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Duke Heart Pulse April 30th 2023

Highlights of the week:

ISHLT Held in Denver

The 43rd annual meeting & scientific sessions of the International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation (ISHLT) was held at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver, CO from April 19-22.

Duke research presented included that of Carolyn Glass, Brandi Bottinger, Andrew Vekstein, Jack Haney, Matt Hartwig, Leslie Snyder, Jacob Schroder, Marat Fudim, Mark Kittipibul, Michael Carboni, Hakim Ali, Scott Palmer, Stuart Russell, M. Mendiola Pla, Elizabeth Pavlisko, Carmelo Milano, Sharon McCartney, Cameron Wolfe, Dawn Bowles, Sarah Casalinova, Chris Holley, Adam DeVore, Chet Patel, former cardiology fellow Lauren Truby, Svati Shah, and Desiree Bonadonna.

We’d especially like to congratulate cardiology fellow Mark Kittipibul for the 3 posters he presented (images shown here). Nicely done!

Great work by all!

Cotter, Maracaja Join Cardiac Anesthesiology Faculty

Two new cardiothoracic (CT) anesthesiology faculty members have joined the Duke team. In an announcement this week, Mihai Podgoreanu, MD, chief of the division of cardiac anesthesiology, formally welcomed Drs. Sarah Cotter and Luiz Maracaja as faculty members in Duke’s Department of Anesthesiology.

Cotter, who joined the faculty as an assistant professor of anesthesiology, obtained her MD from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, followed by a cardiothoracic anesthesia fellowship at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. She then spent several years on faculty at the University of California San Francisco prior to returning to NC.

Podgoreanu stated, “Sarah has a passion for education and we’re looking forward to her many clinical and educational contributions.”

Maracaja, who joined the faculty as an associate professor of anesthesiology, is originally from Brazil, where he obtained his medical degree and completed anesthesiology residency. He then moved to the U.S. and completed another anesthesiology residency program at the State University of New York and a CT anesthesia fellowship at Yale, followed by faculty appointments at Yale and most recently at Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist.

Maracaja “is a clinician-innovator with expertise in 3D printing, prototyping various devices for perioperative care, and has a research interest in delivering therapeutics for lung disease,” Podgoreanu added.

Welcome, Sarah and Luiz!


Celebrating Perfusionists

Perfusion Week 2023 begins today, April 30, and continues through May 6 – it’s a time dedicated to honoring the tireless work of perfusionists around the world. Organized by the American Society of ExtraCorporeal Technology (AmSECT), Perfusion Week is an annual recognition of the positive impact that perfusionists have on the lives of our patients. This year, Perfusion Week follows on the heels of AmSECTs 61st International Conference, which annually celebrates the perfusionist profession, allows for shared knowledge and challenges, and facilitates networking among leading perfusionists from around the world.

With an increasing frequency of heart surgery and other cardiac procedures, perfusion is growing in importance in the healthcare community around the world. In the past decade, perfusion has expanded to areas of perioperative blood management, wound healing, ventricular assistance and advanced uses of extracorporeal circulation. Additionally, perfusionists and other healthcare professionals continue to show their dedication to their patients amidst the ongoing effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The work of perfusionists requires great precision and concentration – and this is especially true for perfusionists at Duke. We are proud of the excellence our perfusion team demonstrates each day for our Duke Heart patients – and we recognize the incredible work they do in serving in leadership roles, on national committees, and toward advancing their field!

Honoring AAPI Team Members and Communities

May is Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, a time to celebrate the millions of Americans with roots in the Asian continent and/or the Pacific Islands. The AAPI community is exceptionally diverse, with approximately 50 distinct ethnic groups speaking more than 100 languages and hailing from many places around the globe—including 48 countries and three territories in Asia, and 15 nations and thousands of islands in the Pacific. We join Duke Health in celebrating the contributions and achievements of our AAPI team members and communities this month and every month.

Great Catch, Greene!

Karla Greene, a physical therapist at our Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation Clinic on Hillandale, recognized that a patient she was seeing for pulmonary rehabilitation had new-onset calf pain and swelling, which she escalated to the patient’s transplant coordinator. The patient underwent an ultrasound, which revealed deep-vein thrombosis, and was started on anticoagulant therapy.

Karla’s recognition of the patient’s condition change helped facilitate timely, potentially life-saving treatment.

Way to go, Karla!

Kudos to PAC, 3100 Teams!

We received a terrific note from Nishant Shah in recognition of our PAC & 3100 teams this week.

Shah wrote, “We have had an extremely busy service with over 20 patients on most days with variable geography given the renovations. Our APPs and Pharmacists this week (Monique and Alyssa (who always keeps the PAC ship afloat with her excellence) have just been outstanding! I certainly don’t know what I would have done without them. Many of these patients had very complex histories and/or complex coronary anatomy, in addition to several uncontrolled co-morbidities. Despite having high patients loads there was always attention to detail, organization, and pre-emptive care coordination that really helped move care forward for the patients. I could not have been more impressed with how awesome the PAC team was. So far, the APPs I have worked with this week are: Sas, Deborah, Nicolena, Janey, Jessyln, Michelle Lacayo, Lisa Synder, and Hannah.”

