News

Big Data Reveals Hidden Subtypes of Sepsis

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UPMC - Much like cancer, sepsis isn't simply one condition but rather many conditions that could benefit from different treatments, according to the results of a Pitt study involving more than 60,000 patients featuring HPM's Derek Angus and reported in JAMA.   

Deep Sedation and Controlled Paralysis Do Not Improve Survival of Critically Ill Patients with Severe Breathing Difficulty

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Reversibly paralyzing and heavily sedating hospitalized patients with severe breathing problems do not improve outcomes in most cases, according to an NIH-funded clinical trial conducted at dozens of North American hospitals and led by clinician-scientists at Pitt, including HPM's Derek Angus, and University of Colorado.   

Pitt Public Health to Lead Creation of Global, Cloud-Based Data System for Infectious Diseases

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UPMC - Backed by a five-year, $6.7 million NIH grant, PHDL's Wilbert Van Panhuis plans to lead a culture shift in data-sharing rippling through scientific fields and harness it to improve global knowledge of infectious diseases.   

Household support for physical activity in adolescent girls living in primarily low socioeconomic status neighborhoods

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INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF EXERCISE SCIENCE - Kristie Rupp, Sharon Taverno Ross, Tiffany Gary-Webb, Thomas Akiva, and John M. Jakicic found that support for physical activity in the household for adolescents with higher BMI's may be warranted.   

Latent classes of polysubstance use among adolescents in the United States: Intersections of sexual identity with sex, age, and race/ethnicity

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LGBT HEALTH - Coulter RWS, Ware D, Fish JN, and Plankey MW found that compared with their heterosexual peers, gay/lesbian and bisexual adolescents-especially females-are at heightened risk of engaging in multiple types of polysubstance use. Designing, implementing, and evaluating interventions will likely reduce these sexual orientation disparities.   

Opresko study finds direct evidence that oxidative stress damage shortens telomeres

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UPMC - "If we can understand what causes telomere shortening and how cells compensate for that," EOH's Patricia Opresko said, "then we'll be in a better position to design intervention strategies that protect telomeres in healthy cells and target telomeres in cancer cells."   

Beyond Clairton: Are we ready to really improve Pittsburgh's air? Wenzel comments.

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NEXT PITTSBURGH - While U.S. Steel has recently completed repairs and pledged to spend $1 billion to upgrade facilities, public outrage over violations hasn't been quieted. "I think the economic factors have outweighed the health factors," says EOH's Sally Wenzel. "I think that has been an issue with the Pittsburgh area for a while."   

Biostatistics departmental award recipient for Dean's Day 2019

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The Department of Biostatistics awarded two prizes. First place went to Junyao Wang (PhD '20) and second place went to Jerry Zhang (PhD '22).  

Cheyenne Annarumo awarded 2018-19 Bob Yee Scholarship

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Cheyenne Annarumo (IDM '20) was awarded a 2019 Bob Yee Public Health Scholarship. A native of Ellwood City, PA, Annarumo is pursuing an MPH with a concentration in infectious disease management, intervention, and community practice (MPH-MIC). She studied biology and was pre-med at Gannon University.   

Kelsey Simon awarded 2018-19 Bob Yee Scholarship

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Kelsey Simon (IDM '20) was awarded a 2019 Bob Yee Public Health Scholarship in recognition of academic excellence. A native of Buffalo, NY, Simon is pursuing an MPH in infectious disease pathogenesis, eradication, and laboratory practice (MPH-PEL). She holds an undergraduate biology degree from the University of Pittsburgh.   

Subramanian Thothathri awarded 2018-19 Bob Yee Scholarship

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Subramanian Thothathri (IDM '20) was awarded a 2019 Bob Yee Public Health Scholarship. A native of Chennai, India, Thothathri is pursuing an MS in infectious diseases and microbiology. He holds an undergraduate bioengineering degree from Sastra University.   

Dean Burke gives six precepts for success in 2019 Convocation Address

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As the 2019 Convocation speaker, outgoing dean Donald S. Burke explained that the world would be looking to the class of 2019 for answers to things like the opioid epidemic, gun violence, and other challenges to the public's health. Dean Burke dispensed wisdom personally gathered during his career, encouraging graduates to use six "90 percent precepts" to help make the most of their incredible potential.  

Meet joint-degree student Laurenia Mangum (BCHS/SocWk), Coverdell Fellow

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Laurenia Mangum worked within the children, youth, and family sector in the Philippines while in the Peace Corps. “The BCHS program compliments my social work background and serves as a great transition from the Peace Corps. It meets my needs without compartmentalizing the studies into one particular focus…but rather provides the opportunity for the student to customize his or her own studies.”  

Garland to participate as lawmakers review clean slate law

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WESA - BCHS's Richard Garland said that by expanding access to jobs, the clean slate law plays a crucial role in preventing low-level ex-convicts from committing future crimes. Before the law, he said, those individuals too often were defined by their criminal records when seeking work.   

