2006 News Makers

The following News Makers are listed by month in reverse chronological order. 


Chyke A. Doubeni, MD, MPH, assistant professor of family medicine & community health, was featured in a December 21 United Press International story and related Health Day article discussing his recent study that found that racial disparities exist in the treatment of colorectal cancer, resulting in poorer survival rates for African-Americans. 

The December 9 Worcester Telegram & Gazette included an interview with Douglas M. Ziedonis, MD, newly appointed chair of psychiatry at UMMS and UMass Memorial Medical Center. Dr. Ziedonis, who specializes in addiction and co-occurring mental illness, discussed, among other things, the high incidence of smoking among those with psychiatric illness. 

On December 3, Chancellor and Dean Aaron Lazare, MD, the Celia and Isaac Haidak Professor of Medical Education and professor of psychiatry, was featured on the CBC (Canada) program “The Sunday Edition” to discuss his book On Apology. Dr. Lazare and fellow guest Dr. Judy Eaton, assistant professor of psychology at Wilfrid Laurier University, discussed the importance of apology and the strength of forgiveness. 

Peter N. Riskind, MD, PhD,  professor of clinical neurology, was interviewed December 1 on NECN’s Worcester News Tonight for a story about Women Against Multiple Sclerosis, a national organization that supports MS research. The organization hosted actress Teri Garr at a fundraising luncheon at the Beechwood Hotel. Dr. Riskind discussed research and new medications and treatment options for MS sufferers. 


Michael P. Hirsh, MD,  professor of pediatrics and surgery, was interviewed November 29 by WBZ-TV 4, WGMC-TV 3, and the Worcester Telegram & Gazette regarding the fifth annual Goods for Guns gun buyback. In addition, Dr. Hirsh appeared the same evening on the “Jordan Levy Show” on WTAG-AM to talk about the buyback, which is sponsored by the Injury Free Coalition for Kids-Worcester, UMass Memorial Medical Center and Wal-Mart. Through the program, which started in 2002, city residents have exchanged more than 1,000 guns for gift certificates to Wal-Mart and have been provided hundreds of free gun locks to more safely store legal firearms. The program seeks to get unwanted or unsafe guns out of homes where they could harm children. 

Vice Dean for Undergraduate Medical Education Michele P. Pugnaire, MD,  associate professor of family medicine & community health, was interviewed by NECN’s Worcester News Tonight on November 29 at the UMMS Simulation Center Open House. Chancellor and Dean Aaron Lazare, MD, the Celia and Isaac Haidak Professor of Medical Education and professor of psychiatry, was also interviewed for the piece.  They both explained the need for medical simulation training, which exposes students and residents to numerous medical scenarios and allows them to develop their clinical skills in a safe environment that recreates the look and feel of a clinical setting. 

Elizabeth Dugan, PhD,  assistant professor of medicine, was featured on the November 13Worcester Telegram & Gazette Health Page in a piece devoted to her book, The Driving Dilemma. The book, which is directed to elder adults and their families, address the ability of seniors to drive safely and solutions when driving becomes unsafe. 

Worcester News Tonight interviewed Mark I. Furman, MD, professor of medicine and cell biology, on November 13 to discuss UMass Memorial’s ongoing efforts to reduce “door-to-balloon time,” the critical interval between a heart attack patient’s arrival at the hospital and the completion of a life-saving catheterization procedure. 

Worcester Telegram & Gazette health reporter Liz Cooney interviewed a number of researchers at UMass Medical School for a November 13 feature article about research funding, following up on comments made by Craig C. Mello, PhD, upon being awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine or Physiology. Dr. Mello, a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, Blais University Chair in Molecular Medicine and professor of molecular medicine and cell biology, discussed the difficulty young scientists often face in securing federal funding for their work. Adding further insight to the concern regarding a lack of research funding were Dale L. Greiner, PhD, professor of medicine; Aldo A. Rossini, MD,  the William and Doris Krupp Professor of Medicine and professor of medicine and molecular medicine ; and Michael P. Czech, PhD,  professor and chair of molecular medicine and professor of biochemistry & molecular pharmacology . 


Darshak M. Sanghavi, MD, assistant professor of pediatrics, was featured on NBC’s Today on October 25. Dr. Sanghavi discussed the dangers of childhood obesity as part of the program's "Living Large in America  " series.  

In an October 19 Worcester Telegram & Gazette article, Richard T. Ellison, MD, professor of medicine and molecular genetics & microbiology, provided his perspective on the recent cases of whooping cough, also known as pertussis, in Worcester and other infectious diseases. 

Richard T. Ellison, MD,   professor of medicine and molecular genetics & microbiology, was a guest on the WUML 91.5 FM program “Sunrise” October 10. In addition to discussing avian flu, Dr. Ellison gave listeners advice on avoiding the flu this season and discussed the processes involved in the annual development of flu vaccine. 

