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About the Department

Graduation Day 2018


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Recent Research Achievements

  1. Assistant Professor Andrés Bur, MD; Resident John Flynn, MD; Clinical Research Director Kevin Sykes, PhD, MPH; and Heather Gibbs, PhD, RD, LD secured an American Cancer Society Institutional Research Grant to study the impact of nutritional supplements on surgical outcomes for head and neck cancer patients. 
  2. Resident Matt Shew, MD won a 2019 ANS Trainee Award for his research on neurotrophin signaling in hearing loss using microRNA perilymph profiling.
  3. Resident Helena Wichova, MD won a 2019 AOS Research Travel Award to support her attendance at the COSM 2019, where she presented findings from her research focused on the utility of perilymph microRNA sampling for identification of active gene expression pathways in otosclerosis.
  4. Associate Professor Sufi Thomas, PhD won a 5-year NIH R01 grant for ground-breaking cancer research focused on understanding the role of autophagy in the tumor microenvironment.
  5. Resident Matt Shew, MD collaborated with faculty mentors Hinrich Staecker, MD, PhD and Kevin Sykes, PhD, MPH to secure AAO-HNSF CORE grant support for their Meniere's: Evaluation of MicroRNA Profiles of Human Inner Ear Perilymph project. 
  6. Assistant Professor Jennifer Villwock, MD received an AAO-HNSF Women in Otolaryngology grant for her Vitality in Medicine: A Modified Delphi Study of Women's Leadership in Medicine and Utility of Self-Coaching Techniques to Address Gaps and Enhance Success project.
  7. Faculty Hinrich Staecker, MD, PhD is leading a landmark clinical study to implant a remarkable virus to restore hearing in patients with severe hearing loss.

Learn more about our research activities.

Recent Academic Achievements

  1. Department Chair Alexander Chiu, MD was the department research day speaker for the departments of otolarynology at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester and University of Texas Houston, and was Distinguished International Speaker at Stellenbosch University in Cape Town, South Africa and Universidad de Chile in Santiago, Chile.
  2. Professor Hinrich Staecker, MD, PhD was a distinguished guest of honor at the 90th Annual Congress and 14th International Forum and Joint Meeting of the American Academy of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery Foundation and the German Society for Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery. 
  3. Assistant Professor Jennifer Villwock, MD was a speaker at the TEDxUMKC event in March 2019 and the Frontier in Stem Cell and Cancer Research program in Ponce, Puerto Rico in February 2019.
  4. Faculty promotions in 2019:
    David Beahm, MD was promoted to associate professor on the clinical scholar track. 
    Shannon Kraft, MD was promoted to associate professor on the clinical scholar track. 
    Sufi Thomas, PhD was awarded tenure at current rank of associate professor.
  5. Residents Sreeya Yalamanchali, MD and Cara Katzer, MD each led month-long research projects with our collaborators at Christian Medical College in Vellore, India.
  6. Department Chair Alexander Chiu, MD and Clinical Research Director & Assistant Professor Kevin Sykes, PhD, MPH initiated a new medical service partnership with an otolaryngology residency program in Makelle, Ethiopia.

Learn more about our residency program and fellowship opportunities.

Recent Administrative Achievements

  1. Department Chair Alexander Chiu, MD is the Editor-in-Chief of ENTtoday, a publication of the Triological Society.  In 2018, ENTtoday was recognized by Kanter Survey as having the highest circulation and being the most read journal in otolaryngology.
  2. Associate Professor Jim Lin, MD was named head of the 3P Workgroup (Physicians Payment Policy) of the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery.
  3. Department faculty serving in University of Kansas leadership positions:
    Douglas A. Girod, MD, FACS is the 18th Chancellor of the University of Kansas system.  He formerly served as the Executive Vice Chancellor of the University of Kansas Medical Center and Chair of the KU Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery.
    Gregory A. Ator, MD, FACS is the Chief Medical Informatics Officer for the University of Kansas Health System and serves as Chair of the Hospital University IT Operations Coordinating Committee.
    Dianne Durham, PhD is Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs and Faculty Development at KUMC.
    Carrie L. Francis, MD, FAAP is Assistant Dean in the KUMC Office of Student Affairs and Director of the Orr Medical Alumni Society.
    Keith Sale, MD is the Vice President and Chief Physician Executive for University of Kansas Health System Ambulatory Services for clinical care. 
    Terance Tsue, MD, FACS is Physician-in-Chief and Vice President of the University of Kansas Cancer Center and Vice President for Physician Services for the University of Kansas Health System.
  4. Professor Larry A. Hoover, MD, FACS serves as the Program Chairman and Board Member for the Kansas City Society of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology.
  5. Professor J. David Kriet, MD, FACS was named a Senior Examiner for the American Board of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery.  Department Chair Alexander Chiu, MD; Professor Hinrich Staecker, MD, PhD; and Associate Professor Dave Garnett, MD, FACS serve as Examiners for the American Board of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery.
  6. KU Chancellor and ENT Professor Douglas A. Girod, MD, FACS is the past president of the Association of Academic Departments of Otolaryngology, past president of the American Head and Neck Society, and past vice president of the Triological Society.

Learn more about our faculty.

Last modified: Oct 21, 2019
Q&A with Dr. Chiu

Q&A with Dr. Chiu

Research Highlights

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History of KU Otolaryngology

History of the department video