The COVID-19 pandemic has created an ever-changing environment requiring quick adjustment, especially in the field of research. In response to the pandemic, scientists at UK ceased non-essential research activity in the spring, and education was moved to online platforms. While these measures were necessary to ensure safety for faculty and learners, graduate students in the University of Kentucky College of Medicine Integrated Biomedical Sciences (IBS) PhD program saw their progress interrupted.
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (Aug. 18, 2020) — The University of Kentucky Society of Postdoctoral Scholars (SOPS) hosted their first Research Pitch Competition where 19 postdocs and fellows showcased their research with one-minute elevator pitches.


LEXINGTON, Ky. (Aug. 13, 2020) — PDS Biotechnology, a clinical stage immunotherapy company, has announced positive results from preclinical testing conducted at the University of Kentucky College of Medicine of its COVID-19 vaccine candidate, PDS0203. 


Throughout the summer the University of Kentucky College of Medicine has been part of a University-wide pilot program aiming to help boost resumes and build important skills for both UK and non-UK students.

The Summer Badge Program is not your average summer school. The program provides an opportunity for learners to complete courses and earn digital badges, regardless of their current major, with the badges certifying competency in a specific skill.

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Congratulations to Dr. Sarah D’Orazio who was a recipient for this year’s University-wide “Excellent Research Mentor Award”. Dr. D’Orazio has worked to cultivate the careers of numerous graduate, undergraduate, and High School Students. This award reflects her commitment and success in supporting the teaching and research missions of MIMG.
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 11, 2020) — University of Kentucky researchers have launched antibody testing that will help to understand what immunity to COVID-19 really means. Several research labs and core facilities within UK’s Colleges of Medicine and Pharmacy will be testing the antibodies of recovered COVID-19 patients for a study to see how long they protect against reinfection.

Clinical leaders from the University of Kentucky’s Markey Cancer Center, College of Medicine and College of Pharmacy have launched a clinical trial for experimental therapies to treat patients infected with COVID-19. The trial will investigate the effectiveness of azithromycin, ivermectin and camostat mesylate—drugs that could inhibit replication of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes the disease.

Subbarao Bondada, professor of microbiology in the Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics in the University of Kentucky College of Medicine and Markey Cancer Center, has been named a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Election as an AAAS Fellow is an honor bestowed upon AAAS members by their peers.

Bondada is being recognized for distinguished contributions to the field of immunology, particularly to studies of biology of normal and malignant B lymphocytes and antibody responses to bacterial polysaccharide antigens.


Our own Dr. Subba Bondada has been elected to the rank of AAAS Fellow in the Section on Medical Sciences by the Council of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

From Dr. Bondada's award letter: Each year the Council elects members whose “efforts on behalf of the advancement of science or its applications are scientifically or socially distinguished.” On behalf of the Council of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, I am very pleased to inform you of your election to the rank of AAAS Fellow.

Congratulations Dr. Bondada!

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Members of Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics and staff in the Office of Biomedical Education enjoyed the opportunity to show off their Halloween outfits!

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Eleven presenters participated in the 3 Minute Thesis Competition at the Fifth Annual Infectious Diseases Research Day held on October 17, 2019.

From left to right:

3rd place is Taylor Lundy, Graduate Student in Dr. Sylvie Garneau-Tsodikova's lab in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences

2nd place is Gabrielle Keb, Graduate Student in Dr. Ken Fields' lab in the Department of Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics

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A unique partnership between an engineer and a scientist at the University of Kentucky has produced data that is challenging prevailing wisdom about a potentially life-threatening parasite's behavior and revealing possible targets for treatment.

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Decades of research and treatment advances have helped extend the lives of many people living with HIV, but while these patients live longer, their risk of developing dangerous blood clots increases as much as tenfold. Blood clots – also known as thrombi – can wreak havoc on the body, causing events such as debilitating strokes and heart attacks.

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Beth Oates has been selected as the American Society for Microbiology (ASM) Young Ambassador to Kentucky. As the Ambassador for Kentucky, Beth is starting an ASM student chapter at the University of Kentucky. With the Chapter, she hopes to connect undergraduate students, graduate students and PhD students that perform research or are interested in microbiology throughout the University. If you are interested in Beth's ASM ambassador initiatives and for information on joining the ASM student chapter, email Beth at alice.oates@uky.edu.
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4th year MIMG Ph.D. student Gabrielle Keb has been awarded a NIH F31—Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Predoctoral Fellowship. The award from NIAID, entitled “Chlamydia trachomatis Secreted Effector Proteins: Infection Properties and Identification of Host Targets” will directly support her dissertation work and facilitate additional career development. Reviewers were particularly positive about Gabby’s ability and productivity as well as the strong Ph.D. training environment at the UK COM.
Dr. Jackie Rivas, a post-doctoral scholar in Dr. Subba Bondada's lab, won first place for her poster presentation entitled, Enhancing anti-tumor immunity and responses to immunotherapy by reversing interleukin-10 mediated immunosuppression in chronic lymphocytic leukemia, at the 10th annual Markey Cancer Research Day on May 7, 2019. Dr. Rivas research is studying how to enhance anti-tumor immunity in leukemia model systems.

The William B. Sturgill Award is presented annually to a graduate faculty member for outstanding contributions to graduate education at UK. William B. Sturgill was a 1946 graduate of UK and became prominent in the coal industry. He made several important contributions to higher education in Kentucky and served 18 years on the UK Board of Trustees, 10 of which he was chairperson. Among his numerous contributions to graduate education at UK, Dr.

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Gabrielle Keb, a third year Ph.D. student, recently published her innovative work building on a method developed in the Fields lab termed Fluorescence Reported Allelic Exchange Mutagenesis (FRAEM). Gabby engineered a CRE-lox system for generation of marker-less gene deletions in Chlamydia. Importantly, this elegant approach relieves polar effects on down-stream genes and enables a more definitive assessment of null phenotypes. The manuscript appears in Journal of Bacteriology (PMID: 30224436) and was chosen as a spotlight article. The commentary (PMID: 30297356), authored by Drs.

Barbara Nikolajczyk has always had a passion for scientific exploration and discovery. After losing her father to complications from type 2 diabetes, she decided to delve into research examining the connection between inflammation and the disease. Read the rest of Dr. Nikolajcyzk's story on the College of Medicine Research Website here.

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Founded in 1912, The Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) was originally created by three independent scientific organizations to provide a forum in which to hold educational meetings, develop publications, and disseminate biological research results. The association has grown to be the nation’s largest coalition of biomedical researchers, representing 30 societies and over 130,000 researchers from around the world. FASEB is now recognized as the policy voice of biological and biomedical researchers. Dr.