Craig C. Mello, PhD, the Blais University Chair in Molecular Medicine and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, and his colleague Andrew Z. Fire, PhD of Stanford University Medical School, formerly of the Carnegie Institute of Washington, were named by hundreds of news organizations around the globe on Oct. 2, following their receipt of the Nobel Prize. Mello graciously participated in two press conferences at which University President Jack Wilson, UMMS Chancellor Aaron Lazare, MD, and Chair of the Program in Molecular Medicine Michael P. Czech, PhD, gave comments and provided insight into Dr. Mello’s work. 


An article in the September 28 issue of the Worcester Business Journal featured Dario C. Altieri, MD, the Eleanor Eustis Farrington Chair in Cancer Research and professor and chair of cancer biology. Dr. Altieri appeared at a prostate cancer symposium at UMMS on September 19 and spoke about therapies for prostate cancer. 

Marc C. Restuccia, MD, assistant professor of emergency medicine at UMMS and medical director of LifeFlight and Emergency Medical Services at UMass Memorial Medical Center, was interviewed September 20 on WTAG 580 AM by news host Hank Stolz, who recently accompanied Worcester City Councilor Joseph Petty on a “ride along” with Worcester Emergency Medical Services. Dr. Restuccia and Worcester EMS Chief Stephen Haynes discussed the advanced life saving care provided by Worcester EMS and the professionalism and unparalleled training of the paramedics and other staff members. 

Chancellor and Dean Aaron Lazare, MD,  the Celia and Isaac Haidak Professor of Medical Education and professor of psychiatry, provided a historical analysis of international apologies, including Pope Benedict XVI’s apology for comments regarding Muslims, on National Public Radio’s “Open Source” September 20. Dr. Lazare spoke with host Christopher Lydon for the program and critiqued several recent public apologies. 

David C. Ayers, MD,  the Arthur M. Pappas, MD, Chair in Orthopedics and professor of orthopedics & physical rehabilitation, was quoted in a September 18 feature in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette about orthopedic services in Worcester. Dr. Ayers noted that orthopedic services at UMass Memorial include an arthritis and joint replacement center, a foot and ankle center, a spine center and a sports medicine center and comprises 27 full-time medical school faculty members who are orthopedic surgeons. 

Elizabeth A. Jackson, MD,  assistant professor of medicine, was interviewed September 18 on the WUML 91.5 FM program "Sunrise." Dr. Jackson talked about her research into the effectiveness of soy for the relief of hot flashes. Fumihiko Urano, MD, assistant professor of molecular medicine, was featured in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette on September 11. Dr. Urano discussed his finding that the regulation of a recently discovered enzyme could control the production of insulin and blood sugar levels with implications for diabetes research and treatment. 

In a September 11 Worcester Telegram & Gazette feature, Linda F. Weinreb, MD, the Joy McCann Professor for Women in Medicine and professor of family medicine & community health and pediatrics, discussed her recent research that found that the physical, mental and financial health of homeless women inWorcester had declined over a ten-year span. 

An article in the September online issue of Diagnostic Imaging, http://www.diagnosticimaging.com , featured Roger S. Luckmann, MD, MPH,  associate professor of family medicine & community health, and his colleagues’ research on Enhanced Intervention for Mammography Resistant Women. The goal of the study is to develop a model intervention, which may include counseling, doctors’ letters or availability of scheduling and facilities, to increase mammography compliance. 


James F. Carmody, PhD,  assistant professor of medicine was the featured guest August 28 on the WUML 91.5 FM program “Sunrise.” Dr. Carmody discussed his research into the effect of mindfulness-based stress reduction on the treatment of hot flashes. 

Rebecca S. Lundquist, MD,  assistant professor of psychiatry, commented on a study published in the August issue of Pediatrics that indicated upwards of 10 percent of new fathers exhibit symptoms of postpartum depression. In an August 8 interview with New England Cable News, Dr. Lundquist said the vast changes that accompany the birth of a baby can be difficult for either or both parents, and stressed the importance of parents seeking and receiving care for themselves and their partners in order to provide a safe and nurturing environment for their children. 

Roger Eaton, PhD,  director of the New England Newborn Screening Program, provided information for a weekly column called “What’s Up, Doc” in the MetroWest Daily News.  The August 8 column discussed the statewide program, operated by UMass Medical School, through which blood samples are collected from infants within 72 hours of birth and screened in the Jamaica Plain labs for a number of rare conditions. 

An article in the August 7 Worcester Telegram & Gazette featured  Sherry Lynn Pagoto, PhD,  assistant professor of medicine, and her colleagues from the Division of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine as they took to Revere Beach for "The Sunless Study." Dr. Pagoto is the principal investigator of the National Institutes of Health grant-funded study, which promotes the use of sunless tanners as a tool to prevent skin cancer and to achieve a desired tan instead of exposure to the sun or to a tanning booth’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays.  

