Upcoming Events


  • LSU ENT Resident Orientation and Luncheon, Baton Rouge, LA, July 11, 2017


  • “Precision Medicine: Integrating Genetics and Genomics into the Clinic” CME event will be held on July 15, 2015 from 8am-1pm in the SOM Learning Center

Association for Women in Science – South Louisiana Chapter (AWIS-SL) Update 

Jane Eason, Ph.D., P.T.

We have continued with our mentoring lecture series this spring with Dr. Florencia Polite presenting another outstanding mentoring seminar titled “The Mentor/Mentee Relationship – How to Make the Most of Your Role” on April 27.  She did an outstanding job presenting information that would be useful to all who attended.  She has graciously agreed to share her references and the slides from her lecture, so if anyone would like this information, please contact Jane Eason at jeason@lsuhsc.edu.

We hosted a networking event in the Raised Root Garden on April 19.  There was a good mix of students and faculty sharing information while enjoying light snacks on a beautiful day in the garden right after work.   For those not aware of this garden, it is located in the grassy area between the old Dibert Building and the 1542 Tulane Ave Building.  There are several raised garden beds, an herb garden, several benches and a lending library.

Our most recent outreach event was a STEM fair for a Girl Scout Troop based out of Our Lady of Divine Providence on Saturday, May 13 from 10:30 am – 12:30 pm.  Girl Scouts were able to rotate through several stations that included Dress Like a Scientist, Tobacco Models, Models of Organs, Exposure to Lead, Noise and Hearing, and Vaccinations.  Faculty and students from LSUHSC manned the tables and interacted with the girls providing information as well as challenging them with questions about these topics and what science topics they were learning about in school.  With the wide variety of backgrounds of the faculty and graduate students, the girls were able to learn about diverse science topics as well as the many opportunities for science careers.

The AWIS Southern Louisiana chapter is dedicated to empowering women in science and technology by providing a platform for networking opportunities and career development programs, and to promoting an interest in science among girls and young women.  The AWIS Southern Louisiana chapter welcomes all persons interested in furthering the careers of women in science.

The cost to join the national organization is $150.00 annually as a professional member and $65.00 annual for junior members (students, postdocs).  To join only the AWIS-SL chapter only, professional and junior member dues are $25.00 annually and $10.00 annually for students.  We use this money to help fund our Outstanding Young Scientist Travel Award for graduate students/post-docs as well as for other community outreach events.  If you are interested in joining the local AWIS chapter, please contact our treasurer, Allison Augustus – Wallace at awall1@lsuhsc.edu.

If anyone is interested in learning more about us, please contact anyone on the Executive Committee; we’d be glad to provide more information.

Local Executive Board members are:

  • Jane Eason (SAHP), President
  • Tekeda Ferguson (SOPH), Secretary
  • Allison Augustus-Wallace (SOM), Treasurer
  • Angela Amedee (SOM), Past-President
  • Crescent Combe (SOM) – Post-Doc Representative
  • Adrienne McGinn (Graduate Studies) – Graduate Student Rep

LGBT+Allies Organization for Cultural Understanding the Health Sciences (LOCUS) 

Mirandy Li and Ayesha Umrigar
Co-Presidents of LOCUS

Mirandy Li and I are honored to introduce ourselves as the new co-presidents of our campus-wide LGBT organization, LOCUS (LGBT+Ally Organization for Cultural Understanding in the Health Sciences). The goals of this organization are to advance awareness and understanding of LGBT-related issues both at LSUHSC and in the New Orleans community, as well as to provide a safe space for all members of the LSUHSC community.

This past year was very successful, with LOCUS hosting seminars, participating in community outreach events, and co-sponsoring the LGBT Healthcare Disparities Symposium with ETHIKOS (see the accompanying story in the Top Stories section of this issue of The Pulse). Mirandy and I plan to continue this momentum, and we have several community outreach events planned with groups such as NOAGE (New Orleans Advocates for GLBT Elders) and the New Orleans LGBT Community Center.

We are also happy to announce the creation of our new web page, which can be accessed at https://www.medschool.lsuhsc.edu/cmhe/locus/. This web page has a list of general LGBT resources, as well as description of our upcoming events and a link for subscription to our listserv. Stay tuned for a more detailed list of our events. We look forward to a successful year.

SOM Grants

Congratulations to the following researchers for obtaining extramural funding from federal, state, and/or independent sources between May 1 – June 30, 2017!

NOTE: The Office of the Dean provided the information below to The Pulse.  If there is any information that was inadvertently omitted, please contact the editor (aholle@lsuhsc.edu) so a correction can be printed in the next issue of The Pulse.

