Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Nutrition at Harvard Medical School

W. Allan Walker, MD,
Conrad Taff Professor of
Pediatrics, Harvard Medical

The Harvard Clinical Nutrition Research Center, one of 11 NIH-funded nutrition centers across the United States began in 1994.  Its primary goals are to promote clinical and basic nutrition research throughout the Harvard Medical School, including its teaching hospitals.  In addition, the Center provides nutrition education to HMS students and postgraduate programs for residents, fellows and junior faculty. These programs include a four year nutrition curriculum at HMS and postgraduate symposia each year on "cutting edge" topics in nutrition which are held at the HMS Tosteson Hall. This year's curriculum as entitled "Nutrition and Global Health." Each previous symposium has been webcast on the Division of Nutrition Website (http://nutrition.med.harvard.edu/) (*see list of previous symposia).  The Center is also charged with providing the public with evidence-based information on what constitutes a healthy diet.   These materials include a website at the Harvard School of Public Health Department of Nutrition exclusively for the public (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/departments/nutrition/), books from the Harvard University Press, e.g., Eat, Drink and Be Healthy by Dr. Walter Willett and Eat, Play and Be Healthy by Dr. Allan Walker. The Center Director is Dr. Allan Walker, MGHfC and Associate Directors are Dr. Steven Grinspoon, MGH and Walter Willett, HSPH.  

To support research the Center provides four research cores:
1) Genomics Core, directed by Dr. Fred Ausubel (ausubel@molbio.mgh.harvard.edu
2) Cell Biology Core, directed by Dr. Haining Shi (shiha@helix.mgh.harvad.edu);
3) Mass Spectrometry Core, directed by Dr. Tom Jaksic (tom.jaksic@childrens.harvard.edu); and
4) Biostatistics Core directed by Dr. David Schoenfeld (dschoenfeld@partners.org).

These cores are available to Center Investigators (R01 or equivalent funding), and Associate Investigators (pre-R01 or equivalent funding).   The services which are offered for individual cores can be obtained by contacting the core director. 

In addition, a yearly pilot feasibility project (PFP) competition is offered, principally for junior faculty members beginning a career as either a clinical or basic investigator.  This competition occurs in January of each year and is advertised on the website and respective HMS teaching hospital research bulletins.  Clinical/translational investigators are also encouraged to utilize the clinical research facilities at respective teaching hospitals, as well as, other teaching and educational services through the Harvard Catalyst Program.

If interested in joining the Center, contact Suzzette McCarron (smccarron1@partners.org) for information.  

PFP awardees 2010-2011:
Kamryn T. Eddy, PhD,  Instructor of Psychology, Harvard Medical School; Assistant in Psychology, Department of Psychiatry, Massachusetts General Hospital "Inhibitory control and reward processing in adolescent anorexia nervosa"

Amy D. Fleischman, MD, MMSc, Instructor in Medicine, Harvard Medical School; Division of Medicine/Neuroendocrine Program in Nutritional Metabolism, Massachusetts General Hospital "Validation of peripheral blood mitochondrial metabolic markers in humans"

Jeremy Goverman, M.D., Assistant in Surgery, Harvard Medical School; Research Fellow, Department of Surgery, Massachusetts General Hospital, Shriners Hospital for Children "Metabolic benefit of anti-oxidant peptide SS-31 on glucose homeostasis after burn injury"

Elizabeth A. Lawson, MD, Instructor in Medicine, Harvard Medical School; Assistant in Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital "The genetics of appetite-regulation and stress hormones in anorexia nervosa"

Emily Oken, M.D., MPH, Assistant Professor in Population Medicine, Harvard medical School; Associate physician in medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital "Fish consumption intervention and maternal DHA levels in pregnancy"

* Annual Nutrition Symposia at HMS 2006-2010:

2007    "The Obesity Epidemic: Academic, Industry and Government Approaches to Treatment"
2008    "The Pathogenesis of Obesity"
2009    "Protective Nutrients: Are they here to stay "
2010    "Nutrition and Global Health"

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