MCW Pediatric Pathologist awarded 2012 Fogarty GEOHealth Hubs Planning Grant
Dec. 07, 2012 College News - Paula North, MD, PhD Professor and Chief of Pediatric Pathology, has been awarded a 2012 Fogarty GEOHealth Hubs Planning Grant along with partners, Ronald Hines, PhD, Professor of Pediatrics, Cesar Augusto Cabezas Sanchez, MD of the Peruvian NIH (Institute Nacional de Salud) and Luis Vasquez, MD, President of the Yantalo Peru Foundation.
The GEOHealth program, fostered by the National Institutes of Health’s Fogarty International Center, the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), is intended to create regional hubs for collaborative research, data management, training and policy support regarding environmental and occupational health in low- and middle-income countries. Dr. North and partners plan to establish an innovative, world-class GEOHealth Hub in the Alto Mayo region of Northern Peru. Their efforts will provide critical support needed by Peruvian health authorities to develop well-targeted, effective public health policies and educational strategies to address environmental and occupational health risks.
“This research will focus on assessing indoor and outdoor air quality, water and soil quality, and safety of traditional medicinal plant preparations” Dr. North said. Although environmental health concerns of the broad populace will be addressed, the critical problems of infant/maternal mortality will be emphasized.
Dr. North is building upon an on-going partnership that has developed between the Peruvian Institute Nacional de Salud, the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW) Division of Pediatric Pathology, the Milwaukee-based NIH/NIEHS-sponsored Children's Environmental Health Science Core Center (CEHSCC) for which Dr. North serves as Deputy Director, the Yantalo Peru Foundation, and most recently the Oregon State University Superfund Research Program.
In June 2011, MCW signed a formal affiliation agreement with the Yantalo Peru Foundation and MCW medical students will begin rotating at this site in 2013. Each year the pediatric general surgery team led by Keith Oldham, MD, Professor and Chief, Pediatric Surgery, visits Peru and conducts an International Symposium in Cusco. In addition, the team completes complex general surgical procedures in Lima, Moyobamba and Cusco. Luis Vasquez, MD, Founder and President of the Yantalo Peru Foundation, helps coordinate these visits. In addition, Karen Sue Kehl, PhD, Associate Professor of Pathology and Director of the Microbiology Lab at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, was awarded a MCW Faculty Vitality Award to work with Dr. North and other members of the Division of Pediatric Pathology, including Tara Sander, PhD, Stanley Lo, PhD, and Julie Tetzlaff, PhD, to develop and implement a clinical laboratory for the Yantalo Clinic and Diagnostic Center, currently under construction in Yantalo. This facility will serve as the central site of operation for the Fogarty grant-supported studies.