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Sunday, September 23,2012

OU Diabetes Center has new director

Photo Credits: Submitted photo
Photo Caption: Dr. Darlene Berryman

Ohio University has appointed Darlene Berryman, Ph.D., R.D., as director of The Diabetes Institute at Ohio University, the first initiative of the OU Health Sciences Center.

According to a news release, the Institute was created to bring together the many diabetes-related programs throughout the university in an effort to best address one of the most critical health-care issues facing Americans.

The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that one in three Americans born in the year 2000 will develop diabetes. Though the incidence in Ohio is higher than in the rest of the nation at 9.5 percent, it is higher yet - at 11.5 percent - in southeastern Appalachian Ohio, the release said.

"It is an exciting time to be involved in the study of diabetes at Ohio University," Berryman said in the news release. "In the past we developed a number of initiatives in research, clinical services, and educational programming. Now with the establishment of The Diabetes Institute, these initiatives are housed under one unit enhancing the synergy we have developed to address this devastating disease."

The OU Board of Trustees has renamed the Diabetes Endocrine Center as The Diabetes Institute at Ohio University. The newly named institute will assume and build upon several existing initiatives including the Diabetes Research Initiative, the Diabetes Coalition and the clinical services, provided through the Diabetes Endocrine Center, a clinic for diabetes patient care located on the O'Bleness Hospital campus, the release said.

The Institute will expand opportunities for further development of diabetes research, clinical care, education and community outreach, according to the release. "With the establishment of the Institute, we will be able to make a significant impact toward reducing the diabetes disease burden regionally, nationally and globally," Berryman said.

Dr. Berryman is one of several strategic appointments made possible in part by the historic $105 million gift to the Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine (OU-HCOM) from the Osteopathic Heritage Foundations, according to the news release. She has a dual appointment with both OU-HCOM and the College of Health Sciences and Professions. In addition to her directorship responsibilities, she will continue her obesity research at the Edison Biotechnology Institute and as associate professor of food and nutrition and continue to oversee the Diabetes Certificate Program.

"We are pleased that Dr. Berryman will be providing leadership for The Diabetes Institute," Dr. Randy Leite, dean of the College of Health Science and Professions, said in the release. "I've had a chance to work closely with her on a number of activities and know, first, hand, both her level of dedication and the quality of her work."

The Institute will be administratively housed in OU-HCOM, with financial and personnel resources contributed by the College of Health Science of Professions, the Edison Biotechnology Institute, and the Office of Vice President for Research and Creative Activity.

Additional funding for The Diabetes Institute comes from the Osteopathic Heritage Foundations' gift.


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