November 2018
Daniel Lueders, MD has been elected to the Little League International Board of Directors. The board provides expertise, guidance, and oversight to the Little League's global program and set the direction for the organization's future.

October 2018
Amy Houtrow, MD, PhD, MPH, has been elected into the National Academy of Medicine. This is considered one of the highest honors in the fields of health and medicine and recognizes individuals who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and commitment to service.

Michael Boninger, is the PI on a UH3 grant that was funded providing $7M over 5 years in BCI research. The Co-Is on this grant include Jennifer Collinger, Robert Gaunt, and Elizabeth Tyler-Kabara from the University of Pittsburgh and Silman Bensmaia, Nicho Hatsopoulos, and Peter Warnkle from the University of Chicago.

Kentaro Onishi, DO, has been awarded a traveling fellowship to Japan in September 2019 through the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine (AMSSM)

August 2018
Maria Twichell, MD, has been named as a winner of UPMC's Award for Commitment and Excellence in Service (ACES) for Fiscal Year 2018. Fewer than 1 percent of all of UPMC staff are chosen annually for this award.

July 2018
Michael Munin, MD, was asked to serve on the workgroup for AAPM&R's Interventional Spasticity STEP Certificate Program.

June 2018
Michael Boninger, MD, was asked to give the scientific keynote for the conference co-hosted by NINDS and NCMRR, entitled "SCI 2020: Launching a Decade of Disruption in Spinal Cord Injury Research". This keynote will provide a clinically informed overview of the current state of scientific discovery and opportunities.

Fabrisia Ambrosio, PhD, MPT, received the Aging Cell Best Paper Prize 2017 for her paper, "Aging of the skeletal muscle extracellular matrix drives a stem cell fibrogenic conversion." The prize is awarded by the Anatomical Society's Prizes and Awards Committee, on the recommendation of the Editors-in-Chief of Aging Cell.

March 2018
Unoma Akamagwuna, MD, has been given the J. Nadine Gracia Faculty of the Year Award on behalf of Pitt's Chapter of the Student National Medical Association. This award is given every year to an individual in the medical school that embodies the spirit of J. Nadine Garcia, through their dedication to education, diversity and exceptional patient care.

Fabrisia Ambrosio, PhD, MPT, had an article, "Regenerative Rehabilitation: Applied Biophysics Meets Stem Cell Therapeutics" published in Cell Stem Cell

Juliet Schulz, MD, under the mentorship of Amy Wagner, MD, had research, "Subacute Systemic Inflammation Associated with Depression at 12 Months Post Traumatic Brain Injury" selected for an Oral Presentation at the 2018 AAPM&R Annual Assembly.

February 2018
Kentaro Onishi, DO, served as a medical volunteer at the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Winter Games.

Michael O'Connell, DO, under the mentorship of Eric Helm, MD, had an abstract, "Depth Assessment using Contralateral Oblique View during Cervial Interlaminar Edipural Steroid Injections" chosen as a "Top 8 Abstract" by the American Society of Interventional Pain Physicians.

January 2018
Unoma Akamawuna, MD, was chosen to participate in the Academic Pediatric Association Quality & Safety Improvement Scholars Program.

December 2017
Amy Houtrow, MD, PhD, MPH, was appointed to the Medicaid Child Workgroup for National Quality Forum.

Mark Linsenmeyer, MD, had an abstract, "Genetic Variation in Dopamine Neurotransmitter Pathways" selected for this year's AAP 10 Newsworthly Abstracts

October 2017
Kentaro Onishi, DO, has been awarded as the winner of PM&R Best Original Research Award from the Foundation for PM&R for "Human Adipose=Derived Mesenchymal Stromal/Stem Cells Remain Viable and Metabollically Active Following Needle Passage"

August 2017
Megan Cortazzo, MD, has been named as a winner of UPMC's Award for Commitment and Excellence in Service (ACES) for Fiscal Year 2017. Fewer than 1 percent of all of UPMC staff are chosen annually for this award.

May 2017
Wendy Helkowski, MD, was elected Vice Chair for the ACGME Review Committee for PM&R

April 2017
Amy Houtrow, MD, PhD, MPH was named the 2017 recipient of the prestigious American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine Edward Lowman Award. This award was established in honor of Edward Lowman, MD who recognized the importance of multidisciplinary teams in rehabilitation. This award is for individuals whose careers reflect an energetic promotion of the spirit of interdisciplinary rehabilitation.

February 2017
Shanti Pinto, MD, Brain Injury Medicine Fellow, will receive the Association of Academic Physiatrists' Best Paper Award for “Cost-Efficacy Analysis of Routine Venous Doppler Ultrasound for Diagnosis of Deep Venous Thrombosis at Admission to Inpatient Rehabilitation.” The award recognizes and seeks to encourage young researchers, while strengthening all investigation in the field of PM&R

Joshua Rothenberg, DO, Sports Medicine Fellow, has been awarded the McLean Outstanding Fellow Award from the Association of Academic Physiatrists. The award recognizes an AAP member Fellow for outstanding academic performance in academic leadership, teaching and education, and research. Dr. Rothenberg will receive the award during the AAP Annual Meeting in February 2017.

October 2016
President Barack Obama on Thursday, October 13, shook hands and fist bumped with Nathan Copeland who was using a mind-controlled robotic arm. "Today he can move that arm just by thinking about it. He can once again feel the touch of another person," said Obama, commenting on groundbreaking research from the department of PM&R.

July 2016
The Outstanding Council Service Award was created in 2010 to recognize service and volunteerism of members who contribute to the success of the Academy in fulfilling its mission and serving its membership in ways not limited to research, education, and product development. Dr. Houtrow is nationally known for her advocacy of children with disabilities and their families and working to improve healthcare delivery to this vulnerable population.

February 2016
Michael Boninger, MD is named the 2016 Distinguished Academician by the Association of Academic Physiatrists (AAP).

Tracy Knippel, MD, 3rd year resident is awarded the AAP Electrode Store Best Paper for "Ten year trends in pediatric inpatient rehabilitation: predicting length of stay and rehabilitation outcomes using WeeFIM data."

November 2015
Corina Bondi, PhD was awarded a Young Investigator Travel Bursary to attend the 22nd World Congress of Neurology, in Santiago, Chile. Her work entitled “A combined regimen of preclinical neurorehabilitation and antidepressant treatment restores executive function after experimental neurological injury” was also selected as an oral presentation in the Neurorehabilitation section.

October 2015
Anthony Kline, PhD, received the Distinguished Mentor Award from the Faculty for Undergraduate Neuroscience(FUN) International Organization in recognition of significant contributions as a mentor for young neuroscientists


September 2015
On September 12 the UPMC Rehabilitation Institute and the Pittsburgh Mighty Penguins sled hockey team took to the ice to celebrate the opening of the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex. The event raised money for the Mighty Penguins’ organization to continue funding this competitive sport and the people with disabilities who compete in it.


“Federal assistance programs for children with mental health disabilities are likely being underutilized when they could help cover the costs to improve the health and wellbeing of the child and family,” said Dr. Amy Houtrow, who served on the committee that authored the report. “It appears that more kids could benefit from available funding, and the medical community could help eligible families become aware of the benefits and how to apply.”

A free PDF of "Mental Disorders and Disabilities Among Low-Income Children", is available from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine.


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