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Double doctors

By Matthew Bates

Adam Jara, D.O./Ph.D. candidate



Jara, who just completed his second year of medical school, will devote the next three years to working on his Ph.D. He spent summer 2008 learning protocols and techniques for his doctoral research with John Kopchick, D.O., Goll-Ohio Eminent Scholar and professor of molecular biology.

Jara’s work with Kopchick will concern growth hormones  and the development of effective tests to detect biomarkers induced by them, a subject that has interested Jara since he was an undergraduate student studying molecular biology. 

“Before coming to OU, I had followed the lab’s work on obesity and growth hormone,” Jara says. “After meeting Dr. Kopchick the summer before medical school, I knew his lab and expertise would help provide a robust clinical and laboratory training experience.”

According to Kopchick, Jara’s background in molecular biology and dedication to both medicine and molecular research made him a good fit for his lab. 

“Adam is dedicated. He reads the literature, understands the concepts and writes well,” said Kopchick. “I anticipate that Adam will become a very good clinical researcher and a terrific doctor. 

After leaving medical school, Jara hopes to work in an academic setting, where he can practice clinical medicine while reserving time to continue his research.


The concurrent challenges of the dual-degree program help students look at medical problems in a new way. By participating in the dual-degree program, Zidron and Jara enhance their critical thinking and writing skills while contributing to cutting edge developments in medical treatment.

“For one thing, I often think more about the evidence base for treatments than I probably would have without the research background,” Zidron said. “I think that this [program] is something that has benefitted me as a medical student and will make me a better doctor.”


Past D.O./Ph.D. recipients (biological sciences):

  • James Brent Oliver, D.O. (’93), Ph.D.
    • Advisor: Joseph Jollick, Ph.D.
  • Michael Murray, D.O. (’98), Ph.D.
    • Advisor: Linda Ross, D.O. (’07), Ph.D.
  • Mark Verdun, D.O. (’00), Ph.D.
    • Advisor: Ann Loucks, Ph.D.
  • Brian Yoder, D.O. (’00), Ph.D.
    • Advisor: Kenneth Goodrum, Ph.D.

Flexing the research muscle

[1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8]

  Paul Eichenseer, OMS III
  Annick Edon, OMS III
  Stephen Jones, D.O. ('10)
  Amy Zidron, Ph.D., D.O. ('10)
  Adam Jara, OMS III
  Jonathan Umbel, OMS IV
  Lisa Martorano, OMS III
  Marisa McGinley, OMS III
  Ohio University
College of Osteopathic Medicine
Grosvenor Hall | Athens, Ohio 45701
Tel: 1-800-345-1560
Last updated: 06/17/2010