The Translational Research Institute’s (TRI) Pathfinder Committee is committed to ensuring that UAMS students, trainees and faculty consistently receive well-balanced educational opportunities and appropriate research mentorship and guidance. The Pathfinder Committee is comprised of UAMS faculty members who have a history of productive research, successful mentoring and proven leadership at the campus level.

Pathfinders can assist with:

  • Identifying appropriate mentors or collaborators
  • Developing research, training and career development plans
  • Selecting curriculum and identifying research rotations and other campus resources

Contact the Research Education, Training and Career Development program manager to connect with a pathfinder.

TRI Pathfinders

Mary Aitken Bradley Martin Nancy Rusch
Cornelia Beck Robert McGehee Jr. Delia Smith West
Lawrence Cornett Jean McSweeney  
Laura James Samuel Michael Owens


Mary Aitken, M.D., M.P.H. | Biography

Professor, Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine
Director, Center for Applied Research and Evaluation
Medical Director, Arkansas Children’s Hospital Injury Prevention Center

Research Interests: Pediatric injury prevention, assessment of health status and outcomes following injury, particularly traumatic brain injury, and community-based health promotion

Cornelia Beck, Ph.D., R.N., F.A.A.N. | Biography

Professor, Department of Geriatrics, College of Medicine
Director of Research, Hartford Center of Geriatric Nursing Excellence
Director, Alzheimer’s Disease Center
Co-Director, Translational Research Institute (TRI)

Research Interests: Strategies to improve best practices in long-term care settings and non-drug interventions to alleviate problem behavior and promote functional performance in persons with dementia

Lawrence Cornett, Ph.D. | Biography

Professor, Department of Physiology and Biophysics, College of Medicine
Executive Associate Dean for Research, College of Medicine
UAMS Vice Chancellor for Research
Co-Director, Translational Research Institute (TRI)

Research Interests: Role of β2-adrenergic receptors in mediating airway responsiveness in asthma and hormonal regulation of stress responses at the level of the anterior pituitary gland

Laura James, M.D.

Professor, Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine

Research Interests: Mechanisms and pathways of recovery in the liver following acetaminophen toxicity in the mouse model; development of assays for measuring biomarkers of acetaminophen toxicity in clinical samples

Bradley Martin, Pharm.D., Ph.D. | Biography

Professor and Director, Division of Pharmaceutical Evaluation and Policy, College of Pharmacy

Research Interests: Retrospective population-based economic and epidemiologic studies using large administrative data sets and national health surveys

Robert McGehee Jr., Ph.D. | Biography

Professor, Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine
Dean, UAMS Graduate School
Director, Basic Science Research, Arkansas Children’s Hospital

Research Interests: Adipocyte development; regulation of adipogenesis by retinoblastoma proteins; the relationship between obesity and diabetes

Jean McSweeney, Ph.D, R.N., F.A.H.A., F.A.A.N.

Professor and Associate Dean for Research, College of Nursing
Director, Tailored Biobehavioral Interventions Research Center

Research Interests: Women and cardiovascular disease, focusing on early warning and acute symptoms of myocardial infarction

Samuel Michael Owens, Ph.D. | Biography

Professor, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, College of Medicine
Director, Center for Alcohol and Drug Abuse Studies

Research Interests: Development of antibody-based therapies for the treatment of substance abuse

Nancy Rusch, Ph.D.

Professor and Chair, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, College of Medicine

Research Interests: Role of ion channel abnormalities in systemic and pulmonary hypertension

Delia Smith West, Ph.D.

Professor, Department of Health Behavior and Health Education, College of Public Health
Director, Center for the Study of Obesity

Research Interests: Causes and treatment of obesity and eating disorders; behavioral interventions for obesity-related medical conditions, particularly type II diabetes and hypertension; health issues among minority and underserved women

The Translational Research Institute (TRI) at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) is funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) program, grants UL1TR000039 and KL2TR000063. The CTSA program is led by the NIH’s National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS). The content of this website is solely the responsibility of UAMS and does not necessarily represent the official views of the NIH.

All publications, patents, projects, etc., resulting from the utilization of TRI resources are required to credit the TRI grant by including the NIH Funding Acknowledgment and must comply with NIH Public Access Policy.