Volume I, Issue 4: March 2009
Around the Circle

Around the Circle

University Hospital welcomes first patients

Hospital move-in
Daniel A. Anderson / University Communications
UC Irvine Medical Center staff begin moving patients into the new University Hospital.

Doctors, nurses and support staff moved about 180 people from the 1960s-era UC Irvine Medical Center into rooms at the state-of-the-art University Hospital. Teams worked in shifts March 7 and 8 to wheel patients across a bridge between the buildings or through a basement tunnel. Oncology and intensive-care-unit patients, about 30 infants from the neonatal ICU and five burn center patients were transferred. Family members or friends accompanied some on the 10-minute journey.

Hospital opening »

Scientists develop compounds that stop cerebral palsy

Crystal compounds
Daniel A. Anderson / University Communications
Thomas Poulos and colleagues produced crystal structures that prevent cerebral palsy.

Two compounds developed by UCI and Northwestern University scientists prevented cerebral palsy in preclinical animal trials, giving hope that a new drug for humans may be on the horizon. Cerebral palsy is caused by an injury to the brain before, during or shortly after birth, although it typically is not diagnosed until after the age of 1. Approximately 750,000 children and adults in the U.S. have a form of cerebral palsy, and most were born with the condition. The study was published online Feb. 20 in the journal Annals of Neurology.

Cerebral palsy »

Students win 'Crazy Green Idea' contest

Drama students
Kyle Good and Bryan Le
Drama students Sam Thornton (left) and Andrew Delman (center) and recent UCI drama graduate Frank Miyashiro deliver the challenge in the winning video.

Inventors and entrepreneurs worldwide soon could be hard at work trying to answer Kyle Good and Bryan Le's challenge: build an environmentally friendly device to replace batteries in products ranging from personal electronics to cars. The UCI students recently won the $25,000 X PRIZE Foundation's "What's Your Crazy Green Idea?" video contest, for which they proposed developing an "ultra capacitor," an alternative energy storage method far greener than today's rechargeable batteries.

'Crazy Green Idea' »

Medical students ready for PRIME time

PRIME student Marnie Granados
Sara France
As part of the inaugural PRIME-LC class of 2004, Marnie Granados will become a doctor this spring.

An innovative UC Irvine School of Medicine program designed to lessen Latino healthcare disparities in California will produce its first graduates this year. The students will move into jobs as resident physicians and — it is hoped — herald a revolution in healthcare for a third of the state's residents. PRIME-LC (Program in Medical Education for the Latino Community) was developed in 2004 as the first medical education program in the country addressing the unique healthcare needs of Latinos. Since then, four other UC medical schools have launched PRIME programs targeting different underserved communities

PRIME time »

Acting program ranks among top 10 nationally

Drama alumnae Allison Case
Peter James Zielinski
Alumna Allison Case stars in the current Broadway production of 'Hair.'

Two important rankings for graduate-level acting programs place UC Irvine in the top 10 nationally. Actingbiz.com, which ranked UCI eighth, called the department "another excellent graduate program, with many alumni heading straight out of school to Broadway." Another eighth-place listing came from mfaactor.com. "The word is out," said Eli Simon, UCI drama professor and department chair, "that we are one of the top 10 training programs in the country."

Drama department »


School of Medicine appoints interim dean

Dr. Ralph Clayman
Dr. Ralph V. Clayman will provide academic and financial leadership for the School of Medicine.

Dr. Ralph V. Clayman, who founded and built one of the nation's premier urology departments at UCI, has been named interim dean of the UC Irvine School of Medicine, effective March 1. Clayman replaces Dr. David N. Bailey, who will remain health affairs vice chancellor until his retirement July 1. Clayman, urology professor and chair, is widely recognized as the inventor of many minimally invasive urologic surgery techniques, making kidney and other urinary tract surgery safer and more effective

Clayman announcement »

Medical center names interim CEO

Terry A. Belmont was appointed interim chief executive officer of UC Irvine Medical Center and associate vice chancellor for medical center affairs, effective March 7. Belmont served as CEO of Long Beach Memorial Medical Center and Miller Children's Hospital from 2006 to 2009. He will provide executive leadership for the medical center while the university conducts a national search for a permanent CEO to replace Maureen Zehntner, who retired March 6.