On February 7, Dr. Michael Shoykhet, a pediatric critical care physician-scientist whose research focuses on brain injury after cardiac arrest, visited the Safar Center. He completed the Medical Scientist Training Program cum laude at the University of Pittsburgh, followed by Residency in Pediatrics and Fellowship in Pediatric Critical Care at UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. He then moved to the Washington University in St. Louis School of Medicine, where he established a laboratory to study neuronal circuit function after cardiac arrest and resuscitation. In 2018, he joined the Children’s National Hospital in Washington, DC, where he is currently a principal investigator in the Center for Neuroscience Research, a PICU attending and an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences. He has been continuously funded by the NIH since 2011. His lecture “Beyond hippocampus: Embracing complexity in brain injury after cardiac arrest” highlighted the potential value of developing and using rodent models of cardiac arrest with longer arrest durations to try to better mimic the clinical scenario. Seven of our trainees including all four of our T32 fellows presented their work and enjoyed the discussion that was generated from his visit.
On March 1, Dr. Heather Keenan, Professor of Pediatric Critical Care and Associate Chair for Research in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Utah, visited the Safar Center. She completed her pediatric residency at UCLA, a critical care fellowship at the University of Washington, and her PhD in epidemiology at UNC Chapel Hill. Her research, funded by the NIH and the CDC, has focused on children’s outcomes after trauma. Of special note, she currently is the PI for the Pediatric Critical Care and Trauma Scientist Development K12 funded by NICHD for our field. Dr. Keenan’s lecture titled “Young Children’s Outcomes after TBI: Many Open Questions” was well-attended by faculty, trainees, and staff and discussed the challenges in achieving favorable outcome specifically in the setting of abusive head trauma. Seven of our trainees including all four of our T32 fellows presented their work to her. Dr. Keenan also met with faculty from the Child Advocacy Center at UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, including Safar Center Associate Director of Child Abuse, Dr. Rachel Berger, to discuss the relationship between PICU physicians and child abuse pediatricians.
On March 15, a former Pitt and Safar Center alumnus Robert Neumar, MD, PhD, Professor and Chair of Emergency Medicine at the University of Michigan Medical School, visited the Safar Center. Dr. Neumar is also a member of the Max Harry Weil Institute for Critical Care Research and Innovation and the Extracorporeal Life Support (ECLS) Research Laboratory. He has over 30 years research experience in the field of cardiac arrest resuscitation. His basic science research has focused on molecular mechanisms of post-cardiac arrest brain injury and therapeutic strategies to improve neurologic outcomes after cardiac arrest. He currently serves as PI for an AHA-Funded Strategically Focused Research Center Grant titled Michigan Center for Resuscitation Innovation and Science (M-RISE). His lecture titled “Targeting No-Reflow after Prolonged Cardiac Arrest” focused on his recent series of preclinical studies targeting the possibility of intact recovery after prolonged arrest. Nine of our trainees, including all four T32 fellows, presented their work to Dr. Neumar and greatly benefited from his many comments and suggestions.
We are grateful they took time out of their busy schedule to visit, lecture, and meet with our T32 and other trainees.