October 2017 | Issue 32
News roundup

LKCMedicine joins Myanmar government expert panel on medical education
On September 23, LKCMedicine Executive Vice-Dean Professor Lionel Lee and Vice-Dean for Education Professor Naomi Low-Beer were invited to attend the Central Committee for Integrated Curriculum Development (CCICD) – Coordination Meeting of Development Partners. Led by the Myanmar’s Ministry of Health and Sports, the consultation session was attended by Rectors, medical educators and representatives from five Myanmar Universities of Medicine, representatives of NGOs and nine representatives overseas medical schools. The progress and plans of Myanmar’s integrated medical curriculum were discussed with views and assistance sought from the international partners. Requests were also made for LKCMedicine to provide advice and assistance in curriculum development, TBL workshops, and recommendations on the setting up of skills training and teaching laboratories.

TTSH and Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust sign MOU
On 27 September, Tan Tock Seng Hospital (TTSH) signed an MOU with the Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust (ICHT) to further clinical training and development of staff, and share innovations in hospital systems. The partnership was facilitated by LKCMedicine and Imperial. The MOU was signed by TTSH CEO Dr Eugene Soh and ICHT Chief Executive Ian Dalton CBE, and was witnessed by representatives from NHG, Imperial and LKCMedicine. As part of the MOU, ICHT has also joined the CHI Co-Learning Network as a learning partner, to help co-build thought leadership in healthcare innovation, co-transform Singapore’s workforce and co-develop new training programmes and pedagogies.

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LKCMedicine hosts visitors from the region and beyond
LKCMedicine hosted a number of international delegations over the last two months, deepening ties with partners including RIKEN and Imperial as well as forging new links with universities, many of them keen to learn more about setting up a new medical school. A team from China’s Southern University of Science & Technology, Japan’s RIKEN Institute as well as University of Cambridge Newnham College Principal Dame Carol Black and Imperial Emeritus Professor Mary Ritter were among the visitors hosted by the LKCMedicine leadership team at the Novena campus.

Family Medicine Extravaganza 2017
On 8 September, the Family Medicine Extravaganza held at the Clinical Sciences Building Auditorium was attended by over 150 students from the three local medical schools; LKCMedicine, NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine and Duke-NUS Medical School. During the event, physicians from polyclinics, private clinics and community hospitals across Singapore delivered talks, offering students and young doctors in the audience valuable insights into the career path of Family Medicine. A panel discussion with faculty and residents from various residency programmes followed, which ignited a fruitful dialogue about Family Medicine residencies.

LKCMedicine neuroscience team shares insights at three international conferences
August and September saw the LKCMedicine neuroscience research team share their latest discoveries and insights into neurodegenerative diseases with global audiences at three international conferences.
The first was the International Conference on Translational Medicine and Imaging (ICTMI) 2017, which was organised by LKCMedicine Deputy Director and Head of Operation for CeNReN Dr Parasuraman Padmanabhan, who is also General Chair at Vellore Institute of Technology University, India. Over three days, five LKCMedicine faculty shared their expertise at the event.

From 4 to 6 September, the Academia Europaea (AE) together with the European Federation of Academies of Sciences and Humanities (ALLEA) and the Young Academy of Europe (YAE) jointly held the annual AE-ALLEA-YAE conference at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in Budapest, Hungary. LKCMedicine Professor of Translational Neuroscience and Scientific Director of the Neuroscience & Mental Health Research Programme Balázs Gulyás was the principal organiser of this conference which brought together more than 320 researchers from all over Europe to discuss the topic of “Sustainability and Resilience” in the sciences.

Rounding off the conference series, was the Singapore Traumatic Brain Injury Symposium 2017, which brought together about 150 members from the local and international neuroscience and mental health community. The two-day programme, jointly organised by LKCMedicine and NUHS, covered the latest developments in traumatic brain injury research, including biomarkers and modelling technologies.

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LKCMedicine participates in TTSH-John Hopkins Oncology Conference
On 30 September, a team of LKCMedicine research faculty participated in the Tan Tock Seng Hospital-John Hopkins Oncology Conference, held at the TTSH Theatrette. Themed around “Emerging frontiers in cancer treatment: oncology in the geriatric patient”, this annual oncology symposium brought together clinicians, researchers and other healthcare professionals to establish and deepen collaborations in cancer biology and ageing. The LKCMedicine team included Professor of Molecular Medicine Dean Nizetic, Nanyang Associate Professor Karen Crasta and Professor Daniela Rhodes FRS, who presented their latest research. Prof Nizetic presented his novel work on understanding dementia, ageing and cancer by studying cells from people with Down syndrome, while Assoc Prof Crasta spoke on how chemotherapy accelerates ageing and how a novel pathway of chemo-resistance discovered in her lab leads to cellular senescence and chronic inflammation, both of which accumulate with age. Discussing her work on telomeres and ageing, Prof Rhodes described the 3D structure of human telomerase using a combination of cryo-EM methods and X-ray crystallography, knowledge that is key to progress our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of cancer propagation and human ageing. Read more here.

LKCMedicine participates in the 6th Asia Pacific Primary Care Research Conference
From 21 to 23 September, a team of nine LKCMedicine faculty and students, led by Professor of Family Medicine & Primary Care Helen Smith, participated in the 6th Asia Pacific Primary Care Research Conference held at The Academia. The team organised workshops, gave talks and presented their latest research, including work by LKCMedicine Year 2 PhD student Xu Xiaomeng, who presented on an app design for parents with eczema-prone children, and Year 4 students  Isabelle Yoong and Shawn Tan, who spoke on their scholarly projects. Assistant Professor of Evidence-based Medicine Lorainne Tudor Car was awarded a merit prize for her poster presentation on improving research skills amongst participants in the academic writing groups. The team also took the opportunity to conduct some field work, conducting 93 face-to-face interviews over a three-day period.