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Announcements and Accolades

December 2018

Announcements

  • Santiago R. Vera, MD, was presented an award in December in appreciation for his many years of loyalty and dedication to clinical excellence and surgery education on behalf of the Department of Surgery from 1980-2017.
  • The Department of Surgery gathered for the annual holiday reception on December 7, 2018, at the University Club of Memphis.
  • Denis Foretia, MD, assistant professor, Division of General Surgery traveled to Kigali, Rwanda in the beginning of December to attend the 2018 College of Surgeons of East, Central and Southern Africa (COSECSA) annual meeting and to meet with the leadership of some of our partner hospitals.

New Hires

  • Chittoor B. "Sai" Sudhakar, MD, has been named the professor and division chief of Cardiac Surgery. Dr. Sudhakar received his medical degree from the Stanley Medical College-India. He completed his general surgery residency at Bridgeport Hospital, St. Marys Hospital and Waterbury Hospital. He finished his cardiothoracic surgery fellowship at both Yale-New Haven Hospital in Connecticut and The Ohio State University Hospital. Dr. Sudhakar joins us from Baylor Scott and White Clinic in Temple, Texas. He is the Methodist Endowed Professor of Cardiac Surgery and co-director of Cardiac Service Line MLH.
  • Sandeep Sainathan, MD, joins us as an assistant professor for the Division of Pediatric Cardiothoracic Surgery. Dr. Sainathan received his medical degree from Bangalore Medical College. He completed his general surgery residency at Bowring and Lady Curzon Hospital and Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center, and cardiothoracic surgery residency at Yale-New Haven Hospital. He finished his cardiopulmonary transplant and mechanical circulatory support surgery fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and his congenital cardiac surgery fellowship at McGaw Medical Center of Northwestern University. He joins us from UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh.
  • Cem Kuscu, PhD, joins us as an assistant professor for the Division of Transplant Surgery. Dr. Kuscu received his PhD in molecular and cellular biology from Stony Brook University. He received his master's degree in molecular biology and genetics from Bilkent University. He joins us form the University of Virginia.
  • Canan Kuscu, PhD, joins us as am instructor for the Division of Transplant Surgery. Dr. Kuscu received her PhD in biochemistry and structural biology at Stony Brook University. She was a postdoctoral research associate at the University of Virginia.
  • Sai Vineela Bontha, PhD, joins us as an instructor for the Division of Transplant Surgery. Dr. Bontha received her PhD from the Department of Vascular Medicine in Jena, Germany. She joins us from the University of Virginia.
November 2018

Announcements

  • James Eason, MD, professor, chief, Division of Transplant Surgery was a featured speaker at the International Symposium for Commemoration of 5000 Living Donor Liver Transplants at AMC in Seoul, South Korea November 30-December 1.
  • Alexander Feliz, MD, associate professor, Division of Pediatric Surgery, has been appointed the new program director of the UTHSC General Surgery Residency Program.
  • Jeremiah Deneve, DO, associate professor, Division of Surgical Oncology is the new chair of the Clinical Competence Committee for the General Surgery Residency Program.
  • Regan Williams, MD, assistant professor, Division of Pediatric Surgery is the new associate program director of Resident Wellness and Development for the General Surgery Residency Program.

Visiting Professor

  • The Department of Surgery welcomed David A. Kooby, MD, FACS, professor of surgery, Division of Surgical Oncology, Department of Surgery, Emory University School of Medicine as the 9th annual Kosten Distinguished Visiting Professor in November. Dr. Kooby presented on the topic, "Minimally Invasive Pancreatic Resection: A Journey of Patient Care, Research and International Collaboration".

 New Hire

  • Danny Yakoub, MD, joins the Department of Surgery as the associate professor in the Division of Surgical Oncology. Dr. Yakoub received his medical degree from Kasr El Aini Cairo Fom. He finished his general surgery residency from the Staten Island University Hospital. He completed his surgical oncology fellowship at the University of Miami-Miller School of Medicine/Jackson Memorial Hospital. Dr. Yakoub joins us from the University of Miami-Miller School of Medicine. Dr. Yakoub will split his time between the Memphis VA Medical Center and Methodist University Hospital.
  • Amandeep Bajwa, PhD, joins us as the assistant professor in the Division of Transplant Surgery. She received her PhD from Virginia Commonwealth University. She completed her research fellowship in nephrology from the University of Virginia.

