Surgical CTO Spotlight

Surgical Clinical Trials Office is in the Spotlight.   Read more on the team whose approach to the management side of clinical research ensures that researchers themselves do not have to handle administrative, compliance and financial tasks but can instead concentrate on research.

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Additional Stories

Creation of Surgery Research Support Services Office

Sayeed Ikramuddin, MD, MHA, Chair of the Department of Surgery, has created a new research infrastructure to provide increased resources and a single source for research related support with the creation of a new office named - Surgery Research Support Services.  This new research entity is tasked with providing researchers with a one-stop resource, supporting them throughout the research life cycle - from concept - to post award reporting requirements.   Surgery Research Support Services will now provide a singular point of contact for those DOS faculty, post-docs, fell

Todd Tuttle, MD Appointed Vice Chair of Global Surgery and Disparities

Todd Tuttle, MD has been appointed Vice Chair of Global Surgery and Disparities.  In this role he will seek to develop an academic global surgery program that will promote clinical service, research, and education in resource-limited communities globally and in the United States (especially within the Indian Health Service). He will continue his previous clinical practice and research activities, but will step down as Chief of the Division of Surgical Oncology.

Remembering Earl Bakken

Remembering Earl Bakken Earl Bakken

The Pacemaker and the Birth of a Medical Device Industry

In 1958, a new device entered cardiac surgery’s medical arsenal that has become part and parcel of cardiac medicine—pacemakers connected directly to the heart.  Dr. C. Walton Lillehei at the time while conducting research on animal models, learned that the heart's electrical system can be prompted to perform correctly with artificial assistance, that is, by sending an electrical pulse delivered through electrodes in direct contact with cardiac tissue.   These findings led to the first rudimentary pacemaker. However, it relied on a physical connection to the hospital’s electrical system, leaving the patient vulnerable to power failures.  

Improvements came with a productive collaboration with Earl Bakken, an electrical engineer who maintained the electrical equipment used by the Department of Surgery. In 1958, the same year that Lillehei invented the pacemaker concept, he and Bakken developed a wearable pacemaker. It was so effective that it was quickly adapted to aid nonsurgical cardiac patients. Demand for the product became so high that Bakken and his brother-in-law, Palmer Hermundslie, incorporated a new business entity—Medtronic. Capitalizing on emerging technologies such as lithium ion batteries, Medtronic introduced implantable pacemakers in 1960. Today, Medtronic is a cornerstone of the medical device industry in Minnesota that became known as Medical Alley and then LifeScience Alley. Thus, the fruitful collaboration between cardiac surgery and electrical engineering at the University of Minnesota became the basis for the birth of a new global industry.

Greg Beilman, MD Awarded US Department of Defense Research Awards

Greg Beilman, MD received 2 new research grants from the US Department of Defense.  

A Randomized Trial of Intraportal Alone Versus Intraportal and Extraportal Transplantation of Pancreatic Islets After Total Pancreatectomy for Chronic Pancreatitis, PI Greg Beilman, US Army Medical Research and Materiel Command, 4yrs, $1.9 M

Developing MG53 as a Novel Protein Therapeutic for Acute Lung Injury, Ohio State University, US Army Medical Research and Materiel Command, $3.5 M, 4yrs