Medicine Faculty Receive Top Honors,
Remembering Dr. Marcel Tuchman,
Flashback Photo
December 2018

Reflection, Celebration, and Thanks

A message from the chair, Dr. Steve Abramson

As 2018 comes to a close, there are so many accomplishments of our faculty and staff to reflect upon and celebrate. As part of that celebration, Winterfest 2018 was held this past weekend, attended by more than 400 housestaff, fellows, faculty, and staff. The event was a wonderful salute that marked the extraordinary contributions of our housestaff to the department, our hospitals, and the patients we serve. Our residents are remarkably dedicated and talented physicians, the anchors of our academic mission to train the next generation of physicians and scientists. And we owe gratitude to the faculty who were honored as outstanding teachers, selected by the housestaff: Margaret Horlick, John Hwang, and Vikramjit Mukherjee.

I want to extend my sincere appreciation to the many faculty members, trainees, and staff who have contributed to our Department and to wish everyone happiness for this holiday season and great success for 2019!


Remembering Dr. Marcel Tuchman

A note from Dr. Abramson

Rarely, during the course of our careers, do we have the great fortune to meet individuals who leave indelible marks on our experiences and growth as physicians. One such individual was Marcel Tuchman, who passed away last month at age 97. Dr. Tuchman joined the NYU School of Medicine faculty in 1953 and was an inspirational role model for generations of students and residents since that time. A brilliant clinician, compassionate and kind, Dr. Tuchman never let on that his forearm bore the tattooed numbers of the Holocaust, hidden reminders of the years he spent in Buchenwald and Auschwitz.

Dr. Tuchman was born in Poland and immediately following the German occupation of Poland, he was incarcerated in the Przemysl Ghetto, and in 1943 was deported to Auschwitz. He spent the remainder of the war as a prisoner and slave-laborer in the concentration camps at Auschwitz, Buchenwald, and Sachsenhausen until he was liberated by the American Army in May, 1945.

In September, 1945, Dr.Tuchman received a United Nations Scholarship to attend medical school at the University of Heidelberg. As the first Jewish student admitted to a German university after a thirteen-year nationwide ban on admitting Jews, Dr. Tuchman co-founded the Jewish Students Union at Heidelberg. He received his medical degree cum laude in 1949. His book, Remember, My Stories of Survival and Beyond, published in 2010, recounted haunting tales of his often brutal, always compelling experiences as a youth in Eastern Europe during the Holocaust and in its aftermath. The story carries us from the Przemysl ghetto and slave labor in the Auschwitz death camp to his experiences attending university in post-war Germany.

Dr. Tuchman emigrated with his wife Shoshana, who predeceased him in 2013, to the United States and became a resident in internal medicine at the New York University-Bellevue Medical Center. He joined the faculty at the New York University School of Medicine in 1953, rising to the rank of Professor of Clinical Medicine in 1975. He volunteered to teach medical students and house staff from one to three months per year for over fifty years, and continued to teach until this past year.

In his memoir Dr. Tuchman wrote: “What a joy it is for me to recognize the genuine satisfaction in the students’ faces when they learn something new and exciting. Aha! Their expressions shine with triumph. It is something to behold.”

Paying forward that joy of teaching will be the finest legacy of this great man.

Flashback Photo

The photo above features the Class of 1996-1997 from our Internal Medicine Residency Program. Do you recognize a colleague? Are you in the photo yourself? We’d love to identify all of the alumni in the photo who are still at NYU Langone.

Click on the photo for a closer look. Send your comments and guesses to

Welcoming New Faculty

Dr. David Charytan has joined the Department of Medicine at NYU Langone Health as director of the Division of Nephrology. He previously worked at Brigham and Women's Hospital, most recently serving as a physician in its Renal Division and as director of ICU Nephrology. He also held the position of associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and served as director of renal research at the Baim Institute for Clinical Research, an affiliate of Harvard and its five teaching hospitals. In his new role, Dr. Charytan also oversees the division's research, including his own ongoing studies examining the connections between chronic kidney disease and heart disease. Read more about Dr. Charytan.

 Faculty Awards & Accolades

Paula Marchetta, MD, entered office as the President of the American College of Rheumatology—the 7th NYU rheumatologist to fill this role since the ACR’s inception. Read a Q&A with Dr. Marchetta, and her thoughts on how she anticipates the year ahead.

Mark B. Pochapin, MD, director of the Division of Gastroenterology & Hepatology, was named president-elect of the American College of Gastroenterology.

Judith S. Hochman, MD, senior associate dean for Clinical Sciences and director of the Cardiovascular Clinical Research Center, received the AHA Council on Clinical Cardiology’s highest accolade, the 2018 James B. Herrick Award for outstanding achievement in clinical cardiology. The award recognizes a physician whose scientific achievements have contributed profoundly to the advancement and practice of clinical cardiology. Read more about the awards presented at the American Heart Association’s (AHA) 2018 Scientific Sessions.

Edward A. Fisher, MD, PhD, MPH, director of the Center for the Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, received the AHA’s Council on Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology (ATVB) Distinguished Achievement Award for his studies of the breakdown of lipoproteins and the molecular pathology of blood vessels, especially atherosclerosis. The award recognizes individuals who have made substantial professional contributions to teaching and/or clinical care in the field.

