Marquis and Raye-Griffith (4)PS sizedUAMS’ Bryce Marquis, Ph.D., an assistant professor of geriatrics, and Shona Ray-Griffith, M.D., an assistant professor of psychiatry, were recently named recipients of the Translational Research Institute’s 2015 KL2 Mentored Research Career Development Awards. 

Marquis’ KL2 project is testing nutritional therapies to improve respiratory efficiency for heart failure patients. He anticipates the results of his work will direct the development of a new nutritional approach that can be used alone or with exercise to improve health outcomes in heart failure patients.

Ray-Griffith’s KL2 project is the first study using repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) to treat neuropathic pain in pregnant women. rTMS uses a magnetic force to change the way nerves work in the brain. Because it is non-invasive and localized, rTMS is attractive for use in special populations, such as pregnancy, said Ray-Griffith, who has a secondary appointment in the Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

For the next two years, the KL2 awards will provide Marquis and Ray-Griffith with 75 percent of their salaries (up to $95,000), and up to $25,000 for research, tuition, travel expenses and education materials in support of their career development plans.

Marquis’ mentors are Robert Wolfe, Ph.D., Gohar Azhar, M.D., and Jeanne Wei, M.D., Ph.D., all in the Department of Geriatrics;  Elisabet Borsheim, Ph.D., in the Department of Pediatrics; and Gunnar Boysen, Ph.D., in the College of Public Health. Marquis joined the UAMS College of Medicine faculty this year from the University of Central Arkansas, where he was an assistant professor of chemistry. He received his doctorate in analytical chemistry at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis. He was also a National Research Council postdoctoral associate at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, Md.

Ray-Griffith’s mentors are Pedro Delgado, M.D., and Zachary Stowe, M.D., both in the Department of Psychiatry; and Everett Magann, M.D., in the Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology. She joined the UAMS College of Medicine faculty in 2013 with clinical appointments in the Women’s Mental Health program and as a psychiatry consult and liaison. She received her academic appointments in 2014 in the departments of Psychiatry and Obstetrics & Gynecology. She was a research fellow in the Women’s Mental Health Program and also served her residency and internship with the Department of Psychiatry. Ray-Griffith received her medical degree from the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, and she is certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology.