Trainee presentations, publications and awards

We’re extremely proud of our Professional Development and Research Training Program, which has continued to grow and expand since its inception in 2002. Many of our surgery trainees have achieved recognition on the national level for their clinical, academic and research activities. Our general surgery residents continue to meet and surpass expectations on a daily basis, contributing immensely to the scientific foundation for surgical practice.

Accomplishments listed since 2002

Our Program – By the Numbers

Since 2002, 56 residents have completed our Professional Development and Research Training Program. Of them, 46 completed two years of research training, and 14 completed one year. Additionally, our graduates have given 292 scientific presentations and received 51 research awards, including 33 NIH and 10 national awards from professional societies. 

Our current trainees have authored 129 publications to date (an average of 4.6 publications per resident) and more than 50% (69) of their publications are first-authored.  These current trainees have been awarded four industry/society awards, and 15 have received NIH T32/TL1 support.

View current residents in the Research Training Program

The Department of Surgery Professional Development and Research Training Program includes attainment of an advanced degree through The Ohio State University College of Medicine Master of Medical Science Program (MMSP) or other advanced degree path.

View recent graduates


Trainee Presentations

Our current group of trainees has presented their research findings on a variety of topics – more than 150 times across the country. The subject matter of their presentations address a diversity of topics including:

Basic/Translational Research

  • Shayna Brathwaite - Diagnostic Accuracy of PET/CT to Detect Presence or Absence of Colonic Neoplastic Lesions
  • Ekene Onwuka - Successful Nonoperative Management of Neonatal Esophageal Perforation
  • Tae Yoo - The Circulating Plasma miRNA Profile in Response to Vascular Injury
  • Anahita Jalilvand - Changes in Adipocyte-Driven Inflammation after Bariatric Surgery in Subcutaneous Adipose Tissue (SAT)
  • Chris McQuinn - Stellate Cells as Mediators of Immune Suppressive Features in Pancreatic Cancer

Clinical Research

  • Timing of Radiation Improves Margin Status But Not Limb-Salvage Rates in Deep Extremity Sarcoma
    Rita Shelby, MD
  • Long-Term Outcomes of Change in Insurance Coverage After Liver Transplantation
    Clifford Akateh, MD
  • A Comparison of Pre-Operative Endoscopic Biopsy Findings to Gastric Specimens After Sleeve Gastrectomy
    Terrence Rager, MD
  • Variability in Pre-Hospital and Trauma Center Glasgow Coma Scale Scores in Pediatric Traumatic Brain Injury Patients
    Joseph Drews, MD

Trainee Publications

Many of our trainees have published in respected medical journals. Since the 2009-10 academic year, 33 DOS Research Training Program trainees have published more than 215 journal articles. Our current residents have published a variety of articles including such topics as:

Basic/Translational Research

  • Shayna Brathwaite - Mixed Adenoneuroendocrine Carcinoma: An Aggressive Clinical Entity
  • Ekene Onwuka - Quantification of Tissue-Engineered Trachea Performance With Computational Fluid Dynamics
  • Tae Yoo - Computed Tomography Measured Psoas Density Predicts Outcomes in Trauma
  • Anahita Jalilvand - Laparoscopic Gastric Devascularization Reduces Anastomotic Complications Following Minimally Invasive Esophagectomy
  • Chris McQuinn - IL-6 and PD-L1 Antibody Blockade Combination Therapy Reduces Tumor Progression in Murine Models of Pancreatic Cancer

Clinical Research

  • Examining Racial Disparities in the Time to Withdrawal of Life-Sustaining Treatment in Trauma
    (Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery, December 20, 2017)
    Melissa Hornor, MD
  • Impact of Care Coaching on Hospital Length of Stay, Readmission Rates, Post-Discharge Phone Calls and Patient Satisfaction After Bariatric Surgery
    (Surgery for Obesity and Related Diseases, November, 2016)
    Anahita Jalivand, MD
  • Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome in the Trauma Intensive Care Unit: Diagnosis and Management of a Rare Disease in a Challenging Population
    (International Journal of Critical Illness and Injury Science, April-June 2017)
    Joseph Drews, MD
  • Mocetinostat Combined with Gemcitabine for the Treatment of Leiomyosarcoma: Preclinical Correlates
    (PLOS ONE, Nov. 29, 2017)
    David Koller, MD

Department of Surgery Grand Rounds

A further opportunity for our trainees is to present their findings during grand rounds. The research presentations of these three residents are just a sampling of the wide variety of academic topics covered during this activity:

Joseph Drews, MD
“Reversible Stenosis in a Juvenile Lamb Model of Tissue-Engineered Vascular Grafts”
View Flier

Chelsea Horwood, MD
“Impact of Secondary Alert Notification Systems on False Alarm Rate: Next Generation Alarms”
View Flier

David Koller, MD
“Ex Vivo Tissue Drug Screening”
View Flier

Grant Award Winners

Every year, many of our residents receive grants to support their research training. Some of our resident award winners include:


Recipient Academic Year         
Clifford Akateh, MD 2018
Amblessed Onuma, MD 2018
Jenny Barker, MD, PhD 2017
Anahita Jalilvand, MD 2016 and 2017
Taehwan Yoo, MD, MS 2015 and 2016
Christopher McQuinn, MD, MS 2015
Eliza Beal, MD, MS 2014
Ekene Onwuka, MD, MS 2014


