Department of Pathology News

Congratulations, Dr. Trish Simner!

Distinguised Alumni Award 2018
Dr. Trish Simner received a 2018 Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Manitoba. In giving Dr. Simner this award, the University noted that, "Dr. Simner's work reflects the future of microbiologists. Already given several prestigious awards, she is an excellent role model for potential microbiologists, especially young women. Her work on the mechanisms of anti-microbial resistance is timely and necessary. Collaborations include those with the Antimicrobial Resistance Surveillance Taskforce for the CDC." Congratulations!

~February 2018

2017 Publications

Our faculty published more than 200 original peer-reviewed first/last author publications in 2017! From studies of microRNA expression to large epidemiological studies, the impact of this science is breath taking! To learn more click here.

~February 2018

#1 in NIH Funding in 2017

The Blue Ridge Institute released its 2017 rankings of NIH funding to US medical schools, and the Department of Pathology here at Hopkins once again is recognized as the #1 funded pathology department! This makes the department #1 in NIH funding for 10 of the last 11 years. In addition, Sharon Nachman, Susan Eshleman and TC Wu were among the top 25 funded pathologists in the US.
From fighting HIV in Africa, to cancer in the inner city, our faculty are dedicated to impactful science.


1 Johns Hopkins University$53,745,191
2 University of Pennsylvania$33,595,740
3 Washington University$33,172,751
4 University of Washington$28,574,568
5 Emory University$28,197,113
6 Columbia University Health Sciences$27,678,680
7 Stanford University$26,966,391
8 University of Michigan$25,215,399
9 New York University School of Medicine$20,242,440
10 Case Western Reserve University$15,311,283

Click here to view the full list in Pathology.

~February 2017

Congratulations, Dr. Kathy Burns!

Kathleen Burns, MD, PhD Congratulations to Kathy Burns for her election to the American Society for Clinical Investigation (ASCI)! ASCI is one of the nation's oldest and most respected medical honor societies. It is made up of more than 3,000 physician-scientists from all medical specialties who are elected for outstanding scholarly achievements in biomedical research. Kathy will give the new member presentation at the ASCI Annual Meeting in Chicago this spring. She joins Charles Eberhart (elected 2010) and T.C. Wu (elected 2002) from our department.

~February 2018

Diversity Cover Story

Tricia Murdoch, MD Our very own Tricia Murdoch, M.D. was recently featured in the Johns Hopkins Medicine publication Diversity and Inclusion 2017. The piece tells Tricia's remarkable journey - growing up on the Tuscarora Nation (a Native American reservation in New York), to the University of Buffalo, the NIH, the University of Washington, and eventually to fellowship training at Johns Hopkins. Tricia is now on our faculty in GYN Pathology.

Click here to learn more about Tricia's remarkable journey.

~February 2018

February Diversity Calendar

The Pathology Diversity Calendar for the month of February is now available for download (PDF format). Visit the Pathology Diversity web site or get your copy here and learn more about Pathology Diversity Fast Facts and local events.

~February 2018

Insight from Dr. Daniela Čiháková

Daniela Cihakova, MD, PhD Dr. Čiháková published Insight article in Journal of Experimental Medicine discussing diverse population of cardiac-resident macrophages and their critical role in the pathogenesis of heart failure. A new understanding of communication between macrophages and cardiac fibroblasts could lead to novel therapeutic strategies for heart failure with preserved ejection function.

Read the full article.

~January 2018

Congratulations, Carrie!

Carrie Holdren-Serrell Congratulations to Carrie Holdren-Serrell of the Microbiology Lab! Carrie was chosen as a recipient of the 2017 Martin Luther King Community Service Award. This award is presented to employees of Johns Hopkins Medicine in honor and recognition of their significant community service. Read more about Carrie »

~January 2018

Advance in ALS Research

Dr. Shuying Sun Pathology department and Brain Science Institute researcher Shuying Sun and her group have uncovered a mechanism by which genetic alterations common in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease, and some dementias may promote loss of neurons. They focus on how aberrant proteins are produced in disease, and their findings suggest a possible new point of therapeutic intervention. Hexanucleotide repeat expansion in C9ORF72 is the most frequent cause of both ALS and frontotemporal dementia (FTD). Unconventional translation of the repeat-containing RNA produces multiple toxic poly-dipeptides, which contribute to neurodegeneration. The new study demonstrates that the repeat translation is upregulated by various stress stimuli through phosphorylation of the &alpha subunit of eukaryotic initiation factor-2 (eIF2α), the core event of an integrated stress response. Compounds inhibiting phospho-eIF2α-signaling pathways were shown to suppress translation of the repeats. Since the poly-dipeptides can themselves induce stress, this could trigger a feedforward loop with initial repeat-mediated toxicity enhancing the repeat translation and subsequent production of additional poly-dipeptides, thereby driving relentless disease progression. A method perturbing this loop might reduce or delay neurodegeneration and hold therapeutic promise in C9ORF72-ALS/FTD. The study was recently published in Nature Communications.

