Top Rankings for UCSD School of Medicine

UC San Diego School of Medicine  has been ranked among the nation’s best medical schools by U.S. News & World Report (April 24, 2009)  in their  annual issue on U.S. Graduate Schools.

The recognition as the #15 School of Medicine in the country for research and #26 in primary care reflects our faculty’s dedication to training the next generation of physicians and researchers.  In addition, two of our programs — AIDS and drug and alcohol abuse- were recognized in the top 10 of all like programs in the country.   

The methodology and rankings can be viewed at:

Congratulations to the UC San Diego School of Medicine faculty, staff, and students!

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Workshop: Living With, Through & Beyond Cancer

The Seventh Annual Cancer Survivorship Series: Living With, Through & Beyond Cancer
A Three-Part Telephone Education Workshop Program

This free series, made possible by support from the National Cancer Institute and Lance Armstrong Foundation, offers cancer survivors, their families, friends and health care professionals practical information to help them cope with concerns and issues that arise after treatment ends.

Part I entitled, Managing the Stress of Survivorship, will take place on Tuesday, April 14, 2009 from 1:30 – 2:30 pm, Eastern Time (10:30 – 11:30 am, Pacific Time).

The featured speakers for this program include:

  • Keith M. Bellizzi, PhD, MPH, Cancer Survivor, Assistant Professor, Human Development and Family Studies, University of Connecticut;
  • David Spiegel, MD, Wilson Professor in the School of Medicine, Associate Chair, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University School of Medicine; and
  • Guadalupe R. Palos, RN, LMSW, DrPH, Instructor, Clinical Research Faculty, Assistant Professor, Division of Internal Medicine, Department of Symptom Research, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center

Social workers can earn 1contact hour from The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Part II, The Importance of Nutrition and Physical Activity, will be held on Tuesday, May 19 from 1:30 – 2:30 pm, ET (10:30 – 11:30 am, Pacific Time).

Part III, Survivors Too: Family, Friends and Loved Ones: Managing the Fatigue of Caregiving, will take place on Tuesday, June 23 from 1:30 – 2:30 pm, ET (10:30 – 11:30 am, Pacific Time).

More details on Part II and III will follow shortly.

These workshops are free – no phone charges apply.   However, pre-registration is required.  Register at the CancerCare website.  CancerCare has other telephone workshops, for a list see

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Medical Interpreters & the New Law

A new law for 2009 states that all insured Californians must have access to medical interpreters when visiting physicians.  The insurance carrier is required to pay for these services, however, questions still remain for doctors about best practices for providing these services, especially in small private practices.  The California Medical Association plans seminars for the next two years to help improve cultural language competency among its member physicians.

California Health line has a nice audio report on the issues.

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Your Brain on Google

Researchers at UCLA have just published an article in American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry that seems to show that so-called “Net-savvy” users showed an increase in areas of brain activation during Internet search activities than so-called “Net-naive” users.   They caution against drawing sweeping conclusions, but it’s an interesting study:

Small GW, Moody TD, Siddarth P, & Bookheimer SY. Your brain on Google: patterns of cerebral activation during internet searching. The American journal of geriatric psychiatry. 2009;17(2):116-26.

Link: PubMed record – UC/UCSD network users can click through the UC e-Links button to full text.

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Side Effects of Statins

UCSD researcher and statin expert Dr. Beatrice Golomb’s newly published article on “Statin Adverse Effects: A Review of the Literature and Evidence for a Mitochondrial Mechanism”, discusses the often overlooked side effects of statins. Over 900 studies were analyzed and turned up a number of side effects that included memory loss, insomnia, numbness in fingers and toes, and weight gain. However, not all health providers share the concerns derived from this review of research and worry that “potential side effects” may prevent the use of statins among some patients.  Golomb’s article, reported in Wednesday’s Union Tribune, encourages patients and doctors to look more closely at these side effects. According to the UT article these findings from the literature have prompted some physicians to treat statin complications.  Dr. Golomb co-wrote the literature review with Marcella Evans, a UCSD undergraduate student, who is currently enrolled in the UC Irvine’s Medical Scientist Training Program.

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New Art Display -Second floor study

The Biomedical Library recently installed a new permanent exhibit from Linda Nye in the second floor study. Take a break and stop by to see the giant sized photo-collages that were taken from Linda’s garden.

