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June 12, 2009

SIU Medical Student Receives National Research Fellowship

Deena Chihade, Deena Chihade portrait a second-year medical student at Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, has been awarded the 2009 Carolyn L. Kuckein Student Research Fellowship.  She is one of 40 medical students receiving the national award.  This is the thirteenth Alpha Omega Alpha (AOA) fellowship awarded to a SIU medical student.

The $5,000 fellowship is to support Chihade’s cancer research project, which will explore tumor protection by inflammation mediated by the toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4).  The goal of the study is to examine how paclitaxel, a drug used in cancer treatment, elicits a response in tumor cells that may decrease the benefits of toxic cell therapy and increase the chances of tumor cells to escape from chemotherapy.

Chihade is doing her research under the supervision of Sophia Ran, Ph.D., assistant professor of medical microbiology, immunology and cell biology at SIU and a member of the SimmonsCooper Cancer Institute at SIU.

Chihade is the daughter of Issam and Juliette Chihade of Forsyth.  She has a bachelor’s from University of Illinois (2004).

AOA is the only national medical honor society in the world.  It recognizes and works to perpetuate excellence in the medical profession by promoting scholarship and research and by encouraging high standards of character and conduct among medical students and graduates. 



thern Illinois University School of Medicine Office of Public Affairs News Releases P.O. Box 19621, Springfield IL 62794-9621, 217-545-2155