As a dangerous heat wave drove tempuratures close to 100 degrees across the region August 1, the New England Cable News program “Worcester News Tonight” provided tips on preventing heat-related illness via an interview with  Marc A. Gautreau, MD , assistant professor of emergency medicine. Dr. Gautreau discussed warning signs of serious illness caused by prolonged heat and humidity and gave advice on keeping cool and healthy, particularly for the elderly and people who may be homebound or isolated. 

Stephenie C. Lemon, PhD,   assistant professor of medicine, was the featured guest August 1 on the WUML 91.5 FM program "Sunrise" and discussed the StepAhead program, a four-year, randomized, controlled research project funded by the National Institutes of Health to study how hospital workers can control their weight by promoting changes in the work environment that support healthy eating and physical activity. Some 900 employees across six UMass Memorial sites are being followed over the course of the study to evaluate, measure and record changes in weight, diet, physical activities and work productivity. 

An August 1 Wall Street Journal article examining the introduction of electronic medical record keeping systems in nursing homes quoted Jerry H. Gurwitz, MD, the Dr. John Meyers Professor of Primary Care Medicine and professor of medicine and family medicine & community health. Dr. Gurwitz provided insight into the complexities of the nursing home setting and patient population as a factor in medication errors. 

Zhong Jiang, MD, associate professor of pathology, was interviewed for the August issue of Urology Times on his recently published paper in The Lancet Oncology, which identified a novel biomarker that could predict the spread of a particular type of kidney cancer. 


The July 24 Worcester Telegram & Gazette included a health page feature focused on the dangers of biting bugs-mosquitoes and ticks-and the diseases they may carry. Richard H. Glew, MD,  vice chair of medicine, and professor of medicine and molecular genetics & microbiology, described the symptoms of some bug-borne diseases and the likely treatment plans, and provided advice for avoiding bites and subsequent illness. 

Darshak Sanghavi, MD,  assistant professor of pediatrics, a frequent contributor to the Boston Globe, penned the cover article of the July 23 Boston Globe Magazine. "The Mother Lode of Pain," explored the reasoning behind and ramifications of a woman's choice to forego pain medication during labor and delivery, and generated a lot of discussion in a follow-up on-line chat as well as numerous letters to the editor. 

Debra Hurwitz, MBA, BSN, RN,   instructor of family medicine & community health and director of State Health Policy Analysis for Commonwealth Medicine, was interviewed by Springfield’s WHYN-AM July 21 to discuss the competing nurse staffing ratio bills currently under consideration in the state legislature. Hurwitz was part of a multi-disciplinary project team from UMass Worcester commissioned to investigate the complex issue. 

Douglas A. Hinerfeld, PhD,   research assistant professor of biochemistry & molecular pharmacology, was interviewed for a July 18 Worcester Telegram & Gazette business page story about an agreement through which the UMMS Applied Proteomics Services will provide protein-analysis services for BioMachines, Inc., a North Carolina company that makes specialized laboratory equipment. Dr. Hinerfeld is the technical director of Applied Proteomics Services. 

A days-long heat wave prompted a July 18 news report on WBZ-TV Channel 4 which featured tips on preventing heat-related illness, provided by Marc C. Restuccia, MD,  assistant professor of emergency medicine. Dr. Restuccia, also medical director of UMass Memorial EMS and LifeFlight, discussed symptoms of heat stroke and the dangers of dehydration, of particular concern among the elderly and very young children. 

UMMS Chancellor and Dean Aaron Lazare, MD,  the Celia and Isaac Haidak Professor of Medical Education, was interviewed by four teenagers at KRCB 91.1 FM in Sonoma County for the NPR radio program "Voice of Youth" in a discussion comparing true, full apologies to the slang, half-hearted "my bad."  The program aired July 14 and is available in the KRCB archives at www.krcb.org/   

Darshak Sanghavi , MD,  assistant professor of pediatrics,  discussed the gift of organ donation in a July 12 commentary on All Things Considered on National Public Radio. In the segment, Dr. Sanghavi reflected on an experience he had as a medical student observing the harvest of the heart of a teenage boy rendered brain dead in an accident, and what the gift would mean to another child. As a medical student, Sanghavi was asked to close the incision through which the heart had been removed; his dedication to doing a perfect job underscored his reverence for the gift the teen's family had made. 

Thoru Pederson, PhD,   the Vitold Arnett Professor of Cell Biology and professor of biochemistry & molecular pharmacology, was interviewed by the Springfield Republican for a July 7 article reflecting on the tenth anniversary of the birth of Dolly, the world's first cloned mammal. Dr. Pederson provided insight into the scientific uses of cloning and whether early promises have been fulfilled or unexpected benefits or problems have been realized. 

Chancellor and Dean  Aaron Lazare, MD,  was interviewed for a special edition of Business Weekly Taiwan in July 2006 that focused on apology and interpersonal relationships. Dr. Lazare also discussed the process of writing his book, On Apology, and why he felt the book and topic were so important. 


