College of

Dean's Update

A Message from Dean Marsha D. Rappley, MD

January 25, 2013

New Physiology Chair Appointed

I am pleased to announce that Charles “Lee” Cox, Ph.D., has been appointed Professor and Chair for the Department of Physiology, a joint department with our College and the Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine, Veterinary Medicine and Natural Sciences. Dr. Cox will begin his work at MSU in late spring.

Dr. Cox brings a strong neuroscience research portfolio that both complements our current areas of research and also offers fresh opportunities for new investigation into other neurological conditions, such as epilepsy and autism. He comes to MSU from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he was professor in the Department of Pharmacology in the College of Medicine and professor in the Department of Molecular and Integrative Physiology on the Urbana campus. He was also a member of the Neuroscience Program, Center for Biophysics and Computational Biology, and the NeuroTech group in the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology.

Research interests for Dr. Cox focus on neural plasticity, which is the ability of the brain or neuronal circuits to adapt to changes in inputs, and is essential for brain development and function. Ongoing research in his laboratory involves the use of models to understand mechanisms underlying both short- and long-term plasticity in neural circuits in the developing and adult brain. He looks to understand these mechanisms to gain insight with regards to dysfunction that occurs in pathological conditions such as epilepsy and Alzheimer’s disease, as well as developmental brain disorders such as Fragile X syndrome and autism.  

Dr. Cox received his Ph.D. degree in physiological psychology/neuroscience from the University of California, Riverside, where he also received his master’s degree in psychology and bachelor’s degrees in psychology and biology. In addition to his extensive portfolio of peer-reviewed manuscripts and abstracts, Dr. Cox is a reviewer for several neuroscience journals and funding agencies including the NIH. His research has been continuously funded by multiple NIH institutes (National Eye Institute, National Institute of Mental Health, and National Institute of Child Health and Human Development) and private research foundations.

AAMC Writing Award

The AAMC Group on Institutional Advancement (GIA) has selected our College as a recipient of the 2013 Award for Excellence in The Robert G. Fenley Writing Awards: C. Solicited  Articles category for our MD Magazine story, The Human Price and Medical Dilemma of Organ Trafficking. This is Monir Moniruzzaman’s story as told to and written by freelance writer, Pat Shellenbarger, and directed by Geri Kelley. Dr. Moniruzzaman is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology and the Center for Ethics and Humanities in the Life Sciences.  This award honors exemplary work and the writing represents the best of the best. If you haven’t read this story in MD Magazine, you may wish to do so. As one judge commented, “A compelling piece on a horrific topic. This story needed to be written…it held my interest. Well written, and well organized.” 

Flint Update

Today the MSU Board of Trustees approved a resolution permitting the University and our College to pursue a lease with Uptown Reinvestment Corporation (URC), a non-profit focused on the redevelopment of downtown Flint. The lease includes approximately 40,000 square feet of office and teaching space in the former Flint Journal building. The new space in downtown Flint will allow us to expand to a total of 100 third- and fourth-year medical students in Flint, and allow expansion of the Masters in Public Health Program. We now work toward finalizing finance arrangements.  This is a next step toward expanding our College’s Program in Public Health and medical education in downtown Flint, in partnership with Hurley Medical Center, McLaren-Flint and Genesys Health System.

Marsha D. Rappley, M.D.

Dean, College of Human Medicine