Annual Research Festival Draws on Innovation of UCSF Learners

Digital poster session during the Inquiry Symposium. All photos by Mark Wooding.

The annual Inquiry Symposium (formerly ePosterpalooza) and Pathways to Discovery Awards held at Milberry Union gymnasium on May 4th attracted more than 200 attendees including 99 medical students and residents – its greatest turnout yet. The packed room showcased projects from the four schools at UC San Francisco – Medicine, Dentistry, Pharmacy and Nursing in addition to the Dean's Prize and Pathways to Discovery Awards presentations. The event was co-sponsored by Pathways to Discovery and the Clinical and Translational Research Fellowship Program.

Peter Chin-Hong, MD, director of the Clinical and Translational Science Institute’s (CTSI) Pre-Health Undergraduate Program (PUP), TL 1 training program, and director of the Clinical & Translational Pathway noted the high energy of the event and learner presentations: 

“It was remarkable that several ‘research’ generations were in attendance. They ranged from Pre-health Undergraduate Program visitors who came to see their pre-doctoral TL-1 mentors present, who were themselves mentored by previous K12 faculty awardees for their projects. The pipeline is robust! 

Ching-Hong also highlighted the universal language of clinical research, “Our UCSF learners have long undertaken global health and clinical and translational research projects abroad. However, this year we were joined for the first time by Danish medical student researchers from the Lundbeck Foundation Clinical Research Program. These students were funded to do research locally under the guidance of UCSF and Stanford mentors.”

Christopher Stewart, MD, MA, director of the Pathways to Discovery program and professor of medicine commented on the extensive talent and effort behind the symposium:

“The end-of-the-year Inquiry Symposium is always such a wonderful event for me, a celebration of emotions: pride in seeing the work of so many UCSF trainees showcased, and knowing the professionalism with which they approached their inquires; amazement at witnessing the depth and breadth of the topics that UCSF trainees are engaged in, from novel uses of molecular techniques to study the brain, to investigations of the role of phone apps on the HIV epidemic in China; and some sadness as some of the trainees I have gotten to know so well move on to the next stage of their careers. 

It is a culmination of hard work, by the trainees themselves, the faculty mentors and advisors, the leaders and support staff of the various programs, all demonstrating a commitment to each other. In the end, anyone attending the event can really get a sense of how UCSF trainees will continue to make an impact on the world.”

- Inquiry Symposium Schedule
Poster website

2016 Awardees

Dean’s Prize Award Presentations  

John Best, Global Health: Sex-Seeking Mobile Phone Applications and MSM Sexual Health in China
Harjus Birk, Molecular Medicine: Identification and Characterization of Long Non-Coding RNA Involved in Glioblastoma Multiforme Proliferation
Doug Jacobs, Health & Society: Using Drugs to Discriminate – Adverse Selection in the Federal Marketplace
Adam Luxenberg, Health & Society: The Optimal Interruption: Assessing Communication Quality in Text Page Messages
Connie Wang, Clinical and Translational Research: Muscle Function and Sarcopenia in Liver Transplant Candidates

Chih Award in Neuroscience 
Sattar Khoshkhoo: Molecular Medicine: Investigating the role of interneurons in seizure initiation, propagation, and termination using an optogenetic kindling mouse model of seizures.

Pathways to Discovery Mentor Award - Sandrijn van Schaik, MD, PhD

Pathways to Discovery Award Presentations
Brian Gin, Health Professions Education: Intern Perspectives of Supervisor Trust on Pediatric Inpatient Wards
Emmanuel Jauregui, Clinical & Translational Research: Parallel Mechanisms Suppress Cochlear Bone Remodeling to Protect Hearing
Myrna Mungal, Health & Society: Gun Violence in the Bay Area: Victim Experiences of Injury, Recovery, and the Social Determinants of Health
Julia Selezneva, Global Health: Understanding the Impact of Young Mother’s Empowerment Center on Adolescent Mothers in El Alto, Bolivia 
Erron Titus, Molecular Medicine: Characterization of a Novel Cardiac Calsequestrin Mutant  

Pathways to Discovery Honorable Mentions 
Clinical & Translational Research: Shalini Dixit and Erik Velez
Global Health: Ivana Brajkovic and Carolina Zubiri
Health & Society: Danielle Cipres and Matthew Spinelli
Health Professions Education: Yi Lu and Joe Sanford
Molecular Medicine: David Green