An article in the June 30 Worcester Telegram & Gazette highlighted the significant turnaround in UMass Memorial Medical Center’s Cardiac Surgery Program over the past several months, including the recent hire of Associate Professor of Surgery Stanley K.D. Tam, MD, who specializes in cardiac valve repair and minimally invasive surgery. Professor of Surgery Lynn Harrison, MD, chief of the program, stated that improved communication among physicians and nursing staff, as well as inpatient units with nurses dedicated to cardiac patients, were responsible for the better outcomes. He added that, of 112 cases completed since the program restarted earlier this year, only one death of a coronary artery bypass graft patient had occurred;he hopes to soon be able to perform some 600 cardiac cases each year. The mortality rate was about four percent when UMass Memorial elected to temporarily halt its cardiac surgery program last fall in order to retool to ensure patient safety. 

Marc C. Restuccia, MD,   assistant professor of emergency medicine and medical director of UMass Memorial Emergency Medical Services and LifeFlight, was interviewed June 30 by NECN's Worcester News Tonight regarding the hospital’s new LifeFlight helicopter. Dr. Restuccia spoke about the enhanced services and capabilities the helicopter provides for residents of the Central New England region, and the advanced skill level of the crew of pilots, nurses, physicians and medical residents. 

Stephen T. Earls, MD, assistant professor of family medicine & community health and medical director of the Barre Family Health Center, was interviewed for a June 28 Worcester Telegram & Gazette feature announcing a $100,000 gift by the Salvadore family to support the construction of a larger, more technologically sophisticated health center for area residents. 

Shan Lu, MD, PhD,  professor of medicine, was interviewed on June 23 by State Representative Karyn Polito for her program on SGTV-30, Shrewsbury’s cable television. Expected to air for several weeks, the program featured Dr. Lu discussing his laboratory’s work in analyzing a DNA-vaccine candidate developed by British immunotherapeutics company PowderMed and addressing the medical community’s concerns should avian flu become a problem in the U.S. 

Instructor of Medicine Barbara Olendzki, RD MPH, LDN , was interviewed June 22 by WTAG-AM for a segment on the nutritional value of a “Fluffernutter” sandwich in light of a state legislator’s effort to have the item removed from public school lunch menus. 

Zhong Jiang, MD,  associate professor of pathology, was interviewed for a June 20 Medscape Medical News article on his recently published paper in The Lancet Oncology, which identified a novel biomarker that could predict the spread of a particular type of kidney cancer. 

Vice Chancellor for Research John L. Sullivan, MD, professor of pediatrics and molecular medicine, appeared on the June 20 edition of WUML-FM’s The Sunrise Show to discuss the state of AIDS/HIV research 25 years after the virus was officially recognized. 

Theo E. Meyer, MD, PhD, professor of medicine and director of the UMass Memorial Cardiac Catheterization Laboratories and Heart Failure Wellness Center, was interviewed by both New England Cable News and the Worcester Telegram & Gazette during a campus visit by the Heart FX Pod, a simulator designed to help healthcare professionals “experience” the symptoms of heart failure. More than 100 staff –and both reporters—participated in the 5-minute simulation. The NECN broadcast aired June 13 and the Telegram story, which also quoted Robert A. Phillips, MD, PhD, professor of medicine and medical director of UMass Memorial’s heart and vascular center, was published June 14. 

The June 5 Worcester Telegram & Gazette included a feature article about LifeFlight, UMass Memorial's successful air ambulance program, as the hospital's new helicopter was put into service. The program, which has been active since 1982 and has flown some 23,500 patients to date, is one of very few to fly with a physician and flight nurse aboard; other programs rely on paramedics. Marc C. Restuccia, MD, assistant professor of emergency medicine and medical director of LifeFlight and EMS, was interviewed for the article, as were flight nurse Cheryl Coyle and pilotJack Loadholt . LifeFlight plays a key role in the Emergency Medicine residency program. 

The UMMS and UMass Memorial Medical Center’s Department of Pediatrics was featured in the June issue of AAMC’s Academic Physician & Scientist in “A Recipe for Resident Recruitment.” This lead article, which described the department’s residency selection process and featured several photos of residents and staff, was orchestrated by William A. “Jerry” Durbin, MD,  professor of pediatrics, and Michael Dedekian, MD, instructor in pediatrics. 


Several news outlets, including WCVB-TV Channel 5, WBZ-TV Channel 4, the Worcester Telegram & Gazette and WTAG-AM 580, reported on a potential vaccine for avian flu that is being tested by Shan Lu, MD, PhD, professor of medicine. Dr. Lu and his lab will analyze a DNA-vaccine candidate developed by British immunotherapeutics company PowderMed. Television news broadcasts and interviews with Dr. Lu were aired May 31, followed by print and other media. 

In response to his recently published paper in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Yunsheng Ma, PhD, MPH, assistant professor of medicine, was interviewed for a May 25 Reuters Health feature discussing the efficacy of the personal digital assistant (PDA) as a tool for the management of diabetes. 

