This year, the Department of Pathology and Lab Medicine is benefiting from donations provided by Friends of Strong, a volunteer organization that supports Strong Memorial Hospital through fundraising.
In 2015, FOS allocated a total of $110,004 to Pathology. These funds were used to purchase lab equipment including a triple headed microscope, four centrifuges, a spectrophotometer, a tissue cassette printer and gel photography system.
"The Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine is both thankful and gratified at the generous contributions from the Friends of Strong," said Dr. Bruce Smoller, department chair. "So often, a supporting department such as ours, and its needs fall beneath the radar screens of well-meaning organizations and individuals and we are genuinely delighted that the Friends of Strong recognize the manifold important functions of our department."
Friends of Strong is supported by proceeds from Friends of Gift Shop, Finger Lakes Coffee Roasters, the Specialty Shop, and Baby Prints Photography at Strong Memorial Hospital.
In photo: Friends of Strong Council President and volunteer, Rose Faucette (left), Pathology Department Chair Dr. Bruce Smoller, Friends of Strong Director Sandy Arbasak, and Pathology Vice Chair for Administration David Strong.
In February, Pathology residents celebrated the opening of a new and improved study room.
Renovations to the space included new cubicle walls, carpet and a fresh paint job.
The room, which serves as a meeting place and quiet study area, is located on the second floor at 2-6440.
It was previously home to cytopathology, whose office moved to 2-2100 in 1997.
In photos: (Above) Pathology residents Shira Winters, Nisha Patel, and Hani Katerji in the newly renovated resident study room. (Bottom) Sohaib Abu-Farsakh examines slides.
In photo: From left, Dr. David Linehan, chair of Surgery for the School of Medicine and Dentistry, Dr. Hartmut Juhl Founder and CEO of Indivumed, Dr. David Hicks, Dr. Bruce Smoller, and Andrew Deubler, deputy vice president for University Advancement.
About the partnership
The department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine is now the gatekeeper of a human tissue bank at the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC).
URMC has signed a 3-year contract with German-based company, Indivumed, to allow patients to give access to having their tissues classified and used for cancer research worldwide.
The operation is fully funded by Indivumed, a startup founded by Dr. Harmut Juhl in 2002. The company will fully fund the biobank in exchange for half of the available samples.
How does it work?
Patients at Wilmot Cancer Center will have the option of giving consent to allow samples of their tissues - taken from biopsies and other procedures - catalogued and used for research. When consenting patients are in surgery, an employee will be stationed in the operating room to immediately take tissue to Surgical Pathology to be examined by a pathologist.
The process must be completed within moments of the extraction. When the tissue arrives, a pathologist must first examine a segment to determine a patient diagnosis. Once confirmed, the remaining tissue is divided into samples that are labeled and entered into a database. Some will be set aside for Indivumed's use.
Dr. David Zhou serves as director of the bank. Dr. David Hicks helped establish protocol for managing samples from the second they arrive to Surg-Path.
How will it be used?
URMC has not yet established protocol for deciding who gets access to the tissue first. Dr. Bruce Smoller, Pathology chair, said protocol will be determined by a group of URMC leaders.
"(Participating) will increase our profile in the research realm at URMC," said Smoller. "One of the goals is to build our research profile by accessing the available resources."
Three Pathology department residents volunteered their time at URMC’s annual Student National Medical Association (SNMA) Pre Medical Conference hosted by current SMD medical students on Saturday, Jan. 30.
Drs. Sapna Patel, Diana Agostini-Vulaj, and Sachica Cheris participated in the daylong event which exposed potential pre medical students – both high school and college to the field of medicine.
The residents were joined by former cytopathology fellow and resident, Dr. Amanda Martin, as well as current URMC medical students. Pathology faculty, Drs. Metlay and Goldman, assisted residents in choosing pertinent cases for the workshop.
For the event, residents organized a hands-on pathology lab with a focus on cardiac pathology. In addition, Sachica and Diana participated in the physician luncheon where they answered student questions and spoke in greater detail about their journeys into the medical field.
Pictured above: Chief Resident of Pathology, Dr. Diana Agostini-Vulaj, examines the lungs and heart of a patient with truncus arteriosus at a cardiac pathology lab demonstration with high school students at the annual Student National Medical Association (SNMA) Conference at University of Rochester Medical Center. Photo provided by Diana Agostini-Vulaj.