UT Arlington Dedicates New Science, Engineering, and Research Facility

UT Arlington officials cut the ribbon on the university’s new Science & Engineering Innovation & Research building. The $125 million facility will focus on interdisciplinary research on major health science challenges of the day such as brain health, cancer, healthy aging, and cardiovascular health. “We want to thank our champions in the legislature, the Board of Regents, the University of Texas System leadership and the campus community for believing in our vision,” said UTA President Vistasp Karbhari. “SEIR is the embodiment of our health science focus, bringing together research neighborhoods, collaborative spaces, teaching facilities and areas where faculty, staff and… Full Story

M.D. Anderson’s Dr. James Allison Awarded Nobel Prize

Houston can call one of its top physicians a Nobel Prize winner. M.D. Anderson Cancer Center’s Dr. James P. Allison won the 2018 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his breakthrough cancer research this week, the New York Times reports. Allison, 70, worked toward aiding the immune system’s ability to attack cancer by suppressing the proteins that resist the immune’s system’s ability to fight cancer cells. Normally, cancer treatment involves three plans of attack: surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy. But the Nobel committee at the Karolinska Institute called Allison’s immune system treatment “an entirely new principle for cancer therapy,” according… Full Story

Susan G. Komen To Fund $600,000 Grant For Breast Cancer Research At UTSW

Dr. Carlos Arteaga of UT Southwestern Medical Center is the recipient of a $600,000 Susan G. Komen organization research grant that will help him improve precision in breast cancer treatment while preventing drug resistance. Arteaga serves as the Director of the Harold C. Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center and Associate Dean of Oncology Programs at UT Southwestern. While 90 percent of breast cancer patients survive for 5 years, more than 40,000 women still die from the disease each year in the United States, according to the National Cancer Institute. According to the Advanced Pharmaceutical Bulletin journal, 90 percent of failures in chemotherapy… Full Story

After ‘Big Bang’ Discovery, UTSW Center for Alzheimer’s Gets $700K Boost From Aging Mind Foundation

The Aging Mind Foundation has handed over a $700,000 check to UT Southwestern Medical Center’s Center for Alzheimer’s and Neurodegenerative Diseases and the Peter O’Donnell Jr. Brain Institute to help continued efforts in finding the root cause of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. It’s the largest chunk of money put together yet by the five-year-old nonprofit, which gives to a different dementia research-focused philanthropy each year. Aging Mind has given about $2 million overall, with an emphasis on programs that look specifically at the cause of Alzheimer’s. “You can’t do anything else correctly until you know what’s causing it,”… Full Story

Two UT Southwestern Faculty Members Receive Endocrine Society Laureate Awards

A couple of UT Southwestern Medical Center faculty members learned this week that they’re winners of heralded Laureate Awards from the Endocrine Society. Dr. Helen Hobbs, director of the Eugene Mcdermott Center for Human Growth and Development, takes home the 2019 Gerald D. Aurbach Award for Outstanding Translational Research. It’s the latest in a very decorated stretch for Hobbs, whose work led to the development of a new class of drugs for treating high cholesterol by identifying how certain genetic variants impact cardiometabolic health. Carole Mendelson, a professor of biochemistry and obstetrics and gynecology, receives the Sidney H. Ingbar Distinguished… Full Story

Leaders From Texas Health, Baylor, and StratiFi Discuss Disruption, Cost, Outpatient Growth, and Construction

Last week, we corralled a few heavy hitters in North Texas healthcare onto a stage at the AC Hotel Dallas by the Galleria. Over the course of what turned out to be a little over an hour (sorry to keep you), we talked about the evolution of healthcare and impending disruption and, more than anything, about how these things are playing out in the types of investments health systems are making—and should be making, and might make in the future—in Dallas-Fort Worth and beyond. The panelists were Barclay Berdan, CEO of Texas Health Resources; Gary Brock, chief integrated delivery network… Full Story

UT Southwestern COO Departs To Lead Hospitals and Clinics at University of Iowa

Suresh Gunasekaran, who has served as chief of operations for UT Southwestern Medical Center since 2015, has been named associate vice president of University of Iowa Health Care and CEO of UI Hospitals & Clinics, UI Health Care announced this week. In addition to serving as COO, Gunasekaran had a hand in UTSW’s partnership with Texas Health Resources, serving as senior executive officer for the population health services side of the collaboration. UIHC says here that he’ll make $800,000 a year, pending Board of Regents approval. In April, Gunasekaran sat on a Startup Week panel that I moderated. You’ll find… Full Story

Irving-based Company Predicts Smaller (But Still Sizable) Increase In Drug Prices Next Year

Vizient released its drug price forecast for 2019, and the data-driven company says it expects prices to increase 4.92 percent during 2019. But the prediction comes with a caveat for health systems to latch onto: The percent of price inflation is down nearly three percentage points—from 7.61 percent last year—which Vizient says could signal the beginning of a change in the trend. For now, the specialty pharmacy industry continues to drive up the prices, Vizient says: Although the rate of price increases is projected to slow, the specialty pharmacy market is expected to continue its rapid pace of growth, which… Full Story

UT Southwestern Tests Single-Dose Radiation Treatment For Breast Cancer

When 81-year-old Marilyn Gibson was first diagnosed with stage one breast cancer, the Arlington resident—who limits her driving—was looking at undergoing 15 radiation treatments. Instead, as a part of a UT Southwestern Medical Center clinical trial, Gibson underwent just one treatment, completing all required radiation in no more than 45 minutes. UT Southwestern is testing a single, highly focused radiation treatment on breast cancer patients. The treatment, stereotactic partial breastal radiation (S-PBI), is a high-dose form of stereotactic ablative radiotherapy concentrated only on the area of the tumor. The clinical trial is ongoing, but it’s shown positive results so far.… Full Story

UT Dallas Center for BrainHealth Founder To Be Honored As 2018 Woman of the Year

Le Femmes du Monde will recognize the founder of University of Texas at Dallas’ Center for BrainHealth at its 2018 Woman of the Year Gala in October. Dr. Sandra Chapman will be presented the honor. Chapman is a cognitive neuroscientist who holds the Dee Wyly Distinguished University Chair at UT Dallas. She’s also the chief director of the Center for BrainHealth, which she founded in 1999, and has more than 40 funded research grants and 200-plus publications. Kay Bailey Hutchison (1997), Laura Bush (’98), Margaret McDermott (2014), and Nancy Hunt (2016) are among the past winners. The gala is set… Full Story