Dr. Arie Weinstock, section chief of child neurology and director of the epilepsy program for the Dept. of Neurology, Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Univ. at Buffalo/SUNY, attended a press conference on June 29, 2018 to advocate for easy access of Epidiolex, a cannabidiol preparation that has received approval from the FDA for treatment of two forms of severe childhood epilepsy. Also at the press conference were NY Assemblyman Sean Ryan and NY State Senator Chris Jacobs. Dr. Weinstock and his team were part of the clinical trials that demonstrated the effectiveness of this form of medical marijuana in Lennox Gastaut and Dravet syndromes, two severe forms of epilepsy seen in children. The press conference requested that Governor Cuomo sign into law legislation already passed in Albany to expedite access to this new therapy.
The UB Dept. of Neurology of the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences held its annual Michael E. Cohen, MD, Residents Research Day and Graduation Banquet on June 8, 2018. All graduating residents presented their research findings, while the PGY-3 level residents presented research plans. The Research Day was coordinated by Dr. Robert Zivadinov and his Buffalo Neuroimaging Analysis Center staff.
Winners of the Outstanding Resident Presentation Awards for Research Day were Sandhya Mehla, MBBS, PGY4, and outgoing co-chief resident, and Felix Cheng, PGY3. A copy of the Research Day program is attached. Research Day Program 2018
At the Graduation Dinner banquet, Daniela Zambrano, MD, PGY4, and outgoing co-chief resident, received the teaching award from the medical students. Drs. Zambrano and Mehla both received the Dr. Edward Fogan Prize that recognizes overall clinical excellence. Ashley Alex, MD, PGY2, and Babitha Haridas, MBBS, PGY3, received the Resident Collegiality awards. Faculty Drs. Osman Farooq and Mo Hourihane received the Resident Teaching Award.
Graduating PGY4 residents were Drs. Muhammad Ahmed, Rabia Ghazi, Sandhya Mehla, David Okonkwo, Harshit Shah, Alok Singla, and Daniela Zambrano. Incoming chief residents are Drs. Kevin Schmitt and Alise Pham. Eva Tamoga and Thomas Ballanca, administrative support staff for the training programs, played key roles in organizing the banquet. Notably, Eva Tamoga, Assistant to the Chair for University Affairs, will be retiring later this year after working in the department for 22 years. Dr. Nick Silvestri, program director for the adult neurology residency training program, served as master of ceremonies.
Robert Zivadinov, MD, PhD, Professor in the Dept. of Neurology, Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Univ. at Buffalo/SUNY, has received the Gold Medal Award at the International Society for Neurovascular Disease. The award was presented on June 2, 2018 at the society’s annual meeting. It recognizes outstanding ongoing contributions to research and education in the field. Dr. Zivadinov serves as Director of the Buffalo Neuroimaging Analysis Center and the Translational Imaging Center at the university’s NIH-funded CTRC.
Drs. David Hojnacki and Bianca Weinstock-Guttman, both faculty neurologists who specialize in multiple sclerosis at the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, University at Buffalo/SUNY, have again been recognized by ThreeBest Rated for neurologic care in Buffalo. ThreeBest Rated chooses physicians based on practice history, customer reviews and satisfaction, trust, and cost. Dr. Weinstock-Guttman, Professor of Neurology, directs the Jacobs MS Center for Treatment and Research. Dr. Hojnacki, Associate Professor of Neurology, serves as program director for the fellowship training program in neuroimaging.
The Univ. at Buffalo/SUNY Department of Neurology, Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences will once again have a large presence at the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) Annual Meeting to be held April 21-27, 2018 in Los Angeles. Between scientific and educational sessions, the department will conduct some 40 presentations, a likely record for the department. Research topics include multiple sclerosis (MS), neuroimaging, stroke, headache, epilepsy, myasthenia gravis, and the history of neurology. Department faculty listed as first, senior or co-authors on the abstracts include Drs. Ralph Benedict, Michael Dwyer, Edward Fine, Osman Farooq, David Hojnacki, Channa Kolb, Ping Li, Ashkan Mowla (former), Joy Parrish, Murali Ramanathan, Melissa Rayhill, Robert Sawyer, Ferdinand Schweser, Arie Weinstock, Bianca Weinstock-Guttman, Gil Wolfe, and Robert Zivadinov. Neurology residents and fellows include Drs. Svetlana Eckert, Haris Kamal, Sandhya Mehla, Harshit Shah, and Daniela Zambrano among others. Numerous research associates in the department and the Buffalo Neuroimaging Analysis Center were also listed on the abstracts. Tom Fuchs, an MD/PhD student at Jacobs School of Medicine, was awarded a Future Clinical Researcher in Neurology and Neuroscience Award by the AAN for his upcoming platform presentation on the impact of white matter tract disruption and connectivity on cognition in multiple sclerosis.
Dr. Gil Wolfe, Irvin and Rosemary Smith Professor and Chairman of the Univ. at Buffalo Dept. of Neurology, Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, participated in the American Academy of Neurology’s annual Neurology on the Hill in Washington, D.C. on February 27, 2018. Advocacy issues that were raised on Capitol Hill this year included two that directly relate to patient access to care: finding ways to control drug prices and forwarding electronic prior authorizations. Additional NIH funding to investigate alternatives to opiates for chronic pain was also requested. Dr. Wolfe serves on the AAN’s Government Relations Committee.
Nicholas Silvestri, MD, Associate Professor of Neurology, Program Director of the Residency Training Program, and Co-Director of the MDA Clinics at Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Univ. at Buffalo/SUNY, has published a textbook that focuses on a history and examination approach to diagnosing and managing neuromuscular disorders. The text was published by Demos Medical, component of the parent Springer Publishing Company based in New York City. The text is titled “Neuromuscular Disorders: A Symptoms and Signs Approach to Differential Diagnosis and Treatment.” Gil Wolfe, MD, Irvin and Rosemary Smith Professor and Chairman of the Department of Neurology at UB, wrote a foreword for the text.