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Editorial  |   January 2012
Student Research Fellowship, Abstracts, and Poster Competitions: Encouraging Research
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Joseph K. Prinsen, OMS VII
    Student Doctor Prinsen is the National Research director for and a Board of Trustees member of the Student Osteopathic Medical Association, a member of the AOA's Bureau of Osteopathic Clinical Education and Research, and a seventh-year DO and PhD candidate at Michigan State University in East Lansing
  • Address correspondence to Joseph K. Prinsen, OMS VII, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Michigan State University, B440 Life Sciences Building, East Lansing, MI 48824-1317. E-mail: prinsen@msu.edu  
Article Information
Medical Education
Editorial   |   January 2012
Student Research Fellowship, Abstracts, and Poster Competitions: Encouraging Research
The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, January 2012, Vol. 112, 31-33. doi:10.7556/jaoa.2012.112.1.31
The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, January 2012, Vol. 112, 31-33. doi:10.7556/jaoa.2012.112.1.31
This issue of JAOA—The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association features abstracts from student posters that were presented during the 54th Annual American Osteopathic Association (AOA) Research Conference, which was held from October 30, 2011, through November 1, 2011, during the AOA's 116th annual Osteopathic Medical Conference and Exposition (OMED 2011) in Orlando, Florida. Some of these abstracts were submitted by winners of the newly created Student Osteopathic Medical Association (SOMA) Student Research Fellowship. 
Student Poster Competition participants submitted their abstracts through either the AOA's Council on Research or SOMA. The SOMA abstracts presented at OMED 2011 are published herein. Abstracts submitted through the AOA Council on Research were published in the JAOA's August 2011 issue and are available online at http://www.jaoa.org/content/111/8/487.full. 
The current issue of the JAOA also contains abstracts that were submitted to the student competition held by the Bureau on International Osteopathic Medical Education and Affairs (BIOMEA). All participants who submitted abstracts to the BIOMEA competition were welcome to present posters at the BIOMEA meeting, which was held on Sunday, October 30, 2011, during OMED 2011. 
SOMA Student Research Fellowship
In 2011, SOMA partnered with the AOA to offer a new student fellowship program. The SOMA Student Research Fellowship was created to address a need for more high-quality research from osteopathic physicians. The skills needed to perform research are of a diverse nature and include the necessary technical experimental acumen and cognitive skills. Identifying clinical or basic science knowledge gaps and formulating questions that lead to testable hypotheses are 2 examples of such cognitive skills. Technical and persuasive writing form the foundation of effective scientific communication and grantsmanship. Starting to develop these skills as a medical student is 1 way to accelerate the pace at which osteopathic physicians become efficient as researchers. 
Students were selected for the 2011 award, which consisted of $2000 per recipient, based on a proposal application submitted in spring 2011. In March 2011, the SOMA Student Research Fellowship and the AOA Council on Research finalized the selection of 5 recipients of the 2011 fellowship award. The winners were as follows:
  •  
    Ivan Alger, OMS I, for his proposal entitled, “Mechanisms of Pressure Inhibition on Mucosal Healing” (Mentor: Marc D. Basson, MD, PhD) (S38—see page 49)
  •  
    Rung-chi Li, OMS II, for his proposal entitled, “Study of Neuronal Sensitivity to Oxygen Glucose Deprivation in an Alzheimer's Disease Transgenic Mouse Model” (Mentor: Gloria J. Klapstein, PhD) (S9—see page 42)
  •  
    Shane Sergent, OMS II, for his proposal entitled, “Growth and Nutritional Status of Peruvian Children” (Mentor: Joey C. Eisenmann, PhD) (S32—see page 40)
  •  
    Vi Song Tring, OMS IV, for his proposal entitled, “The Variable Influence of Health Care Reform on Osteopathic Medical Students' Career Specialty Choices” (Mentor: Tyler C. Cymet, DO, MPH)
  •  
    Youssef A. Kousa, OMS V, for his proposal entitled, “Intra-amniotic Gene Delivery to the Periderm Using an Adenoviral Vector” (Mentor: Brian C. Schutte, PhD) (S19—see page 38)
Winners are required to present their work at an AOA fall research meeting. Four of this year's winners presented posters during the 2011 event in Orlando, Florida, as noted.
The future of medicine relies on scientific developments conducted by physicians skilled in research, and for that reason it is important for osteopathic medical students to be at the forefront of such scientific progress. The Student Osteopathic Medical Association and the AOA have clearly identified student research as a priority. As a result, the osteopathic community is producing DO physicians who are well versed in research methodology and who are prepared to impact clinical and basic science in the future. I am happy about this commitment by the AOA and the Osteopathic Heritage Foundations (for their kind financial support) and more broadly for the support of the osteopathic community, and I look forward to a bright future. 
The deadline for applying for next year's SOMA Student Research Fellowship program is February 2012. I encourage osteopathic medical students and SOMA members to review the program guidelines posted on Student DO.com and consider submitting a proposal. 
Student Osteopathic Medical Association
The 15th Annual National SOMA Research Symposium and Student Poster Competition were part of the annual AOA Research Conference and were supported by the AOA and SOMA—both of which, as previously stated, are committed to increasing student involvement in research. Moreover, both bodies recognize the important and critical role that research in clinical studies and basic science plays in bridging the gap between the laboratory and the bedside. 
The theme of the 2011 research conference was “The Science Supporting the Impact of OMT [Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment] on the Human Condition: The Structure-Function Relationship and Mechanisms of Action for Self-Regulatory and Healing Processes.” Improving the scientific understanding of how OMT impacts health and disease exemplifies this concept. In particular, osteopathic medical students are uniquely trained to further research in osteopathic manipulative medicine and thus promote the progression of osteopathic principles and practice. 
This year's SOMA abstracts were organized into the following 5 categories:
  •  
    osteopathic manipulative medicine/osteopathic principles and practice (see page 35)
  •  
    clinical studies (see page 37)
  •  
    basic science (see page 41)
  •  
    health policy (see page 49)
  •  
    research (see page 50)
A total of 86 student abstracts were accepted and presented at OMED. On October 31, 2011, judges met with student presenters and identified 3 first-place winners and 6 second-place winners, who were as follows:
  •  
    1st Place
     
