(TEMPLE, TX) — The Texas A&M Health Science Center (HSC) College of Medicine and the Scott & White Hospital Department of Surgery announce the recruitment of M. Karen Newell Rogers, Ph.D., to serve as the Director of the Programmed Cell Death Group where she will coordinate and facilitate the efforts of the group’s investigators. Dr. Newell will also serve as the Raleigh R. White Jr., Endowed Professor of Surgical Research in the Department of Surgery at Scott & White Hospital.

Dr. Newell and several members of her research team come to the HSC-College of Medicine and Scott & White from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs (UCCS) where Dr. Newell served as Professor and the Markert Endowed Chair in the Department of Biology, and as Chief Executive Scientific Director of the University of Colorado (CU) Institute of Bioenergetics since 2003.

“The combined resources that the HSC-College of Medicine and Scott & White bring to the recruitment of Dr. Newell represent an exceptional academic and clinical opportunity for both institutions and for continued collaboration with the University of Colorado,” said W. Roy Smythe, M.D., Professor and Chair of the Department of Surgery.

“It’s an honor to be able to coordinate research efforts with two such highly respected institutions,” Dr. Newell said. “CU has a deep understanding of how this technology regarding cell metabolism and treatments for autoimmune diseases was developed, where it is headed and the benefits it will deliver. My new colleagues at the Texas A&M Health Science Center will contribute fresh insight and expertise. This partnership is the best possible way to ensure that these initiatives move forward successfully and that the technologies reach their full potential.”

On April 6, 2010, a memorandum of understanding was signed between the Texas A&M Health Science Center and UCCS to promote collaborative activities that advance the understanding of cell metabolism, communication and programmed cell death—the natural demise of a cell carried out in regulated processes during an organism’s life-cycle—in an effort to treat cancer, HIV/AIDS, Lyme disease, auto-immune diseases and others. 

The CU Institute of Bioenergetics supports a multidisciplinary approach to understanding cellular metabolism and communication. The HSC-College of Medicine has established a similar multidisciplinary research program in its Department of Surgery that will study programmed cell death. Initially, the Programmed Cell Death Group will consist of several surgical investigators in these research areas, with plans to expand into a multidisciplinary endeavor with more researchers and physician-scientists.

Dr. Newell will be housed at Scott & White in Temple, and in addition to serving as the Director of the Programmed Cell Death Group, she will be an HSC-College of Medicine Professor of Surgery.

See more on the joint venture between the Texas A&M Health Science Center and the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs at http://www.uccs.edu/~webdept/CMS/getnewscontent.php?id=1208

— Dhwani Chauhan