Cancer Institute U54 grant to study AIDS-related malignancies while developing the careers of junior researchers in Argentina.

Read more about the research collaboration »

Researchers Uncover Evidence of Early Genomic Aberrations in Uveal Melanoma

January 10, 2018

Researchers from Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center and Bascom Palmer Eye Institute at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine have uncovered evidence that genomic aberrations in uveal melanoma that lead to metastasis may occur far earlier in tumor evolution than previously believed. The findings fundamentally change the thinking about how this eye cancer progresses.

Read more about the study findings »

Miller School researchers have identified the genetic triggers for chronic itch in patients with atopic dermatitis (eczema) and psoriasis.

Miller School Dermatologists Identify Genetic Triggers for Chronic Itch

January 08, 2018

A groundbreaking study by a team of University of Miami Miller School of Medicine dermatologists has identified the genetic triggers for chronic itch in patients with atopic dermatitis (eczema) and psoriasis. “This is the first study examining all the molecular targets of chronic itch in humans with these widespread skin diseases,” said Gil Yosipovitch, M.D., professor of dermatology and director of the Miami Itch Center.

Read more about the research findings »