UCSF Offers Summer Session of Mini Medical School for Public

June 23, 2010

The summer program of UCSF Mini Medical School for the Public features courses on stem cells and regenerative medicine and advances in primary care.

Sponsored by the UCSF Osher Center for Integrative Medicine, Mini Medical School is designed to provide members of the community the opportunity to learn what happens in UCSF’s classrooms and research labs with lectures from the same faculty who are on the front lines, teaching students in the health professions.

Mini Medical School addresses the accelerating public interest in the scientific knowledge behind the health headlines, the role of the consumer in health care decision making, and each citizen’s role in participating in the shaping of health policy.

Classes for the summer session of Mini Medical School will be taught on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings in Cole Hall, 513 Parnassus Ave.

Stem Cell Science

The course on “Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine” will describe the science behind emerging treatment advances and personalized medicine. This course runs Tuesday evenings, from June 22 to July 27 from 7 to 8:45 p.m.

Participants will learn when and how genetic testing informs the delivery of personalized patient care and learn from Millie Hughes-Fulford, PhD, a NASA science astronaut and professor of medicine, what important basic lessons space travel can teach us about cell biology.

Regeneration of damaged tissues is one of the holy grails in medicine and stem cells might be an answer. Recently, there has been a growing awareness that behaviors of stem cells emerge out of the highly complex interactions of dynamic networks of gene regulation and proliferative control involving both the control within the cell itself as well as the cross talk between the cell and its surroundings.

Those who participate in the stem cell course will get a look behind the scenes to learn more about stem cells and get a realistic insight into their potential as therapeutics of the future.

The stem cell course concludes on July 27 with a class titled “Stem Cells: The Hope, The Hype, and The Science,” by one the world’s leading authorities on the subject—Arnold Kriegstein, MD, PhD, professor of neurology and director of the Eli and Edythe Broad Center of Regeneration Medicine and Stem Cell Research.

Marieke Kruidering-Hall, PhD, associate professor in the Department of Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology and co-director of the Postdoctoral Teaching Fellowship Program is course chair. Watch her talk about the course in this video.

Primary Care Advances

The “Advances in Primary Care” course will describe what patients and their doctors need to know about prevention and treatment of common medical conditions. This course runs Wednesday evenings, from June 23 to July 28, from 7 to 8:45 p.m.

Great primary care focuses on wellness, utilizing the best medical evidence for prevention and treatment of common clinical conditions. And great primary care requires well-informed, motivated patients who can work with physicians and other health professionals to make the best personal medical decisions.

This course, taught by UCSF’s faculty in Primary Care Internal Medicine, will present the latest information on a wide variety of common clinical dilemmas and on new strategies for patient empowerment.

The course chair is Robert B. Baron, MD, MS, director, Mini Medical School for the Public; professor of medicine and associate dean of Graduate and Continuing Medical Education. Baron will discuss strategies to prevent heart disease and the link between obesity and diabetes in two classes in this course. Watch Baron talk about this course on video.

Related Links:


UCSF Mini Medical School for the Public website

Mini Medical School Brochure (PDF)