UofL student Leshaia Davis-Johnson and judges Faye Jones and Ryan Simpson
UofL student Leshaia Davis-Johnson and judges Faye Jones and Ryan Simpson.

The 28th-annual Research!Louisville (R!L) symposium, sponsored by the University of Louisville, School of Medicine, the Office of the Executive Vice President for Research and Innovation and Norton Healthcare, took place the week of Oct. 2-6. The symposium offers valuable opportunities to research scholars to improve essential presentation skills, gain experience, meet scholarship requirements for faculty ranking and promotion, build peer networks and receive valuable feedback from research scientists in a wide range of disciplines.

“Research!Louisville is a great opportunity to explore the important role UofL research plays in our day-to-day lives,” said Kevin Gardner, executive vice president for research and innovation. “That work positively impacts our world, from creating meaningful educational experiences and career pathways for students to developing innovative new technologies and companies.”

This year, R!L highlighted 365 abstracts for presentation. Among the scientific poster competition participants represented were masters and doctoral engineering students, NCI R25 undergraduate students, cancer and health disparity Summer Bridge Program students, Brown Cancer Center high school scholars, dental students, masters and doctoral basic science students, medical students, distinction tract medical students, case reports, postdoctoral scholars, research associates, research staff, PharmDs, masters and doctoral public health students, nursing students, medical residents, clinical fellows and faculty.

A full list of award winners and their slide presentations, as well as photos/recording of the closing ceremony are available on the R!L webpage.

Richard Woychik, director of the National Institute of Environmental Science and the National Toxicology Program delivered the keynote address, “Looking to the Future of Environmental Health Sciences.” Woychik oversees federal funding for biomedical research to discover how the environment influences human health and disease. His lecture drew a full house and was preceded with an introduction by UofL President Kim Schatzel.

R!L’s symposium featured seminars, presentations and lectures on a variety of subjects, including nursing research, environmental health sciences, anti-racism research, IRB protocol and more.

The event schedule included a Q&A forum with renowned medical ethicist and author, Harriett Washington. The School of Nursing presented Imelda Wright, assistant professor of nursing, whose research focuses on the effects of perioperative nurse practice and the environment on patient safety in the operating room. UofL’s Social, Educational and Behavioral IRB presented a workshop to provide an overview of the UofL SBE IRB and HSPP Office. The IRB also hosted a workshop geared toward biomedical researchers from the UofL Health Sciences and Shelby Campuses. The Research Integrity Office presented Leslie Hollie, a distinguished expert in health care fraud and economic crimes, including grant fraud with a concentration in foreign influence/interference and administrative conflict of interest investigations.

The Center for Integrative Environmental Health Sciences (CIEHS) hosted two forums of presentations by Pilot Project awardees and Research Voucher awardees highlighting their accomplishments from their third-year awards. The Office of HSC Diversity and Inclusion hosted a panel discussion, “The Past is Present: Slavery & Medicine in Louisville History” and an anti-racism program which supports anti-racism research occurring at the University of Louisville which encourages further research aimed at impacting racial inequities.

Juw Won Park, director of the Center for Integrative Environmental Health Sciences Biostatistics and Informatics Facility Core, director of Brown Cancer Center Bioinformatics Core, and colleagues discussed their research interest in bioinformatics and computational genomics which requires high-performance computing. Finally, R!L sponsored a seminar at the Kentucky Science Center for students in grades 7-12 with a biomedical focus. The day also included a “Pulse of Surgery” program, a real-time, open-heart surgery. The full schedule of 2023 events are on the R!L webpage.

The co-chairs of R!L, Jon Klein, vice dean for research, and Chris States, associate dean for research, along with the R!L Steering Committee, look forward to R!L 2024. Look for announcements of dates/agenda in UofL Today.