National Institutes of Health R01:

  • Song Hong, Ph.D. (Neuroscience Center of Excellence)

National Institutes of Health – Ruth L. Kirschstein Awards:

  • Elizabeth Avegno, Ph.D. (Department of Physiology)
  • Elia El Hajj (Department of Physiology)

Louisiana Board of Regents

  • Sunyoung Kim, Ph.D. (Department of Biochemistry)

Louisiana LIFT Grants:

  • Shyamal Desai, Ph.D. (Department of Biochemistry)
  • Hong Xin, M.D., Ph.D. (Department of Pediatrics)

Foundation, Pharmaceutical, and Company Grants:

  • Paul LeLorier, M.D. (Department of Internal Medicine), St. Jude Medical, Medtronic
  • Aaron Mammoser, M.D. (Department of Neurosurgery), Orbus Therapeutics, Inc.
  • Donna Neumann, Ph.D. (Department of Pharmacology), Editas Medicine, Inc.
  • Stephanie Taylor, M.D. (Department of Microbiology, Immunology, and Parasitology), Duke University, ELITech Group


Publications of Note

Seen in the Papers

Congratulations to the following individuals for the publication of their work in respected journals from March 1 – April 30, 2017, as reported to The Pulse by individual departments:


“An integrative genomics approach for associating genome-wide association studies information with localized and metastatic prostate cancer phenotypes.” Hicks C, Ramani R, Sartor O, Bhalla R, Miele L, Dlamini Z, Gumede N. Biomark Insights. 2017 Mar 16;12:1177271917695810. doi: 10.1177/1177271917695810.

“Integrative analysis of micrRNA-mediated gene signatures and pathways modulating white blood cell count in childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia.” Ramani R, Megason G, Schallheim J, Karlson C, Vijayakumar V, Vijayakumar S, Hicks C. Biomark Insights. 2017 Apr 12;12:1177271917702895. doi: 10.1177/1177271917702895. eCollection 2017.

“Fueling the mechanisms of asthma: increased fatty acid oxidation in inflammatory immune cells may represent a novel therapeutic target.” Al-Khami AA, Ghonim MA, Del Valle L, Ibba SV, Zheng L, Pyakurel K, Okpechi SC, Garay J, Wyczechowska D, Sanchez-Pino MD, Rodriguez PC, Boulares HA, Ochoa AC. Clin Exp Allergy. 2017 Apr 29. doi: 10.1111/cea.12947. [Epub ahead of print]

“Retrospective analysis of risk factors associated with Kawasaki disease in China.” Bai L, Feng T, Yang L, Zhang Y, Jiang X, Liao J, Chen L, Feng X, Rong Y, Li Y, Qin Z, Qiao J. Oncotarget. 2017 Apr 29. doi: 10.18632/oncotarget.17530. [Epub ahead of print]

“KSHV co-infection down-regulates HPV16 E6 and E7 from cervical cancer cells.” Dai L, Cao Y, Jiang W, Zabaleta J, Liu Z, Qiao J, Qin Z. Oncotarget. 2017 Mar 15. doi: 10.18632/oncotarget.16207. [Epub ahead of print]

“Molecular mechanisms of activating c-MET in KSHV+ primary effusion lymphoma.” Lam BQ, Dai L, Li L, Qiao J, Lin Z, Qin Z. Oncotarget. 2017 Mar 14;8(11):18373-18380. doi: 10.18632/oncotarget.15444.

“Cellular transformation of human mammary epithelial cells by SATB2.” Yu W, Ma Y, Ochoa AC, Shankar S, Srivastava RK. Stem Cell Res. 2017 Mar;19:139-147. doi: 10.1016/j.scr.2017.01.011.

Microbiology, Immunology, and Parasitology: 

Vince Maffei, Eugene Blanchard, Meng Luo, Chris Taylor and David Welsh published the article “Biological Aging and the Human Gut Microbiota” in the Journals of Gerontology, Series A, Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences. 2017 Apr 25. doi: 10.1093/gerona/glx042.

Ping Wang and his collaborators published the following two articles:

“The ArfGAP protein MoGlo3 regulates the development and pathogenicity of Magnaporthe oryzae” in the Environmental Microbiolology. 2017 May 15. doi: 10.1111/1462-2920.13798. [Epub ahead of print]

“Disruption of actin motor function due to MoMyo5 mutation impairs host penetration and pathogenicity in Magnaporthe oryzae” in the Molecular Plant Pathology. 2017 Apr 5. doi: 10.1111/mpp.12554. [Epub ahead of print]


Nasal Extrusion of Internal Carotid Artery Coil in the Setting of Osteoradionecrosis: A Case Report. Keonho Kong, R Mehta, Justin Tenney, Daniel Nuss. Journal of Neurological Surgery, Part B: Skull Base. March 2017

