By Rosanne Fohn
|Ken Hargreaves, D.D.S., Ph.D., (left) receives the Presidential Distinguished Scholar Award from Kenneth L. Kalkwarf, D.D.S., M.S., special assistant to the president. Click on image for a larger view|
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An internationally known scientist and clinician whose discoveries include a new class of nonaddictive painkillers has received the highest award presented by The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.Ken M. Hargreaves, D.D.S., Ph.D.
, was presented the President’s Distinguished Scholar Award at a dinner on March 5. He is a professor and chair of the Department of Endodontics in the Dental School, and serves as a professor of pharmacology, physiology and surgery in the School of Medicine.
Also at the awards ceremony, 15 additional UT Health Science Center faculty and staff members were honored for outstanding work in research, clinical care, teaching or service.
“Tonight we are celebrating 16 outstanding faculty and staff members who contribute, day in and day out, to our work of making lives better. Each of today’s awardees has distinguished themselves by giving from their personal set of skills and talents that they have passionately shared with others. We honor them – and thank them – for their commitment that serves to inspire us all,” said Kenneth L. Kalkwarf, D.D.S., M.S., special assistant to the president, who presented the awards.
Other Presidential Award winners include:Presidential Junior Research Scholar
Presidential Award for Teaching Excellence
- Manjeet K. Rao, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Department of Cellular and Structural Biology and the Greehey Children’s Cancer Research Institute, both part of the School of Medicine
, associate professor in the Division of Infectious Diseases, part of the Department of Medicine, and a physician at UT Medicine San Antonio, the faculty practice of the School of Medicine Lily Dong, Ph.D., professor in the Department of Cellular and Structural Biology in the School of Medicine
Alexandra Loffredo, M.D., associate professor/clinical in the Department of Family and Community Medicine in the School of Medicine, and a physician at UT Medicine San Antonio
Ridley O. Ross, D.D.S., associate professor in the Department of Comprehensive Dentistry in the Dental School
Alan Sakaguchi, Ph.D., associate professor, Department of Cellular and Structural Biology, School of Medicine
Mark Soucy, Ph.D., RN, APRN, associate professor, Department of Family and Community Health Systems, School of Nursing, and Department of Psychiatry, School of Medicine
Presidential Award for Clinical Excellence
, associate professor/clinical in the Department of Family and Community Medicine in the School of Medicine, and a medical provider at UT Medicine San Antonio Deborah Jo Levine, M.D.
, associate professor in the Division of Pulmonary Critical Care, in the Department of Medicine, part of the School of Medicine Randal Robinson, M.D.
, professor in the Division of Reproductive Endocriniology and Infertility in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology in the School of Medicine, and a physician practicing at UT Medicine San AntonioPresidential Award for Employee Excellence in Service
, editor of HSC News
and HSC Express
on the portal, in the Office of Communications Gloria A. Matthews, business administrator in the Department of Pediatrics in the School of Medicine
Richard M. Ongkiko, M.S., database administrator-associate in the Office of the Dental Dean
Rebecca Smith, senior project coordinator in the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences and Office of the Vice President for Research
Susan K. Stappenbeck, M.Ed., M.P.H., senior project coordinator in the Institute for Integration of Medicine and Science Distinguished Scholar
Dr. Hargreaves, the Distinguished Scholar, holds the Presidents’ Council Chair in Dental Research. And on Feb. 6, he was named the first holder of the USAA Foundation President’s Distinguished University Chair in Neurosciences
“As the first holder of this neurosciences chair, Dr. Hargreaves will help retain and recruit international leaders and foster interdisciplinary discovery in neuroscience research, a field that spans all five schools and multiple scientific disciplines at the Health Science Center,” said William W. Dodge, D.D.S., dean ad interim
of the Dental School, in nominating Dr. Hargreaves for the award.
|Sixteen faculty and staff members from the UT Health Science Center San Antonio were honored March 5 for excellence in research, clinical care, teaching or service. Click on image for a larger view|
Dr. Hargreaves has had several significant scientific breakthroughs since joining the faculty in 1997.
Presidential Awards selection committees
- He developed the “Hargreaves Apparatus,” which measures response to infrared heat stimulus and is now used routinely in pain research.
- In 2009, Dr. Hargreaves and his lab discovered of a family of substances produced in the body at the site of pain. In studying linoleic acid — similar to capsaicin, the chemical that gives chili peppers their heat — Dr. Hargreaves and his team discovered that oxidized linoleic acid metabolites activate the body’s major pain receptor and contribute to the development of inflammatory pain. Dr. Hargreaves found a way to block the receptors, thus relieving the pain. This research was supported by the Department of Defense to find a way to control burn pain in wounded warriors. Dr. Hargreaves’ discovery had resulted in a new class of nonaddictive pain killers that are being developed to control a wide variety of inflammatory diseases and pain disorders.
- Dr. Hargreaves’ team is now investigating stem cell and tissue engineering methods to improve dental care and oral pain management. Through this research, he has discovered that women and men experience oral pain differently. His team is seeking methods of controlling gender-specific pain.
At the awards ceremony, Dr. Kalkwarf also thanked the committees who chose the award recipients. “They had the difficult task of studying the nominations of many exemplary faculty and staff members to select the ‘best of the best’ to receive the awards.” The names of the committees and their chairs included:
- Presidential Distinguished and Junior Research Scholar Award Committee and Presidential Teaching Excellence Award Committee – Michael Gargano, Ed.D., vice president for academic, faculty and student affairs;
- Presidential Clinical Excellence Award Committee — Kozue Shibazaki, Ph.D., director of Counseling Services in the Office of Student Services; and
- Presidential Employee Excellence in Service Award Committee — JoAnn Rios, training specialist-intermediate, Office of Human Resources.
A Tribute Video
featuring the award recipients was shown at the ceremony. (Viewing is limited to those with a uthscsa.edu
login due to copyright restrictions.)
Award winners will be profiled individually during the year in the Spotlight on Excellence series on the UT Health Science Center portal