Awards & Recognitions – August 2021

AANS Cushing Award

Robert F. Spetzler, MD, emeritus chair of neurosurgery at Barrow Neurological Institute, received the 2021 AANS Cushing Award for Technical Excellence and Innovation in Neurosurgery. Dr. Spetzler was recognized on August 23 during the American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS) Annual Scientific Meeting, held virtually. He was introduced by Michael T. Lawton, MD, who trained under Dr. Spetzler and succeeded him as president and CEO of Barrow. AANS established the Cushing Award in 2013 to honor a member for technical prowess and skill and/or innovation in the development of new procedures that have become part of a neurosurgeon’s arsenal for treating disease or trauma. Dr. Spetzler was nominated by his colleagues in the field.

Brain Aneurysm Foundation Research Grant

Jinglu Ai, MD, PhD

The Brain Aneurysm Foundation (BAF) announced that Jinglu Ai, MD, PhD, an associate professor of neurobiology in the Barrow Aneurysm and AVM Research Center, is a 2021 BAF Research Grant Recipient. Dr. Ai’s project will be funded by the Thomas J. Tinlin Chair of Research. His expertise includes translational research of traumatic brain injury and subarachnoid hemorrhage.

Acta Neurochirurgica Cover

For its August cover image, Acta Neurochirurgica selected an illustration by Mark Schornak, manager of our Neuroscience Publications department. The image accompanies an article on the impact of vestibular nerve preservation on facial and hearing outcomes in small vestibular schwannoma surgery. Barrow President and CEO Michael T. Lawton, MD, and former Barrow neurosurgery resident Mohamed Labib, MD, were two of the authors on the paper.

World Neurosurgery Editor’s Choice

Image courtesy of World Neurosurgery

A manuscript from Barrow Neurological Institute was selected as an Editor’s Choice article for the August issue of World Neurosurgery. The authors include Barrow neurosurgery research fellow Lena Mary Houlihan, MD; former neurosurgery research fellow Xiaochun Zhao, MD; President and CEO Michael T. Lawton, MD; and Director of Neurosurgery Research Mark Preul, MD. The manuscript, Transorbital neuroendoscopic surgery as a mainstream neurosurgical corridor: a systematic review, was granted free online access for 12 months—thanks to a partnership between World Neurosurgery and The Neurosurgical Atlas.

ALS Association Fellowship

Lauren Gittings, PhD

The ALS Association awarded a unique fellowship to Lauren Gittings, PhD, a postdoctoral research fellow in the Sattler Laboratory at Barrow. The competitive Milton Safenowitz Fellowship Program supports young scientists and is the only program of its kind specifically funding early ALS postdoctoral fellows who are searching for a cure for the disease. Dr. Gittings is one of eight new fellows this year.

Medical Illustration Podcast Feature

Illustrations by Michael Hickman. Promotional graphic by Paul Kelly.

Michael Hickman, a senior technical artist in the Neuroscience Publications department at Barrow, was invited to speak on the Medical Illustration Podcast. He talked with podcast host Paul Kelly about his work at Barrow and the past, present, and future of medical illustration.

Student Research Awards

Marian Park, a second-year Creighton University School of Medicine student who worked under the mentorship of Director of Neurosurgery Research Mark Preul, MD, at Barrow this summer, has received a Valley Research Partnership Program Grant and a Creighton Medical Student Summer Research Fellowship. She received the funding for her research proposal titled, Comparison of Intraoperative In Vivo and Ex Vivo Confocal Laser Endomicroscopy Visualization of Brain Tumor Microstructure. The aim of this project was to analyze the feasibility and imaging performance of a fluorescence-based imaging technology that can be used to visualize and differentiate normal and abnormal brain tissue.