Research Day - April 26, 2024

Important Event Links:

Research Day highlights the full scope of innovative research in the Department of Medicine and facilitates collaborative interactions within our educational, research and clinical community.

The theme for this year’s DOM Research Day is health equity. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) define health equity as the principle underlying the continual process of assuring all individuals or populations have optimal opportunities to attain the best health possible. This year’s feature presentations will include cutting-edge science and discuss how scientists can address this important issue in all stages of research.


Required Poster Sizes & Specifications

All posters are required to be 48" wide x 36" tall with a 1" border or 48" square with a 1" border to align with NIH-recommended dimensions. Abstracts do not need to be included on posters, but they can be if so desired.

Designing & Printing Posters

The DOM Communications team has created a department-branded template for research posters. It uses consistent colors, logos and layouts in line with campus and department brand standards.

Printing resources:

Additional helpful links:

Poster Review Process

Event judges will review and score all posters based on whether significance, innovation, and approach have been adequately presented. They also take into consideration the quality of the overall presentation and the knowledge and enthusiasm of the presenter. Final scores will be comprised of 2/3 the poster score and 1/3 the abstract score.

Poster Honors and Awards

Prize ribbons and $150 in funds for the lead author’s professional development/research expenses will be awarded to the top scoring poster presentation from basic, clinical, translational and health services/health equity research in each of the following researcher categories:

  • Residents = Medical Residents
  • Fellows/Postdocs/Other Trainees = Medical Fellows, Post Docs, and Graduate and Undergraduate Students
  • Researcher/Scientist/Research Staff = PhD/MD level Researchers and Scientists as well as Research Specialists, Research Assistants, Research Associates, Clinical Research Coordinators, and Biostatisticians
  • Junior Faculty = Assistant Professors and Instructors

A total of 16 posters will be recognized. 

Breakout Sessions

This year’s Research Day will offer small breakout sessions to give attendees the opportunity to learn more about different scientific and implementation topics that may enhance their research efforts. Event registration is required for participation.

Straight Talk with the IRB

Learn about the IRB's process and how to get help when you’re not sure what to do.


Engaging Communities in Research

Discuss how to increase interest in research participation, especially among underrepresented and historically underserved populations.


  • Candi Cornelius, MSN, RN, advisory council member, Native American Center for Health Professions, UW School of Medicine and Public Health
  • Sue Passmore, PhD, assistant professor, UW School of Nursing, co-lead for the Center for Community Engagement & Health Partnerships’ “Just Research” program
  • Naomi Takahashi, MSW, director of diversity, equity and inclusion, UW School of Medicine and Public Health and UW Health


  • Carey Gleason, PhD, MS, associate professor, Geriatrics and Gerontology, leader of the Inclusion of Under-Represented Groups core, Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center 
Keys to Collaboration

Learn how to develop collaborations both inside and outside the university and how to make sure they remain healthy and productive.


Leadership Skills

Learn about key leadership skills that you may not have learned in school and things various department leaders have found helpful in developing their career.


  • Sanjay Asthana, MD, professor and Duncan G. and Lottie H. Ballantine Chair in Geriatrics, Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Fahad Aziz, MD, associate professor, Nephrology
  • Christie Bartels, MD, MS, associate professor and chief, Rheumatology
  • Beth Drolet, MD, professor and Geneva F. and Sture Johnson Distinguished Chair, Department of Dermatology, UW School of Medicine and Public Health
  • Michael Fiore, MD, MPH, MBA, director, University of Wisconsin Center for Tobacco Research and Intervention
  • Amy Kind, MD, PhD, professor, Geriatrics and Gerontology, associate dean for social health sciences and programs, UW School of Medicine and Public Health
  • Jim Stein, MD, Robert Turell Professor of Cardiovascular Research and vice chair for faculty development, Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Deneen Wellik, PhD, professor and chair, Department of Cell and Regenerative Biology, UW School of Medicine and Public Health


Telling the Story

Learn communications skills that can help you share your science and make it understandable for everyone.


  • Sara Benzel, media relations manager, UW Health
  • Elizabeth Burnside, MD, MPH, associate dean for team science and interdisciplinary research, UW School of Medicine and Public Health
  • Nate Chin, MD, associate professor, Geriatrics and Gerontology, medical director and clinical core co-leader, Wisconsin Alzheimer's Disease Research Center
  • Robyn Perrin, PhD, chief communications officer, UW School of Medicine and Public Health
  • Kelly Tyrrell, MS, director of media relations and strategic communications, University Communications
Research Through a Health Equity Lens from Basic to Clinical Science

Learn how to apply a health equity lens to research—even if you don't consider yourself a health equity researcher.