Recipient Academic Year         
Shaylyn Bennett, MD, MS 2015
Shayna Brathwaite MD, MS 2014 and 2015
Justin Huntington, MD, MS 2013
Nicholas Latchana, MD, MS 2013 and 2014
Sara Mansfield, MD, MS 2013 and 2014
Robert Plews, MD, MS 2013

NIH AHQR P30HS024379

Recipient Academic Year         
Chelsea Horwood, MD 2017

NIH Diversity Supplement

Recipient Academic Year         
Rita Shelby, MD 2017 and 2018
Nakesha King, MD, MS 2016
Ekene Onwuka, MD, MS 2016

More +


Recipient Academic Year         
Jason Zakko, MD 2018
Joseph Drews, MD, MS 2017 and 2018
Amy Collins, MD, MS 2009

OSU Pelotonia Fellowship

Recipient Academic Year         
Kara Rossfeld, MD, MS 2013 and 2014

OSU University Fellowship

Recipient Academic Year         
Shaylyn Bennett, MD, MS 2014
Jon Wisler, MD, MS 2010

Professional Society Awards

Recipient Academic Year         
Melissa Hornor, MD, MPH
(ACS/JAHF James C. Thompson Geriatrics Clinical Scholar in Residence)
2016 and 2017
Eliza Beal, MD
(AASLD Emerging Liver Scholars Program)
Michelle Nguyen, MD
(AAMC Clinical Care Innovation Award, AAMC Learning Health System Pioneer Award)
Daniel Lodwick, MD, MS
(Society of University Surgeons, 
Karl Storz Award)
Amy Collins, MD
(American Association for Cancer Research, AACR-FNAB Fellows Grant for Translational Pancreatic Cancer Research)
Thomas Pham, MD
(Folkert Belzer MD Research Award, The National Kidney Foundation, American Society of Transplant Surgeons)
Peter Nau, MD
(AHPBA Research Award)
Meghan Forster, MD
(SIS Grant)

Travel Award Winners

These competitively selected awards cover the trainees’ travel costs when presenting their research at conferences out of town. A sampling of surgery resident travel award winners are listed below.

Travel Award Recipients

American Association of Immunologists
Christopher McQuinn, MD, MS (April 2016)
Nationwide Children's Hospital Intramural Travel Award
Daniel Lodwick, MD, MS (October 2015)
AASLD Young Investigator Travel Award
Eliza Beal, MD, MS (August 2016)
OSUWMC Trainee Research Day Travel Award
Robert Plews, MD, MS (April 2013)
Tyler Spata, MD, MS (April 2013)
AASLD Emerging Liver Scholar Resident Travel Award
Eliza Beal, MD, MS (2016)
Thomas Pham, MD, MS (August 2012)

Department of Surgery Annual Research Conference Winners

Our trainees’ abstracts reflect a broad collection of basic/translational, clinical/health services and surgical education research topics. Members of the Department of Surgery Research Council reviewed and scored abstracts and selected oral and poster presentations based on the quality of the science, novelty and diversity of the topic.

23rd Annual DOS Research Conference Winners 2018

Our winners for the 23rd Annual Research Conference were selected by a panel of faculty judges including our 2018 Zollinger Visiting Professor, Kelly McMasters MD, PhD, Chair of the Department of Surgery at the University of Louisville.

1st Place Oral Presentation Winner
Amitava Das, PhD

2nd Place Oral Presentation Winner
Anahita Jalilvand, MD

2nd Place Oral Presentation Winner
Natalia Higuita-Castro, PhD

3rd Place Oral Presentation Winner
Rita Shelby, MD

1st Place Poster Presentation Winner
Joseph Drews, MD, MS

22nd Annual DOS Research Conference Winners 2017

Our winners for the 22nd Annual Research Conference selected by a panel of faculty judges including our 2017 Zollinger Visiting Professor, Mary Hawn, MD, Chair of the Department of Surgery at Stanford University.

1st Place Oral Presentation Winner
Maria H.H. Balch, MS
Abstract Title: Robot-Assisted Mechanical Therapy Protects Against Stroke-Induced Skeletal Muscle Injury
Faculty Advisor: Cameron Rink, PhD

2nd Place Oral Presentation Winner (tie) 
Amitava Das, PhD
Abstract Title: Overcoming Antibiotic Resistance in Wound Biofilm Infection
Faculty Advisors: Chandan K. Sen, PhD and Sashwati Roy, PhD

Christopher J. McCulloh, MD
Abstract Title: The Efficacy of Stem Cells in Protecting the Intestines from Necrotizing Enterocolitis
Faculty Advisor: Gail E. Besner, MD

3rd Place Oral Presentation Winner
Anahita D. Jalilvand, MD
Abstract Title: Changes in Adipocyte Driven Inflammation after Bariatric Surgery in Subcutaneous Adipose Tissue (SAT)
Faculty Advisors: Willa A. Hsueh, MD and Bradley R. Needleman, MD

1st Place Poster Presentation Winner
Eliza W. Beal, MD, MS
Abstract Title: Improved Preservation During Normothermic Ex-vivo Liver Perfusion with Delta Opioid Agonist (D-Ala2, D-Leu5) Enkephalin (DADLE)
Faculty Advisors: Sylvester M. Black, MD, PhD and Carl R. Schmidt, MD