Identification and Characterization of Potential Environmental Risk Factors for ALS Using the ATSDR/CDC Registry: Case Control Study:
I have recently( (2017-2018) been successful in obtaining two research grants ;
one from the CDC (RO1 ) to partner with the CDC/ATSDR ALS registry and biorepository to carry out a case controls study to consider pesticide and other environmental exposures in ALS cases compared to controls who are matched by age, gender and residential area ( county). The second grant funded by the Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Society will use data from the Women's Health Initiative cohort study as a platform to study the relationship of Air toxics and ALS risk working with Eric Whitsel ,PHD (UNC) and the WHI air pollution research group.
Relationship between Air Pollution and Asthma with other Acute Respiratory Hospitalizations/Emergency Department Visits in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania Department of Health
We will utilize Emergency Department discharge data obtained from local hospitals and hospital systems (which include Children’s Hospital, UPMC, and Allegheny Health Network) for residents of Allegheny County for the period 1999-2011. Data includes age, gender, ZIP code of residence, date of visit, and disposition. This data will be linked to daily modeled air pollutant predictions at the ZIP code level for PM2.5, O3, NO2, SO2 and CO which were specifically developed for the PARIES project and corresponding temperature. A case-crossover / time series analysis will be performed to examine the effects of short-term exposure to the specific air pollutants on Emergency Department visits for asthma and other acute respiratory conditions. Compared to an earlier investigation, 1 this analysis will use data from more than one hospital system, including data from Children’s Hospital where a majority of children in the area are treated, and will also have more geographically refined exposure estimates.
Use of Linked Data to Investigate Opioid-Related Hospitalizations and Mortality in PA in conjunction with the PA Department of Health
Dean’s office, GSPH, University of Pittsburgh.
The Department of Epidemiology team headed by Drs Thomas Songer and Evelyn Talbott are collaborating with the Pennsylvania Department of Health (PADOH) to conduct the first ever investigation of hospitalizations of opioid overdose/abuse that are also linked to causes of death for individuals within Pennsylvania for 2000-2011. The group will be conducting a study to track individuals from the first hospitalization due to an opioids overdose to subsequent hospitalizations and possible death. By using a linked a dataset from the Pennsylvania health department, we can track individual trajectories related to opioid abuse. This dataset links all hospitalizations in Pennsylvania from 2000 to 2011 where the individual had a least one opioid hospitalization during this period to all-causes of death for these individuals in PA from 2000 to 2014
CDC Academic Partners in Environmental Public Health Tracking: U19 EH000103-05
This CDC funded project has as its primary goals to 1) facilitate environmental health capacity building, 2) evaluate existing environmental health surveillance methodologies, and 3) foster development of innovative strategies and tools to assess possible links between hazards, exposures and health effects. The projected date for initial national implementation is June of 2009. The project will involve the evaluation of data linkage of health outcomes including childhood birth defects, autism, blood lead levels, childhood cancer and adverse reproductive outcomes such as low birth weight and 1UGR with environmental hazard and environmental exposure data for use by health departments for surveillance and potential public health
Pittsburgh Aerosol Research Inhalation Epidemiology Study:
Long Term Heath Impact of Fine Particulate matter (Allegheny County Clean Air Fund) 1999-2011 (funded 2014-2016)
This is an offshoot of a previously funded study called the Pittsburgh Aerosol Research Inhalation Epidemiology Study (PARIES) which examined the relationship between air pollution and several health endpoints, particularly cardiovascular and respiratory morbidly and mortality for the period 1999-2006. This study will extend the time period though 2011 and will focus on Allegheny County daily mortality and emergency department visits. The principal investigator and co-principal investigator are Richard Bilonick, PhD, Department of Ophthalmology, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and Evelyn Talbott, DrPH, MPH Department of Epidemiology, GSPH
Heinz-Endowments – Environmental and Personal Risk Factors in Childhood Autism
The primary objective of this epidemiological study is to investigate the association of specific environmental factors with the risk of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) by conducting a population based case-control study of ASD In Southwestern Pennsylvania with cases recruited from autism clinics and treatment centers as well as local pediatric and family medicine practices.
CDC - 2000-2010-37443 - Air Quality and Biomarkers of Cardiovascular Effects
The aim of this project is to advance the understanding of the association of ambient fine particulate air pollution with cardiovascular effects and make recommendations for further data and research needs within the Environmental Public Health Tracking program.
CDC - 200-2010-37444 - Development of Environmental Exposure Assessment Methods
This study will assess the impact of air lead on childhood lead poisoning through an ecological county level study, a case-control study, and an assessment of additional biomonitoring data through NHANES individual data on a US sample of children aged 1-5 for 1999-2004.