Core Faculty Research Support

Steve M. Albert, PhD, MS

End of Life in Very Old Age, PI: 12/01/14 – 11/30/16
Little population-based data are available to describe dying, health care choices, and clinical trajectories in persons who have reached very old age. The overriding goal of the proposed study is to provide information on a broad-based sample of elders aged 85+ in order to improve care at the end of life in advanced age.

Community Violence Prevention, PI:  07/01/16 – 06/30/18  
In the U.S., community violence is a significant public health problem. Despite many programs designed to interdict gang violence and work with community partners, no comprehensive review is available to determine why some programs work better than others.  Is the variable success mainly a function of program elements or features of communities?  We propose a systematic review of the evidence to date.  Further, we suggest that this systematic review will be most productive if we convene a broad-based community work group covering the full range of stakeholders involved in violence prevention. The growing toll in violence in minority communities suggests that this effort is critical.

Violence Prevention Initiative, PI: 07/01/16 – 06/30/18
The Pittsburgh Violence Prevention Initiative (VPI) applies a public health perspective to prevention of community violence, with a special focus on neighborhood group violence involving guns.

Pittsburgh Older Americans Independence Center, Co-I: 07/15/16 – 06/30/17         
The goal of the Pittsburgh Pepper Center is to 1) Promote independence in older adults through multidisciplinary research on mobility, balance and aging; 2) Develop and test new preventive and therapeutic interventions to promote balance and mobility, reduce falls and prevent fall injuries; 3) Pursue relevant research ranging from molecules to societies, but with a primary focus on human studies of mechanisms and interventions. This program includes investigators from medicine, bioengineering, rehabilitation, epidemiology/public health, biostatistics, psychology, pharmacology, biology, imaging, informatics, and health services research that address mobility, balance, and falls risk problems.

ACISR for Late-Life Depression Prevention (Project 1), Co-I: 05/01/15 – 04/30/17
To address how to intervene in the developmental trajectory of mental illness to prevent its progression, to promote healthspan and independence, and to mitigate inequities of mental health services access and delivery to low-income people.

Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research Center, Co-I: 09/30/2014 – 09/29/2019
This third renewal will continue and enhance the Center for Healthy Aging and Population Health Prevention Research Center focusing on promoting healthy aging within communities and establishing a new core research program designed to reduce obesity and subsequent chronic disease in old age implementing a weight management intervention in the community setting.

 

Robert M. Boudreau, PhD

Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research Center, Co-I: 09/30/2014 – 09/29/2019
This third renewal will continue and enhance the Center for Healthy Aging and Population Health Prevention Research Center focusing on promoting healthy aging within communities and establishing a new core research program designed to reduce obesity and subsequent chronic disease in old age implementing a weight management intervention in the community setting.

Long Life Family Study: University of Pittsburgh Field Center, Co-I: 06/01/2014 – 05/31/2019
This is the renewal of an investigation of the exceptional survival of families in the Long Life Family Study (LLFS) cohort. A second examination of the families will be conducted to discover genetic and environmental factors that contribute to healthy aging. These studies could lead to the discovery of new pathways and potential therapeutic/prevention targets affecting healthy aging and longevity.

Peripheral nerve decline: an underappreciated cause of injury falls, Co-I: 06/15/13 – 05/31/17
The renewal of this ancillary study to the Health Aging Body Composition Study (Health ABC) is designed to determine if poor peripheral sensory and motor nerve function is associated with treated fall injuries, including fractures, and with greater total and fall-related Medicare utilization, Medicare expenditures, and mortality.

Ultra-high-field Neuroimaging in Elderly After a Two-Year Exercise Intervention, Co-I: 04/01/2014 – 05/31/2017
The propose project will examine whether the physical activity (PA) related effects previously reported in the hippocampal formation of younger elderly exist in very old and frail adults for periods of time beyond 1 year and whether these effects are stronger for the dentate gyrus. The study will 1) quantify the relationship of PA with Ultra High-Field brain markers; 2) quantify the relationship of memory and processing speed with Ultra High-Field brain markers; and 3) explore the role of Ultra High Field markers in explaining brain response to PA.

