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AHRQ Awards Nearly $1M for Study of Anticholinergics in Elderly with Depression

AparasuUHCOP Professor Rajender Aparasu, Ph.D., has received a nearly $1 million grant from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality to determine the risks and impact of cognitive decline, dementia and other adverse events associated with the use of anticholinergic drugs in elderly patients with depression. Prescribed to treat a range of common conditions, including gastrointestinal, urinary tract and respiratory disorders, anticholinergics are a broad class of drugs that block the neurotransmitter acetylcholine to varying degrees. Aparasu's four-year project will be one of the largest studies of its kind, with an estimated 2 million medical records of nursing home residents from the federal Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Pritchard Tapped for Adherence Think-tank, Search Committee for Next UH VP/Provost

Pritchard Dean F. Lamar Pritchard, Ph.D., R.Ph., has been appointed to a national think-tank working to compile and disseminate real-world best practices for improving patient medication adherence. Led by a collaboration of Duke University and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the Medication Adherence Alliance is comprised of representatives from academia, professional organization, public/consumer advocacy groups, government/regulatory agencies, and the pharmaceutical industry. Pritchard also was recently appointed by UH System Chancellor and UH President Renu Khator to serve on the executive search committee for the next UH System Vice Chancellor/UH Vice President of Academic Affairs & Provost following John Antel’s departure from the post in December.

TSHP, College Partner to Boost Participation in PPMI Survey by Texas Health Systems

pitman-web.jpgThe Texas Society of Health-System Pharmacists has partnered with UH College of Pharmacy to encourage Texas health systems' participation in the ASHP Pharmacy Practice Model Initiative (PPMI) Self-Assessment tool. UHCOP's Paige Pitman, Pharm.D., MBA, is coordinating the outreach efforts by UHCOP MS/Residency program participants on behalf of TSHP's PPMI Task Force. Designed to provide a benchmark and ‘snapshot’ of how health-system practices in the state stack up against the rest of the country, the survey will help identify “next steps” that hospitals and/or TSHP should take to bring about change in practice and improvement of patient care. To access or learn more about the self-assessment project, click here

Tikunova Receives $451K NIH Grant for
 Novel Model of Dilated Cardiomyopathy

tikunova-web.jpgUHCOP Asssitant Professor Svetlana B. Tikunova, Ph.D., has received a $450,000 grant from the National Heart, Blood, and Lung Institute to support her development of a novel mouse model of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), the most common disease of the heart muscle. DCM causes the heart's main pumping chamber to become enlarged and weakened, preventing adequate blood flow and often progressing to a variety of life-threatening health conditions. Tikunova's project seeks to develop a better understanding of the molecular mechanisms of DCM through mutations in the cardiac troponin C regulatory protein, which binds to calcium during the complex process of muscle contraction.

Board of Regents Approve Proposal to Seek Health Science Center Status for UH

The UH System Board of Regents has approved a proposal by UH System Chancellor and UH President Renu Khator to seek Health Science Center designation for the university from the Texas Legislature. Enhancing UH's abilitiy to address regional and state healthcare needs, spuring innovation in the delivery of health care, and creating opportunities for synergy and collaboration among UH faculty members and colleagues in the Texas Medical Center and elsewhere were among the reasons Khator cited in proposing a health science center at the university. Read more here.


Save the Date

Spring Picnic


UH Reception at TSHP


Upcoming Events


March 11-15

Spring Break -
No classes; UH offices open

Thursday, March 28-
Friday, March 29

Dean's Advisory Council
Spring 2013 Meeting
Meeting: UH Hilton
Mary Reed, 713-743-1252

Friday, March 29
UH Pharmaceutical Health Services Research Symposium
8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
UH University Center,
Houston Room (# 251)
Free admission,
registration required
Contact: Hemal Mehta or Ayush Patel

Friday, March 29
UHCOP Spring Picnic
4 - 6 p.m.,
Satellite Hill (between SR2 and UC Satellite)
Contact: Barbara Lewis

Friday, April 26
UHCOP Reception at
TSHP Annual Meeting & Seminar

7:30-9 p.m.,
Free hors d'oeuvres and refreshments
Renaissance Austin Hotel
Contact: Mary Reed, 713-743-1252


KUHF's Marisa Ramirez interviews UHCOP's Kevin Garey on award-winning C.diff. study


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