Awards and Kudos

  • Amandeep Bajwa, PhD, assistant professor in the Division of Transplant Surgery received an NHI R01 grant for her research entitled “Mitochondrial Therapy for Kidney Injury”. Acute kidney injury (AKI) is a serious health burden associated with increasing rates of hospitalization and high mortality (40-60%) in critically ill patients. Current treatment strategies are limited to supportive care. Therefore, development of effective treatment strategies to prevent and treat AKI is urgently needed. Our current R01 will evaluate the use of isolated healthy mitochondria as a therapeutic modality for prevention and treatment of AKI. Additionally we will investigate the mechanisms of how transfer of healthy exogenous mitochondria protect kidneys from injury.

  • Marcus Alvarez, research resident, was awarded the 2018 UT/West Cancer Center Training Grant Program for the topic “Examination of the effect of TGF-β and obesity-related inflammatory macrophages on the activity of active β-catenin and PD-L1 expression in pancreatic adenocarcinoma”. He was mentored by Evan Glazer, MD, assistant professor in the Division of Surgical Oncology. Additionally, his abstract entitled “Effects of TGF-β on ARID1a expression in pancreatic cancer cell lines “ has been accepted for QuickShot Presentation at the 14th Annual Academic Surgical Congress on February 5-7, 2019, in Houston.

  • Leah Hendrick, research resident, was awarded the 2018 UT/West Cancer Center Training Grant Program for the topic “Functional significance of ASCL1 and ATP10A in HPV-associated malignancies”. She was mentored by David Shibata, MD, FACS, FASCRS, professor and chairmen for the Department of Surgery. Additionally, her abstract entitled “Are quantitative measures of visceral adiposity obtained after neoadjuvant chemoradiation associated with postoperative morbidity in patients with locally advanced rectal cancer?” has been accepted for the 2019 Gastrointestinal Cancers Symposium. She was mentored by Dr. David Shibata.

October 2018

Announcements

  • Nia Zalamea, MD, assistant professor in the Division of General Surgery and her team started October performing surgical services in the Philippines. The team completed 14 surgeries (thyroidectomies, hernias, hydroceles and cleft lip and palate repairs) in one day.
  • Ying Zhuge, MD, assistant professor for the Division of Pediatric Surgery completed a medical mission in Honduras. In keeping with breast cancer awareness month, the team focused on women's health and prevention. They performed breast exams and Pap smears for over 200 patients.

Special Event

  • For the first time, all of the UT Departments of Surgery (Memphis, Knoxville, Chattanooga and Nashville) held a reception at the American College of Surgeons conference in October. Faculty, current students, staff and alumni were all invited to the combined reception.
September 2018

Announcement

  • David Shibata, MD, FACS, FASCRS, professor, Scheinberg Endowed Chair in Surgery, was selected as a delegate of the American Surgical Association to the French Academy of Surgery. Dr. Shibata served as a visiting professor at three major academic centers in France. He visited and lectured on the topic of minimally-invasive surgery for rectal cancer at the University of Lyon, University of Rennes and University of Lille. He was also a guest at the French Association fo Surgery congress held in Paris, France.

New Hire

  • Nathan Hinkle, MD, joins the Department of Surgery as assistant professor in the Division of Surgical Oncology.

Awards and Kudos

  • Nathan Manley, PGY-3, was a recipient of the American Association for the Surgery of Trauma 20forTwenty Scholarship. This scholarship allowed him to attend the annual meeting in San Diego September 26-29, 2018.

  • Denise Wong, PGY-3, was awarded the Fall Global Surgery Institute Scholarship, which enabled her to go on a medical mission trip to the Philippines with Nia Zalamea, MD, assistant professor in the Division of General Surgery.

August 2018

New Hire

  • John Nelson, MD, joins the Department of Surgery as assistant professor in the Section of Acute Care and General Surgery, Division of General Surgery.