~January 2018

Dr. King Memorial Service

We lost a very dear friend and colleague, Dr. Karen E. King, on January 5, 2018 at the age of 56. Karen graduated from Wellesley College (1982) and the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine (1986). She went on to complete her residency in Pathology (1991) and fellowship in Transfusion Medicine (1993-1996), after which she was recruited to the Hopkins faculty in 1996. She subsequently rose to the ranks of Professor in 2016, becoming the 227th woman Professor at Hopkins. Karen brought immense enthusiasm, hope, and strength to all that she did, and it was through these unique qualities that she cared for patients, taught students and colleagues, pioneered new horizons in transfusion medicine, and battled cancer until the very end. Karen was known for her intellect, energy, and brilliant smile, which she shared freely with her family, friends, colleagues, and the many students, residents and fellows whom she taught. She considered her students and mentees to be family, providing a role model to all who had the privilege of working and learning from her. A beloved teacher, Karen was awarded the Resident's Teaching Award. First and foremost, she led by example and inspired others by her indefatigable efforts on behalf of her patients and trainees. Karen encouraged those around her to dream big and realize all that their careers could evolve into, shying away from pre-established conventions. Through her work in pathology and transfusion medicine, she was affectionately known as the institution's "interventional pathologist". Not content to fill an assigned role, she created something unique and unmatched. Perhaps more than most anything else, Karen was an inspiration to all of those who have worked with her over the years.

She was also a dedicated physician-scientist whose contributions advanced the field and therapy for countless patients. Karen built the Hemapheresis and Transfusion Support (HATS) Division at Hopkins from the ground up; this program provides specialized transfusion care to diverse patients with complicated medical disorders. She served not only as the Medical Director of HATS, Director of the Transfusion Medicine Fellowship, but also the Associate Director of the Pathology Residency Program and Associate Medical Director of Transfusion Medicine. She was recognized worldwide as an expert in apheresis and the management of complex immunologic and blood disorders, including sickle cell anemia, cancer, neurologic disorders, and organ transplantation. Thanks to Karen, today over 2500 therapeutic apheresis cases are performed at Johns Hopkins every year. To advance our understanding and care of complicated patients requiring blood transfusion, she was a prolific scientist, imparting her knowledge and expertise through the medical literature and over 60 invited lectures throughout the world. Karen was honored with the American Association of Blood Banks (AABB) Presidential Award this past October in recognition of her "tremendous service to AABB through education, mentorship and numerous appointments to AABB committees, including associate editor of Transfusion and for her leadership in apheresis and organ transplant immunohematology as well as her devotion to training junior members in the field of transfusion medicine."

In addition to her medical career, Karen was a talented pianist who trained at the Peabody Conservatory and in France at the École des Beaux-Arts at Fountainebleu. She also established an exchange program whereby students from Japan came to study at Hopkins, and Hopkins students had the opportunity to study in Japan.

Karen is survived by her husband, Porter Siems, their three children, Lilly, Elizabeth, and Matthew, her brother Ted Jr, and her mother, Mrs. Lilly King. Karen's father, Dr. Theodore King, was a long-term member of the Hopkins family. He served as the Vice President for Medical Affairs, Director of the Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, and he helped to establish the Johns Hopkins Program for International Education in Gynecology and Obstetrics (JHPIEGO).

Simply put, Karen was a much-loved member of the Department of Pathology and Hopkin's family. Her impact was beyond measure, and she will live on in the hearts and memories of those she touched.

Karen's family will receive well-wishers at Ruck's Funeral Home in Towson (1050 York Road, Beltway exit 26) on Friday, January 12th, from 3 pm to 5 pm and from 7 pm to 9 pm, and a memorial service will be held at the Church of the Redeemer (5603 N. Charles St., Baltimore, MD 21210) on Saturday, January 13th at 11 am. The family requests that in lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Hopewell Cancer Support, 10628 Falls Rd., Lutherville, MD 21093 or Wellesley College.

~January 2018

Congratulations, Dr. Juan Millan!

Juan Millan, MD, FCAP

Congratulations Dr. Juan Millan (fellow from 1972 to 1975 and in the Faculty from 1975 to 1989). Juan was awarded the College of American Pathologists 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award. This award recognizes Juan's service to the CAP's Laboratory Accreditation Program. Juan served as deputy commissioner to the systems since 2008, on the Complaints and Investigation Committee (2007-2015) and he has been a delegate to the CAP since 2003. Juan is currently Director of Laboratories at Legacy Health in Portland Oregon. Congratulations Juan!

~January 2018

Red Cross Blood Drives

Red Cross Blood Drive

There are many Red Cross Blood Drives scheduled for the Hopkins community-across all Hospitals and all locations-throughout 2018. Please click the image above to see the entire list. Please consider a donation to save lives.

~January 2018

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