Message from the Division Director
Welcome to the UAMS Division of Radiation Health. Our main mission is to understand how ionizing radiation affects normal (non-cancer) tissues and to identify new interventions that can prevent or reduce normal tissue radiation injuries.
The current level of interest in studies of radiation effects on normal tissues is unprecedented, and more resources are being directed toward this field than in many decades. First, the importance of quality of life of long-term cancer survivors is being increasingly recognized. Consequently, there is an active search for interventions that can be used to minimize adverse effects of radiation therapy. Second, there is increased recognition of the urgent need to develop pharmacological countermeasures against radiological and nuclear threats. Third, in preparation of future long-distance space missions, more research is required to understand the effects of space radiation on human health.
Studies of normal tissue radiation responses are complex and require broad, multidisciplinary expertise, not only in radiation biology, but also in the pathophysiology of specific organ systems, as well as in systems biology, cellular biology, and molecular biology of a variety of processes such as inflammation, cell proliferation, oxidative stress, connective tissue remodeling, neuroscience, and endothelial and vascular biology.
Faculty in the Division of Radiation Health include Antiño Allen, Nukhet Aykin-Burns, Marjan Boerma, Martin Hauer-Jensen, and Rupak Pathak. Each faculty member has a laboratory studying particular aspects of normal tissue radiation injury. Opportunities for graduate studies are offered through the Interdisciplinary Biomedical Sciences Program and the Pharmaceutical Sciences Program of the UAMS Graduate School.
The Division of Radiation Health is also central to the COBRE Center for Studies of Host Response to Cancer Therapy that investigates biological mechanisms of and interventions in side effects of cancer therapy. The Center provides financial and mentoring support to Project Leaders and Pilot Project Awardees and maintains core facilities that provide specialized technical support.
I encourage you to peruse these web-pages as well as those of the College of Pharmacy, Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, and UAMS, to learn more about what our division and our institution have to offer.
I will be happy to answer questions about the Division of Radiation Health in terms of who we are, what we do, and where we are going!
Marjan Boerma, Ph.D.
Director, Division of Radiation Health