Announcements

  • Martin Croce, MD, professor and chief, Division of Trauma/Surgical Critical Care was named senior vice president and chief medical officer of Regional One Health.
  • George Maish, III, MD, associate professor, Division of Trauma/Surgical Critical Care has been named the president of the Tennessee Chapter of the American College of Surgeons.
  • Emily Lenart, MD, Catherine Seger, MD, and Ethan Stranch, MD, have been recruited as the Trauma/Surgical Critical Care fellows beginning in August 2018.
  • Benjamin Deschner, MD, is the Complex General Surgical Oncology fellow beginning in August 2018.

Cadaver Lab

  • The Department of Surgery hosted a cadaver lab in August where residents were able to participate in a simulation lab.
July 2018

New Hires

  • Valeria Mas, PhD, has been named director of transplant research for the UT/Methodist Transplant Institute. She will also hold the Transplant Institute Endowed Professorship in Translational Research at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center.
  • Daniel Maluf, MD, has been named professor of surgery, surgical director of liver transplantation and director of live donor transplantation for the UT/Methodist Transplant Institute. He will also hold the Transplant Institute Endowed Professorship in Liver Transplantation.

Faculty Promotions

  • Jeremiah Deneve, MD, Division of Surgical Oncology, to associate professor.
  • Paxton Dickson, MD, Division of Surgical Oncology, to associate professor.
  • Alex Feliz, MD, Division of Pediatric Surgery, to associate professor.
  • Eunice Huang, MD, Division of Pediatric Surgery, to professor.
  • TK Susheel Kumar, MD, Division of Pediatric Cardiothoracic Surgery, to associate professor.
  • Daniel Maluf, MD, Division of Transplant, to professor.
  • Valeria Mas, PhD, Division of Transplant, to professor.
June 2018

New Hire

  • Virginia "Jenny" Weaver, MD, has been named assistant professor, Bariatric Surgery Section head, Division of General Surgery. 

Top Doctors by Memphis Magazine

  • Stephen W. Behrman, MD
    Surgical Oncology
  • Andrew M. Davidoff, MD
    Pediatric Surgery
  • James D. Eason, MD
    Transplant Surgery
  • James W. Eubanks III, MD
    Pediatric Surgery
  • Harvey E. Garrett, Jr., MD
    Vascular Surgery
  • Max R. Langham, Jr., MD
    Pediatric Surgery
  • Justin Monroe, MD
    Colon and Rectal Surgery
  • Nosratollah Nezakatgoo, MD
    Transplant Surgery
  • Michael J. Rohrer, MD
    Vascular Surgery
  • David Shibata, MD
    Surgical Oncology
  • Guy R. Voeller, MD
    General and MI Surgery
  • Benny Weksler, MD
    Thoracic Surgery

Harwell Wilson Surgical Society Awards

  • Absite Awards
    PGY1: Stacey Kubovec, MD
    PGY2: Marcus Alvarez, MD
    PGY3: Renee Levesque, MD
    PGY4: David Hall, MD and Charles "Patrick" Shahan, MD
    PGY5: Jennifer Gordon, MD
  • Chairman's Top Absite Performance Award
    PGY2: Marcus Alvarez
  • Resident Teaching Award
    David Bittenbinder, MD
  • TICU Award
    Bennett Berning, MD
  • Best Paper Competition
    Leah Hendrick, MD
  • Faculty Teaching Award
    Jeremiah Deneve, MD
May 2018

 Announcements

  • Eugene C. Mangiante, Jr., MD, professor, Division of General Surgery, has been named the chief, Surgical and Anesthesiology Services at the VA Medical Center. 
April 2018

Announcements

  • Jeremiah Deneve, MD, associate professor, Division of Surgical Oncology, received the Golden Apple Teaching Award for faculty from the UTHSC College of Medicine.
  • Margaret Ferguson, MD, PGY-3, was awarded the Golden Apple Teaching Award for a surgical resident by the UTHSC College of Medicine.

