News Makers

The following News Makers are listed by month in reverse chronological order. 


Both Chancellor and Dean Aaron Lazare , and Aldo A. Rossini, MD, the William and Doris Krupp Professor of Medicine, were quoted in a May 27 WorcesterTelegram & Gazette report about a $1 million donation made by George Chabot of Auburn to establish the George and Marie Chabot Research Fund that will support diabetes research. 

In a May 24 Health Page feature in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette that outlined the health benefits of taking a vacation, Saki F. Santorelli, EdD, assistant professor of medicine, provided insight into the need for daily stress reduction. 

A May 23 Worcester Telegram & Gazette editorial highlighted the shortage of nursing school faculty and included commentary from Dean of the Graduate School of Nursing Doreen Harper, PhD.    

Jurgen H. Kedesdy, PhD,  clinical associate professor of pediatrics, was interviewed May 19 about the physiological aspects of chocolate cravings for a segment on WCVB-TV Channel 5’s “Chronicle.” 

Richard A. Perugini, MD,  assistant professor of surgery, was quoted in the May 19 News-Sentinel of Fort Wayne regarding complications associated with gastric bypass surgery and the importance of the surgeon’s experience. 

On May 13, numerous news outlets reported on the region’s first living donor intestine transplant, performed by Luca Cicalese, MD, associate professor of surgery, Giacomo P. Basadonna, MD, PhD, professor of surgery, Craig A. Paterson, MD, assistant professor of surgery, and Marc E. Uknis, MD, associate professor of surgery.  Media who covered the event included the Worcester Telegram & Gazette, The Boston Globe, the Boston Herald, the Providence Journal, WCVB-TV Channel 5, New England Cable News, WBZ-TV Channel 4, WFXT-TV Channel 25, WHDH-TV Channel 7, WTAG-AM and the Springfield Republican. 

The May 12 Worcester Telegram & Gazette published a front-page interview with Paul Danielson, MD, assistant professor of surgery, which focused on his tour of duty in Iraq. 

The May 7 Worcester Telegram & Gazette covered the Girls, Inc. luncheon honoring Marianne E. Felice, MD, professor and chair of pediatrics, as the 2004 Advocate for Girls. In her keynote, Dr. Felice applauded the organization’s mission statement, “to be strong, smart and bold.”  Dr. Felice was also quoted in the May issue of Hospital News in an article that provided an overview of pediatric services available at top health care facilities in the region. 

Edward W. Boyer, MD, PhD,  assistant professor of emergency medicine and medical director of toxicology for UMass Memorial, was interviewed by the MetroWest Daily News May 5 following a Waltham auto mechanic who received a rare black widow spider bite while working on a customer's car; UMass Memorial is the region’s emergency toxicology center. Several other news outlets also ran the story. 

The May 4 Worcester Telegram & Gazette highlighted Jean A. King, PhD, associate professor of psychiatry, who was one of five winners of the YWCA's Katharine F. Erskine Award, which honors women accomplished in their fields and committed to volunteer activities that help eliminate racism and empower women. 

James B. Broadhurst, MD,  assistant professor of family medicine & community health, was interviewed May 4   by the Worcester Telegram & Gazette for an article announcing a $150,000 donation made by the Alpha Delta Pi Foundation to support the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile.  

Dario C. Altieri, MD,  the Eleanor Eustis Farrington Chair in Cancer Research and chair of cancer biology was quoted May 4 in the Boston Globe in an article about technological advances in screening tools used to detect cancer. 


Bruce A. Meyer, MD, MBA,  professor and chair of obstetrics & gynecology, was quoted in an April 29 Worcester Telegram & Gazette article regarding a Massachusetts Medical Society report indicating that the high cost of living and relatively lower salaries in the state were causing a shortage of physicians, particularly in some medical specialties. 

A study by Ira S. Ockene, MD, the David J. and Barbara D. Milliken Professor of Preventive Cardiology, which indicated that cholesterol levels naturally vary from season to season, received considerable press attention when published in the April 26 Archives of Internal Medicine.  Dr. Ockene was also interviewed by several news outlets, including CNN Radio, CNN TV, NBC-TV, the New York Times, Chicago Sun Times, the Boston Herald, The Boston Globe, Worcester Telegram & Gazette, USA Today, the Fitchburg Sentinel & Enterprise, Readers Digest and Men’s Health Magazine. 

Donna M. Ambrosino, MD,  professor of pediatrics, was quoted April 27 in The Boston Globe, Worcester Telegram & Gazette and Mass High Tech when the Massachusetts Biologic Laboratories provided a sample of the human antibody of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome or SARS to China, where a new outbreak of the disease had occurred. 

An April 26 health feature in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette that focused on diabetes in the Latino community, quoted Matthew J. Collins, MD, assistant professor of family medicine & community health, who is also interim medical director of the Family Health Center.  

