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University of Iowa Media News Release

June 27, 2005

UI Hospitals Leaders To Chair Institute Of Medicine Groups

A pair of faculty members at the University of Iowa will chair two special groups of health specialists assembled by the Institute of Medicine (IOM).

The IOM has initiated Interest Groups in a total of 12 specialty areas of medicine. The groups will bring together IOM members from different disciplines and sections to enrich their understanding of pertinent scientific and policy topics, and develop new ideas for program activities and other initiatives by the IOM.

Francois Abboud, M.D., the Edith King Pearson Chair of Cardiovascular Research, UI professor of internal medicine and physiology and biophysics, associate vice president for research, and director of the UI Cardiovascular Research Center, will chair the Interest Group on Cardiovascular Disease/Vascular Biology.

A UI faculty member since 1960, Abboud served as head of the UI Department of Internal Medicine from 1976 through 2001. Among his many professional accomplishments, Abboud is recognized for his contributions to the understanding of the causes of and treatments for heart disease. The UI Cardiovascular Research Center, which Abboud has directed since 1974, has become one of the most prestigious cardiovascular training centers in the world. Abboud was a member of the initial working group committee that reassessed the IOM's sectional structure and proposed the establishment of the Interest Groups, similar to groups also established at the National Institutes of Health.

Jennifer Niebyl, M.D., professor and head of the UI Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, will chair the Interest Group on Maternal and Child Health and Human Development.

Niebyl joined the UI faculty in March 1988. Her clinical expertise is in drug use in pregnancy, medical disease in pregnancy, tocolytic drugs for pre-term labor, and birth defects. "U.S. News and World Report" includes the UI Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology as one the nation's top programs in its "Best Hospitals in America" rankings.

A nonprofit organization, the IOM was chartered in 1970 as a component of the National Academy of Sciences. The institute provides a vital service by working outside the framework of government to ensure scientifically informed analysis and independent guidance. The IOM's mission is to serve as adviser to the nation to improve health. The institute provides unbiased, evidence-based and authoritative information and advice concerning health and science policy to policymakers, professionals, leaders in every sector of society and the public at large.

University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the UI Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine and UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care, medical education and research programs and services they provide. Visit UI Health Care online at

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