Linda's garden

Linda's garden

Linda Nye, medical illustrator, has been creating visualization for books, patient education materials, and web pages for biomedical, pharmaceutical, computer and aerospace institutions for over 25 years.  Her “celebration of the beauty and complexity within the human body ” displays can been seen throughout the Biomedical Library.  This new exhibit is a departure from her award winning medical visualizations.  For more information about Linda Nye’s projects please visit her website at

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Ethnic Disparities Cancer Research Grant

The Moores Cancer Center and SDSU are partners in a 5 year, $15 million dollar grant from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to focus on the ethnic disparities of cancer incidence and deaths.  The NCI is encouraging partnerships between cancer research centers and universities that have large ethnic student populations.

The emphasis for this grant is on why African-Americans with colorectal cancer have a higher death rate than other groups, as well as research into developing drugs that more precisely target prostate cancer and chemotherapy drugs for colon and pancreatic cancers.

Full story online at the San Diego Union-Tribune.
SDSU gets joint grant for cancer research
By Keith Darcé, staff writer
2:00 a.m. December 17, 2008

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Healthcare Reform – 2.0 Style

President-elect Obama’s healthcare reform starts with grassroots efforts.  At a conference call yesterday for 1,000 people (out of the 10,000 who responded via the internet) Thomas Daschle, Obama’s appointee for Secretary of Health & Human Services, began a dialog that promised to be the first of many opportunities for Americans to provide their input.

Already, online videos are being used to ask questions and prompt responses.  Blog postings and email alerts are also planned as information avenues.  Social networking technologies have reached new heights for allowing Americans to be heard.

See the full article in the Washington Post.

Hat tip to the iHealthBeat blog.

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UCSD to receive famous brain for study

If you studied neurosciences anytime in the last 40 years, you probably learned about an amnesic patient referred to as H.M. who was unable to form new long-term memories but could still learn new skills.  His case led to our modern understanding of memory formation and learning, and also provided insights into other brain disorders including Alzheimers Disease. H.M., whose full name was Henry Gustav Molaison, passed away last week at the age of 82. His brain will be transported to the Brain Observatory at UCSD where it will be sliced, stained, and imaged, and digital images made available to the scientific community. Dr. Jacopo Annese is a computational neuroanatomist at UCSD who will oversee the work on H.M.’s brain.  He is quoted in the San Diego Union-Tribune: “Researchers will be able to compare actual brain tissue with research findings made during Henry’s life. They will be able to see what is there, what is not and how it relates to what Henry lost.”

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10 Tips to help you Go Green & Save Green

For the past 10 weeks, we have posted a weekly tip to help you “Go Green and Save Green” by using some of our services that can save you money and help the environment. Here is a complete list of the 10 tips:

  1. Use online biomedical textbooks and journals from anywhere. Find out about our growing collection of online books and journals that you can use from any computer with Internet access.
  2. Get expert help from a librarian – online. Save time by taking advantage of our electronic reference services to find full-text materials and get tips for searching library resources. Contact us via e-mail, chat, IM, or text message (txt).
  3. Create a PDF of a print article. Use our scanners to make an electronic copy of a print article. Just be sure to bring your flash/thumb drive to save a copy to take away!
  4. When you are in a database (e.g PubMed, BIOSIS), use UC-eLinks to get full-text online articles. The orange button links to the online version of an article, provides information about where to find it in our libraries, and links to a form that you can use to request a PDF of the article at no charge to you.
  5. Get articles from our print collection delivered directly to your desktop. Use our Document Delivery service to get PDFs of articles available from our print collection that are not available online sent directly to you for a small charge.
  6. Have books delivered from San Diego libraries delivered to a UCSD campus library. Search Circuit, the catalog that includes the holdings from UCSD, USD, SDSU, CSUSM, and the San Diego County Libraries, and get books delivered to campus at no cost to you.
  7. Set up your online library account (i.e., Roger account). Find out how to set up your account to renew books, put holds on books to pick up later, and transfer books from one library to another.
  8. Send information needed to find a book to your cell phone (via txt message). Search for books now, get them later. Use the txt feature in our catalog, Roger, to send the information you need to get the book from the shelf to your cell phone.
  9. Manage your PDF articles. Learn about several desktop PDF management tools and free web tools that can help you organize articles.
  10. Keep up with new resources and services by reading read Currents online. Check out the Biomedical Library quarterly newsletter, Currents, published in print and online.
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