Jerry H. Gurwitz, MD,  the Dr. John Meyers Professor of Primary Care Medicine, provided comments in the April 19 Worcester Telegram & Gazette  on a proposal regarding collaborative drug therapy management, which would allow pharmacists to play a larger role in overseeing the medications people take. 

The Worcester Telegram & Gazette interviewed Frederick A. Spencer, MD, associate professor of medicine, regarding a study in the April 12 Archives of Internal Medicine that demonstrated no negative association between the length of time a heart attack patient remained in the hospital and short-term mortality.  The Boston Herald also ran a story about the study. In addition, Dr. Spencer was interviewed on April 1 by The Boston Globe for his thoughts about a New England Journal of Medicine study questioning the usefulness of a blood test to predict the risk of heart attack or cardiovascular disease. 

The April 12 Worcester Telegram & Gazette health page featured the medical team responsible for the treatment of an 11-year-old boy who developed renal artery stenosis and underwent “heroic surgery” to remove his kidney, repair it and return it to his body. Interviewed and photographed for the story were Giacomo P. Basadonna, MD, PhD, professor of surgery; Bruce S. Cutler, MD, professor of surgery; Peter J. Foley, MD, clinical associate professor of anesthesiology; William A. Primack, MD, professor of pediatrics, and Marc E. Uknis, MD, associate professor of surgery. The story also ran in the May edition of Hospital News. 

Frederick A. Anderson, PhD,  research professor of surgery, was quoted in The Boston Globe April 9 regarding Bruce Edwards, a professional golf caddy who died of ALS on the first day of the 68th Masters Tournament. 

H. Brownell Wheeler, MD,  the Harry M. Haidak Distinguished Professor of Surgery Emeritus, was profiled in Worcester Magazine’s “One On One” interview April 5, discussing his work to improve end-of-life care in the region. 

In an April 5 Worcester Telegram & Gazette article accompanying a health feature on a one-year-old child undergoing hearing tests prior to a cochlear implant, Peter J. Foley, MD, clinical associate professor of anesthesiology, discussed the difference between sedation and anesthesia for children during surgery or diagnostic testing.  Stephen O. Heard, MD, professor and chair of anesthesiology, was also quoted in the article, which examined the safety and efficacy of the two methods. 

Mitchell J. Gitkind, MD,  clinical associate professor of medicine, was quoted in a feature article April 1 in The Boston Globe that focused on the limited number of options, particularly medications, available to treat obesity. 


Marc Fisher, MD,  professor of neurology, was quoted in a March 29 article in Forbes magazine that explored the challenges of developing drugs that can treat and prevent strokes. 

A March 28 story in the 

Worcester  Telegram & Gazette featured Lee A. Mancini, MD, a fellow in sports medicine at UMass Memorial Medical Center . Dr. Mancini discussed the significant dangers of steroid use among younger people trying to develop their bodies quickly.

Proposed changes in the Medicaid system, which could limit access to care for people of modest means, was the subject of a March 27 story in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette featuring Daniel H. Lasser, MD, MPH, professor and chair of family medicine & community health; Robert A. Baldor, MD, professor of family medicine & community health; and Wendy E. Warring, executive vice president of UMass Memorial Health Care. 

A March 25 story in the 

Worcester Telegram & Gazette recognized Deborah Harmon Hines, PhD, associate vice chancellor for school services,  for her receipt of an Economic Empowerment Award from the Martin Luther King Jr. Business Empowerment Center of Worcester. Dr. Hines was also photographed for the story.

News of a novel vaccine against HIV, and the clinical trial to test its safety and immunogenicity, was reported widely around the world beginning on March 23.   Articles in major print outlets including The Boston Globe, Los Angles Times, Newsday, Miami Herald and featured interviews with Shan Lu, MD, PhD, associate professor of medicine, who developed the vaccine and Jeff Kennedy, MD, assistant professor of medicine, who is leading the clinical trial.  Stories about the vaccine and trial also aired widely on television news stations.  

Stories in The New York Times on March 23 and in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette on March 16, reported on a study published by Kathleen Mazor, EdD, assistant professor of medicine and member of the for the Meyers Primary Care Institute, which explored patient attitudes about medical errors. The study found that if physicians admit mistakes and apologize to the affected patients, a malpractice suit is less likely to be pursued. 

Debra W. Heitmann, MD,  assistant professor of emergency medicine, and Sandra Mayrand , director of the Regional Science Resource Center, were featured in a March 22 Worcester Telegram & Gazette story about the Women in Science conference, co-sponsored by UMMS.  Dr. Heitmann discussed her experiences as an emergency room physician, while Mayrand spoke about the goal of the conference, which is to interest young women in a variety of science careers open to them. 

