Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

medical staff pulse newsletter

Text size: A A A

Formulary Expanded; FDA Warns About Immune Globulins, Spinal Catheters, Cardiac Drugs

Pharmacy Focus

The Pharmacy and Therapeutics Committee added ticagrelor (Brilinta®) to the formulary and took other actions Oct. 1. Also, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has cautioned about human immune globulin products, the use of spinal catheters in patients taking anticoagulants and two cardiac stress test agents.

» Read more

Meetings and Events

Grand Rounds

Click here to view upcoming grand rounds.

Upcoming CME Conferences

Click below to view a complete list of all scheduled Continuing Medical Education conferences.

CME Newsletter - November 2013 (PDF)

Share Your News

Won any awards or had an article accepted for publication? Share your news about professional achievements and other items of interest.

Click here to share your news

Mentoring Tomorrow's Medical Scientists

Moshe Arditi, MD, instructs high school student Lara Schwieger in his lab.

Cedars-Sinai Experience Proves Valuable for High School Students

Lara Schwieger has more exposure than most 17-year-olds to the world of medicine — and not just because her parents are physicians. This past summer, she spent a month observing top scientists in a Cedars-Sinai laboratory as part of the medical center's Teens in Science program.

She learned about T-cells, oxygen saturation tests, macrophages and much more. She even overcame an aversion to laboratory mice as she saw firsthand how important they are to medical research.

"I wanted to see if research is something I could do as a career, or if I would prefer to be a doctor and work with patients," Schwieger said. "I like both. It will take more time to figure this out."

Schwieger — whose mother, Cynthia Litwer Schwieger, MD, is a radiologist at Cedars-Sinai, and whose father is a nephrologist in Tarzana — is one of many high school students who spent part of their summer vacation observing the process of basic research and receiving one-on-one mentoring from faculty members representing many disciplines. Cedars-Sinai reaches out to students interested in medical careers through a number of avenues, including a weeklong Regenerative Medicine Institute program that introduces them to the potential of stem cells to advance treatment for diseases of the gut, brain or heart.

"The idea behind these high school outreach programs is, ultimately, to bring young, motivated, bright minds from our community and the city of Los Angeles to Cedars-Sinai," said Mahul B. Amin, MD, chair of the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, who created the Teens in Science program in 2009 along with staff members from the departments of Environmental Health and Safety and Volunteer Services.

"Not only will such efforts relieve the nation's shortage of medical lab scientists and other healthcare professionals, but they also expose these young individuals to the exciting science occurring at the medical center," Amin said. "This will enhance the understanding of these future potential scientists and physicians that Cedars-Sinai is not only world class as a patient care facility, but is a place where exciting discovery and innovation constantly occur."

Among the Cedars-Sinai researchers who mentor high school students through this program is Moshe Arditi, MD, director of the Infectious and Immunological Diseases Research Center and the Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases.

Arditi brings about six students into his lab each summer. Often, they are recommended by their high school science teachers and then placed through Cedars-Sinai's Volunteer Services Department in one of the labs that Environmental Health and Safety has designated as "teen approved."

Schwieger, a senior at Viewpoint School in Calabasas, spent July observing experiments in Arditi's lab, and she had a number of opportunities to ask questions and discuss career options with him.

Arditi enjoys giving teens exposure to the day-to-day activities in his lab.

"They learn whether they like the tedious work of research," he said. "And they see a spectrum of career paths. I think it's great that Cedars-Sinai provides this opportunity for students interested in biological science and research."

Arditi had high praise for Schwieger's determination to make the most of the experience. "She learned a lot, and was even able to conquer her initial fear of mouse models," he said.

Schwieger said she picked up laboratory skills that will be helpful in her science classes as she finishes high school and goes on to college. One unexpected discovery: The lab wasn't the frenetic, high-pressure environment she had imagined.

"The people I worked with were so knowledgeable, professional and relaxed," she said. "It made me feel that I could do this kind of work as a career and be relaxed about it, too."

To learn more about how Cedars-Sinai mentors teens interested in medical careers, call the Volunteer Services Department at 310-423-8044 and ask for Sandra Gomez.