    •  
      Allison L. Macke, OMS II, et al, for their work entitled, “Social, Societal, and Economic Burden of Mal de Debarquement Syndrome” (S12—see page 37)
    •  
      Timothy Gauntner, OMS IV, et al, for their work entitled, “Evaluation of CCR1 Antagonists in Multiple Myeloma and Osteolytic Bone Disease” (S34—see page 48)
    •  
      Youssef A. Kousa, OMS VI, and Brian C. Schutte, PhD, for their work entitled, “Intra-amniotic Gene Delivery of Irf6 to the Periderm Using an Adenoviral Vector” (S19—see page 38)
  •  
    2nd Place
     
    •  
      Bryden Considine, OMS II, et al, for their work entitled, “Role of Cathepsin Proteases and Niemann-Pick C1 Protein in Ebola Virus Infection” (S24—see page 45)
    •  
      Tova Appleson, OMS III, and Robert V. Hill, PhD, for their work entitled, “Optimal Vascular Conduits for Multiple Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting” (S3—see page 41)
    •  
      Christopher R. Engdahl, OMS I, et al, for their work entitled, “Increase in Paraoxonase I Activity After Hemodialysis Is Not Caused by Changes in High-Density Lipoprotein Subclasses” (C16)1
    •  
      Izabela B. Robel, OMS II, et al, for their work entitled, “Salivary C-Reactive Protein and Adiponectin in Metabolic Syndrome” (S18—see page 38)
    •  
      Joseph J. Kosmach, OMS III, and Sean M. Lynch, PhD, for their work entitled, “Thiocyanate Prevents Myeloperoxidase-Mediated Loss of Paraoxonase Activity From Human High-Density Lipoprotein” (B17)2
    •  
      Semah B. Zavareh, OMS III, et al, for their work entitled, “Autoantibodies Are Abundant in Human Sera and Are Useful for Disease Diagnostics” (B13)3
First-place winners received $500 each, and second-place winners were awarded $250 each.
Abstracts with numbers that do not begin with the letter designation “S” were submitted through the AOA Research Conference and were thus published in the August 2011 issue of the JAOA. The 35 student abstracts submitted and accepted through SOMA are published in this issue beginning on page 35. 
Bureau of International Osteopathic Medical Education and Affairs
At OMED 2011, SOMA continued its collaboration with BIOMEA to offer students a venue to present their international experiences. This year's competition consisted of 2 categories: (1) research projects conducted internationally and (2) broad outreach experiences. There were 20 abstracts submitted in the outreach category and 7 in the research category. The winners, who were selected by BIOMEA members, were as follows:
  •  
    Research
     
    •  
      1st Place—Erin K. Philpott, OMS II, et al, for their abstract entitled, “Identifying Risk Factors Involved in the Spread of Dengue Virus in Guyana” (835—see page 52)
    •  
      2nd Place—Karen Koto, OMS II, et al, for their abstract entitled, “Exposure to DEHP and Its Implications in the Pediatric Population of Taiwan” (837—see page 53)
  •  
    Outreach
     
    •  
      1st Place—Kesha Zaveri, OMS II, et al, for their abstract entitled, “Effect of the Continuity of Schistosomiasis Screenings on Disease Prevalence in Rural Tanzanian Villages” (847—see page 61)
    •  
      2nd Place—Amanda Wu S. Liu, OMS II, et al, for their abstract entitled, “Holistic Patient-Centered Care in Taiwan Correlates With Osteopathy” (829)
These abstracts and others submitted to the BIOMEA poster competition appear beginning on page 51. These winners were invited to present a summary of their research in Orlando, Florida, during the 13th Annual International Seminar, “Osteopathic Medicine in the Global Community,” which was held Sunday, November 30, at OMED 2011. 
I congratulate all of the winners and abstract presenters on their achievements. It is my hope that their success will be a driving force for them and their colleagues to conduct cutting-edge osteopathic medical research throughout their careers. 
   Financial Disclosures: None reported.
 
References
Engdahl CR, Caccavello R, Kimura S, Gugliucci A. Increase in paraoxonase I activity after hemodialysis is not caused by changes in high-density lipoprotein subclasses [abstract C16]. J Am Osteopath Assoc. 2011;111(8):497.
Kosmach JJ, Lynch SM. Thiocyanate prevents myeloperoxidase-mediated loss of paraoxonase activity from human high-density lipoprotein [abstract B17]. J Am Osteopath Assoc. 2011;111(8):506.
Zavareh SB, Nagele EP, DeMarshall C, Nagele RG, Han M. Autoantibodies are abundant in human sera and are useful for disease diagnostics [abstract B13]. J Am Osteopath Assoc. 2011;111(8):504.