This Week’s Notes
Notes – 6/16/2013
Now that our Commencement ceremony (preceded by a joyous Department luncheon for our graduates, their families and friends) is over, we have shifted into a calmer summer mode. We welcome students who are taking our summer courses, and those that have or will be taking the opportunity to study abroad for the summer. I myself am just back from Kuwait where we were recognizing the completion of the first twelve months of our TRACER birth cohort study. 1500 pregnant women enrolled. Well done Feiby Nassan, Ayah Ahmed, Smitha Abraham, and our team in Kuwait (see picture below). Also thanks to Bruce Boley, Costas Christophi, Roz Wright, and Yara Abu Awad.
Summer is traditionally a time of transition, and we have some news on that front.
Congratulations to Quan Lu who has been promoted to Associate Professor. Quan, who is in our MIPS program, uses cutting-edge genetics and genomics approaches to focus on understanding the complex gene-environment interactions that are critically involved in diseases relevant to public health. Please join me in congratulating Quan on this major milestone.
On a more bittersweet note, we are bidding Dan Tschumperlin a fond farewell as he leaves us to join the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. Dan has been a faculty member in MIPS since 2001 and has been a major contributor to MIPS and our Department since then. He will remain an adjunct faculty member here as he transitions into his new position. We wish Dan all the best, and we look forward to continued collaborations and contact with him in the future.
Christopher Hug, David Christiani, and Maitreyi Mazumdar of Children’s Hospital, received a faculty exploratory grant from the Harvard University Center for the Environment (HUCE). The name of their project is “A New Model for Chronic Respiratory Disease: environmental arsenic exposure induces a novel form of cystic fibrosis.”
The Liberty Mutual Fellows, Lauren A. Murphy, Candace Nelson, Avinoam Borowsky, Jin Qin, and Sohit Karol (in absentia), presented an update on their work on June 3rd at the LM Research Institute for Safety in Hopkinton. These fellows continue to be particularly productive. Congratulations to them and there Liberty Mutual and Harvard mentors. Thanks to Alberto Caban-Martinez and Ted Courtney for organizing this interesting afternoon and their leadership of this partnership.
The EPA Clean Air Research Center had an outstanding meeting of their Science Advisory Committee the week before last. It was an extraordinary display of cutting edge research on exposure assessment, experimental studies, observational studies and biostatistical methods. Too many outstanding presentations and posters to list them all. Petros Koutrakis has done an exceptional job in marshaling this outstanding air pollution research team. Thanks to Alice Smythe for organizing this meeting, to all the poster presenters, to the project and core leaders, and especially to Petros Koutrakis for his leadership of this premiere air pollution research program.
I understand there was heavy competition in the MIPS program’s dessert contest. Winners in the cake category were (in order) Zhiping Yang, Helen Cho and Sally Bedugnis. In the pie category it was Magda Bortoni, Andressa Louzada and Glen Deloid. In the “other” category it was Sally Bedugnis, Rose Filoramo and Alissa Wilcox. And the grand prize winner was … Sally Bedugnis for the dessert she calls Nutella Balls. Actually, from what I understand everyone who attended was a winner. Thanks to Marshall Katler for organizing it, and to all who participated. Next year I’ll have to plan my travels so I won’t miss it!
It is a beautiful Father’s Day and the Bruins won last night. Enjoy!