Trans-Ethmoidal Endoscopic Resection of a Giant Orbital Osteoma: Technical Considerations. Shannon O’Brien, R Mehta, Frank Culicchia, Daniel Nuss. Journal of Neurological Surgery, Part B: Skull Base. March 2017

Special Considerations in Pediatric Neurotologic Skull Base Surgery, Joshua Sappington, Frank Culicchia, R Mehta, Moises Arriaga. Journal of Neurological Surgery, Part B: Skull Base. March 2017

Rare Case of Cerebellopontine Angle Glioependymal Cyst in a Pediatric Patient, Matthew Cutrer, R Mehta, Joshua Sappington, Moises Arriaga. Journal of Neurological Surgery, Part B: Skull Base. March 2017

Dr. Rohan Walvekar, Associate Professor, has the following book accepted for publication with Springer Nature. Walvekar R, Gillespie MB, Schaitkin B, Eisele D. Gland-Preserving Salivary Surgery: A Problem-Based Approach, April 2017.

Dr. Chu Chen, Professor, had the following book published. Zhang J, Chen C. Δ9-THC and COX-2 signaling. Chapter 75, in Victor R Preedy (Ed), Handbook of Cannibis and Related Pathologies. Elsevier Publisher, Amsterdam, Netherlands, ISBN: B978-0-12-800756-3; pp: 729-738, January 2017


Marble M, Guillen Sacoto MJ, Chikarmane R, Gargiulo D, Juusola J. Missense variant in UBA2 associated with aplasia cutis congenita, Duane anomaly, hip dysplasia and other anomalies: A possible new disorder involving the SUMOylation pathway. Am J Med Genet. A, DOI:10.1002/ajmg.a38078, 2017.



SOM Faculty Publications

Are you interested in seeing what your colleagues and co-workers are publishing?  Are you curious to see how prolific scientists and clinicians are in their research publications?  If so, then click on the following link to see a list of all of the work published by LSU investigators:


If you’re just interested in seeing some highlighted works, you can go to the following link on a monthly basis to see a few select articles highlighted by the library staff:


Once there, click on the year and month to see all highlighted publications for that month.

If you do not see one of your publications listed in the comprehensive list, please contact Kathryn Kerdolff (kkerdo@lsuhsc.edu) to have your publication included.

Technique Improves Breast Reduction Outcomes

Leslie Capo
Director of Information Services, LSUHSC

Research led by Frank Lau, MD, Assistant Professor of Clinical Surgery at LSU Health New Orleans School of Medicine, has found that long-term breast reduction outcomes can be improved by using techniques that minimally disrupt the lower breast suspensory ligaments. The paper, “The Sternum Nipple Distance is Double the Nipple Inframammary Fold Distance in Macromastia”, is published ahead of print online in the Annals of Plastic Surgery.

“Breast reduction is one of the most commonly performed plastic surgery procedures. The long-term appearance after reduction is not optimized 50% of the time using standard reduction techniques,” notes lead author Dr. Frank Lau. “At LSU Health New Orleans, we offer an improved technique that preserves more of the critical breast anatomy. This study provides an anatomical foundation for why our technique may yield better, longer lasting results.”

About 50% of patients who undergo the most commonly used breast reduction technique experience pseudoptosis or “bottoming out” as a long-term complication. This occurs when breast tissue drops to the lower portion of the breast independent of nipple position.

“We want our patients to have a long lasting, aesthetically pleasing breast shape,” says Lau. Believing that disruption of the lower suspensory ligaments may be a critical factor because they are stronger than the upper sensory ligaments, the researchers conducted a retrospective review of 208 patients who underwent breast reduction surgery from 2008-2015, studying the results in 400 individual breasts. In all patients, only one reduction technique was performed per patient. Ninety two percent of the 174 reductions performed with the inferior pedicle technique used a Wise pattern incision, which disrupts the lower suspensory ligaments, and 7.5% used a Boston modification of Robertson technique, which preserves the lower suspensory ligaments. Of the 33 superomedial pedicle reductions, 25 (75.8%) used a Wise pattern incision and 8 (24.2%) used a vertical pattern incision.

By measuring the sternal notch nipple distance and the nipple inframammary fold distance (proxies for upper and lower sensory ligament strength, respectively), the study found a differential rate of stretch – for every 1 cm in upper sensory ligament stretch, the lower sensory ligament length increases by 0.45 cm. This relationship strengthens the researchers’ hypothesis that the lower pole ligaments stretch at a significantly slower rate than the upper pole ligaments. An anatomic basis for this differential may exist. A horizontal membrane of dense connective tissue originating at the level of the fifth rib that divides the breast into segments at the level of the nipple has been described. This division may signify a transition point in sensory ligament strength. On that basis, the authors recommend that techniques such as the Boston modification of Robertson technique should be preferred by surgeons seeking to avoid pseudoptosis. Other advantages of the Boston modification of Robertson technique include decreased operative time and elimination of the “triple point,” the most common site of postoperative incision rupture.