Jill Buyon, MD, director of the Division of Rheumatology, was recognized as a Master of the American College of Rheumatology (ACR), one of the highest honors the College bestows. The designation of Master is conferred on ACR members, age 65 or older by October 1 of the year in which they are nominated, who have made outstanding contributions to the ACR and the field of rheumatology through scholarly achievement and/or service to their patients, students, and profession.

Boris Reizis, PhD, professor of Pathology and Medicine, was honored with the 2018 Frederick W. Alt Award from the Cancer Research Institute (CRI) for his contributions to immunology. Dr. Reizis’ research has had a major impact on advancing our understanding of dendritic cells, the key sentinel cells of the immune system. Read more on Inside Health.

Timothy Niewold, MD, the Judith and Stewart Colton Professor of Medicine and Pathology, and director of the Colton Center for Autoimmunity, received the ACR's Henry Kunkel Young Investigator Award for his research into the genetic causes of autoimmune diseases.

Renee L. Williams, MD, was named to the Board of Trustees of the American College of Gastroenterology, and was awarded the Minority Digestive Health Care Award. This ACG achievement award recognizes an ACG Member or Fellow whose work in the areas of clinical investigation or clinical practice has improved the digestive health of minorities or other underserved populations of the United States.

Nina Blachman, MD, has been selected as the Merrin Bedside Teaching Faculty Development Program Fellow. Dr. Blachman's project—entitled Empowering EldeR Novel Interventions for delirium prevention (ERNI)—aims to create a unique partnership between Geriatrics and Psychiatry to intervene early to prevent delirium and inappropriate Behavioral Emergency Response Team (BERT) calls by utilizing trained volunteers to provide nonpharmacological interventions to hospitalized elderly adults. The program was implemented in April 2018 as a pilot on a Medical ICU and Cardiology unit.

Christopher Petrilli, MD, was recently awarded the Humana Award for Innovation in Value-Based Healthcare at the 30th Annual National Forum on Quality Improvement in Health Care, for his project "Transforming Value and Bending the Cost Curve." Dr. Petrilli and his team instituted a comprehensive, institution-wide value-based management program to systematically identify and act upon opportunities to increase the value of care.

Recent Events & Conferences

Fourth Annual Colton Center Symposium: Advances in Autoimmunity

On Monday, November 5, 2018, Drs. Timothy Niewold, Steven Abramson, Jill Buyon, and Boris Reizis hosted the fourth annual “Advances in Autoimmunity Symposium,” sponsored by The Judith and Stewart Colton Center for Autoimmunity. The event featured an afternoon of enlightening scientific presentations about new discoveries, diagnostics, and treatments for autoimmune diseases by leaders in the field.
Learn more about the event and the presenting scientists
See photos from the event (password: jen)

Obesity Research Summit Hosted by the Comprehensive Program on Obesity

On Thursday, November 1st, the Comprehensive Program on Obesity hosted its inaugural Obesity Research Summit to promote both research and public community engagement. The event drew hundreds of participants, and had a broad array of internal and external experts in basic science, clinical research, population health, and data science. The full-day event featured two keynote addresses and sessions on the mechanisms, treatment, and management, and prevention of obesity, as well as the use of technology and data in predicting and understanding the chronic disease. (Pictured above, center: Dr. Melanie Jay, Co-Director, NYU Langone Comprehensive Program on Obesity)
Read more on Inside Health.

Division of Geriatric Medicine and Palliative Care Takes Part in Reimagine End of Life New York

Megan Rau, MD, MPH, (pictured above, right) performed a narrative piece at The Nocturnists—a live storytelling event where doctors and health professionals share stories of joy, sorrow, and self-discovery—on Tuesday, October 30th at Housing Works Bookstore Cafe. The event was part of a larger partnership with Reimagine, a week-long, city-wide event series that explores the subject of death and dying through art, performance, and design. The Division also sponsored a film screening and talk with Jessica Zitter, MD, on End of Life issues as part of Reimagine.

The House of God at 40: Healing Then and Now

On Thursday, December 6th, the Division of Medical Humanities, in collaboration with the Master Scholars Program in Humanistic Medicine and Education, Faculty, and Academic Affairs, hosted a symposium to celebrate the 40th anniversary of one of the most influential medical novels of the modern era, The House of God by Samuel Shem, MD (above, center, with the 'characters' from the book). Read more on Inside Health.

Gold Humanism Honor Society Induction Ceremony

Congratulations to the following residents and fellows from the Deparment of Medicine who were inducted into the Gold Humanism Honor Society on Tuesday, December 11th. These individuals were nominated for their exemplary commitment to humanism in medicine, as embodied by the ideals of the Society: compassion, empathy, integrity, service, and excellence.