“I also wanted to send kudos to the 3100 nursing staff for going out of their way to find our team for a very sick patient as soon as they arrived. The nursing team flawlessly, confidently, and calmly assisted us in managing the patient who was having a very large active MI. I cannot be more grateful for the 3100 nursing staff.

I just wanted to share my thoughts and give credit to all the wonderful people involved on 3100.”

Excellent work, teams!!


Faculty Offer CPR Training at Local School

We learned that several of our faculty members stepped onto a different type of campus this week. Drs. Anna Lisa Chamis, Chetan Patel, Manesh Patel and Svati Shah took some time to offer CPR training at a local high school – demonstrating their teaching skills and expertise in cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Such an important skill for all of us to know and share.

Thank you for doing this and great job leading by example!


Quick Reminders & Updates

  • National Nursing week begins on Saturday, May 6.

Upcoming Events & Opportunities


Cardiology Grand Rounds

May 2: Maximizing the Slice of the Pie: Donor/Recipient Matching in 2023 with Chris Wrobel. 5 p.m. Zoom only.


2023 Loan Repayment Program to Promote Diversity and Inclusion in Medicine

The Duke Department of Medicine has announced the 2023 Loan Repayment Program to Promote Diversity and Inclusion in Medicine (LRPDIM). This award is part of a series of mentored career development opportunities offered by the Department of Medicine and is designed to fund members of groups underrepresented in medicine who, as a group, are disproportionately impacted by student loans. This financial burden impedes the retention, recruitment, and diversification of research faculty in our department.

We encourage investigators from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds who are under-represented in Medicine to consider applying. The LRPDIM award repays up to $50,000, annually for up to two years, of a researcher’s qualified educational debt in return for a commitment to engage in research.  Up to two applicants will be funded (July 1, 2023, through June 30, 2025).  The award recipient must remain a full-time employee of the DOM to receive the full amount of the award. Award funds are not restricted and can be used at the awardee’s discretion. If the research commitment is not met, recipients must pay back the amount awarded.

The 2023 LRPDIM Award application deadline is May 12, 2023, at 5 p.m.  Eligibility criteria, detailed information about the Award, and the application form are available on the DOM Loan Repayment Program to Promote Diversity and Inclusion website. For program-related questions, please contact Kimberly Dorman, Special Assistant to the Vice Chair for Faculty Development and Diversity in the Chair’s Office.


Cardiac Safety Research Consortium Think Tank Meeting, June 7

The Cardiac Safety Research Consortium will hold a Think Tank meeting on June 7. The event,  CSRC Think Tank: Update on Regulatory Status of Hypertension, Biomarkers and Arrhythmia Monitoring in Clinical Trials will be held at the FDA.

In Session 1, these leading industry professionals will speak on panels discussing:

  • Regulations for ECG/QT
  • The double-negative conundrum
  • Alternative methods for assay sensitivity assessment in routine Phase 1 QT Studies
  • Covid-19 and prolonged QT

In Session 2, we will discuss:

  • Small increases in blood pressure and CV risk I
  • Intermittent versus chronic use hypertension drugs

In Session 3, the meeting faculty will dive into:

  • Biomarkers

In Session 4, the panelists will discuss hot topics in the field such as:

  • Biologics/cardiomyopathy and vaccine development
  • MACE
  • Gene therapies
  • Wearables

The event will include professionals from FDA Regulatory, Cardiac Safety Consultants, Ltd., Eli Lilly, Richmond Pharmacology, University of Connecticut, Stanford University, University of Pennsylvania, Cleveland Clinic, Clario, Mass General, DSI, Penn Medicine, and UCSF.

There is a registration fee for attendance, for academics it is $275. Registration and more information is available here: https://cardiac-safety.org/

The meeting will be held in person; a recording of the meeting and slide presentations will become available a month after the event occurs.


Have news to share?

If you have news to share with the Pulse readership, please contact Tracey Koepke, director of communications for Duke Heart at tracey.koepke@duke.edu. We would love to hear about your latest accomplishments, professional news, cool happenings, and any events or opportunities that may be of interest to our Duke Heart family. Please call with any questions: 919-681-2868. Feedback on Pulse is welcome and encouraged. Submissions by Noon, Wednesdays, to be considered for weekend inclusion.


Duke Heart in the News:

April 21 — Conrad Hodgkinson

Diagnostic and Interventional Cardiology

A Second Chance for a Healthy Heart


April 25 — Jamie Diamond

HealthDay News

Hospitals Caring for Mostly Black Patients Provide Quality Heart Failure Care


*also carried by 78 additional outlets including in San Francisco-Oakland, Seattle and Salt Lake City

April 25 — Duke University Health System

Becker’s Hospital Review

49 hospitals, systems among Forbes’ best employers for diversity


April 26 — Rhonda Brandon

Becker’s Hospital Review

How Duke’s health system supports a workforce that is 60% millennial or Gen Z


April 26 — Donald Glower

Medical News Today

Mitral valve repair: Minimally invasive and conventional surgery have similar outcomes


April 27 — Suresh Balu and Mark Sendak

Stat News

A research team airs the messy truth about AI in medicine — and gives hospitals a guide to fix it


April 27 — Stephen Greene


Outcomes poor after HF hospitalization for patients with mildly reduced, preserved EF


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