Risk of Incident Knee OA & Clinical Outcomes Based on Imaging Biomarkers, Co-I: 09/15/14 – 06/30/19
The proposed study builds on the strengths of two ongoing studies, the Osteoarthritis Initiative (OAI) and the Pivotal OAI MRI Analyses (POMA), an ancillary proposal to OAI. The Osteoarthritis Initiative was designed to address the lack of biomarkers for the development and progression of knee OA. Through POMA, we have utilized the OAI MRIs to identify imaging biomarkers of knee OA development and progression up to 48 prior to the onset of radiographic knee OA (ROA).

Pepper Center Data Management, Analysis and Informatics Core, Co-I: 07/01/2015 – 06/30/2020
The Department of Epidemiology participates in three Cores of the renewal of the Claude D. Pepper Older Americans Independence Center. The Leadership Administrative Core (LAC), which is responsible for the organizational, communication, budgetary and regulatory functions, the Data Management, Analysis, and Informatics Core (DMAIC), and the Integrated Systems Core (ISC) which is responsible for providing access to cohort studies, and developing new clinical assessment protocols.

 

Jane A. Cauley, DrPH

Training in the Epidemiology of Aging, Co-Director: 05/01/16 – 04/30/21
This is the renewal of a training program which enrolls individuals who are well-trained in a relevant scientific discipline and provides them with theoretical instruction and practical field experience in epidemiological aging research. The training experience is customized to the background and interests of the individual trainee while capitalizing on the rich and diverse research opportunities available in the epidemiology of aging.

Osteoporotic Fractures in Men, PI: 08/01/2003 – 04/30/18
The primary goal of the study is to determine the extent to which fracture risk in older men is related to bone mass, bone geometry, life style factors, biochemical measures, fall propensity, and other variables.  This renewal will include a 4th clinic visit and a focus on Medicare linkage and defining aging related trajectories as phenotypes.

Study of Osteoporotic Fractures, PI: 09/01/2011 – 05/31/16
This proposal will continue SOF and link the comprehensive SOF database with Medicare claims data to determine if age-related trajectories in cognitive function, physical performance, BMD, body weight, and positive affect predict phenotypes of optimal aging defined by longevity, active lifespan, exceptional health span, and rates of inpatient and residential health care utilization.

Long-term Significance of Pre-Radiographic Lesions for Knee OA, PI: 06/01/14 – 05/31/19
This is a subcontract for participation in grant #R01-AR065473, a long-term, longitudinal study to evaluate the clinical significance of pre-radiographic lesions in persons at higher risk for knee osteoarthritis.

Risk of Incident Knee OA and Clinical Outcome Based on Imaging Biomarkers, PI: 09/15/14 – 06/30/19
The proposed study builds on the strengths of two ongoing studies, the Osteoarthritis Initiative (OAI) and the Pivotal OAI MRI Analyses (POMA), an ancillary proposal to OAI. The Osteoarthritis Initiative was designed to address the lack of biomarkers for the development and progression of knee OA. Through POMA, we have utilized the OAI MRIs to identify imaging biomarkers of knee OA development and progression up to 48 prior to the onset of radiographic knee OA (ROA).

Changes in Sleep and Cognition in Older Women, PI: 04/30/2012 – 03/31/17
This is an ancillary study to the SOF study for collection of data and health outcomes for a project studying on the longitudinal relationships of sleep and cognitive function in older women.

Bone Strength Through the Menopausal Transition: Trabecular Bone Score , PI: 07/01/15 – 06/30/19
The proposed competitive renewal of our grant, Bone Strength Through the Menopausal Transition: Trabecular Bone Score, builds upon the Study of Women’s Health Across the Nation (SWAN) Bone Project, a multi-site, multi-racial/ethnic longitudinal study designed to characterize the physiological and psychosocial changes that occur during the menopausal transition (MT).

 

Nancy W. Glynn, PhD

The LIFE Study, Co-I/Program Director:09/30/2009 – 11/30/2016
The major goal of this project is to conduct a Phase 3 randomized, controlled trial (RCT) that will provide definitive evidence in the use of physical exercise to prevent physical and mobility disability in older persons at the University of Pittsburgh Field Center.

Ultra-high-field Neuroimaging in Elderly after a two-year Exercise Intervention (NIH/NIA), Co-I: 04/01/2014 – 05/31/2017
This project examines whether the physical activity (PA) related effects previously reported in the hippocampal formation of younger elderly exist in very old and frail adults for periods of time beyond 1 year and whether these effects are stronger for the dentate gyrus. The study will 1) quantify the relationship of PA with Ultra High-Field brain markers; 2) quantify the relationship of memory and processing speed with Ultra High-Field brain markers ; 3) explore the role of Ultra High Field markers in explaining brain response to PA.

