Research and Practice News

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

Students & community collaborators create 'Disrespecting the Border' mural

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Pitt student Camilo Ruiz (BCHS/Anthropology '20) collaborated with artists Leah Patgorski and Gil Rocha on a community mural-making workshop resulting in a magnificent art piece entitled "Disrespecting the Border."  An artist and teacher from Laredo, Texas, Rocha facilitated a diverse group of nineteen people through the five-day process of creating the mural which aims to" dignify and make visible the Latinx presence in Pittsburgh."  


Bacterial metabolism of dietary soy may lower risk factor for dementia 

Bacterial metabolism of dietary soy may lower risk factor for dementia

NEUROSCIENCE NEWS - A metabolite produced following consumption of dietary soy may decrease a key risk factor for dementia--with the help of the right bacteria.  According to a discovery by EPI's  Akira Sekikaw a , elderly Japanese men and women who produce equol--a metabolite of dietary soy create... (10/26/2020)

Study shows how HIV and cancer drugs accelerate cellular aging 

Study shows how HIV and cancer drugs accelerate cellular aging

INSIDE LIVE CHANGING MEDICINE - Why do HIV patients tend to show premature signs of aging: cancer, cognitive diseases, osteoporosis? Is the virus itself is causing aging or the drugs being used to treat the virus? In a new study published in Nature Communications , doctoral student Samantha Sanfo... (10/26/2020)

Staying social can boost healthy ‘gray matter’ in aging brains 

Staying social can boost healthy ‘gray matter’ in aging brains

US NEWS (HealthDay News) — Older adults who get together with friends, volunteer, or go to classes have healthier brains, which could help them ward off dementia, according to a new study led by postdoc Cynthia Fox of EPI. Being socially engaged—even moderately—with at least one relative or friend ... (10/20/2020)

The opioid crisis didn’t disappear amid the pandemic. It still calls for urgent action. 

The opioid crisis didn’t disappear amid the pandemic. It still calls for urgent action.

THE WASHINGTON POST - Despite the predominance of the coronavirus pandemic among national priorities, the paper's editorial board urges the dedication of public health funds and attention to the ongoing opioid crisis, citing data gathered by HPM's Hawre Jalal and EPI's Donald S. Burke which suggest... (10/20/2020)

Exempt from inspection: States ignore lead-contaminated meat in food banks  

Exempt from inspection: States ignore lead-contaminated meat in food banks

ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH NEWS -  Food banks in the U.S. are on course for a preventable collision between record-setting food insecurity and lead-contaminated meat. Though hunter-donated meat provides crucial protein to U.S. food banks, a lack of oversight could result in potentially hundreds of thousa... (10/15/2020)

Frailty factor: How well you walk when you’re older may depend on one gene 

Frailty factor: How well you walk when you’re older may depend on one gene

STUDY FINDS  – While many seniors try to keep frailty at bay through diet and exercise, a PItt study finds that who becomes infirm may come down to one gene. “Most people think about dopamine’s role in mobility in the context of Parkinson’s disease, but not in normal aging," says lead author EPI's... (10/12/2020)

Burke and Baumann take filmmaking to the health sciences 

Burke and Baumann take filmmaking to the health sciences

Jessica Burke and Sara Baumann (BCHS '19) have created a new form of public health research called Collaborative Filmmaking. The six-step process engages its participants to create a detailed, multimedia form of study rarely seen in the field. Baumann said she knew Pitt was the right fit for h... (10/07/2020)

Revisiting Freedom House Ambulance: A Call for a Modern and Inclusive Public Health Initiative (video) 

Revisiting Freedom House Ambulance: A Call for a Modern and Inclusive Public Health Initiative (video)

Freedom House Enterprises ambulance services was a pioneering program designed to be representative of the community it served (Pittsburgh's Hill District), provide a pathway for upward mobility, and address a severe disparity in pre-hospital care. The collaboration between Phil Hallen, Peter S... (09/30/2020)

COVID-19 on campus (video) 

COVID-19 on campus (video)

Drs. John Williams and Margaret McDonald share an update on the current COVID conditions on campus and reflect on their insider experiences serving on Pitt’s Healthcare Advisory Group during this public health crisis. (09/25/2020)

COVID-19 & Secondary Impacts (video) 

COVID-19 & Secondary Impacts (video)

The stay-at-home and social distancing COVID-19 mitigation orders drastically restricted people’s physical movements and access to businesses, causing myriad secondary impacts on the public’s health. Dr. Andrea Gielen discusses how the pandemic has affected injury risks due to changes in lifestyles... (09/18/2020)

Summer of 2020: Evolution of our understanding of SARS-CoV-2 and ability to forecast COVID-19 (video) 

Summer of 2020: Evolution of our understanding of SARS-CoV-2 and ability to forecast COVID-19 (video)

What we have learned during the summer of 2020 that puts SARS-CoV-2 into perspective with other emerging viruses and explores the current state of COVID-19 forecasting for the next few months. IDM's Amy Hartman talks what we know (and don't know) about SARS-CoV-2 and EPI's Donald Burke discusses th... (09/14/2020)

