For the 2021 Long School of Medicine’s “Research Week”, Dr. Byron Hepburn, Director of the Military Health Institute (MHI) at UT Health San Antonio (UTHSA), hosted a panel presentation of UTHSA faculty conducting Department of Defense related research and provided an overview of MHI research support.

With a goal of enhancing Department of Defense (DOD) and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) research activity at the University, our team assists faculty with their research from ideation to commercialization. We do this by:

  • Increasing awareness of DoD & VA opportunities
  • Reducing hurdles to apply for DoD & VA opportunities
  • Providing support for DoD & VA proposal development and submission
  • Increasing competitiveness of DoD & VA proposals submitted

The MHI supports several research-focused collaborative working groups throughout the San Antonio region:

Some current projects we are proud to support include:

Precision Therapeutics
PI: Kumar Sharma, M.D.

The Center for Renal Precision Medicine (CRPM) at UTHSA was recently funded by the Department of Defense and the NIH for two important studies. The DoD funded study is to examine the role of mitochondria on acute trauma related lung injury and septic shock. The support of the Military Health Institute was of great value and facilitated collaboration with COL (Dr.) Kevin Chung, Uniformed Services University, for this multi-site mechanistic study. The CRPM also received funding for an NIH supported investigator initiated clinical trial for COVID related acute kidney injury. The study will evaluate a mitochondrial protectant agent in patients who are hospitalized with COVID-19 and develop acute kidney injury.

Enhancing Resiliency and Optimizing Readiness in Military Special Forces
PI: Alan Peterson, Ph.D.

Developing and evaluating a brief psychological health intervention to enhance resiliency and optimize readiness in US military personnel preparing for a deployment.

Trauma and the Gastrointestinal Microbiome
PI: Susannah Nicholson, M.D., M.S.

Gastrointestinal microbiome (in collaboration with the US Army Institute of Surgical Research

Hypertonic saline in wound closure (in collaboration with the US Air Force 59 Medical Wing

Chronic Pain and Post-Traumatic Headache
PI: Don McGeary, Ph.D.

Post-traumatic headache (in collaboration with the DoD TBI Center of Excellence, Brooke Army Medical Center, and other DoD/VA treatment facilities)

Inflammatory and endocannabinoid biomarkers of head injury and headache (in collaboration with the VA)

Cannabis derivatives for lower extremity diabetic neuropathy (in collaboration with the VA)