Long Life Family Study: University of Pittsburgh Field Center, Co-I/Program Director: 06/01/2014 – 05/31/2019
This is the renewal of an investigation of the exceptional survival of families in the Long Life Family Study (LLFS) cohort. A second examination of the families will be conducted to discover genetic and environmental factors that contribute to healthy aging. These studies could lead to the discovery of new pathways and potential therapeutic/prevention targets affecting healthy aging and longevity.

Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research Center, Co-I: 09/30/2014 – 09/29/2019
This third renewal will continue and enhance the Center for Healthy Aging and Population Health Prevention Research Center focusing on promoting healthy aging within communities and establishing a new core research program designed to reduce obesity and subsequent chronic disease in old age implementing a weight management intervention in the community setting.

 

Joseph T. Hanlon, PharmD, MS

Cumulative CNS medication dosage and serious fall injuries, PI: 01/01/2015 – 12/31/2016
The objective of the study is to determine the risk of serious falls in those taking higher CNS dosages compared to those not taking these drugs.

Pittsburgh Pepper OAIC, Co-I/Core Director: 04/01/2015 – 03/31/2020
The goal of the Pittsburgh Pepper Center is to 1) Promote independence in older adults through multidisciplinary research on mobility, balance and aging; 2) Develop and test new preventive and therapeutic interventions to promote balance and mobility, reduce falls and prevent fall injuries; 3) Pursue relevant research ranging from molecules to societies, but with a primary focus on human studies of mechanisms and interventions. This program includes investigators from medicine, bioengineering, rehabilitation, epidemiology/public health, biostatistics, psychology, pharmacology, biology, imaging, informatics, and health services research that address mobility, balance, and falls risk problems.

Improving Outcomes of UTI in LTC Facilities: The IOU Study, Co-I: 06/01/2015 – 05/31/2018
The long-term goal is to enhance the health of older nursing home residents with suspected UTI by increasing the appropriateness of antibiotic use through the dissemination of a multifaceted intervention.

 

Iva Miljkovic, MD, PhD, FAHA

Ectopic adiposity in black men with high type 2 diabetes risk, PI: 09/13 – 07/17
This study takes advantage of the unique resource of archived computed tomography (CT) scan image files from over 1500 black men to analyze changes in calf myosteatosis over more than 6 years, and characterize the natural history of changes in calf myosteatosis with aging in black men, and the temporal relationship of these changes with glucose and insulin homeostasis. In addition, we are obtaining new CT measures of other ectopic fat depots (i.e. visceral, liver, abdominal muscle, thigh, and pericardial adiposity), and will test for their independent and combined association with measures of glucose and insulin homeostasis.

 

Anne B. Newman, MD, MPH

Training in the Epidemiology of Aging, Director: 05/01/16 – 04/30/21
This is the renewal of a training program which enrolls individuals who are well-trained in a relevant scientific discipline and provides them with theoretical instruction and practical field experience in epidemiological aging research. The training experience is customized to the background and interests of the individual trainee while capitalizing on the rich and diverse research opportunities available in the epidemiology of aging.

Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research Center, PI: 09/30/2014 – 09/29/2019
This third renewal will continue and enhance the Center for Healthy Aging and Population Health Prevention Research Center focusing on promoting healthy aging within communities and establishing a new core research program designed to reduce obesity and subsequent chronic disease in old age implementing a weight management intervention in the community setting.

Long Life Family Study: University of Pittsburgh Field Center, PI: 06/01/2014 – 05/31/2019
This is the renewal of an investigation of the exceptional survival of families in the Long Life Family Study (LLFS) cohort. A second examination of the families will be conducted to discover genetic and environmental factors that contribute to healthy aging. These studies could lead to the discovery of new pathways and potential therapeutic/prevention targets affecting healthy aging and longevity.

Exceptional Survival: Trajectories to Functional Aging (CHS All Stars), PI: 09/01/11 – 05/31/17
This is the renewal of a study investigating functional aging, or disability-free survival by examining long-term survivors of the Cardiovascular Health Study to determine the likelihood of maintaining function, identifying the trajectories that distinguish those destined to do well, and define the importance, independence and interactions of physiologic predictors of function.