Ellen S. More, PhD ,   professor of psychiatry, appeared on WTAG-AM’s “The Jordan Levy Show” on May 23 to discuss the history and evolving role of women in medicine in the context of the Changing the Face of Medicine exhibit, on display at the Medical School through June 15. 

Aldo A. Rossini, MD,   the William and Doris Krupp Professor of Medicine, was photographed and interviewed for a May 16 New York Times article that discussed the alarming cuts that have taken place in National Institutes of Health funding slated for diabetes research.   

On May 15, Jerry H. Gurwitz, MD , the Dr. John Meyers Professor of Primary Care Medicine, appeared on WUML FM’s “The Sunrise Show” to discuss his recent grant from the Attorney General Consumer and Prescriber Grant Program. Dr. Gurwitz will use funds from the two-year grant to create materials to teach medical professionals the tactics drug companies use to promote their products. 

Stephen T. Earls, MD,   assistant professor of family medicine & community health and director of the Barre Family Health Center, was quoted in a May 11 Barre Gazette article covering the ground breaking ceremony for the clinic's new $6.6 million, 19,400-square-foot expansion.  

With reports that ticks will abound this spring and summer, Jennifer S. Daly, MD ,  professor of medicine, spoke with WTAG-AM on May 8 regarding the signs and symptoms of Lyme disease.   

Elaine R. Martin, MSLS, DA,  director of the UMMS Lamar Soutter Library, and Ellen S. More, PhD,  professor of psychiatry, were interviewed by NECN’s “Worcester News Tonight” on May 5 regarding the opening of the Changing the Face of Medicine traveling exhibition at the Medical School . On display through June, the exhibit chronicles the struggles and successes of women in medicine.  


Research on post-treatment mammogram rates of breast cancer by survivors by Chyke Doubeni's MD, MPH , assistant professor of family medicine & community health, was featured on the front page of Worcester Telegram & Gazette April 24, and articles also appeared in The Boston Globe, Providence Journal, as well as 270 additional media outlets served by the Associated Press.  The study, Patterns and Predictors of Mammography Utilization Among Breast Cancer Survivors, analyzed the incidence of post treatment mammograms in 797 insured women over the age of 55.  The study will be published in the June issue of the journal Cancer. Also interviewed for several articles was Kathryn L. Edmiston, MD, associate professor of medicine. 

In response to a review article published in the New England Journal of Medicine that reported on pregnancy complications and fetal development issues related to transplantation, Karen W. Green, MD,  professor of obstetrics & gynecology, was interviewed for an April 24 Worcester Telegram & Gazette article on the topic. Dr. Green, who specializes in high-risk pregnancies and is chief of maternal-fetal medicine at UMass Memorial Medical Center, discussed the concerns regarding the long-term use of immunosuppressant drugs by women who have had organ transplants and their possible effect on a growing fetus and on the mother during pregnancy. 

In an April 18 article discussing the opening of a new program specializing in the treatment of digestive tract tumors at UMass Memorial Cancer Center, Dario C. Altieri, MD,  center director and the Eleanor Eustis Farrington Chair in Cancer Research, was quoted discussing the multidisciplinary bent of the program, which will include physicians, surgeons, and diagnostic and therapeutic radiologists.  Jennifer F. Tseng, MD, assistant professor of surgery, was also named and photographed for the story as the first research scholar of the local Pancreatic Alliance. 

Frank J. Domino, MD,  associate professor of family medicine & community health and the family medicine clerkship director, provided information to the 

Worcester Telegram & Gazette for an April 17 story about the use of PDAs in medical education. According to the Liaison Committee on Medical Education, 28 percent of medical schools require students to use hand-helds and many more use them voluntarily. Third- and fourth-year students at UMMS are required to use PDAs on their clinical rotations.

Jerry H. Gurwitz, MD,   the Dr. John Meyers Professor of Primary Care Medicine, was interviewed for an April 14 Worcester Telegram & Gazette article regarding educational grants funded through a settlement with a pharmaceutical company convicted of illegally marketing a particular drug for off-label use. The purpose of these grants, announced by the Office of the Massachusetts Attorney General, is to educate health care professionals and consumers about pharmaceutical industry marketing practices and to provide strategies for accessing unbiased sources of information about drugs so that healthcare providers and patients can make clear choices about prescription drugs.   

UMMS Chancellor and Dean Aaron Lazare, MD , the Celia and Isaac Haidak Professor of Medical Education, was featured April 13 in a CBS’s “Early Show” segment on the art of the apology. 

Yunsheng Ma, PhD, MPH,  assistant professor of medicine, was interviewed by a number of outlets including Men’s Health, WebMD and Reuters Health on April 13 to discuss his paper, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, which found that increased fiber intake could lead to a decrease in CRP, a protein that has been demonstrated to play a role in diabetes and cardiovascular disease.  

