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Research and Practice News

Check out some highlights of research and practice under way at Pitt Public Health:

Simenson, Salerno, Saal-Ridpath selected for future health leaders program 

Simenson, Salerno, Saal-Ridpath selected for future health leaders program

PITT WIRE - Three students from Pitt Public Health were selected for the inaugural class of The Milken Institute’s Future Health Leaders Program. The students, ASHLEY SIMENSON (EPI '19), JESSICA SALERNO (IDM '20), and KAITLYN SAAL-RIDPATH (HPM '20), are among a dozen of fellows selected nationwid... (10/18/2018)

Alcohol screening tests fail to work in RYGB patients 

Alcohol screening tests fail to work in RYGB patients

BARIATRIC NEWS - People who undergo Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery are at increased risk for alcohol-related problems and common screening tools that help physicians identify patients at high risk for alcohol use disorder fail to work well in this population, according to a new study. EPI's WENDY... (10/17/2018)

Pitt Public Health study identifies modifiable dementia risk factor in older adults 

Pitt Public Health study identifies modifiable dementia risk factor in older adults

SCIENCE DAILY - New research from Pitt Public Health found that arterial stiffness is a good proxy for predicting who will go on to develop dementia. Even minor signs of brain disease were not as telling. Since arterial stiffness can be reduced by antihypertensive drugs, and likely also lifestyle i... (10/17/2018)

Bariatric surgery can reduce risks - but King's study finds it depends how much they can keep off after their operation 

Bariatric surgery can reduce risks - but King's study finds it depends how much they can keep off after their operation

DAILY MAIL - Bariatric surgery can reduce the risk of heart attacks, strokes, and death in obese people. But those who gained back 20 percent of weight lost were more than one-third more likely to develop diabetes and two-thirds more likely to have high cholesterol, according to a study lead by WEN... (10/17/2018)

King finds alcohol disorder tests fail in weight-loss surgery patients 

King finds alcohol disorder tests fail in weight-loss surgery patients

UPMC - Given the increased risk of alcohol use disorder associated with Roux-en-Y gastric bypass, it is recommended that clinicians screen for alcohol use disorder before and after surgery, but there is no guidance on how to do that screening, said EPI's WENDY KING. According to a long-term, multic... (10/15/2018)

Religious freedom laws linked to poor health in LGBT people in center study 

Religious freedom laws linked to poor health in LGBT people in center study

EUREKALERT - After Indiana's passage of a Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) in 2015, sexual minorities increasingly reported poor health on a national survey. "Although we can't say for certain what caused this significant increase in unhealthy days for sexual minority people in Indiana, the... (10/15/2018)

Pitt wins federal grant to use big data and AI to help solve opioid epidemic 

Pitt wins federal grant to use big data and AI to help solve opioid epidemic

PITTSBURGH BUSINESS TIMES - Pitt Public Health has won a $1.2 million grant from the CDC to bring to bear its computer and algorithmic firepower on the nation's opioid epidemic. The two-year grant builds upon Pitt's modeling system called A Framework for Reconstructing Epidemiological Dynamics (FRE... (10/10/2018)

Allegheny County gets $1.7M in grants to combat opioid crisis 

Allegheny County gets $1.7M in grants to combat opioid crisis

TRIB LIVE - The Allegheny County Health Department has received two federal grants totaling nearly $1.7 million that will assist in addressing health inequality and the opioid epidemic across the county. Several Pitt Public Health alumni are a part of this initiative, along with BCHS's TIFFANY GARY... (10/09/2018)

Aging Institute leadership marches on 

Aging Institute leadership marches on

PITT WIRE - Baby boomers have long been known as one of the largest generations, and now they are living longer and healthier than any generation before, says Epi's ANNE NEWMAN, newly appointed clinical director of the Aging Institute of UPMC and the University of Pittsburgh. “We’re going through a... (10/09/2018)

Burke uses mobile health to track cardiovascular risk factors 

Burke uses mobile health to track cardiovascular risk factors

PITTSBURGH COURIER - Around 75 percent of people in the United States use a smartphone, and apps focusing on mobile health (mHealth) can be used to track key and unique health updates for users. The research of EPI's LORA BURKE (EPI '98), has focused on how to use mHealth for one particular risk fa... (10/08/2018)

Burke updates Pitt Public Health community on state of the opioid epidemic (VIDEO) 

Burke updates Pitt Public Health community on state of the opioid epidemic (VIDEO)

Dean Donald S. Burke's third annual address to the school on the state of the nation's opioid overdose epidemic looks at one of the most pressing issues facing our region. Burke highlights his team's research recently published in  Science  ( Changing dynamics of the drug overdose epidemic in t... (10/04/2018)

Thurston: sexual harassment and assault take long-term toll on women's health 

Thurston: sexual harassment and assault take long-term toll on women's health

PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER - A new study shows that not only are sexual harassment and assault highly prevalent today, but they may also have negative health consequences. "It is widely understood that sexual harassment and assault can impact women's lives and how they function, but this study also eval... (10/03/2018)

Hackathon Gives PA Coders An Opportunity To Help Fight The Opioid Crisis 

Hackathon Gives PA Coders An Opportunity To Help Fight The Opioid Crisis

WESA-FM - Pennsylvania is asking coders and designers to look at its data on the opioid crisis as part of a month-long hackathon to find new strategies to fight the epidemic. Teams are encouraged to focus on 1 of 3 tracks dealing with the opioid epidemic: preventing opioid use disorder, saving live... (10/03/2018)

CRAB co-chair Jeanette South-Paul to receive international award for work in Japan 

CRAB co-chair Jeanette South-Paul to receive international award for work in Japan