The Match Day Ceremony on March 17 was covered by the 

Worcester Telegram & Gazette, New England Cable News “Worcester News Tonight,” and the Springfield Republican. The stories featured a selection of interviews with graduating students and their families.

Stephen J. Doxsey, PhD,  associate professor of molecular medicine, was quoted extensively in a March 15 article in The Scientist that explored the role of aneuploidy as a potential cause of cancer. 

The clinical research on lupus directed by Ann E. Traynor, MD, associate professor of medicine, was covered March 15 in the 

Worcester Telegram & Gazette. The extensive report chronicled Dr. Traynor’s research into using stem cell transplants to treat the disease, in addition to general information about lupus and the personal stories of several affected patients.

Ira S. Ockene, MD,  the David J. and Barbara D. Milliken Professor of Preventive Cardiology, was quoted March 9 in The Boston Globe report on a study of statin therapies that compared a low dose versus a high dose of the drugs for persons who suffered cardiac problems. 

The March 8 

Worcester  Business Journal carried a story about the newly established Graduate Entry Pathway program at the UMMS Graduate School of Nursing. Kathleen Thies, PhD, director of the program, was featured in the report, explaining how the program is designed to offer persons with non-nursing undergraduate degrees an opportunity for an accelerated masters degree in nursing.

Judith K. Ockene, PhD,  the Barbara Helen Smith Chair in Preventive and Behavioral Medicine, was quoted in a March 3 Worcester Telegram & Gazette story about the National Institutes of Health’s decision to halt an estrogen study because of increased risk of stroke among participants. 

A March 2 report in The Boston Globe featured Machelle M. Seibel, MD, professor of obstetrics & gynecology, in his efforts to use original musical compositions to deliver important health messages to the public. 

A March 1 story in the 

Worcester Telegram & Gazette explored the impact of obesity on children’s cardiac health. The story featured Phyllis Pollack, MD, clinical associate professor of pediatrics and director of pediatric cardiology, and Nancy Hagberg, NP, director of the pediatric preventative cardiology program at UMass Memorial Medical Center .  Both discussed the increasing incidence of obesity-related high blood pressure, high cholesterol, type 2 diabetes and other conditions among children that carry long-term cardiac implications.


The Injury Free Coalition for Kids Worcester, led by Michael P. Hirsh, MD , professor of pediatrics, held a joint press conference Feb. 23 with city's Parks & Recreation Department to announce the renovation and expansion of the Bell Hill Playground. Dr. Hirsh was interviewed by WTAG-AM, New England Cable News “Worcester News Tonight,” and the 

Worcester Telegram & Gazette. Peter Paige, MD, assistant professor of emergency medicine, who was instrumental in raising the funds needed for the project, also spoke that evening on "The Jordan Levy Show."  

The February edition of Hospital News included an interview with Richard S. Irwin, MD, professor of medicine, upon his induction as president of the 

American College of Chest Physicians at the College’s 69th annual international scientific assembly.  In the interview Dr. Irwin said he intends to continue the College’s work in patient-focused care.

Paula D. Ravin, MD,  clinical associate professor of neurology, was interviewed for the Feb. issue of Redbook magazine for a feature article on headaches, discussing different kinds of headaches from tension headaches to migraines. 

In a Feb. 17 Fitchburg Sentinel & Enterprise article regarding a study linking early childhood exposure to infections and bacteria with decreased rates of allergies, Oren P. Schaefer, MD, clinical associate professor of medicine, discussed the development of the immune system in a “dirty” vs. “clean” environment. 

Mario Stevenson, PhD,  the David J. Freelander Professor of AIDS Research, was quoted in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Feb. 16 in an article about an ongoing study by the CDC regarding transmission of retroviruses—such as HIV—from monkeys to humans, generally in zoos or animal research facilities. 

Dana K. Andersen, MD,  the Harry M. Haidak Professor and chair of Surgery and Marianne E. Felice, MD, professor and chair of pediatrics, were quoted in the Feb. 13 Community Advocate following a gala evening held in honor of Tara Bean, a Shrewsbury fourth grader who died just after being diagnosed with a brain tumor.  Proceeds from the event, which attracted more than 375 people and coincided with the addition of Oguz I. Cataltepe, MD, associate professor of surgery and pediatrics, to the faculty, will be used to support research and care of children with brain tumors. 

Elizabeth A. Jackson, MD,  assistant professor of medicine, was quoted in a Feb. 17 “Sound Body” column in The Boston Globe regarding changes in guidelines for helping women avoid heart disease, published in the journal Circulation. Dr. Jackson was also interviewed Feb. 11 on WTAG-AM’s "The Jordan Levy Show."  James M. Flynn, MD, assistant professor of medicine, was also quoted on the same topic in the MetroWest Daily News the same day. 