The April 9 Sunday Telegram & Gazette featured a lengthy front-page article about UMass Memorial’s emergency and trauma services. In addition to members of LifeFlight and EMS crews, faculty interviewed included: Michael P. Hirsh, MD, professor of surgery and pediatrics; Mark L. Shapiro, MD, assistant professor of surgery; Marc C. Restuccia, MD, assistant professor of emergency medicine; and Marc A. Gautreau, MD, assistant professor of emergency medicine. 

Worcester Telegram & Gazette news editor Jay Whearley, who received a liver transplant at UMass Memorial in December, wrote a front-page account of his experience, from diagnosis of his liver disease to treatment and his ultimate transplant for the April 2 Sunday Telegram & Gazette. Accompanying the piece was a photograph of Whearley with dozens of his healthcare providers including Luca Cicalese, MD,  associate professor of surgery and pediatrics, and Lawton Schick, MD, assistant professor of medicine. 

Surgery assistant professors Jennifer Tseng, MD, and Rakhshanda Layeeque, MD , and Catherine Nowak, MD, assistant professor of pediatrics, were featured in an article in the April issue of   Bay State Parent "Is There a Doctor in the House? Yes, my Mom." With the growing number of women in medicine, the magazine lets readers know how Dr. Moms face pressures like the rest of us, and how they juggle being a doctor and a parent. 


James F. Carmody, PhD, assistant professor of medicine and Elizabeth A. Jackson, MD, assistant professor of medicine, were guests on WTAG-AM’s “The Jordan Levy Show” on March 29; they discussed their current research into alternative treatments for hot flashes, the most common menopausal symptom. 

In light of a recent study that found that the number of both child and adult cases of asthma are rising in New England , Oren P. Schaefer, MD, clinical associate professor of medicine, was interviewed by NECN’s “Worcester News Tonight” on March 27 to discuss the regional influences on this increase. 

Worcester Commissioner of Public Health Leonard J. Morse, MD, clinical professor of medicine, and H. Brownell Wheeler, MD, the Harry M. Haidak Distinguished Professor of Surgery Emeritus and professor of surgery, were quoted in a March 27 Worcester Telegram & Gazette feature regarding their professional relationship with retired surgeon George Dunlop, MD, who celebrated his 100th birthday on March 31. The feature primarily focused on Dr. Dunlop’s life and the changes he’s witnessed in health care over the last century. 

Linda F. Weinreb, MD,  Joy McCann Professor for Women in Medicine, was interviewed for a March 26 feature in the Sunday Worcester  Telegram & Gazette that examined the physical and psychological effects of hunger on children and families. 

Mitchell J. Gitkind, MD,   clinical associate professor of medicine, was interviewed for a March 22 Boston Herald story and for “Worcester News Tonight” to discuss a report from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health that indicated that in 2004, more residents of the Commonwealth were overweight and obese than just five years ago.  Dr. Gitkind discussed the health risks associated with excess weight and warned of potential increases in such serious weight-related diseases as diabetes and heart disease. 

Associate Vice Chancellor for Human Resources Joanne Derr was interviewed for a March 20 Worcester Business Journal feature on employee morale in which she noted that companies should actively engage their employees by asking for their opinions and gauging their reactions. 

Catherine A. Phillips, MD,    clinical associate professor of neurology, was quoted in a Worcester Telegram & Gazette Health Page on March 20 that featured the a woman coping with epileptic seizures through yoga and meditation. Dr. Phillips specifically commented on the importance of such outlets, such as yoga, that help people “cope with their chronic illness and feel more empowered.” 

Alan P. Brown, MD, clinical professor and interim chair of psychiatry. was quoted in a March 17 Worcester Telegram & Gazette article discussed the fate of the UMass Memorial Psychiatric Treatment Center housed at Worcester State Hospital . 

Eric J. Alper, MD   , associate professor of medicine, offered comments to NECN’s “Worcester News Tonight” on March 16 regarding a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine that found that only 55 percent of study participants received recommended health care. 

Mariann M. Manno, MD,   clinical associate professor of pediatrics and emergency medicine, was interviewed for a feature in the March 14 Worcester Telegram & Gazette regarding the Teen RIDE (Reality Intensive Driver Education) program she organized in conjunction with the Worcester District Juvenile Court . The full-day program introduced a number of teens convicted of driving offenses to a gentleman paralyzed in an accident as a teen and “assigned” them traumatic injuries/ Other activities were also employed to teach the teens the possible consequences of reckless driving. 

Guy M. Vallaro, PhD,   assistant professor of pathology, was interviewed by the Boston Herald for a story March 11 regarding a case in which a 9-month-old had ingested coccaine. Dr. Vallaro specifically discussed the potential health effects of this drug on a young child.  

In reaction to the lung cancer-related death of Dana Reeve, widow of actor Christopher Reeve and advocate for medical research, WTAG-AM interviewed William V. Walsh, MD, assistant professor of medicine, on March 7 regarding the causes of and treatments for lung cancer. 

