News

Kamboh co-PI on $10.7M for Alzheimer's Disease Genetic Research

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UPMC - A new project with Washington University School of Medicine funded by the NIH aims to advance Alzheimer's research using whole genome sequencing to address a critical knowledge gap. HUGEN and EPI's Ilyas Kamboh is part of a research team that plans to identify the genetic variants, genes and pathways that lead to formation of plaques and tangles - two biomarkers that appear 15-25 years before symptoms.    

Special Report: Dementia wards in PA were ravaged during the pandemic. Nace explains.

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US NEWS/POST-GAZETTE - Sixy-seven percent of big outbreaks were in personal care and assisted living homes with dementia units. Just keeping infections from dementia wards has been daunting, said David Nace (EPI '95), chief medical officer for UPMC Senior Communities and co-lead of the state's regional collaborative that responds to outbreaks in long-term care homes in Western Pennsylvania.   

Althouse: Why Number Needed to Treat Can be Misleading for Vaccines

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MEDSCAPE - Andrew Althouse (EPI '13) authored a piece discussing how the "number needed to treat" (NNT) concept is misleading when applied blindly to vaccine trials for COVID-19.   

King discusses vaccine hesitancy paper and looking at hesitance by occupation

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KDKA AM - "Our hope as public health professionals is that overtime, people that are vaccine hesitant now will be willing to take the vaccine [in the future]," said EPI's Wendy King, lead author on a recent paper looking at vaccine hesitancy by occupation.   

Hill and colleagues find that coke works fire made asthma worse for sufferers nearby

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WTAE - Brandy Bywra-Hill (EOH '22) was lead author on a recent study in collaboration with ACHD that recounts the impact of the Christmas Eve 2018 fire that destroyed the pollution controls of the U.S. Clairton Coke Works. "This is the type of data that helps shape policy about air emissions, factory emissions, public health - all sorts of things," said Hill.    

Newman: Remote Research and Clinical Trial Integrity During and After the Coronavirus Pandemic

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JAMA NETWORK - EPI Chair Anne Newman is co-author on a recent publication evaluating the affect of remote research needs through coronavirus mitigation efforts on clinical trials, finding that reducing unnecessary participant travel may be beneficial but that other factors can compromise the validity and integrity of certain trials and that deciding to conduct future trials remotely should be considered carefully.   

Mendez talks Black Maternal Health in Adagio Health's Better Health Outcomes Speakers Series

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In observance of Black Maternal Health week, EPI's Dara Mendez presented Black Maternal Health in Pennsylvania and the U.S., presenting data, discussing the implcations of racism and next steps. Open for the full recording.   

Roberts on COVID-19 vaccination rates falling short in parts of MN

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STAR-TRIBUNE - COVID-19 vaccination rates are lagging in parts of Minnesota as the pace of new shots slows throughout the state, an early warning sign that achieving herd immunity could take longer in some places. "In rural areas, the fact is you are still moving around, you are still coming into contact with people," said HPM and PHDL's Mark Roberts. "If only 40% of the people in that geographic area are vaccinated and immune then you have a hi... 

Gary-Webb on vaccine inequity between Black and White Allegheny County residents

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WESA - Gary-Webb agrees that the mass vaccination sites were an important and effective way to quickly inoculate a large number of people. But now that nearly half of Allegheny County’s population has received at least one dose of the vaccine, she said it is time to shift efforts to clinics that target specific populations. This is due not only to vaccine hesitancy concerns, but also to the fact that some people who are still unvaccinated face m... 

Barkin examines impact of climate change on mental health

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Jennifer Barkin (EPI '09, BIOST '02) is attracting national attention for her work at the intersection of climate/mental health, recently receiving Georgia's Vanguard of Environmental Justice Award for her work. She developed the Barkin Index to measure function during new motherhood and now, she’s working on creating the Climate Distress Index to examine how and to what degree changes in the environment affect a person’s mental health.   

Ding wins 2021 Craig Award

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Congratulations to Ying Ding! "As a teacher, Dr. Ding can answer very hard theory questions as well as practical problems that students may have about statistics, and she is also experienced in inspiring a student's interests in statistics," said one nominator. Other nominators said she was accessible both in and out of the classroom and willing to encourage discussion and encourage work outside of the classroom.   

Wang wins ICSA Student Paper Award

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Xinjun (David) Wang (BIOST ’22) wins 2020 ICSA Student Travel Award for his paper entitled “BREM-SC: A Bayesian Random Effects Mixture Model for Joint Clustering Single Cell Multi-omics Data”.   

Dean's Day 2021 EPI departmental award recipients

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Darien Beall (EPI '21) won the master's level award and Mary Schiff (EPI 22) won the doctoral level award. Taylor Robinson (EPI '22) and Yu-Husan Lai (EPI '22) won the new Department of Epidemiology Health Disparity Research Award.   

Dean's Day 2021 Doctoral Category Winners

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Congratulations to first place winner Alexander Layden (EPI ‘20). Second place was awarded to Alexander Sundermann (EPI '22) and third to Tianyu Zou (HUGEN ‘21).   

Dean's Day 2021 Master's Category Winners

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Congratulations to Dean's Day winners in the master's category. Receiving first place is Simon Cao (EPI '21). Second place was awarded to Paula Dzimira (EPI ‘19). Third place was given to Ke'alohi Worthington (EPI '21).   

Dean's Day 2021 Rosenkranz award recipient

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This year's Herbert Rosenkranz Prize was given to Andrea Casas (EPI '21).    

Award recipients for 2021's CPHP Translation and Cartier Ulrich Award

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In conjunction with Dean's Day, Praveen Kumar (HPM '21) and Alexander Sundermann (EPI '22) received the Center for Public Health Practice Award for Translation and Application of Research to Public Health Policy and Practice. In addition, Darien Beall (EPI '21) and Stephanie Christian (BCHS '23) were awarded with the Catherine Cartier Ulrich Memorial Award for Service to the Underserved.   

Biostatistics departmental award recipient for Dean's Day 2021

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The Department of Biostatistics awarded two prizes. One to Wei Zong ('23) and the other to Xinjun Wang ('22).   

Dean's Day 2021 BCHS departmental award recipients

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Chinwoke Isiguzo (BCHS '23) received the prize for the master's category and Sarah Sanders (BCHS '22) received the doctoral prize.   

Dean's Day 2021 EOH Keleti Award

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This year, EOH awarded the Keleti Award to Qiao Lin (EOH '21).   

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Cen named to Pitt's Board of Trustees 

Cen named to Pitt's Board of Trustees

PITTWIRE - Among the latest to be added to Pitt's Board of Trustees is alumna Hui (Debra) Cen (IDM '91). Cen is a biologist, biotech entrepreneur, Rotarian and social entrepreneur who did biomedical research at the National Institutes of Health, the University of California, San Francisco and Chiro... (07/12/2021)
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BIG STAKES, BIG STATS: Making sense of COVID-19 trials 

BIG STAKES, BIG STATS: Making sense of COVID-19 trials

PITTWIRE — When we hear about clinical trials, we might picture doctors and patients partnering to test new therapies. What we might not think about are the many others who make those studies happen. Take Maria Mori Brooks, professor of epidemiology and biostatistics, who makes sense of the numbers... (02/24/2021)
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Covid vaccine misinformation target of Pitt study 

Covid vaccine misinformation target of Pitt study

KDKA CBS NEWS — Fueled by a grant from the Richard King Mellon Foundation, Pitt researchers are studying and combating false online information about vaccines. “Vaccines are often the victim of their own success,” said BCHS doctoral student Beth Hoffman, a research assistant at the Center for Resea... (02/01/2021)