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PFAS expert Savitz interviewed by Detroit Public TV

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GREAT LAKES NOW - Last week, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder’s office declared two townships in Kalamazoo County a state of emergency due to elevated levels of the chemicals called “PFAS.” The amount is 20 times what the EPA says is unsafe. To find out more about PFAS contamination and what it can do to water and to the human body, Great Lakes Now talked with PFAS expert DAVID SAVITZ (EPI '82).  

Robin Leaf and Marnie Bertolet complete the Diversity and Inclusion Certificate Program

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Congratulations to Student Affairs' ROBIN LEAF and EPI's MARNIE BERTOLET, EPI professor, for completing the Diversity and Inclusion Certificate Program (DICP) and for being recognized at the recent Graduation Ceremony. DICP is designed to reinforce the University’s core values of diversity and inclusion through a series of six workshops open to all faculty and staff.   

Brent comments on the potential affect of suicide details reported by the media

REUTERS - How the media reports on suicides may impact whether others decide to kill themselves in the days following the original death, a study suggests. Stories can have a positive effect if they shed light on the role of mental health issues, according to EPI's DAVID BRENT.   

SuperCourse created to reduce the brain drain

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THE BORGEN PROJECT - The “Brain Drain” is the migration of professionals from one country to another in search of a higher standard of living. This has negative effects on developing nations. To increase the connectivity between professionals in developed and developing countries a revolutionary network has been developed at the University of Pittsburgh called SuperCourse. EPI's TREVOR ORCHARD is on the editorial board and Faina Linkov (EPI '05)... 

'Good cholesterol' may not always be good for postmenopausal women

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NBC NEWS - Postmenopausal factors may have an impact on the heart-protective qualities of high-density lipoproteins (HDL) – also known as ‘good cholesterol.' Higher HDL cholesterol may not always be as protective in postmenopausal women as we once thought, said SAMAR EL KHOUDARY, lead author and EPI professor. "High total HDL cholesterol in postmenopausal women could mask a significant heart disease risk that we still need to understand.”  

Updated osteoporosis screening guidelines cover only women. That could hurt men, says Cauley

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PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER - The emphasis on screening women for osteoporosis has fostered a sexist view of the bone-weakening disease. That’s harmful to men, whose bones also weaken with age. Men are twice as likely to die within a year of breaking a hip. In a journal editorial accompanying the guidelines, EPI's JANE CAULEY, said screening men is justified and should target those 70 and older “who have a high probability of fracture.”  

Pitt task force outlines framework for confronting nationwide opioid crisis

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PITTWIRE - Pitt is taking a leading role in tackling the public health crisis by strengthening its prevention, treatment and recovery programs to bring meaningful change to the lives of students. "While opioid abuse is lower on university campuses, we can't be complacent," said Chancellor Patrick Gallagher. Pitt Public Health was represented on the task by BRADY BUSHOVER (EPI '18) and project coordinator MICHAEL MALLON (BCHS '13).   

Pitt Public Health finds ‘good cholesterol’ may not always be good for postmenopausal women

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ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - Postmenopausal factors may have an impact on the heart-protective qualities of high-density lipoproteins (HDL) – also known as ‘good cholesterol.' “The results of our study are particularly interesting to both the public and clinicians because total HDL cholesterol is still used to predict cardiovascular disease risk,” said lead author and EPI's, SAMAR EL KHOUDARY (EPI '08).   

Pitt's opioid task force releases recommendations

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PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE - The task force, which includes officials and students, including BRADY BUSHOVER (EPI '18) and MICHAEL MALLON (BCHS '13), has recommended that the school mobilize its research and treatment resources to fight addiction through initiatives ranging from partnerships with local medical centers to an on-campus space devoted to student recovery.   

Power from the ground up: A garden in Larimer shows collaboration across fault lines

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PUBLIC SOURCE - At first, some were skeptical about the African Healing Garden in Larimer. Too often outside forces dropped projects into the neighborhood without knowing the people there. However, EPI's HEATHER ENG says the garden is a “bridge” for the people that live there. Sharing Facebook posts of its progress has "helped us all have something that we can talk about with enthusiasm and appreciation.”   

Brent on suicide rates climbing across the nation

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NY TIMES - Suicide rates rose steadily in nearly every state from 1999 to 2016, increasing 25 percent nationally. Studies found that slightly more than half of people who had committed suicide did not have any known mental health condition. “The reason most suicide decedents don’t have a known mental disorder is that they were never diagnosed, not that they didn’t have one,” said EPI's DAVID BRENT.   

Belle honored for contributions to clinical trials

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UPMC - EPI's STEVEN BELE has been named a fellow of the Society for Clinical Trials, recognized for outstanding leadership for several multicenter studies of surgical outcomes and other treatment trials across a wide range of conditions and applications. “It’s an honor to be recognized by those who themselves are leaders in the premier international society devoted to clinical trials and other health care research."   

New roles for Cauley and Ayyavoo

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JANE CAULEY, who has served as the associate dean for research, will be stepping down from that position to take on additional responsibilities as the executive vice chair of EPI. Cauley is also a distinguished professor of epidemiology. VELPANDI AYYAVOO, currently associate dean for faculty affairs and IDM professor, will become the associate dean for research and faculty affairs. Congratulations!   

Gary-Webb and Mendez talk Project Hunger (Video)

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WTAE - More than 325,000 people in southwestern Pennsylvania are food insecure according to the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank. Rural areas are particularly vulnerable. "If groceries stores are miles away, it'll be very difficult to get to those," says BCHS's TIFFANY GARY-WEBB. "Some do have access to food but it may not be the most helpful food," says EPI's DARA MENDEZ.   

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