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Research & Practice

Funded Research and Training Projects

The Department of Epidemiology, the largest department at Pitt Public Health, offers interdisciplinary research opportunities in the City Of Pittsburgh, which is recognized as an international hub for health care innovation and practice. The school is one of the nation’s leading schools of public health, consistently ranking in the top tier among schools of public health in terms of NIH funding. The Department of Epidemiology accounts for about forty percent of the school’s total grant funding.

The Department of Epidemiology has a central theme of "Teaching and Prevention through Quality Research," and is involved in both research and prevention activities. The department’s primary faculty members have a varied range of research interests reflected in more than 90 funded projects and more than 500 publications each year. Faculty, staff and student participation in regular seminars provides a rich collaborative environment.

Based on faculty research, the department offers many areas of emphasis including aging, applied public health, cancer, cardiovascular and diabetes, clinical trials and methods, environmental, global health, infectious disease, injury prevention, molecular and genetics, neuroepidemiology, obesity and nutritional, prevention, lifestyle and physical activity, psychiatric, reproductive, perinatal and pediatric and women's health epidemiology.

Research programs include those with global reach in over a dozen nations including: maternal and child health (rural India); functional disability in aging (rural India); diabetes (Rwanda), hypertension, cardiovascular disease (rural India, Tobago); impaired kidney function (Tobago); infectious disease/HIV (Brazil, India, and Mozambique); bone health (Tobago); prostate cancer (Tobago, Nigeria); cancer (China); environmental health (China); application of the Internet and Mobile technology for global health and prevention; Infectious diseases/dengue modeling (Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia, Taiwan, Brazil, Columbia); atherosclerosis, coronary heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (Japan).

Research Innovations

in risk assessment

  • use of advanced imaging methods
  • use of biomarkers, including genetic profiles and personal monitoring
  • use of activity monitoring and environmental (air and water quality) assessment
  • use of molecular tools to detect and study emerging bacterial infections - in data management and analysis
  • adaptive designs for clinical trials
  • geographic modeling
  • temporal modeling

Research Highlights

  • through the Center for Aging and Population Health (CAPH, a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Research Center, supporting data collection for several large studies, primarily in older adults but also in other groups
  • through CAPH, addressing healthy aging by promoting a comprehensive community prevention program called the 10 Keys to Healthy Aging 
  • with funding from the National Institutes of Health, currently conducting the Lifestyles and Independence for the Elderly Trial, Testosterone Trial, and Aspirin to Prevent Events in the Elderly Trial
  • engaging in ongoing follow-up for the Epidemiology of Diabetes Complications study, Women’s Health Initiative, Cardiovascular Health Study, Study of Osteoporotic Fracture, and Men's Osteoporosis Study

Collaborating Partners

  • Pitt Public Health departments
  • Pitt Department of Psychiatry
  • University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute
  • Magee Womens Research Institute
  • Allegheny County Health Department
  • Pennsylvania Department of Health
© 2017 by University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health

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