Presidential Inauguration and Convocation

For only the second time in its 40-year history, Western University of Health Sciences will inaugurate a new president.

Daniel R. Wilson, MD, PhD, will be inaugurated as WesternU President at 1 p.m. Saturday, August 12, 2017 at Fairplex in Pomona. The Presidential Inauguration and University Convocation Ceremony will also formally open WesternU’s academic year. White coat ceremonies and an invitation-only Inauguration Reception and Formal Dinner will follow. Click here for more information.

Saturday’s full schedule will cap a week of special events. WesternU will hold a faculty and staff reception, a students’ breakfast with the President, and the President’s Symposium, “Science, Health and Humanism.” Click here to read the full story.

Click here to read about Convocation and white coat ceremonies in Pomona.

Click here to read about Convocation and the white coat ceremony in Lebanon.


WesternU President’s Symposium features renowned clinical psychologist and author Dr. Kay Redfield Jamison

Three renowned authors and academic leaders headline the President’s Symposium, part of Western University of Health Sciences’ multi-day celebration of the inauguration of WesternU President Daniel R. Wilson, MD, PhD.

The symposium, “Health, Science & Humanism,” will take place from 2 to 5 p.m. Friday, August 11, 2017 in WesternU Health Education Center Lecture Hall I, 701 E. Second St., Pomona, Calif. 91766. Click here for more information about WesternU’s Presidential Inauguration events.

Kay Redfield Jamison, PhD, is a leading expert on manic-depressive (bipolar) illness. She is the Dalio Family Professor in Mood Disorders, Professor of Psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and co-director of the Johns Hopkins Mood Disorders Center. She is also Honorary Professor of English at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. She is co-author of the standard medical text on manic-depressive illness, Manic Depressive Illness: Bipolar Disorders and Recurrent Depression, which was chosen as the most outstanding book in biomedical sciences by the American Association of Publishers.
M. Roy Wilson, MD, became the 12th president of Wayne State University on August 1, 2013. Prior to joining Wayne State, Dr. Wilson served as deputy director for strategic scientific planning and program coordination at the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities of the National Institutes of Health.
Dan Siegel, MD, is a clinical professor of psychiatry at the UCLA School of Medicine and is the founding co-director of the Mindfulness Awareness Research Center at UCLA.

Click here to read the full story.


From the College of Dental Medicine:

WesternU College of Dental Medicine receives $1.5 million HRSA grant
Western University of Health Sciences College of Dental Medicine received a $1.5 million Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) grant to train predoctoral dental students in providing care to vulnerable children ages 0-5 and children with special health care needs in rural and underserved areas.

The Predoctoral Pediatric Training Project (PPTP), a five-year grant, recognizes the curriculum and infrastructure built through College of Dental Medicine (CDM) partnerships with local school districts, nonprofits, hospitals and community health centers. It also will allow CDM to develop new programs that encourage diversity and provide care to underserved areas and populations.

Click here to read the full story.


From the Graduate College of Biomedical Sciences:

WesternU team shows calpain-2 inhibitor provides neuroprotection following traumatic brain injury
In 2010, an estimated 2.5 million traumatic brain injury (TBI) cases presented for treatment in the U.S., and it is likely that many more cases were never reported. Penetrating traumatic brain injuries produce the worst outcomes and highest mortality rates.

A new study led by Western University of Health Sciences Graduate College of Biomedical Sciences Dean Michel Baudry, PhD, examines the potential for a targeted calpain inhibitor to reduce the damaging effects of TBI.

The article, “Protection against TBI-induced neuronal death with post-treatment with a selective calpain-2 inhibitor in mice,” by Dr. Yubin Wang, Dr. Yan Liu, Dulce Lopez, Moses Lee, Sujay Dayal, Alexander Hurtado, Dr. Xiaoning Bi, and Dr. Michel Baudry, was published online by the Journal of Neurotrauma in June 2017 ahead of print. Click here to read more:

Click here to read the full story.


