Research Announcements

Great Plains IDeA-CTR Hosts NCATS Director during Annual Scientific Meeting

“Catalyzing Translational Innovation”

Monday, October 23rd, 2017

Christopher Austin, M.D., director of the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) at the National Institutes of Health, will be the keynote speaker for the Annual Great Plains IDeA-CTR Scientific Meeting.  NCATS’ mission is to enhance the development, testing and implementation of diagnostics and therapeutics across a wide range of human diseases and conditions. The center collaborates with other government agencies, industry, academia and the nonprofit community.

The Scientific Meeting, held October 23rd-24th will include:

  • clinical and translational research presentations;
  • clinical research resources across the network;
  • community engagement activities;
  • interactive workshops (including a mock study section); and
  • information about Great Plains IDeA-CTR’s mission to build infrastructure for clinical and translational research.

The conference is designed for clinical and translational researchers (CTR) across the Great Plains, including physicians, advanced practice nurses, nurses, administrators and other health care professionals as well as community members interested in CTR.

For registration information and to access a full agenda for the event, see the website.

The meeting is sponsored by the Great Plains IDeA-CTR in conjunction with the UNMC Center for Continuing Education and UNMC College of Nursing Continuing Nursing Education.


N-95 Disposable Respirator Fit Testing

Colleagues who are required to be fitted annually for a disposable N95 respirator should schedule a fitting between July 10 and July 21. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires fit testing for any employee whose job description indicates a potential for exposure to airborne and/or aerosolized diseases and particles. If you are not sure if you are required to be fit tested, please check with your manager or UNMC Safety.

Per OSHA requirement, you must be fit tested before you use a respirator in the workplace and you must be retested at least annually to make sure that the respirator you use still fits you. You must be fit tested with the specific make, model, style and size of respirator that you will be using.

The fit of your respirator must also be retested whenever you have a change in your physical condition which could affect the fit of your respirator. Such changes could include:

  • Large weight gain or loss
  • Major dental work (such as new dentures)
  • Facial surgery that may have changed the shape of your face
  • Significant scarring in the area of the seal

Any of these changes could affect your respirator’s ability to properly seal to your face, which could allow contaminated air to leak into your respirator face piece.

Beginning July 10, fit testing for disposable N95 respirators will be held in the Durham Outpatient Center, level two, room 2602.You are asked to sign up for a fit testing slot between July 10 and July 21 in Apollo. Log in to Apollo, select “Search for Trainings” on the right-hand side, then type in ”fit testing.”  Note: These sessions will not be conducting fit testing for any reusable half mask or full face respirators.  Contact Employee Health to schedule fit testing for those respirators.

Additional dates will be held in the future for those who are unable to make it during this two-week period.

Here are some additional details for your upcoming appointment:

  1. It will take approximately 20 minutes
  2. Plan to arrive 5 to 10 minutes before your scheduled appointment
  3. You must complete this questionnaire before you arrive
  4. If you are late, you may be asked to reschedule
  5. Males must be clean shaven in the area where the mask will make contact with their skin. Facial hair can affect the respirator’s ability to protect you

For questions, email Employee Health at

American Skin Association Funding Announcement

The American Skin Association’s (ASA) 2018 funding opportunities in dermatology have been announced.  ASA seeks to provide funding for top researchers, physicians, and medical students who are dedicated to the field of dermatology.  Through these grants, ASA hopes to broaden understanding and increase knowledge of various skin diseases.

ASA is currently inviting application submissions from medical students and established researchers alike.  The following grants are being offered this year:

  • Milstein Research Scholar Award in  Melanoma/Non-Melanoma Skin Cancer ($60,000)
  • Calder Research Scholar Award in Vitiligo/Pigment Cell Disorders ($60,000)
  • ASA Research Scholar Award in Dermatology ($60,000)
  • Research Grants in the areas of Childhood Skin diseases/Disfigurement, Psoriasis/Inflammatory Skin Diseases, Skin Cancer & Melanoma, and Quality of Life/health Services/Outcomes Studies ($15,000)
  • Hambrick Medical Student Grants for those students working in the area of Melanoma & Skin Cancer ($7,000)


Submission deadline is Sunday, October 1, 2017 at 11:59 EST.  All applications should be completed online at

For submission instructions and award information click here.