TRIB LIVE - Co-chair of the Center for Health Equity’s Community Advisory Board, JEANETTE SOUTH-PAUL, MD, is among the first to be honored with the America-Japan Society’s second annual Kentaro Kaneko Award to be presented at the International House in Tokyo this October. “I can’t over-emphasize le... (10/02/2018)

Human immunodeficiency virus infection induces lymphoid fibrosis in the BM-liver-thymus-spleen humanized mouse model 

Human immunodeficiency virus infection induces lymphoid fibrosis in the BM-liver-thymus-spleen humanized mouse model

JOURNAL OF CLINICAL INVESTIGATION INSIGHT - Jasmine Samal, Samantha Kelly, Ali Na-Shatal, Abdallah Elhakiem, Antu Das, Ming Ding, Anwesha Sanyal, Phalguni Gupta, Kevin Melody, Brad Roland, Watfa Ahmed, Aala Zakir, and Moses Bility developed a potentially novel human immune system–humanized mouse mo... (10/02/2018)

Interdepartmental Human and Medical Genetics Retreat 

Interdepartmental Human and Medical Genetics Retreat

On Thursday, September 13, the Department of Human Genetics gathered with other departments, centers, and divisions at Pitt and UPMC for the first Interdepartmental Human and Medical Genetics Retreat. The retreat featured a variety of talks and a poster session about the latest genetics research at... (10/02/2018)

Biostatistics and Biomedical Informatics hold joint retreat 

Biostatistics and Biomedical Informatics hold joint retreat

Pitt's departments of biostatistics and biomedical informatics held a half-day joint faculty retreat to share respective areas of work, identify common interests, and foster collaborations in research and education. (09/26/2018)

Pittsburgh finds current liver allocation system disadvantages children awaiting liver transplants 

Pittsburgh finds current liver allocation system disadvantages children awaiting liver transplants

ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - Children are at a considerable disadvantage when competing with adults for livers from deceased organ donors in the U.S. allocation system. “Using national, long-term data, our report is the first to demonstrate that the scoring system, on its own, dramatically underestimates ... (09/24/2018)

Changing dynamics of the drug overdose epidemic in the United States from 1979 through 2016 

Changing dynamics of the drug overdose epidemic in the United States from 1979 through 2016

SCIENCE - In an effort to understand the epidemic dynamics and perhaps predict its future course, Pitt Public Health researchers analyzed records of nearly 600,000 overdose deaths. Dean DONALD BURKE, HPM's HAWRE JALAL, and colleagues concluded that the U.S. drug overdose epidemic has been inexorabl... (09/21/2018)

Maseru joins panel on "Human Rights in Pittsburgh and the World" 

Maseru joins panel on "Human Rights in Pittsburgh and the World"

Noble Maseru of the Center for Health Equity joined a panel discussion entitled "Human Rights in Pittsburgh and the World: Assessing Human Rights Impacts, Limitations, and Prospects at the 70th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR)". Maseru challenged the audience of studen... (09/19/2018)

Research Videos

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Burke updates Pitt Public Health community on state of the opioid epidemic (VIDEO) 

Burke updates Pitt Public Health community on state of the opioid epidemic (VIDEO)

Dean Donald S. Burke's third annual address to the school on the state of the nation's opioid overdose epidemic looks at one of the most pressing issues facing our region. Burke highlights his team's research recently published in  Science  ( Changing dynamics of the drug overdose epidemic in t... (10/04/2018)
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Newman and colleagues' new study uses local participants to look at aspirin use in older adults (video) 

Newman and colleagues' new study uses local participants to look at aspirin use in older adults (video)

WPXI - TV - We've long heard that an aspirin a day can help lower the risk of heart disease. A new study using participants from Pittsburgh suggests that isn't always the case. The study looked at 19,000 people worldwide, including 178 people from Pittsburgh. "People who took aspirin and people who... (09/19/2018)
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Flatt discusses dementia prevalence in sexual minority older adults (video) 

Flatt discusses dementia prevalence in sexual minority older adults (video)

ALZHEIMER'S ASSOCIATION - The first dementia prevalence data from a large population of lesbian, gay, and bisexual older adults was reported at the 2018 Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in Chicago by JASON FLATT (BCHS '13) and colleagues. "We really need to think about providing mor... (07/27/2018)
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IDM’s Rinaldo discusses HIV wonder drugs and curing HIV in 1998 World AIDS Day interview (VIDEO) 

IDM’s Rinaldo discusses HIV wonder drugs and curing HIV in 1998 World AIDS Day interview (VIDEO)

UPMC HEALTH NEWS – In the late 1990s, new and highly potent anti-HIV drugs emerged— including protease and reverse transcriptase inhibitors—which could for the first time control HIV infection. For this 1998 World AIDS Day, Pitt IDM AIDS researcher Charles Rinaldo and the late Bridget Murtagh of th... (07/17/2018)
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Pitt Public Health study helps inform new legislation sponsored by Sen Toomey (video) 

Pitt Public Health study helps inform new legislation sponsored by Sen Toomey (video)

In Sen Toomey's weekly e-newsletter, he announces that the Senate Finance Committee adopted his amendment, the Encouraging Appropriate Prescribing for Victims of Overdose in Medicare Act, to require Medicare to notify a doctor if their patient has suffered a non-fatal opioid overdose. Toomey refere... (06/26/2018)
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Matthews on why we need a public health approach to HIV (video) 

Matthews on why we need a public health approach to HIV (video)

IDM's DERRICK MATTHEWS explains Pitt Public Health's work on HIV/AIDS and where we are today. "If your’e a black gay man in the U.S., you have a one in two change in your lifetime of becoming HIV positive…short of the cure that we’re looking for, the biology is way ahead of the social implementat... (06/20/2018)
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