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Mayo Clinic announces new K12 BIRCWH Program scholars

The Mayo Clinic NIH K12 Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women’s Health (BIRCWH) Program announces five new scholars for 2020.

The program has been successfully funded since 2010 and is in its third cycle, led by Kejal Kantarci, M.D. (RD ’04, CTSA ’09), Division of Neuroradiology, as principal investigator; and Melissa Morrow, Ph.D. (BME ’09, OR ’12, CTSA ’13), Division of Health Care Policy and Research, as research director.

Over the past 10 years, the program has demonstrated progress toward the long-term goal of increasing the science workforce of interdisciplinary teams translating scientific discoveries into clinical practice to improve women’s health. Fifteen scholars have trained in the BIRCWH program.

2020 BIRCWH K12 Scholars

Aoife Egan, M.B., B.Ch., Ph.D. (ENDO ’20), Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, & Metabolism
Research focus: Pathophysiology of type 2 diabetes in women; understanding mechanisms regulating pancreatic islet function, survival and regeneration in obesity and diabetes in women.

Emma Fortune Ngufor, Ph.D. (OR ’14), Center for the Science of Health Care Delivery
Research focus: Development of novel methodologies for use with wearable sensor technology for physical activity monitoring in postmenopausal women to maintain or improve bone and muscle health for healthy aging.

Elizabeth Ann Enninga, Ph.D. (CTSA ’16), Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology
Research focus: Developing a comprehensive understanding of maternal immune system and how it interacts with the semi-allogeneic fetus during normal and complicated pregnancies.

Arvin Forghanian-Arani, Ph.D. (RD ’16), Department of Radiology
Research focus: Developing new clinical applications of magnetic resonance elastography to explore sexual dimorphisms in tissue biomechanics as a function of natural aging, therapy response and disease.

Joshua R. Smith, Ph.D. (CV ’17), Cardiovascular Research
Research focus: Investigating how sex- and menopause-specific mechanisms contribute to blood pressure regulation in health and in patients with cardiovascular disease.

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