“This study is one of the largest breast anthropometry (measurement) studies ever performed,” says Lau. “These results help us provide the best breast reduction outcomes to our patients.”

Coauthors include Thomas Steele, a recently graduated medical student at LSU Health New Orleans School of Medicine, and Julian Pribaz, MD, of Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School.


LSU Health New Orleans Graduates New Members of Health Care Workforce

Leslie Capo
Director of Information Services, LSUHSC

Students from LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans’ six professional health schools graduated during its 143rd Commencement on Thursday, May 18, 2017 held at the University of New Orleans Lakefront Arena.

Graduates included students from LSU Health New Orleans’ schools of Allied Health Professions, Nursing, Public Health, Graduate Studies, Dentistry, and Medicine. Dr. Larry H. Hollier, LSU Health New Orleans Chancellor, presided over the ceremony.  James Williams, of the LSU Board of Supervisors, conferred the degrees. Gregory C. Feirn, Chief Executive Officer of LCMC Health, delivered the Commencement Address.

Nearly 900 students completed degree requirements this academic year. The vast majority of students – 90% – are from 44 Louisiana parishes. Women comprise 65% of the class.

“The impact of LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans’ commencement reaches far beyond our faculty, students and their loved ones,” said Dr. Larry Hollier, LSU Health New Orleans Chancellor. “It is our graduates who take care of people in Louisiana or become research scientists whose discoveries advance treatment or prevent disease and faculty members to educate and train future generations of Louisiana health care professionals.”

The 143rd Commencement brings the total number of degrees and certificates awarded by LSU Health New Orleans since its founding to 39,454.

Medical Student To Spend A Year Doing Research At the National Institutes of Health

Leslie Capo
Director in Information Services, LSUHSC

Russ Guidry sm vRuss Guidry, a student at LSU Health New Orleans School of Medicine, is one of only about 50 medical students in the country chosen to participate in the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Medical Research Scholars Program.

According to the NIH, the Medical Research Scholars Program is a comprehensive, yearlong research enrichment program designed to attract the most creative, research oriented medical, dental, and veterinary students to the intramural campus of the NIH in Bethesda, MD. Student scholars engage in closely mentored basic, clinical or translational research projects on the main NIH campus in Bethesda or nearby NIH facilities that match their research interests and career goals.

“It’s an honor to have the opportunity to represent LSU Health Sciences Center at the NIH,” says Guidry. “I can’t wait to discover all that this experience has to offer.” Guidry is a third year LSU Health New Orleans medical student originally from Baton Rouge. For the past couple of years, he has worked on angiogenesis inhibitors in the lab of Dr. Eugene Woltering, the James D. Rives Professor of Surgery and Neuroscience and Section Chief of Surgical Endocrinology at LSU Health New Orleans School of Medicine.

“Russ Guidry is the fifth LSU student to participate in this prestigious program,” notes Dr. Paula Gregory, Director of Faculty Development at LSU Health New Orleans School of Medicine. The NIH Medical Research Scholars Program is a public/private partnership supported jointly by the NIH and generous contributions to the Foundation for the NIH from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, the American Association for Dental Research, the Colgate-Palmolive Company, Genentech and alumni of student research programs and other individual supporters via contributions to the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health.

Guidry will begin the program in July 2017. While he’s there, he’ll also have the opportunity to take graduate courses and engage in activities like seminars and journal clubs with top experts in a variety of fields.

Precision Medicine CME Event – July 15, 2017

Judy Crabtree, Ph.D.

The LSUHSC Precision Medicine Program within the Department of Genetics is again hosting a CME event entitled “Precision Medicine: Integrating Genetics and Genomics into the Clinic.” The course will provide didactic coverage of the fundamentals of genetics, inheritance, and genetic testing with content delivered by MDs, PhDs and clinical genetic counselors (CGCs) with special emphasis on the role of genetics in disease risk and patient management. The overarching goals of the program are to provide a foundation in genetics and an understanding of precision medicine applications in the clinic and in any specialty.

The program will be held on July 15, 2017 from 8am-1pm with lunch included. The course costs $49 and is eligible for 4.25 hours of AMA PRA Category 1 credits. If an Internal Medicine physician also wishes to enroll in MOC credit, this is an additional $25. Additional repeats of this event will be scheduled quarterly, and this event is open to any physician or health care provider in the southern Louisiana area. The deadline to enroll is July 7, 2017.

To register, please visit https://www.regonline.com/lsuprecisionmedjuly. For additional information, please contact the Course Director, Judy Crabtree at jcrabt@lsuhsc.edu.