Dear Mass General Research Community,

The spring is typically a busy time here at Mass General, but it has truly been an action-packed time for our research community.

It all began earlier this month with ECOR’s annual Celebration of Science event. This year’s event was paired up with the Warren Triennial Prize celebration, making for a day-long series of inspiring science talks.

The morning included talks from Mario Suvà, MD, PhD, winner of the Howard M. Goodman Fellowship, Daniel MacArthur, PhD, winner of the Martin Research Prize for Clinical Research and Alexander Soukas, MD, winner of the Martin Research Prize for Fundamental Research. The fact that the winner of the clinical research award went to an investigator with a PhD and the fundamental science award to an investigator with an MD illustrates the way in which our clinical and fundamental science programs are interconnected.

The event also marked the introduction of the 2017 MGH Research Scholars. Since the program’s launch in 2011, Mass General has named 50 MGH Research Scholars, a remarkable achievement since the program is funded exclusively through philanthropy.

The Warren Triennial Prize ceremony followed in the afternoon, with a series of presentations on cancer immunology leading up to a keynote address by the 2017 Warren Prize winner James Allison, PhD, of the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Last week, the Mass General Research Institute teamed up with the Brigham Research Institute to host our first “Research Rumble” communicating science competition as part of the Cambridge Science Festival. We had five contestants each give four-minute presentations on their science and receive feedback from a panel of judges. See below for some pictures and more on this fun event.

To round out this whirlwind month, last Saturday a large contingent from the Mass General community represented the institution at the Boston March for Science. Inspirational remarks were given in the Bulfinch tent by Regina Larocque, MD, of the Physicians for Policy Action; Peter Slavin, MD, President of Mass General; and Congressman Stephen F. Lynch. Be sure to scroll down to see some pictures!

One of the priorities of the Mass General Research Institute is to let the world know about our science, and this month’s events highlighted both the excellence and passion of our scientific community. Let’s keep it up.

Until next month,
Sue
Susan A. Slaugenhaupt, PhD
Scientific Director
Mass General Research Institute

 

Boston March for Science

On Saturday, April 22, hundreds of members of the Mass General community—along with their families, colleagues and friends—gathered on the Bulfinch Lawn to join the “Stand Up for Science” rally.

Following remarks by Regina Larocque, MD, of the Physicians for Policy Action, Peter L. Slavin, MD, Mass General president, and Congressman Stephen F. Lynch (D-Boston), participants walked together to the Boston Common to join the Boston March for Science, which attracted thousands of supporters.

The goal of the Boston march was to unite a diverse and nonpartisan group to celebrate the city as an exceptional place for scientists and scientific research. Mass General joined this important effort as a visible sign of solidarity and support for the crucial role that science plays in improving the lives and health for our patients.

“Science is healing our patients, relieving pain, restoring lives, and offering health and hope. The MGH is science,” said Dr. Slavin.

He went on to say “the proposed drastic budget cuts to the NIH would have a devastating effect on our institution and our patients – present and future. We believe that the federal budget should reflect the powerful and vital role that science plays in supporting our democracy. This march is a way to reaffirm that belief.”
 
See more photos from the event

See slideshow with additional photos

The Research Rumble

Last week five researchers from Mass General and Brigham and Women’s Hospital showed off their science communication skills in a Research Rumble at the Cambridge Public Library as part of Cambridge Science Festival.

We heard about topics ranging from traumatic brain injury suffered by women in abusive relationships, to genetic sequencing in newborn babies, to Alzheimer’s disease.

The judges, Julie Burros, Chief of Arts and Culture for the City of Boston; Carey Goldberg, editor of WBUR’s CommonHealth blog; Christine Reich, PhD, Vice President of Exhibit Development and Conservation at the Boston Museum of Science; and Mark VanDerzee, co-founder of Company One, provided insightful feedback to our contestants.

They offered suggestions for simplifying the science (i.e. avoid scientific jargon and abbreviations) and how to make the presentations feel more like narrative stories by adding in personal anecdotes and discussing the bigger picture.

The judges chose Mass General’s own Jonathan Hoggatt, PhD, as the winner, but the broader goal of the event was to share ideas about effective science communication.

Pictured, from left, are Marc Sabatine, MD, moderator, Mark Abbey VanDerzee*, Christine Reich, PhD, Jonathan Hoggatt, PhD, Julie Burros*, Robert Green, MD, Carey Goldberg*, Anna Greka, MD, PhD, Eve Valera, PhD, Florence Lai, MD.
*Rumble Judges. Drs. Valera, Hoggatt and Lai are from Mass General, and Drs. Sabatine, Green and Greka are from Brigham and Women's Hospital.
 

2017 MGH Research Scholars

Please join us in congratulating this year's class:
 
   
   
              
 
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