University of North Texas Health Science Center: April 2016

University of North Texas Health Science Center: April 2016

Forth Worth, TX
Creating solutions for a healthier community.

The University of North Texas Health Science Center (UNTHSC) is one of the nation’s premier graduate academic medical centers, with five schools that specialize in patient-centered education, research and health care. The UNT Health Science Center comprises the Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine (TCOM), the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, the School of Public Health, the School of Health Professions, the UNT System College of Pharmacy, plus other centers and institutes. UNT Health handles over 600,000 patient visits annually. The group's 230 physicians practice in 40 medical and surgical specialties and subspecialties, including allergy/immunology, family practice, cardiology, neurology, obstetrics & gynecology, oncology, orthopedics, psychiatry, sports medicine and neurosurgery.

Tucked in the Cultural District of Fort Worth, the University of North Texas Health Science Center (UNTHSC) is home to one of the nation’s most comprehensive health care educational programs.

Since the opening of the renowned Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine in 1970, UNTHSC has evolved to include graduate schools for pharmacists, physician assistants, physical therapists, public health experts and biomedical scientists. In the works is a new medical school with Texas Christian University, which when completed will make UNTHSC one of the few academic medical centers in the country training both allopathic and osteopathic physicians.

Meeting the community’s healthcare needs is a top priority for UNTHSC, which graduates the second highest percentage of primary care physicians of any medical school in the country. 

“We are equally as committed to the advancement of research in diverse fields and the reduction of health disparities around the globe,” said David P. Cistola, M.D., Ph.D., vice president for Research & Innovation. “Our internationally known researchers are taking the lead in exploring new approaches to the prevention and treatment of Alzheimer's disease, ocular diseases, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, and cancer.”

UNTHSC serves as home to a number of NIH- and federally funded research and training programs and currently leads all Texas health science centers in the rate of research growth.

A blood test under development by UNTHSC researchers could one day make it possible to identify early Alzheimer’s disease. Across campus, the North Texas Eye Research Institute is focused on discovering the cause of vision-robbing diseases. In the quest to reduce side effects from chemotherapy, UNTHSC researchers are using HDL-like nanoparticles as trojan horses to deliver chemotherapy directly to tumors.

UNTHSC’s renowned forensics and applied genetics program is one of the most advanced in the country, working with police departments and government agencies worldwide to identify missing persons and human remains, and to address the problem of human trafficking using next-generation DNA technology.

In the pharmaceutical world, UNTHSC is helping start-ups reach the marketplace at lightning speed. The Tech Fort Worth-UNTHSC Accelerator Lab served as home to biotech companies, such as ZS Pharma, which was recently acquired by AstraZeneca for $2.7 billion.

Long known for educating health professionals to serve minority populations, they continue to find innovative ways to 

address this urgent need. Professor J.K. Vishwanatha is one of four leaders of the NIH-funded National Research Mentoring Program, which is designing a mentoring network to help researchers from underrepresented minorities thrive in biomedical careers.

UNTHSC’s efforts are strengthened by Research!America and its dedication to supporting innovative therapies, promoting new discoveries and serving as an advocate for the future of medicine. “Research!America is a very strong advocate and valuable asset,” said Dr. Cistola. 

Media Contacts

Tim Haynes
Senior Director of Communications 

The capabilities are enormous, a little bit of research can pay off quite a bit in the long run.
Paul D’ Addario, retinitis pigmentosa patient