Karen Wiss, MD,  associate professor of medicine, was quoted in the March 7 Women’s Day Kid’s Day” column, regarding a study she conducted that found colored dyes used in many disposable diapers to be the cause of chronic diaper rash or contact dermatitis in some babies. Dr. Wiss added that she recommends generic-brand diapers without colors for her patients to alleviate this problem.   

Richard T. Ellison , MD,  professor of medicine and molecular genetics & microbiology, was interviewed for a March 5 Worcester Telegram & Gazette feature that examined how local organizations would prepare in the wake of an avian flu pandemic. 

Jerry H. Gurwitz, MD,   the Dr. John Meyers Professor of Primary Care Medicine, was widely interviewed after publishing an editorial in the New England Journal of Medicine titled “Serious Adverse Drug Effects: Seeing the Trees through the Forest.” The piece accompanied a study that found that the antibiotic Tequin can cause potentially fatal swings in blood sugar for a broad group of patients. According to Dr. Gurwitz in interviews on March 1 with CNN, The Boston Globe, Reuters, The Baltimore Sun, HealthDay and others, the FDA and Bristol-Myers should reconsider adding a black box to the label —the agency's strongest warning for high-risk patients. 

Associate Professor of Medicine Dominic J. Nompleggi, MD, PhD, was interviewed for a story about heartburn and acid reflux in the March edition of Road King Magazine, a publication for long-haul truckers. Dr. Nompleggi provided insight into the causes and risk factors of reflux and provided advice on prevention and possible treatment options. 


Yunsheng Ma, PhD, MPH, assistant professor of medicine, was interviewed for a February feature in Family Circle on his recently published paper examining the relationship between winter weather and weight gain. Dr. Ma, who discussed how families can work together to prevent weight gain, was also featured in the February issue of SHAPE. 

In reaction to a sudden cold front that sent temperature plummeting into the single digits, WTAG-AM interviewed Marc C. Restuccia, MD, assistant professor of emergency medicine, on Feb. 27 for tips on how to avoid, identify and treat frostbite and other cold-weather health risks. 

W. Peter Metz , MD , clinical professor of psychiatry and pediatrics, was featured in a Feb. 27 Worcester Telegram & Gazette article that discussed a bereavement program for children who have lost a parent. Dr. Metz, who is not affiliated with the program, commented on the “enormous value” children receive from having the opportunity to talk and connect with other children about a very painful event in a non-clinical environment. 

Mitchell J. Gitkind, MD,   clinical associate professor of medicine and medical director of the 

UMass Memorial Weight Center , was quoted in the Feb. 20 Worcester Telegram & Gazette downplaying the recent report that suggests a low-fat diet might not prevent breast cancer, colon cancer or heart disease.

Dario C. Altieri, MD, the Eleanor Eustis Farrington Chair in Cancer Research, chair of the Department of Cancer Biology and director of the UMass Memorial Cancer Center, was featured in the Feb. 20 Worcester Telegram & Gazette discussing the receipt of a National Cancer Institute Rapid Access to Intervention Development (RAID) award for his work with shepherdin, a novel anti-cancer agent now in the drug precursor stage of development. The sole proposal awarded in this project cycle, the RAID will allow the NCI to perform all of the preclinical development tasks needed for the investigational new drug at no cost to the University, providing a valuable service while removing steps that may be obstacles to clinical translation. 

A Feb. 13 Worcester Telegram & Gazette Health Page feature about a treatment for a congenital heart defect included quotes from Lars Carl Erickson, MD, MPH, associate professor of pediatrics. The story focused on Dr. Erikson’s patient, a 20-month-old girl, and her condition, hypoplastic left heart syndrome. 

Theo E. Meyer, MD, PhD, professor of medicine, appeared live Feb. 13 on "The Jordan Levy Show" on WTAG-AM in recognition of Heart Failure Awareness Week. Dr. Meyer discussed heart disease and the services available through UMass Memorial’s Heart Failure Wellness clinic. 

Oguz I. Cataltepe, MD,    associate professor of surgery and pediatrics, was interviewed Feb. 9 for a Worcester News Tonight feature on the Tara Bean Valentine’s Gala to Benefit Pediatric Brain Tumor Care and Research, scheduled Saturday, Feb. 11. Some of the proceeds from the gala will benefit a new fellowship training program in pediatric neurosurgery at UMass Memorial Children’s Medical Center . 

Andrea M. Pezzella, MD,   clinical instructor in obstetrics & gynecologyand urologist Mitchell H. Bamberger, MD,  clinical associate professor of surgery were featured in a Feb. 6 Worcester Telegram & Gazette Health Page discussing a new minimally-invasive procedure that they perform to repair a prolapsed pelvic floor, a problem that is estimated to affect one in three woman age 45 and older. 