Pittsburgh Older Americans Independence Center, Co-PI: 09/01/2014 – 06/30/2020
The Department of Epidemiology participates in three Cores of the renewal of the Claude D. Pepper Older Americans Independence Center. The Leadership Administrative Core (LAC), which is responsible for the organizational, communication, budgetary and regulatory functions, the Data Management, Analysis, and Informatics Core (DMAIC), and the Integrated Systems Core (ISC) which is responsible for providing access to cohort studies, and developing new clinical assessment protocols.

ASPirin in Reducing Events in the Elderly, PI: 09/15/2009 – 01/31/2017
The study is a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial of aspirin in primary prevention in healthy people aged 70 years and over to determine whether the potential benefits of low dose aspirin to extend the duration of disability free life in an aging population will outweigh the risks of severe bleeding in this age group.

The ENRGISE Study (ENabling Reduction of low-Grade Inflammation in SEniors), PI: 09/01/2015 – 05/31/2017
The University of Pittsburgh field center will screen, and recruit participants in the ENRGISE study and perform all study related interventions and assessments, ensure retention and adherence of participants, and enter the data into the web-based data entry system. All functions will be performed as outlined in the study protocol. The University of Pittsburgh field center will work with all other centers, cores and committees to ensure the accurate implementation of the study protocol and the successful conduct and completion of the study. The University of Pittsburgh field center will ensure the compliance with all regulatory requirements, including but not limited to, personnel training, IRB approval, and adverse event reporting. The University of Pittsburgh field center investigators will participate in the study committees as outlined in the grant application, committee meetings, manuscript writing, and dissemination of the study results.

Comprehensive Evaluation of Aging-Related Clinical Outcomes and Geroproteins, PI: 06/01/2016 – 05/31/2021
Under the proposed subcontract, Dr. Newman will provide expertise about the Health Aging and Body Composition Study (Health ABC) and Cardiovascular Health Study (CHS) as well as aging and dementia outcomes for the San Francisco Coordinating Center at California Pacific Medical Center for the Comprehensive Evaluation of Aging-Related Clinical Outcomes and Geroproteins study.

CHS research resources for the cardiovascular health of older adults, PI: 05/17/2016 – 03/31/2020
This project will 1) provide infra-structure support to maintain the CHS CC, its various databases, and activities; 2) provide support for the CHS Biorepository and for mentored access to its specimens; 3) continue events data collection for all primary cardiovascular outcomes and total mortality; 4) provide limited and focused support for 9 CHS WGs to use CHS data and develop grant applications to address new questions and hypotheses; and 5) to make CHS data, new events data, and ancillary-study opportunities widely available to all investigators.

 

Caterina Rosano, MD, MPH

Resilience to mobility impairment: neural correlates, PI: 05/01/2011 – 04/30/2016
This is a longitudinal neuroepidemiological study to identify the brain characteristics and risk factors of older adults who have maintained good mobility in the face of substantial structural brain abnormalities.

Epidemiology of Diabetes Complications (EDC) Phase II: Renewal, Co-I: 06/01/2014 – 05/31/2019
This is an extension of the Epidemiology of Diabetes Complications (EDC) study which has examined risk factors contributing to diabetes complications for 25 years.  The extension focuses on further assessment of complication development for a total follow-up period of 30 years with a focus on the roles of glycemic, oxidative and inflammatory stress along with women’s health issues and an evaluation of skin advanced glycosylation end products as a complication predictor.

Ultra High Field Neuroimaging in Elderly after Two Year Exercise Intervention, PI: 04/01/2014 – 05/31/2017
The propose project will examine whether the physical activity (PA) related effects previously reported in the hippocampal formation of younger elderly exist in very old and frail adults for periods of time beyond 1 year and whether these effects are stronger for the dentate gyrus. The study will 1) quantify the relationship of PA with Ultra High-Field brain markers; 2) quantify the relationship of memory and processing speed with Ultra High-Field brain markers ; and 3) explore the role of Ultra High Field markers in explaining brain response to PA.

Pittsburgh Older Americans Independence Center, Co-I: 07/01/2015 – 06/30/2020
The Department of Epidemiology participates in three Cores of the renewal of the Claude D. Pepper Older Americans Independence Center. The Leadership Administrative Core (LAC), which is responsible for the organizational, communication, budgetary and regulatory functions, the Data Management, Analysis, and Informatics Core (DMAIC), and the Integrated Systems Core (ISC) which is responsible for providing access to cohort studies, and developing new clinical assessment protocols.