Career Development Discussion with Dr. Fernando Holguin, the Research Day Grand Rounds presenter

Join Dr. Holguin for an informal discussion on career development for those in the earlier stages of their career.


  • Fernando Holguin, MD, MPH, associate vice chair for research, Department of Medicine, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus


Data Visualization

Learn how to tell a clear story with your data using data visualization techniques.



Grand Rounds Speaker

“Respiratory Health Disparities: Root Causes and Opportunities for Action”

Fernando Holguin, MD, MPH

Fernando Holguin, MD, MPH

Professor of Medicine 
Professor of Pediatrics 
Associate Vice Chair for Research, Department of Medicine

Dr. Fernando Holguin is a pulmonologist and professor of medicine and pediatrics in the Division of Pulmonary Sciences and Critical Care Medicine at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora, Colorado. He grew up in Mexico City, where he went to medical school. He did his pulmonary and critical care training and was a junior faculty at Emory University in Atlanta, where he also worked as a medical epidemiologist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. He was subsequently recruited to the University of Pittsburgh, prior to joining the University of Colorado. 

Throughout his academic career, Dr. Holguin has focused much on his work on translational research and patient care. He has been in practice for more than 25 years and has many clinical interests including air pollution, obesity as an asthma comorbidity, and treatment of severe asthma. Dr. Holguin is currently Director of Asthma Clinical and Research Programs at the University of Colorado. He also served as the co-chair of the American Thoracic Society and European Respiratory Society Task Force on severe asthma. He has been continuously funded throughout his academic career by the NIH, DOD, ALA and the EPA. His work initially focused on air pollution, epidemiology of chronic airways diseases, and lung physiology, but more recently, his work is focusing on airway epithelial metabolism as it relates to airway dysfunction in obesity and asthma. Dr. Holguin has authored or co-authored more than 220 papers and is internationally known for his work in asthma, COPD and air pollution. 

Dr. Holguin enjoys spending time with his family (wife Shanta, and sons Mateo and Diego), skiing, reading, and traveling to new places.

Afternoon Session Speakers

To represent the excellence and breadth of research being conducted by the Department of Medicine, the lead authors of the top-scoring abstracts from the four categories of research (i.e., basic, translational, clinical and health services/health equity) will present their work from 1:00 to 2:20 pm in HSLC room 1306.

  • "Mechanistic Insights into Sphingomyelinase-Mediated Pathways in Cardiomyocytes: From Calcium Signaling Disruption to ROS Production” presented by Zach Spears, BS, student, Cardiovascular Medicine
  • "Differential Patterns of Immune Infiltration in the Tumor Immune Microenvironment Associate with Therapeutic Response in Primary Prostate Cancer Following Chemohormonal Therapy" presented by Erika Heninger, PhD, scientist III, Hematology, Medical Oncology, and Palliative Care
  • "Pre-transplant malnutrition, particularly with muscle depletion is associated with adverse outcomes after kidney transplantation” presented by Jessa Engelken, MPH, RDN, and Katrina Kennedy MS, RDN, both clinical nutritionists, Nephrology
  • "Destigmatizing Clinical Documentation Using Spell Check" presented by David Sterken, MD, assistant clinical professor, Hospital Medicine


All DOM investigators and trainees are encouraged to submit basic, clinical, translational, or health services/health equity research abstracts for the poster session. Those who submit abstracts may be the lead author on only one submission but may co-author multiple submissions. Research abstracts previously submitted to national meetings are welcome. Case study submissions will not be accepted. 

Submissions were due by 5 pm, Friday, February 23, 2024.

Read the Call for Research Abstracts

Writing Abstracts

For the DOM's Research Day, please write your research abstract using Arial font no smaller than 11 points.

General format for research abstracts:

  • Introduction: 2-3 sentences on the clinical relevance of the project
  • Methods: 2-4 sentences on the methods employed in the research project
  • Results: 4-6 sentences on what was found in the project
  • Discussion: 2-3 sentences on how these results relate to the topic in the introduction.
  • You may add images and figures.

