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Etta D. Pisano, M.D.

Vice President for Medical Affairs
Dean, College of Medicine


Dear Colleagues:

Steven Carroll, MD, PhD, Appointed Chair, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine

I am pleased to announce the appointment of Steven Carroll, MD, PhD, as Chair of the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine.  He will be assuming this role effective March 1, 2014.

Dr. Carroll received his B.S. from Memphis State University and his PhD and MD from Baylor College of Medicine.  He completed an Anatomic Pathology Residency, Neuropathology Fellowship, and Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in the Department of Pathology at the Washington University School of Medicine from 1988-1994.  Following completion of his training, Dr. Carroll was appointed Assistant Professor of Pathology at the Washington University School of Medicine in 1994, and also served as a member of the Graduate Faculty in the Division of Biology and Biomedical Sciences.

In 1997, Dr. Carroll was recruited to the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) as an Assistant Professor of Pathology and as Director of the UAB Brain Resource Program.  He was promoted to Associate Professor with Tenure in 2001 and to Full Professor in 2008.  Dr. Carroll served as Director of the Affymetrix Core Laboratory in the Department of Pathology from 2000-2002, and was appointed Director of the Division of Neuropathology in 2008.  In addition to his appointment in the Department of Pathology, Dr. Carroll also has faculty appointments in the Departments of Neurobiology, Cell Biology, and Cell, Developmental and Integrative Biology, and has served as a Scientist in the Department of Neurology/Alzheimer’s Disease Center, the Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center, the Center for Neurodegeneration and Experimental Therapeutics, the Center for Aging, the Civitan International Research Center, the Center for Glial Biology in Medicine, and the Comprehensive Cancer Center.  He served as Co-Director and Interim Director of the UAB Cancer Biology Graduate Program, and also served as Graduate Faculty for several training programs.

Dr. Carroll is involved with numerous professional organizations including the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Association for Cancer Research, the American Society for Investigative Pathology, the American Association of Neuropathologists, the International Society of Neuropathology, and the American Society for Neurochemistry.  He has served on the editorial boards of journals including The American Journal of Pathology, the Journal of Neuropathology and Experimental Neurology, and Neuro-Oncology, and has served as an ad hoc reviewer for numerous journals.  Dr. Carroll’s primary research interests are in neuregulin-1 growth and differentiation factors and their role in the pathogenesis of neurofibromatosis type-1 and -2 associated peripheral nerve sheath tumors, and he has received support from the NIH and DOD in support of his research endeavors.  He has numerous peer-reviewed publications, and has presented at national and international meetings.  In addition to his clinical and research endeavors, Dr. Carroll has been very active in educational activities to include training of graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, medical students, and clinical fellows.

Dr. Carroll brings an excellent combination of clinical, research, teaching, and administrative skills to lead the continued growth and development of the department.  As we welcome Dr. Carroll to his new role, please join me in thanking Dr. Mary Richardson for her excellent service as Interim Chair.  I am confident that Dr. Richardson and Dr. Carroll will work to ensure a smooth transition in leadership of the department.

Internal Search for Director, MUSC Tissue Biorepository Network

We are pleased to announce an internal search for Director of the MUSC Tissue Biorepository Network.  The Tissue Biorepository Network is the result of efforts by the MUSC Biorepository Steering Committee over the past year.  The Steering Committee has recommended the establishment of this leadership position; the selected individual will be expected to drive this initiative forward, to include both logistical and operational processes.  The Director of the Tissue Biorepository Network will be expected to devote 10- 20% effort to this position, and will report to COM Senior Associate Dean for Research Craig Crosson in this role.  Additional information regarding this position can be found at

The search is open to current MUSC faculty.  Candidates should have experience in biobanking and/or the use of human specimens for research, a strong record of grant funding and publications, experience with IRB and compliance issues, and leadership experience to including project management.  Nominations of individuals for consideration and applications should be submitted electronically to Dr. Crosson in care of Mary McConnell at by January 17.  Applicants are asked to submit a cover letter and current CV.

