Cutaneous manifestations of COVID-19, clinical advances in wound care, and award-winning scientific findings from University of Miami Miller School of Medicine faculty and trainees prevailed at the recent global Symposium of Advanced Wound Care and Wound Healing Society (SAWC/WHS) meeting — the largest annual wound meeting in the world. For the first time, it was held virtually due to COVID-19.
Robert S. Kirsner, M.D., Ph.D., chair of the Dr. Phillip Frost Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery, co-chairs and organizes the conference annually. Several members of the department presented their findings at the virtual meeting. Although they were physically separated by COVID-19, they were joined together by a mission to improve wound healing outcomes.
“Our Department had a very prominent appearance, and our trainees received multiple awards,” said Marjana Tomic-Canic, Ph.D., director of the Miller School’s Wound Healing and Regenerative Medicine Research Program and a member of the conference program committee.
Andrea Maderal, M.D., for example, presented findings on COVID-19-related dermatologic issues as a conference keynote speaker. Other faculty members sharing their expertise included Hadar Lev-Tov, M.D., and Irena Pastar, Ph.D.
Rivka C. Stone, M.D., Ph.D., emerged as a finalist in the conference’s Wound Shark Innovation Competition. Together with Ivan Jozic, Ph.D., Dr. Stone presented research entitled "At home wound transcutaneous oxygen monitor via portable smartphone adapter and app.”
Research in the spotlight
The conference also highlighted research from three Miller dermatology trainees:
Rashmika Reddy, a student in the Master of Skin Biology and Dermatological Sciences program, received a first prize for top scoring abstract in laboratory research. She presented her master thesis research entitled “Pilot Study Evaluating Diagnostic Tissue Biomarkers to Predict Healing Outcome and Guide Debridement in Chronic Venous Leg Ulcers.”
Sydney Resnik, a fellow in the Wound Healing and Regenerative Medicine Research Program in the past year, won the Wound Healing Society Trainee Award for her abstract entitled “Comparative Transcriptomic of Human Diabetic Foot Ulcers and Diabetic Mouse Wounds Reveals Limited Overlap.”
Andjela N. Egger, a fourth-year medical student and research fellow in the Wound Healing and Regenerative Medicine Research Program for the past year, was awarded the John K. Robinson Travel Grant to present a top-scoring abstract entitled “Mevastatin for Topical Use in Diabetic Foot Ulcers to Accelerate Wound Closure by Inhibition of Caveolin-1 and Restoration of EGF Signaling.” She had previously won the 2020 Dr. Carl and Barbara Alving Endowed Biomedical Research Award.
Visit the virtual conference website for more information about this year’s event.