Retirement

  • Santiago Vera, MD, professor, Division of General Surgery, VA Medical Center has been granted the status of professor emeritus, Department of Surgery. Dr. Vera is a graduate of Central University of Venezuela Medical School, and he completed his surgical residency and transplantation fellowship at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center where he also served as clinical instructor. Dr. Vera then moved on to serve as an assistant professor of surgery at Rush-Presbyterian, St. Luke’s Medical Center in Chicago, but returned to the University of Tennessee in 1986, serving as faculty in the Department of Surgery. Dr. Vera has served in various academic and professional appointments during his tenure, including medical director, Liver Transplant Program, assistant chief of surgery, general and hepatopancreatobiliary surgeon at the Memphis Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and medical director, Mid-South Transplant Foundation. Dr. Vera has served UTHSC and patients in the Memphis community for over thirty-seven years, treating more than one thousand liver and one thousand kidney transplant recipients. Additionally, Dr. Vera has published and presented more than one hundred plus papers on organ transplantation.
March 2018

New Hire

  • Miklos Molnar, MD, joins the Department of Surgery as associate professor in the Division of Transplantation.
February 2018

Announcements

  • Evan Glazer, MD, assistant professor, Division of Surgical Oncology, was selected for the Korean Society of Surgical Oncology (KSSO) observership by the International Committee, Society of Surgical Oncology. Dr. Glazer's application was the highest-rated and afforded him the opportunity to travel to Korea in February 2018.
  • Sanjaya Satapathy, MD, associate professor, Division of Transplant, has been advanced to Fellow of American Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (FASGE). 
January 2018

Announcements

    • Eunice Huang, MD, associate professor, Division of Pediatric Surgery, will serve as vice-chair elect for the American Pediatric Surgical Association Education Committee, 2018-19.
    • Guy Voeller, MD, professor, Division of General Surgery, was elected the president of the medical staff at Baptist Memorial Hospital for 2018-19. 
    • Ankush Gosain, associate professor, Division of Pediatric Surgery, has been awarded the 2019 ACS Traveling Fellowship to Germany. Dr. Gosain was awarded a NIH NIDDK R03 funding for research into Hirschsprung's Disease.
    • Sanjaya Satapathy, MD, associate professor, Division of Transplant, received the US Practice to PolicyTM Health Awards Program grant from Intercept Pharma ($25,000).
    • Martin Croce, MD, professor and chief, Division of Trauma/Surgical Critical Care, was named president-elect of the American Association for the Surgery of Trauma.
    • Trey Eubanks, MD, associate professor and chief, Division of Pediatric Surgery, was elected to the board of directors for the Trauma Center Association of America.
    • Max Langham, MD, professor, Division of Pediatric Surgery, was named chairman of the Board of the Halstead Society.
    • Peter Fischer, MD, associate professor, Division of Pediatric Surgery, was elected medical director of Hospital Wing (Memphis Medical Center Air Ambulance Service).
    • Regan Williams, MD, assistant professor, Division of Pediatric Surgery, was elected to the board of directors for the Tennessee Emergency Medical Services for Children.
    • Manish Talwar, MD, associate professor, Division of Transplant, was named medical director, Transplant Nephrology.
    • Alex Feliz, MD, assistant professor, Division of Pediatric Surgery, was named vice-chair of Surgical Critical Care Committee of American Pediatric Surgical Association (APSA). He was also named chair of the Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) Proposal Development Committee and the QEP Steering Committee for UTHSC.

Retirement

  • Timothy Fabian, MD, professor, Division of Trauma Critical Care, has been granted the status of professor emeritus, Department of Surgery. Dr. Fabian is a graduate of Loyola University’s Stritch School of Medicine in Chicago. Following medical school, Dr. Fabian completed his surgical residency training at The Ohio State University. From there, he attended Emory University’s School of Medicine, where he completed his fellowship in trauma/critical care at Grady Memorial Hospital. After serving as faculty at Emory University, he moved on to the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in 1980 where he began an academic career in trauma. During his career, he helped to organize and develop one of the largest volume trauma centers in the United States – The Elvis Presley Trauma Center at Memphis. Dr. Fabian is a Harwell Wilson alumnus and has served in various academic and professional appointments including president of Eastern Association for the Surgery of Trauma and as chairman of the Department of Surgery, the University of Tennessee Health Science Center which he held for sixteen years. Dr. Fabian has published nearly one hundred plus peer-reviewed articles, as well as forty plus chapters. After retiring from the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in December of 2017, Dr. Fabian has proposed to remain with our hospital affiliate in the trauma center, and he will continue his committee obligations for organizations such as the National Trauma Institute and the Coalition for National Trauma Research.

Last Published: Oct 3, 2019