Advancement of Women Faculty Award Reception

The MUSC Women Scholars Initiative invites all members of the College of Medicine to attend a reception honoring the 2013 Advancement of Women Faculty Award recipient, Dr. Kathleen Brady.  The reception will be held next Wednesday, December 18, 4:00-5:30 p.m., in Colcock Hall.  Questions may be directed to Miriam Hutton at  Congratulations to Dr. Brady!

Faculty Bridge Funding Program

A primary goal of the College of Medicine is to support and strengthen research capabilities of our faculty.  One mechanism utilized to facilitate this goal is our Bridge Funding Program.  The purpose of this program is to support investigators with established clinical or basic research programs during periods when a competitive renewal was not funded.  Program details and the application format are available at  The application deadline for the current cycle is December 16.  Applications may be emailed to Mary McConnell at  Faculty with questions about this program should contact Senior Associate Dean for Research Craig Crosson.

“What’s the Buzz?”

MUSC will begin offering the new MUSC Health Plan to its state employees beginning in calendar year 2014.  Effective January 1, 2014, all MUSC and MUHA employees previously enrolled in the Standard State Health Plan (SHP) will be automatically enrolled in the MUSC Health Plan.  This new insurance product was created specifically for active, benefits-eligible MUSC employees and their dependents and is based on a patient-centered medical home model which requires the selection of a primary care provider in order to take advantage of many of the plan’s benefits.  MUSC Chief Strategic Officer, Dr. Mark Lyles, has recorded this week’s What’s the Buzz video explaining some of the plan’s key points in detail.  You can watch that video at .

BIRCWH K12 Program Accepting Applications

The Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women’s Health (BIRCWH) Career Development Program supports the research career development of junior faculty members who have recently completed clinical training or postdoctoral fellowships (less than 6 years of research training), and who have mentorship and a solid plan for training in basic, translational, clinical and/or health services research relevant to women's health in all areas of the neurosciences.  Scholars will be selected for a career development award to begin July 2014, and will receive 2-3 years of salary support commensurate with 75-100% effort per year to pursue multidisciplinary clinical and pre-clinical research.  Applicants should develop a research topic in consultation with an eligible mentor (experienced faculty with NIH research funding) and submit their applications by noon on March 3, 2014.  For more information and application instructions visit or contact Sarah Gainey at or 792-8207.

SCOR Request For Pilot Project Proposals 

In order to catalyze women's health-related research throughout the MUSC campus, the Specialized Center of Research (SCOR) on Sex and Gender Factors Affecting Women’s Health is pleased to announce a request for pilot project proposals focused on sex and gender-related issues in neuroscience.  The pilot program will provide short-term start-up funds (up to $15,000) to promising postdoctoral fellows and junior faculty (less than 5 years from post-doctoral training/terminal degree) to collect initial data for an RO3, R21, or R01 submission.  The project must focus on a neuroscience-related topic and explore either sex/gender differences or disorders/treatments as they uniquely relate to women.  The project can be either clinical or basic science, but consistent with the NIH Roadmap Initiative and the vision of MUSC's South Carolina Clinical and Translational Research Institute (SCTR).  Projects involving multidisciplinary teams and/or translational research efforts are especially encouraged.  Applications are due by noon on March 3, 2014.  For more information visit or contact Sarah Gainey (

Discussion Forums

As a reminder, we have electronic discussion platforms focusing on education, research, clinical affairs, and general information from the Dean’s Office and the College of Medicine.  These forums are intended to serve several purposes.  First, they are another way for my office to share important information with faculty, staff, and students.  Second, they are meant to encourage discussion about issues within the college and to empower everyone within the college to voice their opinions.  These “discussion forums” are intended to be not only channels for messages to be sent out, but channels for YOUR ideas, comments and questions to be heard by college leadership.  Your voice matters and we are pleased there is a new way for it to be heard.  You can access these forums by using the following links and your net ID and password:

As always....

Let's work together to meet our strategic planning goal - to be in the Top 25 among academic medical centers for reputation, quality, service, efficiency and financial performance by 2015 – and to continue excellence in our research and education missions.  I look forward to hearing from you - either in person or via email.



Etta D. Pisano, MD

Vice President for Medical Affairs

Dean, College of Medicine