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WORLD DIABETES DAY, NOV. 14, 2008 IN NYC:
THE FIRST ANNUAL GERALD J. FRIEDMAN FELLOWS SYMPOSIUM ON
NUTRITION, DIABETES AND HUMAN HEALTH

The first annual Gerald J. Friedman Fellows Symposium was held November 14, 2008 on World Diabetes Day at the Tribeca Grand Hotel in New York City. This exciting day-long event, from 9AM until 6PM, explored the ongoing research of a unique fellowship program, bringing together multi-disciplinary academicians to advance research on nutrition, diabetes and health.

The symposium featured a plenary lecture by Dr. Anastassios Pittas, the first Friedman Fellow, on lessons from 10 years in research. Fellows, drawn from Beth Israel Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, Siouxland Medical Education Foundation, Tufts University and Tufts Medical Center delivered presentations on cutting-edge research.

Symposium topics included: Molecular mechanisms that link type 2 diabetes and breast cancer progression, Novel biological roles for Vitamin K, Does women's empowerment really improve child nutrition in Bangladesh? and sixteen others.

One of the most exciting presentations on the agenda was that of conference co-chair Leonid Poretsky, M.D., Chief, Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism Director at Gerald J. Friedman Diabetes Institute, Gerald J. Friedman Chair in Endocrinology at Beth Israel Medical Center and Professor of Medicine at Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

Dr. Poretsky presented data from the first year of operation at the new Gerald J. Friedman Diabetes Institute at Beth Israel Medical Center. Perhaps the most important measurable goal the program has achieved is a 50% reduction in excess HbA1C (a reflection of an average of all blood sugars in an individual which have occurred in a period of three months) levels, in all patients at the Institute. The odds of this occurring by chance alone are .1%. With 99% certainty we can conclude that patients who have entered this program have shown these improvements within at least 3 months.

The first annual Gerald J. Friedman Fellows Symposium was sponsored by The Gerald J. and Dorothy R. Friedman Foundation and marked the first anniversary of The Gerald J. Friedman Diabetes Institute, Beth Israel Medical Center, New York City.

as reported by April Sandmeyer

NYC has a comparative shortage of diabetes medical centers that was well-documented by the NY Times. Unfortunately, this is driven by the economics of the dysfunctional U.S. medical system. Consider that Boston and Philadelphia (cities and metro areas which are considerably smaller) both have more diabetes medical centers than the nation's largest city and metro area, which has just under 8 million residents within the city limits alone.

This is indeed great news for New York, and the generosity of the Friedmans cannot be underestimated.

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