The Mid-Atlantic Regional Public Health Training Center strengthens the current and future public health workforce

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The Center for Public Health Practice's latest training center works to strengthen the public health workforce through collaboration with schools and agencies across a five-state region. The center meets workforce training needs on topics from project management and data analytics to the opioid epidemic. "Our ultimate goal is to improve the public's health by working even better   together," says Center Director Elizabeth Van Nostrand.   

Roberts talks to the LA Times about the measles outbreak

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LA TIMES - Los Angeles County officials dealing with a measles outbreak say they expect that more people will be diagnosed with the illness in the coming weeks, while the nation stares down what will like be its worst measles year in decades. As they search for outbreak's start, HPM and PHDL's Mark Roberts reminds us, "What matters is not the case that started it, what matters is how many people that one case infects."   

2019 Celebration of Student Awards

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On April 27, 2019, Pitt Public Health celebrated recent graduates with awards given upon the culmination of a degree program. Delta Omega's honor society inductees were announced and outstanding thesis/essay and dissertation awards were conferred. Outstanding Student Awards were also given at both the master's and doctoral level, as well as Dean's Service Awards.   

Hoffman led research into anti-vaxxers on social media (video)

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WPXI - Antivaxxers left negative business reviews for Kids First Pediatrics after they posted a social media video encouraging HPV vaccination. So, they teamed up with researchers at Pitt including Beth Hoffman (BCHS '19, '23) who found that we have to "...start thinking about how to deliver tailored messages that really get at all of these concerns we're seeing."   

Pitt Medicine shows plans for their part of health sciences expansion

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PITT MED - the education addition and renovation is part of the University's master plan that includes many improvements throughout the health sciences and includes a rennovation of the Falk Library of the Health Sciences, a cafe, and common areas accommodating a variety of study styles.   

Finegold talks about the importance of handling WES properly

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MD ALERT via REUTERS - Whole exome sequencing (WES) may identify genetic causes of idiopathic liver disease after an unrevealing conventional workup, researchers say. "WES is now broadly available in a wide range of genomics laboratories, both hospital-based and commercial. The interpretation of this data is profoundly challenging and absolutely requires special expertise within the laboratory."   

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EOH alumna Lauren Chubb is looking beyond what the eye can see to keep miners safe. 

EOH alumna Lauren Chubb is looking beyond what the eye can see to keep miners safe.

PITT MAGAZINE - Lauren Chubb, DrPH, MPH (EOH ’16, ’13) occasionally dons a hard hat to see the results of her work in the lab. Her team at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health's Mining Program has developed software to analyze respirable dust samples in just a few minutes, rath... (08/05/2019)
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Chaves-Gnecco Named 2019 Pediatrician of the Year 

Chaves-Gnecco Named 2019 Pediatrician of the Year

PITTWIRE - Diego Chaves-Gnecco (MMPH '00) has been named 2019 Pediatrician of the Year by the American Academy of Pediatrics, Pennsylvania Chapter. The award recognizes a chapter member who exemplifies excellence in the profession. (05/29/2019)
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National, county research partnerships use AI to better predict opioid overdose risk 

National, county research partnerships use AI to better predict opioid overdose risk

PITTWIRE - HPM's Walid Gellad is using machine-learning algorithms to predict who is at risk of opioid misuse and overdose, teaming up with Allegheny County officials and national health care databanks in two separate studies.  (05/29/2019)


Featuring the latest research, opportunities, and groundbreaking developments from CEPH-accredited schools and programs of public health. Review theFriday Letter submission guidelines then share your story ideas via publichealth.pitt.edu/share-news or contact phcomm@pitt.edu. 

Pitt Public Health finds weight-loss patients at higher risk of death from substance use disorders 

Pitt Public Health finds weight-loss patients at higher risk of death from substance use disorders

ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - The death rate from drug- and alcohol-related causes in people who've had Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery is nearly triple that of the general public, according to research led by EPI's Wendy King. The study also found that fewer than half of those who died had triggered a sa... (06/27/2019)

Pitt Public Health sheds light on 'black box' of inpatient opioid use 

Pitt Public Health sheds light on 'black box' of inpatient opioid use

ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - People who receive opioids for the first time while hospitalized have double the risk of continuing to receive opioids for months after discharge compared with their hospitalized peers who are not given opioids, according to research led by HPM's Julie Donohue.  (06/27/2019)
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Pitt Public Health epidemiologist to lead creation of global infectious disease data system 

Pitt Public Health epidemiologist to lead creation of global infectious disease data system

ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - Backed by a five-year, $6.7 million National Institutes of Health grant, PHDL's Wilbert Van Panhuis will lead a culture shift in data-sharing rippling through scientific fields and harness it to improve global knowledge of infectious diseases.  (06/06/2019)