Posted 7 a.m. Sunday, March 5, 2023
Mayo, UWL collaboration successful in furthering health research in the Coulee Region
(Article provided by Mayo Clinic Health System)
Since its launch in 2019, a collaboration between Mayo Clinic Health System and UW–La Crosse has advanced health research in and beyond the Coulee Region. Through the relationship, Mayo Clinic Health System providers, university faculty, and students work together on research that will improve health and medical care, while providing valuable experience for learners who will become the next generation of scientists, innovators, and health care providers.
To date, the collaboration has established:
- The Collaborative Seed Grant Program Funding
The Seed Grant Program has funded six health-focused research projects. Led by teams of physicians and scientists from both institutions, seed grants often launch promising new research projects and provide valuable preliminary data to attract more substantial funding from external sources. These projects advance research in strategic health areas, including sports medicine and cancer. To date, 16 students have participated in Seed Grant Program-funded research projects.
- Annual Research Day
During Annual Research Day, Mayo Clinic Health System staff share abstracts on topics including pilot studies, retrospective case reports and series, and impactful research and practice improvement projects from recent years (including presented work at national conferences). Additionally, a poster session highlights clinical and scholarly research activity. Past poster session topics include the social determinants of health, the incorporation of osteopathic and manipulative medicine into the primary care practice, and sports medicine nutritional research. Staff, faculty, and students from both organizations attend the event.
- Lunch and Learn educational presentations
Held quarterly, the Lunch and Learn educational presentations connect staff at Mayo Clinic Health System and UWL to opportunities and new developments in education, health care, and research. In February, the Lunch and Learn presentation focused on the use of artificial intelligence and its potential use in health care. Students are also welcome to attend the Lunch and Learn presentations.
- Joint faculty appointments, degree programs, and research projects
Several UWL faculty have been appointed as Mayo Clinic Research Affiliates, which lays the foundation for faculty members to work with students and staff from both institutions to collaborate on clinical research. UWL students and staff, along with Mayo Clinic physicians are involved with research projects involving the effects of long COVID-19, peripheral vascular disease, body composition, and health and performance determinants in male and female high school wrestlers.
- Combined scholarly activities
Together, researchers from the UWL and Mayo Clinic Health System have shared several recent successes including 47 conference abstracts, 32 published peer-reviewed publications, and given 13 presentations at national and regional conferences. These collective works focus primarily on sports medicine, metabolism, nutrition, body composition, load monitoring, and the physiological demands of tactical occupations that include firefighters and ROTC cadets.
Joe Gow, UWL; Paul Mueller, regional vice president for Mayo Clinic Health System in Southwest Wisconsin and Erik St. Louis, regional chair of Research for Mayo Clinic Health System in Southwest Wisconsin, say they are excited about these achievements, which would not be possible without the strong collaborative relationship between both institutions.
“This relationship allows the best and brightest in two outstanding organizations to prosper while conducting essential health and science research,” says Gow. “UWL is thrilled to be part of the ground-breaking research that is providing invaluable health benefits. Our students get an opportunity to learn with some of the nation’s leading health practitioners while addressing current health situations. It’s a win-win for all.”
“We are forging a very strong research collaboration with our colleagues at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, especially leveraging our mutual strengths in sports science and medicine, data science, and cancer research,” adds St. Louis. “The annual Seed Grant program and Lunch and Learn presentations are growing steadily each year, and we are excited about continuing to build even stronger connections between our campuses. This strong connection and collaboration will improve the health of our community and better serve our patients in the region and beyond.”
Research and teamwork are key to Mayo Clinic Health System’s and the University of Wisconsin–La Crosse’s mission and values. Both organizations are committed to working together to address the educational and patient needs in the Coulee Region.
“The research collaboration attracts high-caliber physicians, faculty, staff, and students to the La Crosse area,” says Mueller. “It also allows physicians to engage in scholarly work, hoping to find new treatments to care for our patients. Moreover, this enhances the student’s educational experience and helps prepare them for the future workforce. Ultimately, today’s research transforms into tomorrow’s cutting-edge care and cure for our patients and communities.”
In addition to the research agreement, Mayo Clinic Health System and UWL team up to host the annual Youth Sports Symposium and share athletic training and sports medicine services. Mayo Clinic Health System also provides on-campus access to Mayo Clinic services for UWL and Western Technical College students at the Student Health Center.
Gow, Mueller and St. Louis say they’re excited about what the future holds and look forward to continuing to build a strong collaborative relationship between UWL and Mayo Clinic Health System.