Getting to know Jack Turman, Ph.D.

by Karen Burbach, UNMC public relations | August 12, 2010

The School of Allied Health Professions today hosts a formal campus welcome for its new director of physical therapy education.

Internationally recognized developmental neurobiologist Jack Turman Jr., Ph.D., joined the SAHP in July after serving as founder and director of the Center for Premature Infant Health and Development at the University of Southern California (USC) Keck School of Medicine since 2002.

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Jack Turman, Ph.D.
In all, he spent 15 years as a faculty member at USC, which U.S. News & World Report has ranked as the top PT program since 2004.

You can meet Dr. Turman today from 2 to 4 p.m. in University Tower's Private Dining Rooms A and B and learn more about his research as he answers the following questions:

Describe your research in layman's terms.

I look at interventions that will help preterm infants in the NICU improve their neurodevelopmental outcomes. I also have a great interest in community-based research to help reduce disparities in infant mortality and poor birth outcomes.

Why is this research important?

My research is important to help improve the outcomes of preterm infants and their families. A preterm birth is considered anything less than 37 weeks gestation.

How did a physical therapist become interested in the neurodevelopmental outcomes of preemies?

I became interested while practicing physical therapy in a large inner city hospital in Los Angeles, treating children after they were discharged from the NICU and living in the community.

What are your research collaboration plans and goals?

I want to collaborate with faculty in medical nutrition, newborn medicine, radiation technology, pediatric GI, and the Munroe-Meyer Institute to understand how early nutrition interventions impact neurodevelopmental outcomes of preterm infants. On the public health side, I would like to collaborate with public health researchers and community members to help reduce disparities in adverse birth outcomes.

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Pat Hageman
August 12, 2010 at 7:16 AM

Welcome Aboard Jack! The program will be in great hands with you at the helm. All the best.