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Kim Receives CTRI Award for Graduating School of Medicine Seniors

June 7, 2016

Jane Kim, MD recieves award

Jane Kim, MD, receives the CTRI Award during the Class of 2016 senior awards ceremony on June 4 at the UC San Diego School of Medicine. From left are CTRI director Gary S. Firestein, MD; Kim; and CTRI education director Colin A. Depp, PhD.
Photo by Jill Dumbauld Nery

Jane Kim, MD, whose research interests include ophthalmic imaging, biomarkers, and inflammatory eye disease, has received the UC San Diego Clinical and Translational Research Institute (CTRI) Award for fourth-year medical students. Kim was honored during the School of Medicine Class of 2016 Senior Awards ceremony at the Medical Education and Telemedicine Building on June 4. She received a medical degree at UC San Diego on June 5.

“Kim’s leadership in clinical research, leading to novel clinical applications for enhanced depth imaging optical coherence tomography, truly embodies the spirt of CTRI’s mission,” said Gary S. Firestein, MD, director of CTRI.

While in medical school, Kim dedicated one year of research (July 2014 to July 2015) to work in the Laboratory of Immunology at the National Eye Institute as part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Medical Research Scholars Program. “My research focus during my NIH research year was to study how we can better implement ophthalmic imaging modalities to improve our current understanding and treatment of intraocular inflammation,” Kim said.

During the NIH year, Kim spearheaded a clinical research project to determine the reproducibility of choroidal thickness measurements in uveitis patients using enhanced depth imaging optical coherence tomography, an imaging technique primarily used in the research sector. “She designed the project and was responsible for the direction, organization, focus, and statistical analyses. The findings of this project were powerful because they provide the clinical parameters of reproducibility for the uveitis community,” said H. Nida Sen, MD, MHS, in her award nomination letter for Kim. Sen is director of the Uveitis and Ocular Immunology Fellowship Program at the National Eye Institute, NIH. Uveitis is an inflammatory eye disease.

Kim published this work as a first author on the paper, Enhanced Depth Imaging Optical Coherence Tomography in Uveitis: An Intravisit and Interobserver Reproducibility Study, in the April 2016 issue of American Journal of Ophthalmology, one of the top ranking peer-reviewed journals in the field of ophthalmology.

The CTRI award, designed to recognize students with outstanding potential for future contribution to translational research, is typically given to one fourth-year medical student per year. Kim was among 34 fourth-year medical students receiving awards during the awards ceremony.

“I am so grateful and honored to be the recipient of the Clinical and Translational Research Institute Award. I hope to continue to pursue my passion for research in ophthalmology,” Kim said.

Kim will be going to St. Mary’s Medical Center in Long Beach for her preliminary medicine intern year and for an ophthalmology residency at Duke University. Prior to entering medical school at UC San Diego, Kim received a bachelor’s degree in molecular, cell, and developmental biology from UCLA, graduating summa cum laude. She has been an author or co-author on a dozen peer-reviewed publications and book chapters, and has served as president of the UC San Diego Ophthalmology Interest Group and a member of the UC San Diego Surgery Interest Group and the UC San Diego American Medical Women’s Association. She was also a Cancer Research Training Award Fellow from 2010-2011 at the Laboratory of Translational Genomics, Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, part of the NIH National Cancer Institute.

About UC San Diego Altman Clinical and Translational Research Institute:

UC San Diego Altman Clinical and Translational Research Institute (ACTRI) is part of a national Clinical and Translational Science Award consortium, led by the National Institutes of Health National Center for Advancing Translational Science. Established in 2010, ACTRI provides infrastructure and support for basic, translational and clinical research throughout the San Diego region to bring discoveries from the laboratory to the bedside, and facilitates training and education of the next generation of researchers. ACTRI carries out its activities in collaboration with institutional and corporate partners and currently has more than 1,500 members.