In a Feb. 8 article reflecting on Black History Month, the Sunday Telegram & Gazette posed the question, “Do you believe African-Americans in this country have the same freedoms and opportunities as whites?” to a number of prominent people in the community, including Associate Vice Chancellor for School Services Deborah Harmon Hines, PhD, who was photographed and quoted in the story. 


Boston  Business Journal’s special Biotech section featured an article about RNAi and its impact on research, citing work by Craig C. Mello, PhD, Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator and Blais University Chair of Molecular Medicine, and quoting Michael P. Czech, PhD, professor and chair of molecular medicine. Also in the same edition was an article describing a joint venture between UMMS and Ethicon, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, to develop wound treatment technology more quickly ― aproject lead by Raymond M. Dunn, MD, professor of surgery.

UMMS Chancellor and Dean Aaron Lazare , was consulted by several news outlets following the Super Bowl halftime show during which singer Janet Jackson’s breast was exposed by fellow singer Justin Timberlake.  Dr. Lazare provided insight into elements of a genuine apology after Timberlake issued an ineffective apology for the exposure; Dr. Lazare was quoted by the Feb. 7 Patriot Ledger, the Fort Worth Star Telegram  and the Orlando Sentinel. 

A Feb. 6 Boston Globe article reported on a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine in which researchers detected a marker for preeclampsia in pregnant women as early as five weeks before symptoms appeared. Sharon E. Maynard, MD, assistant professor of medicine, was a coauthor of the study, which was conducted with colleagues when Maynard was a postdoctoral fellow at 

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center .

The Boston Globe, 

Worcester  Telegram & Gazette and Fitchburg Sentinel & Enterprise reported on a study, coauthored by Associate Professor of Pediatrics Brian P. O'Sullivan, MD, and published in the Feb. 5 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine indicating that restoring the balance of two particular fatty acids may help delay the onset of symptoms in children with cystic fibrosis.

Dean of the Graduate School of Nursing Doreen Harper, PhD,  was quoted in several news articles Feb. 4 when the GSN announced the Graduate Entry Program, which seeks to attract professionals to the field of nursing. Dr. Harper spoke with the Associated Press as well as the 

Worcester   Telegram & Gazette,   Attleboro  Sun Chronicle, Daily Hampshire Gazette, Athol Daily News and Patriot Ledger.

For a Feb. 2 health feature article describing the conception and birth of quadruplets, the Worcester Telegram & Gazette interviewed Bruce A. Meyer, MD, MBA, professor and chair of obstetrics & gynecology, and Francis J. Bednarek, MD, professor of pediatrics, about the medical challenges faced by women carrying quadruplets and the risk to the newborns themselves.  

Paul S. Appelbaum, MD,  the Arnold F. Zeleznik Professor of Psychiatry and chair of psychiatry, was interviewed for a Feb. 1 Fitchburg Sentinel & Enterprise feature article about the insanity defense. Attorneys for a local man accused of stabbing one son to death and injuring another maintain that the man was suffering bipolar disorder at the time of the attack. Similarly, Dr. Appelbaum was quoted in a Feb. 9 

Worcester  Telegram & Gazette health feature that highlighted the issue of stereotyping and stigmatizing people with bipolar disorder.


Erik J. Garcia, MD,  assistant professor of family medicine & community health, was lauded in a Jan. 30 Worcester Telegram & Gazette article listing the winners of the 2004 Visions Awards. Dr. Garcia received the publication's Public Service Award. 

Mario Stevenson, PhD,  the David J. Freelander Professor of AIDS Research, was quoted in various local newspapers on Jan. 16, including The Boston Globe, Worcester Telegram & Gazette and Metrowest Daily News, regarding an  editorial published in the journal Science that he co-authored which called upon the National Institutes of Health to halt a major HIV vaccine trial set to begin in Thailand. 

The Jan. 12 Health Page in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette featured an interview with Professor of Medicine Gerard P. Aurigemma, MD, regarding his findings confirming a Japanese study that identified a stress-triggered syndrome that mimics the symptoms of a heart attack. 

Edward W. Boyer, MD, PhD,  assistant professor of emergency medicine, was featured Jan. 9 on ABC's "20/20" in an investigative report on dextromethorphan, an ingredient found in many over-the-counter cough suppressants that, in certain doses, produces vivid hallucinations and has thus become a recreational drug for teens. 

Professor of Medicine David M. Clive, MD, was quoted in the Jan. 7 

Worcester Telegram & Gazette regarding a national survey investigating end-of-life care. Dr. Clive, who is also chair of the ethics and treatments committee at UMass Memorial, agreed with the findings that palliative care should be improved for the terminally ill.

Eric S. Rawson, PhD,  instructor in medicine, was featured in The New York Times Jan. 6 "Personal Health" column regarding a study he published with colleagues in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise on the failure of cholesterol screenings to identify 50 percent of people nationwide who have heart attacks each year.