Oregon Health & Science University emerged from a pandemic in 2023 with a renewed commitment to its mission to improve the health and well-being of people in Oregon and beyond.
As the state’s only academic health center, OHSU routinely takes on the most complex cases from across the region, while educating the next generation of health care professionals. At the same time, the university is an economic engine that amassed a record amount of research funding to drive countless discoveries related to human health.
Indeed, even by typical OHSU standards, the year brought some remarkable developments.
In August, OHSU announced a non-binding letter of intent to integrate with Legacy Health. The combined health system would become the largest employer in the Portland metro area, with more than 100 clinical locations, 10 hospitals and more than 3 million patient visits annually.
Meanwhile, OHSU logged a series of notable milestones during the year.
- David Huang, M.D., Ph.D., earned the Lasker Award, known as “America’s Nobel,” for developing a widely used type of imaging technology that prevents blindness and is increasingly used to diagnose and treat conditions of the heart, brain and skin.
- OHSU served as a safe haven for scores of patients denied reproductive health care in states outside of Oregon, following the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in 2022 that allowed states to ban abortion or impose extreme restrictions.
- The newly established OHSU Gun Violence Prevention Research Center is applying a public health approach to reduce firearm injuries and deaths, highlighted by a roundtable discussion in October.
Following is a sampling of other OHSU innovations and accomplishments during the past year:
OHSU sees the most complex cases from throughout the region, and clinicians continue to lead new innovations in improving the health and well-being of patients in Oregon and well beyond. Throughout the year, OHSU continued efforts to diversify its workforce and address the health risks caused by climate change.
- Brain implant at OHSU successfully controls both seizures and OCD
- Driven by OHSU research, FDA approves new drug to prevent hearing loss in children with cancer
- ‘Liver in a box’ helps save more lives, can improve transplant outcomes
- OHSU patient with breast cancer: ‘I have hope again’
- OHSU achieves national milestone in new knee repair technique
- From Sandy to Switzerland: OHSU patient overcomes heart condition with new treatment
- Osteosarcoma survivor carves a new path forward
- Gene therapy allows teen to see snowflakes for the first time
- MRI innovation for the first time reveals cells’ energy activity in organs and tissues
- New tool will help to diagnose form of extreme social isolation
- Young mother’s harrowing injury ends in amazing recovery
- Saving more lives from pancreatic cancer
- Team conducts first awake spine surgery at OHSU
- OHSU heart transplant patient thriving nearly three decades after surgery
OHSU scientists operate on the leading edge of research, and in 2023 researchers published important findings ranging from next-generation cancer treatments to new avenues for treating alcohol use disorder.
- OHSU Biofabrication Hub develops organs, bone for pioneering research into cancer, more
- OHSU scientists discover new cause of Alzheimer’s, vascular dementia
- OHSU researchers assemble comprehensive atlas of human gene mutations
- Study reveals limitations in evaluating gene editing technology in human embryos
- Quarter of low-income older Americans don’t have health insurance, study finds
- OHSU researchers identify promising next-generation cancer treatment
- Almost half of people who use drugs in rural areas were recently incarcerated
- Teens rarely receive addiction medication in U.S. treatment
- OHSU-led study seeks to better support transgender patients before surgery
- OHSU brings new tools in fight against lung cancer
- OHSU research offer clues for potential widespread HIV cure in people
- A surgeon-scientist blazes a new path to immune-based cancer treatment
- Study shows promise of gene therapy for alcohol use disorder
- OHSU confirms first nonhuman primate model of Usher syndrome
- THC use during pregnancy linked to changes in fetal development
- Study raises possibility of immunotherapy for treatment of ALS
- OHSU researchers find immune response to COVID-19 strengthens over time
As the state’s academic health center, OHSU is a statewide resource for all Oregonians, from the coast to the high desert of Central Oregon to the Owyhee country in Malheur County.
- Hitting the road to bring cancer education to Oregonians
- Making Hepatitis C care easier when treatment seems impossible
- OHSU leading effort to make cancer trials more inclusive
- OHSU program that protects kids’ vision marks 20 years
- Increasing cancer awareness, screening in underserved communities
- Inspiring students to pursue rural health care careers at MedQuest camp
- OHSU hosts screening event, launches study to reduce the risk of ground-level falls
- ‘Stop the Bleed’ training teaches life-saving skills
- Couple leaves $13 million gift to support cancer, dermatology research at OHSU
OHSU scientists and clinicians were recognized for being among the most accomplished in their respective fields.
In September, David Huang, M.D., Ph.D., became the latest OHSU scientist to earn the Lasker Award, followed by a White House ceremony in October where President Joe Biden told honorees: “You’re literally changing the world for the better.” It capped a year in which Huang was elected to the National Academy of Engineering and was among scientists and clinicians across OHSU who earned national and international accolades.
- OHSU dermatologists detect the world’s smallest skin cancer
- OHSU investigators awarded funding to extend leading-edge research
- Mitalipov honored with award in reproductive medicine
- Internationally renowned OHSU cancer biologist elected to the National Academy of Sciences
- OHSU names new director of Oregon National Primate Research Center