Top row, from the Internal Medicine Residency Program, pictured L-R: Kate Otto Chebly, Margot Hedlin, Derek Moriyama, Neha Nagpal, Poy Theprungsirikul

Bottom row: from the Division of Cardiology, Maxine Stachel (left) and from the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Maureen Whitsett (right)

Highlights from National Meetings

NYU Rheumatology had a stellar presence at the recent American College of Rheumatology Meeting in Chicago (Oct 19-24, 2018). NYU Rheumatology had 53 Accepted Abstracts, including 37 posters, 14 oral presentations, and 2 plenary sessions. In addition, members of the division received accolades: as noted above, Dr. Paula Marchetta was installed as President of the ACR, and Dr. Jill Buyon was recognized as a Master of the American College of Rheumatology. Michael Pillinger, MD, was recognized with the Rheumatology Research Foundation Fellowship Training Award, and Shudan Wang, MD (fellowship class of 2018) was named as a Rheumatology fellow of the year.

Drs. Adina Kalet, Kinga Eliasz, and Colleen Gillespie attended the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) conference in Austin, Texas. There, Dr. Eliasz showcased results from a qualitative study exploring what makes elements of an immersive simulated 'on call' experience particularly memorable for near-graduating medical students. She also presented a poster on an exciting project that mapped a comprehensive suite of clinical checklists from the Night-on Call event to the 13 core Entrustable Professional Activities - a framework for key behaviors that incoming interns are expected to perform independently on day one of residency.

Nicole Adler, MD, received 3 awards at the High Value Practice Academic Alliance Architecture of High Value Care National Meeting: 1st Place Abstract, Award Category: Information Technology Innovations: Face-to-Face Use of Scheduled Video Visits in Oncology Patients to Reduce Emergency Department Utilization and Improve Patient Engagement; 2nd Place Abstract, Award Category: Provider Behavior Modification: Would you be Surprised? The use of a simple question to identify and improve care for our end-of-life population; and 3rd Place Abstract, Award Category: Improving Appropriateness of Treatment/Interventional Services: Vascular Access Stewardship: Enhancing Patient Safety One (Less) Line at a Time .

The annual IDWeek meeting took place October 3-7, 2018, in San Francisco, CA, featuring the latest scientific findings and approaches to prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and epidemiology of infectious diseases, including HIV infection. The Division of Infectious Diseases and Immunology was well-represented: Drs. Scott Weisenberg and Robert Ulrich presented an abstract entitled Understanding Travel Medicine Provider's Risk Assessment of Travel-associated Diseases; Dr. Robert Pitts presented a poster entitled: Potential Use of Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) Testing for Expanding HIV Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) at an Urban Hospital Center; Dr. Angelica Kottkamp presented two abstracts: Implementation of Universal Screening for Strongyloidiasis Among Solid Organ and Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation Candidates in a Non-endemic Area and The Anti-Parasitic Drug Atovaquone Inhibits Arbovirus Replication; Shin-Pung "Polly" Jen presented an abstract entitled: Streamlining to oral beta-lactam versus fluoroquinolone as definitive therapy for Enterobacteriaceae bacteremia; and Dr. Jesica Hayon, an NYU-Brooklyn PGY2, submitted a tricky rash diagnosis for presentation in the Challenging Cases in Infectious Diseases session.

Peter S. Liang, MD, MPH, and members of the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology were awarded an ACG SCOPY award for "Best in Blue" in honor of Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. 


Grants & Awards

NYU has been activated to enroll patients in the NIAID U01 funded study “Prospective Multicenter, Clinical Trial of HIV+ Deceased Donor Kidney Transplants for HIV+ Recipients”. Dr. Sapna Mehta is the Site Principal Investigator and interested patients can be referred to the Transplant Institute by calling 212-263-8134. The Transplant Institute also continues to enroll patients for HIV-HIV liver transplantation through the HOPE in Action parent pilot study and U01 funding is anticipated for early 2019.

Drs. Caroline Blaum and Josh Chodosh, and a team of collaborators, were awarded a grant from the NIH/NIA to develop and evaluate a quality improvement program for older adult patients at NYU Langone Health who have both diabetes and dementia. There is very little care guidance for providers about this large group of older adult patients who are at risk of hypoglycemia, worsening function and increased healthcare utilization, and whose families and caregivers often experience stress. The program will provide care resources and educational materials to primary care doctors in the FGP.

Josh Chodosh, MD. was awarded a supplement from NIH/NIA for his SLUMBER grant. SLUMBER investigates whether an educational program that teaches nursing facility staff strategies for improving common sleep-related symptoms among residents improves nighttime sleep quality or resident-reported symptoms of poor sleep, depressed mood, anxiety, pain, and cognitive and physical function; the supplement supports the study in dementia units within nursing homes.

Jennifer Scherer, MD, won the highly competitive Doris Duke Charitable Foundation's Fund to Retain Clinical Scientists (FRCS) award. The FRCS supports a 5-year program (1/1/16–12/31/20) funded by equal contributions from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and the NYUSOM Office of Science and Research. The program seeks to support outstanding junior physician-scientists for whom a relatively small investment over a 2-year period promises to substantially minimize the likelihood that they will change their career path owing to the demands of extraprofessional caregiving obligations. The award will assist with funding a full time research assistant for Dr. Scherer's National Kidney Foundation study.

Events & Opportunities


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