Using a harm-reduction framework to guide teacher-student interactions 

Using a harm-reduction framework to guide teacher-student interactions

Teaching during this pandemic is hard. BCHS faculty and student co-authors—MPH student Shannon Mitchell (BCHS '21) and doctoral student Abisola Olaniyan (BCHS '21)—offer educators guidance on using harm-reduction principles to guide interactions with students while building compassionate, collectiv... (09/09/2020)

Baumann and Burke create community with shared art space to combat negative effects of physical distancing 

Baumann and Burke create community with shared art space to combat negative effects of physical distancing

During the COVID-19 pandemic, how have you stayed connected and maintained community connections? BCHS' Jessie Burke and Sara Baumann asked the Pitt community to respond with art projects, which are now available for viewing in a new virtual gallery featured on Pitt Public Health's website. "[A]rt ... (08/28/2020)

Masks and Much More: Public Health in the Time of COVID-19 

Masks and Much More: Public Health in the Time of COVID-19

PITTSBURGH CURRENT—"Green is associated with 'go,' 'all clear,' 'nothing to worry about'—but during this pandemic, green could not be further from the truth." Doctoral candidate Chantele Mitchell-Miland (EPI '20) and advisor EPI's Dara Mendez explain why we all still need to be vigilant and practic... (07/01/2020)

Garland among those chosen for task force on police reform 

Garland among those chosen for task force on police reform

BCHS's Richard Garland is one of 17 civilians named to a Pittsburgh task force that will review policing in Pittsburgh and deliver recommendations by the fall. Garland is director of the Center for Health Equity's Violence Prevention Project where he oversees training, data collection, and outreach... (06/24/2020)

Worthington interns with Hawaii Department of Health for COVID-19 project 

Worthington interns with Hawaii Department of Health for COVID-19 project

MPH student Ke’alohi Worthington (EPI ’21) has been performing data analyses for her internship with the Department of Health in Hawaii, which examines how COVID-19 has affected indigenous and other populations.  (06/18/2020)

Health Department Responses 

Health Department Responses

EPI's Catherine Haggerty and HPM's Wendy Braund lead a conversation about the health department response to COVID-19 at the local and state levels. Haggerty starts the conversation with a discussion of the approaches, impact, and challenges of containment and mitigation efforts at the county level.... (06/13/2020)

Biostatistical Modeling and COVID-19  

Biostatistical Modeling and COVID-19

Biostatistical modeling, estimation, and decision-making support have been playing an important role in responses to COVID-19 challenges. Lu Tang and Andriy Bandos will discuss statistical considerations involved in modeling the epidemic progression and in the use of COVID-19 related tests for esti... (06/13/2020)

Gary-Webb on the new Pittsburgh coalition tackling racial inequities and the pandemic 

Gary-Webb on the new Pittsburgh coalition tackling racial inequities and the pandemic

WESA - Coalition scientists have pushed to get more coronavirus testing into communities of need. To get that done, EPI’s Tiffany Gary-Webb said they mapped out where Black families live in poverty and lack access to quality medical care, and then created an overlay showing where the federally qual... (06/08/2020)

Research Videos

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Revisiting Freedom House Ambulance: A Call for a Modern and Inclusive Public Health Initiative (video) 

Revisiting Freedom House Ambulance: A Call for a Modern and Inclusive Public Health Initiative (video)

Freedom House Enterprises ambulance services was a pioneering program designed to be representative of the community it served (Pittsburgh's Hill District), provide a pathway for upward mobility, and address a severe disparity in pre-hospital care. The collaboration between Phil Hallen, Peter S... (09/30/2020)
image

COVID-19 on campus (video) 

COVID-19 on campus (video)

Drs. John Williams and Margaret McDonald share an update on the current COVID conditions on campus and reflect on their insider experiences serving on Pitt’s Healthcare Advisory Group during this public health crisis. (09/25/2020)
image

COVID-19 & Secondary Impacts (video) 

COVID-19 & Secondary Impacts (video)

The stay-at-home and social distancing COVID-19 mitigation orders drastically restricted people’s physical movements and access to businesses, causing myriad secondary impacts on the public’s health. Dr. Andrea Gielen discusses how the pandemic has affected injury risks due to changes in lifestyles... (09/18/2020)
image

Summer of 2020: Evolution of our understanding of SARS-CoV-2 and ability to forecast COVID-19 (video) 

Summer of 2020: Evolution of our understanding of SARS-CoV-2 and ability to forecast COVID-19 (video)

What we have learned during the summer of 2020 that puts SARS-CoV-2 into perspective with other emerging viruses and explores the current state of COVID-19 forecasting for the next few months. IDM's Amy Hartman talks what we know (and don't know) about SARS-CoV-2 and EPI's Donald Burke discusses th... (09/14/2020)
image

Health Department Responses 

Health Department Responses

EPI's Catherine Haggerty and HPM's Wendy Braund lead a conversation about the health department response to COVID-19 at the local and state levels. Haggerty starts the conversation with a discussion of the approaches, impact, and challenges of containment and mitigation efforts at the county level.... (06/13/2020)
image

Biostatistical Modeling and COVID-19  

Biostatistical Modeling and COVID-19

Biostatistical modeling, estimation, and decision-making support have been playing an important role in responses to COVID-19 challenges. Lu Tang and Andriy Bandos will discuss statistical considerations involved in modeling the epidemic progression and in the use of COVID-19 related tests for esti... (06/13/2020)
View more research videos

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