Brudnick Neuropsychiatric Research Institute investigator Evgeny I. Rogaev, PhD, professor of psychiatry, discussed his impressive sequencing of the complete mitochondrial genome of a 33,000-year-old woolly mammoth in a Feb. 7 Worcester Telegram & Gazette article. Dr. Rogaev also appeared that same evening on NECN’s Worcester News Tonight discussing this “mammoth” research effort. 

A Feb 4. WorcesterTelegram & Gazette sports feature on Southborough’s St. Mark’s College Preparatory School both quoted and pictured alum and Associate Professor Orthopedics & Physical Rehabilitation Brian D. Busconi, MD. Dr. Busconi, who also serves as chief of UMass Memorial’s Division of Sports Medicine, credited his athletic experiences at St. Mark’s with laying the ground work for his success at Harvard and for helping prepare him for his career as a physician. 

Demetrius E.M. Litwin, MD,   professor and chair of surgery at UMass Medical School was quoted and pictured in a Feb. 4 Worcester Telegram & Gazette article highlighting a recent visit by employees from medical device company Karl Storz to UMass Memorial Medical Center’s new Lakeside Wing Dr. Litwin specifically commented on the reason’s why the Charlton company was chosen to outfit the wing’s 10 new operating suites with their equipment – their quality, service and price. 


Throughout the month, Professor of Medicine Richard S. Irwin, MD,  author of the American College of Chest Physicans' new cough treatment guidelines that discourage use of over-the-counter cough medicines, was interviewed by several national and international media outlets including ABC's World News Tonight, Canada TV, the Associated Press, The Seattle Times, The Washington Post, U.S. News&World Report and CNN. 

Susan C. Fiorillo, DMD,   assistant professor of surgery, David M. Matson, DMD,   assistant professor of family medicine & community health, and John P. Gusha, DMD, instructor in family medicine & community health, were quoted in a Jan. 30 Worcester Telegram & Gazette Health Page feature regarding the new dental residency program initiated at UMMS in 2005. 

Darshak M. Sanghavi, MD,   assistant professor of pediatrics, penned a column in the Health Sciences section of the Jan. 30 Boston Globe regarding the recent “epidemic” of peanut allergies among children. 

A Jan. 25 business story in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette discussed the recent recruitment of UMMS Professor of Surgery Lynn Harrison Jr., MD, as a the new chief of cardiac surgery for UMass Memorial Medical Center.  Dr. Harrison, who came to UMass Memorial from Louisiana State University School of Medicine, was featured for his role in helping rebuild the hospital’s cardiac surgery program, which closed for six-weeks last fall. 

Bruce A. Meyer, MD, MBA,   professor and chair of obstetrics & gynecology and president of the UMass Memorial Medical Group, was interviewed for a Jan. 25 The Boston Globe article regarding conflict of interest policies. The story focused on a proposal, published in the Jan. 25 issue of JAMA, which questioned whether academic medical centers should accept any support from pharmaceutical and medical supply companies, or whether such support—including grants used for educational conferences—exerts undue influence on physicians. 

Chancellor and Dean Aaron Lazare  commented on what makes an effective apology in a Jan. 23 Orlando Sentinel editorial. The column highlighted recent incidents in which Christian broadcaster Pat Robertson and New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin made imprudent remarks and then “apologized.” 

Matilde Castiel, MD,   instructor in medicine and a recipient of the 2005 Career Achievement Award from the Worcester District Medical Society, was featured in the Jan. 19 – 25 Worcester Magazine  cover story – including the front-page photo – regarding the rise in Worcester’s Latino leaders but their lack of representation in city government.  Dr. Castiel specifically discussed her hope to start a half-way house that is culturally sensitive to Latinos. 

Ajay K. Wakhloo, MD,  professor of radiology and director of the Department of Radiology’s new Neuroimaging and Intervention Division, was quoted in the Jan. 16 Worcester Telegram & Gazette Health Page regarding a patient, profiled in the article, on whom he repaired two aneurysms non-invasively. Dr. Wakhloo re-introduced the minimally invasive procedure at UMass Memorial Medical Center when he joined the staff in August 2005. Italo Linfante , MD, an associate professor of radiology, was also named in the article.

Erik Garcia, MD,   assistant professor of family medicine & community health, wrote a letter to the editor published in the Jan. 6 Worcester Telegram & Gazette, which referenced a Dec. 21 memorial held for the city's homeless and noted the death of one of the shelter's residents remembered during the ceremony. He also stressed the importance of mourning the passing of members of this population so that all might treat the homeless living in the city with more dignity and respect.

Harrison Ball, MD,   professor of obstetrics and gynecology and chief of gynecologic oncology for UMass Memorial, was interviewed for Jan. 5 articles in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette, Boston Globe, and ABC Medical News online regarding an announcement from the National Cancer Institute regarding the benefit of coupling intravenous chemotherapy with intraperitoneal chemotherapy to lengthen survival by about 12 months for women with advanced ovarian cancer.  Results of the multi-site study were published in the New England Journal of Medicine.