Retinal Imaging Markers of Cognition in Adults with T1D, PI: 09/22/2015 – 09/21/2017
This is an exploratory study using existing data to develop a risk score of cognitive impairment and neurovascular abnormalities in middle-aged patients with Type 1 diabetes using existing repeated measures of retinal vascular imaging collected over 30 years and adding new follow-up data on cognitive function by conducting cognitive assessments at participant visits.

 

Andrea L. Rosso, PhD, MPH

Environmental Challenges and the Aging Brain: Implications for Community Mobility, PI: 09/01/2016 – 08/31/2020
This career development award proposes to assess age-related changes in the brain that may be a key determinant of the ability to remain mobile in complex community environments through utilization of a study design that incorporates community-based environmental challenges and real-time functional brain imaging while participants are walking.

 

Akira Sekikawa, MD, PhD, MPH

Omega-3, isoflavones & amyloid deposition in cognitively normal elderly, PI: 05/15/2016 – 4/30/2019
The study will compare prevalence of amyloid deposition in cognitive normal elderly in Japan and the US and test hypotheses that (1) the prevalence is lower in Japanese and (2) midlife blood levels of each of omega-3 fatty acids and isoflavones in Japanese have a significant inverse association with late life amyloid deposition in the brain.

Japanese diet for cardiovascular disease prevention, PI: 01/1/2017 – 12/31/2018
The study proposes to examine whether a component of Japanese diet, equol, has a significant inverse association with the progression of coronary atherosclerosis in a population-based sample of 1,000 Japanese.

Cardiovascular Epidemiology Training Program, Co-Director: 08/02/2013 – 07/31/2018
The Cardiovascular Training Grant at the University Of Pittsburgh Department Of Epidemiology is one of seventeen training grants in Cardiovascular Epidemiology and Biostatistics funded through the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute. The training program is unique in that the focus is on early cardiovascular disease that can be detected through non-invasive evaluation of the vasculature. The program is designed to produce independent investigators who are skilled in the design, use and analysis of these early measures of atherosclerosis in population based studies.

 

Elsa S. Strotmeyer, PhD, MPH

Peripheral nerve decline: an underappreciated cause of injurious falls, PI: 06/15/13 – 05/31/17
The renewal of this ancillary study to the Health Aging Body Composition Study (Health ABC) is designed to determine if poor peripheral sensory and motor nerve function is associated with treated fall injuries, including fractures, and with greater total and fall-related Medicare utilization, Medicare expenditures, and mortality.

Training in the Epidemiology of Aging, Co-Director: 05/01/16 – 04/30/21
This is the renewal of a training program which enrolls individuals who are well-trained in a relevant scientific discipline and provides them with theoretical instruction and practical field experience in epidemiological aging research. The training experience is customized to the background and interests of the individual trainee while capitalizing on the rich and diverse research opportunities available in the epidemiology of aging.

Osteoporotic Fractures in Men Study (MrOS) Renewal, Co-I: 08/01/13 – 04/30/18
The primary goal of the study is to determine the extent to which fracture risk in older men is related to bone mass, bone geometry, life style factors, biochemical measures, fall propensity, and other variables. This renewal will include a 4th clinic visit and a focus on Medicare linkage and defining aging related trajectories as phenotypes.

Exceptional survival: Trajectories to functional aging (CHS), Co-I: 09/01/11 – 05/31/17
This is the renewal of a study investigating functional aging, or disability-free survival by examining long-term survivors of the Cardiovascular Health Study to determine the likelihood of maintaining function, identifying the trajectories that distinguish those destined to do well, and define the importance, independence and interactions of physiologic predictors of function.

Study of Women’s Health Across the Nation (SWAN) V: Coordinating Center, Co-I: 09/15/14 – 06/30/19
The aims of the renewal of the multicenter Study of Women’s Health Across the Nation are to characterize the natural history of reproductive aging through the late post-menopause, evaluate the impact of reproductive aging on health outcomes, and identify underlying mechanisms to link reproductive aging and health.

Resilience to mobility impairment: neural correlates, Co-I: 05/01/11 – 4/30/17
This is a longitudinal neuroepidemiological study to identify the brain characteristics and risk factors of older adults who have maintained good mobility in the face of substantial structural brain abnormalities.

 

Last Updated Sep 30, 2016