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Goldstein on the clarion call for scientists and the EPA

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E&E NEWS - The debate has gone on for some time over whether scientists should simply lay out their information and let politicians decide how to use it or advocate for a specific policies. Emeritus EOH professor and emeritus dean BERNARD GOLDSTEIN, who also served as assistant administrator for research in the Reagan administration says, “I find it very situational,” Goldstein said. He added that recent political attacks on science and particula... 

Bernstein addresses Congressional roundatble on climate change (video)

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U.S. CONGRESS - On June 20, 2017, emeritus dean and professor BERNARD GOLDSTEIN called on lawmakers to support a research agenda to mitigate global climate change during special D.C. hearing. As an expert environmental toxicologist, he emphasized the need to address conservatives’ reasons for not trusting climate science in order to get bipartisan support for research. He concluded that fighting over the issue is potentially disastrous to society... 

Cut off: A bereft nervous system may eat away at the will to live

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PITTMED MAGAZINE - Someone once told Eve, a teen with severe intractable depression, "You just aren’t working hard enough in therapy." And then her doctor, HuGen’s LISA PAN—along with fellow Human Genetics faculty member DAVID FINEGOLD—learned that she can’t seem to make critical neurotransmitters. As it turned out, Eve’s CSF level of biopterin, a chemical the body uses to synthesize several neurotransmitters, was through the floor. 

More data needed in fight against opioids use, Burke says

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PITTSBURG POST-GAZETTE - The numbers are staggering, and yet DONALD S. BURKE wants more of them. He believes good data is essential in fighting the opioid crisis that is growing exponentially across the country — and nowhere faster than the Appalachian region that includes Western Pennsylvania. Burke, dean of the University of Pittsburgh’s Graduate School of Public Health, took his case to Washington, where he participated Monday in a panel discu... 

Dean Burke addresses congressional hearing on the opioid epidemic

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On Monday, June 19, 2017, Dean Burke joined four other public health deans from Appalachian universities to speak at a U.S. congressional hearing on the national opioid epidemic. Addressing the standing-room-only crowd, he spoke about the epidemiology of the crisis and the need for better info on costs. “Billions [of dollars] are needed, and we don't have a good handle on the magnitude of the epidemic. We need data.” 

HPM's Jarlenski on arguments, evidence, and abortion policy 

HPM's Jarlenski on arguments, evidence, and abortion policy

PUBLIC HEALTH POST - In a public health article, HPM's MARIAN JARLENSKI says fake scientific arguments should not shape abortion law. She asks “why it is that so much un-scientific medical guidance is being codified into state statutes. Six state laws require that women seeking an abortion be counse... (06/19/2017)

Burke keynotes for Erie's opioid crisis psychiatry conference 

Burke keynotes for Erie's opioid crisis psychiatry conference

GO ERIE - A presentation and discussion of Erie’s opioid epidemic will highlight Thursday’s Challenges & Innovations in Rural Psychiatry Conference at the Bayfront Convention Center, sponsored by Stairways Behavioral Health. DONALD BURKE, dean of the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Publi... (06/19/2017)

Gellad says Medicare could learn a thing or two from the VA 

Gellad says Medicare could learn a thing or two from the VA

WALL STREET JOURNAL - In a piece by HPM's WALID GELLAD, he says, "Everyone agrees prescription drugs are too expensive, but what to do about it? One popular idea—supported in the past by President Trump, and by 80% of the public in some polls—is for Medicare to negotiate lower drug prices directly.... (06/14/2017)

Facts alone won’t convince people to vaccinate, but FRED can 

Facts alone won’t convince people to vaccinate, but FRED can

ESPN - There was something about showing a movie of your hometown that people relate to,” said DON BURKE, dean of Pitt's Graduate School of Public Health. It was his idea to break the data modeling down by county.The FRED platform allowed researchers to build a simulation of human interaction dynami... (06/12/2017)

Buchanich and Burke on fatal ODs across Pa. 

Buchanich and Burke on fatal ODs across Pa.

PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER - “For the first time in Allegheny County, fentanyl was found in more people than heroin,” said Pitt Public Health epidemiologist JEANINE BUCHANICH. There appear to be two distinct epidemics in Pennsylvania, said DONALD BURKE. Southeastern Pennsylvania historically ha... (06/08/2017)

King finds 1 in 5 surgical weight-loss patients take preseription opioids 

King finds 1 in 5 surgical weight-loss patients take preseription opioids

UPI - Research led by EPI's WENDY KING found that while the number of adults with severe obesity using prescription opioids initially declines in the months after bariatric surgery, it eventually increases to surpass pre-surgery rates. "Almost half of patients reporting opioid use at the time of sur... (06/05/2017)

Fabisiak and Brink: Air pollution increases regional health risks 

Fabisiak and Brink: Air pollution increases regional health risks

PITTSBURGH TODAY - “PM2.5 is probably the chief concern for the region, mainly because of its contribution from a source as big as the Clairton plant has an effect over a fairly large area,” said EOH associate prof JAMES FABISIAK.... “Everything that’s a risk factor for bad health is showing up high... (06/01/2017)

Zimmerman, Nowalk, Hawk, and Ricci receive Adult Immunization Publication Award 

Zimmerman, Nowalk, Hawk, and Ricci receive Adult Immunization Publication Award

Kudos to (photo front, left to right) alumna PATRICIA NOWALK (EPI '81, ’93) and BCHS faculty MARY HAWK, ED RICCI, and (back) RICHARD ZIMMERMAN, who received the Immunization Publication Excellence Award presented during the National Adult Influenza Immunization Summit, May 10, 2017, in Atlanta, Geor... (06/01/2017)

Human genetics research to understand craniofacial birth defects 

Human genetics research to understand craniofacial birth defects

A facial shape genetics paper from a research team including HUGEN's JOHN SHAFFER, ELEANOR FEINGOLD, and student EKATERINA ORLOVA, was among the top 50 most downloaded "PLoS Genetics" open-access journal papers in 2016. (05/30/2017)

IDM's Gupta team develops improved test to detect hidden HIV virus 

IDM's Gupta team develops improved test to detect hidden HIV virus

TRIBUNE REVIEW - “This will be extremely useful for clinical trials and people doing the basic science on the latency,” said PHALGUNI GUPTA, senior author and IDM vice-chair. In addition to being more sensitive, the new test is cheaper, easier, faster, and requires less blood than the test commonly ... (05/29/2017)

Van Panhuis explains why gaps in immunization coverage are troubling 

Van Panhuis explains why gaps in immunization coverage are troubling

STAR TRIBUNE - “That is the herd immunity,” said WILBERT VAN PANUIS, Pitt Public Health epidemiologist and affiliated faculty of the Public Health Dynamics Laboratory. Measles is less likely to turn into an outbreak if at least 95 percent of the population has immunity protection. ldquo;If the numbe... (05/28/2017)

Mixed wisdom on the first use of purpose-built crematory on U.S. soil 

Mixed wisdom on the first use of purpose-built crematory on U.S. soil

POST-GAZETTE - An early  motive for promoting cremation — to prevent contamination — appears overstated. Poorly buried corpses of people who died of infectious diseases in the 1800s could contaminate a nearby water supply, but there would have been no general risk of contamination from those who die... (05/28/2017)

Accelerated approval and expensive drugs — a challenging combination says HPM's Gellad 

Accelerated approval and expensive drugs — a challenging combination says HPM's Gellad

NEJM - Despite the uncertain evidence of clinical benefit, drugs receiving accelerated approval enter the market as FDA-approved products, and insurers must decide whether and how to pay for them. Those decisions are becoming increasingly complex in light of the rising prices of new drugs. Read abou... (05/25/2017)

Will the ACHA take away career flexibility, asks HPM's Donahue 

Will the ACHA take away career flexibility, asks HPM's Donahue

90.5 WESA - “So in effect, the people with preexisting conditions could find coverage so unaffordable that they don't have access to the market even though the guaranteed issue rule is still in place,” said JULIE DONAHUE, professor of health policy and management at the University of Pittsburgh. Don... (05/22/2017)

HPM's Hershey and Kahn offer perspective on state sepsis mandates and regulation of hospital quality 

HPM's Hershey and Kahn offer perspective on state sepsis mandates and regulation of hospital quality

NEW ENGLAND JOURNAL OF MEDICINE - In an editorial on “Rory’s Regulations” requiring hospitals follow a protocol to quickly identify and treat sepsis, Pitt Public Health’s TINA BATRA HERSHEY and JEREMY M. KAHN examine the potential of additional state sepsis mandates, noting this represented a major ... (05/21/2017)

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