From the College of Podiatric Medicine:

Kudos on accomplishments
Dr. Lawrence Harkless and Dr. Jonathan Labovitz were two of the co-authors of the International Diabetes Federation Clinical Practice Recommendations for the Diabetic Foot – 2017. A guide for health care professionals. The document is available online at​.

Dr. Labovitz is featured in an article on a new policy brief by the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research. The policy brief states that allowing podiatrists to give diabetic patients regular foot health screenings — which are usually done by primary care doctors — could save limbs, lives and money. Dr. Labovitz was the lead author of the report. Click here to read more on the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research website:


From the College of Veterinary Medicine:

Kudos on accomplishments
CVM Associate Professor Yiling Hong recently published a research article in Environmental Research as corresponding author: Aqueous cigarette tar extracts disrupt corticogenesis from human embryonic stem cells in vitro: Begum, A., Aguilar, J. S., and Hong, Y. (2017). Environmental Research, 158:194-202.


From the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific:

Kudos on accomplishments
OMSIII Kelsey Wong was recently elected to the national board of PsychSIGN, a national student interest group in psychiatry affiliated with the American Psychiatric Association. Wong is a regional chairperson for the state of California.

COMP students Nidhi Sheth, David Zezoff, David Pilkington, Berniece Chen and Kevin Hon volunteered their time at the weeklong Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) Summer Camp for LA/OC.

OMM Fellow Masumi Asahi was named as a recipient of the Chiyo M. Hattori Memorial Scholarship.

A COMP-Northwest graduate and a faculty member published articles in the July/August 2017, Volume 9, Number 4 edition of Osteopathic Family Physician, the official peer-reviewed publication of the American College of Osteopathic Family Physicians.

COMP-Northwest alumnus Kyle Rutledge, DO ’17, co-authored the article “Adverse Childhood Experiences: A Call to Action for Osteopathic Medicine.” (Pages 22-25)

COMP-Northwest Assistant Professor Janice Blumer, DO, FAAO, co-authored the article “Osteopathic Approach to Anxiety.” Pages 26-34)

Click here to read the publication.


Medical Anatomy Center news
Brion Benninger, MD, MSc, Professor of Medical Innovation, Technology & Research and Clinical Anatomy, was the invited speaker at the May 31, 2017 Albany Chamber of Commerce meeting. He delivered his presentation wearing Google Glass while discussing how medical technologies are affecting medicine. He shared many of the more than 100 student projects he has mentored while at COMP-Northwest and highlighted technologies (ultrasound simulation, imaging ultrasound, Sectra imaging and robotics haptics point-of-care pain relief simulation) used by the Medical Anatomy Center to train medical students with a couple volunteers from the audience. He invited all the Chamber members to visit the Medical Anatomy Center at COMP-Northwest to see and interact with the medical technology.


From Western Diabetes Institute:

WDI collaborates on international periodontitis study
Western University of Health Sciences’ Western Diabetes Institute (WDI) recently published an international study on the importance of screening for periodontitis in diabetes patients.

Faculty from WDI, the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific and the Graduate College of Biomedical Sciences collaborated with faculty from Newcastle University in the United Kingdom. The citation is: Pumerantz AS, Bissett SM, Dong F, et al. Standardized screening for periodontitis as an integral part of multidisciplinary management of adults with type 2 diabetes: an observational cross-sectional study of cohorts in the USA and UK. BMJ Open Diabetes Research and Care 2017;5:e000413. doi: 10.1136/bmjdrc-2017-000413. Click here to read the article.


From Learning Enhancement & Academic Development (LEAD):

Rx: R.E.N.E.W grand opening
More than 100 students, faculty and staff came to the grand unveiling of LEAD’s tucked away, dedicated quiet space for students. Visitors took interest in all that RENEW has to offer and learned about the value of coloring for brain health, mindful pausing during studying, the benefits of stretching, playing games and more. Among the equipment that can be checked out is a keyboard from the 1980s. The space even boasts a gallery wall waiting for students’ finished works of art. LEAD’s motto, “A student who feels well does well,” has found expression in this new addition to the LEAD Department in HSC. To see pictures of the events go to