Helpful links:

Abstract Submission Process

To submit a research abstract:

  1. Complete the abstract submission form and attach a PDF (.pdf) version of your abstract to it.
  2. Save your abstract submission form to your files using this naming convention: 1st Author’s Last Name.First Initial_Date of Submission (e.g., Smith.A_02.12.24).
  3. Register and upload your abstract submission form to the Registration & Abstract Submission Portal by 5 pm, Friday, February 23, 2024. Extensions will NOT be granted.
Abstract Review Process

All eligible abstract submissions will be reviewed and scored by the Research Education Committee for effective and efficient communication of relevance and key findings. Committee members take the following into consideration when scoring:

  1. Introduction: The main subject, purpose, and importance of the research are succinctly described and connected to the immediate relevance and context of the research.
  2. Methods: A clear description of what was done is presented with sufficient detail to conclude the methods were appropriate to the research.
  3. Results: A concise description and logical interpretation of the research findings and observations are provided.
  4. Discussion: Concluding comments are given that relate the results to the research question, purpose, and larger context of the field.
  5. Abstract Format and Submission:  
    • Well-written using complete sentences and correct grammar and punctuation.
    • Free from spelling errors and all acronyms are defined.
    • Follows formatting guidelines as outlined on the abstract submission form.
    • The abstract is attached to the submission form as a PDF.
Abstract Author Honors & Awards

All eligible abstract submissions will be reviewed and scored by the Research Education Committee for effective and efficient communication of relevance and key findings. 

Lead authors in the categories of basic, translational, clinical, and health services/health equity will be chosen from amongst the top scoring abstracts to speak during the afternoon event session. Selected individuals will be honored with a speaking slot, a prize ribbon and $75 in funds for their professional development/research expenses.

Regardless of score, all abstract authors will receive an invitation the week of March 18, 2024, to display a poster at the event, if eligibility criteria and space permits.

DOM Division "Leader of the Pack" Award

New this year, the Department of Medicine division with the top number of abstract submissions weighted by the division’s full research activity will be recognized with the “Leader of the Pack” traveling trophy. The award will provide bragging rights and remain with the division until next year when it will be awarded again.

Past Events

Research Day 2023

No event was held in 2023.

Research Day 2022

Poster award winners

Index of Research Day posters

Research Day acknowledgements


portrait of Sid O'Bryant, PhD

Grand Rounds Speaker

“AT(N) Biomarkers Among Diverse Populations: Re-Thinking Alzheimer’s Disease.”

Sid O’Bryant, PhD

Executive Director, Institute for Translational Research, University of North Texas Health Science Center

As the population of those aged 65 and over continues to grow, so does the diversity of the U.S. population. In fact, by 2060 approximately 27.5% of the population will be Hispanic, 15% will be African American, and 44.3% will be non-Hispanic white.

Dr. Sid O'Bryant is the principal investigator of the Health & Aging Brain Study – Health Disparities (HABS-HD), which is the most comprehensive study of Alzheimer’s disease among the three largest racial/ethnic groups in the U.S. ever conducted – African Americans, Mexican Americans, non-Hispanic whites.

The goal of the HABS-HD program is to understand the life course factors, including biological, sociocultural, environmental, and behavioral, that impact risk for Alzheimer’s disease in late life. This work will ultimately lead to population-specific precision medicine approaches to treating and preventing Alzheimer’s disease (i.e., “treating your Alzheimer’s disease”).

In addition to being a global leader in Mexican American cognitive aging, Dr. O’Bryant is a global expert in precision medicine approaches to novel diagnostic and therapeutic strategies for Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Dementia with Lewy Bodies and Alzheimer’s disease among adults with Down Syndrome.  

Keynote Speaker

portrait of Jon S. Odorico, MD

“Stem Cell-derived Islets: A Potential Beta Cell Replacement Therapy for All?”

Jon S. Odorico, MD, FACS, FAST

Dr. Odorico is Director of the Pancreas and Islet Cell Transplantation Programs and Professor in the Department of Surgery, Division of Organ Transplantation at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health.

He received his Chemistry BS from Duke University and M.D. from New York University. He completed General Surgery training as well as a post-doctoral research fellowship, at the University of Pennsylvania and an Organ Transplant Fellowship at the University of Wisconsin.

The University of Wisconsin Pancreas Transplant Program consistently ranks among the highest volume programs in the world and has developed many field-leading innovations. 

Dr. Odorico has an active, extramurally funded research laboratory that focuses on beta cell differentiation from pluripotent stem cells. He previously served as President of IPITA and Chair of the UNOS Pancreas Committee. He is also the scientific co-founder of Regenerative Medical Solutions, Inc.