Fiscal Year 2023
College of Health's Office of Research
In Fiscal Year 2023, our faculty garnered $24,552,208 in sponsored grants and contracts. This is the second highest annual amount in the history of our college.
Although the majority of our sponsored research is funded by federal agencies such as the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the U.S. Department of Education, our diverse funding portfolio also includes numerous awards from industry, private foundations, and non-profit organizations.
Below are examples of notable research awards received in FY 2023. These awards represent the college’s diverse disciplines and reflect our commitment to embrace innovative approaches and methods, conduct both basic and applied research with diverse populations, and promote interdisciplinary collaboration.
Findings from these research projects have the potential to impact population health in Oregon, the nation and world.
Funded by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, National Institutes of Health, $392,682 for two years
Led by PI Sarah E. Rothenberg, Associate Professor
Methylmercury (MeHg) is a potent neurotoxin, and recent studies indicate that inorganic arsenic(III) (iAs) is also neurotoxic. Although chemicals co-occur in the environment, the study of chemical mixtures is more recent. Heavy metals target the central nervous system, and co-exposure may result in synergistic neurotoxic impacts. However, the biological and molecular mechanisms underlying these joint effects are uncertain. This study advances our understanding of the mechanisms by which co-exposure to two chemicals contributes synergistically to offspring neurotoxicity.
Funded by the National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, $329,094 for one year
Led by PI Brian Primack, Dean and Professor
Patterns in Twitter data have revolutionized the understanding of public health events such as influenza outbreaks. Although researchers have begun to examine messaging related to substance use on Twitter, this project will strengthen the use of Twitter as an infoveillance tool to rigorously examine nicotine, tobacco, and cancer-related communication. A multidisciplinary team of experts in diverse relevant fields will build upon previous research to develop and validate structured algorithms providing automated surveillance of Twitter’s multifaceted and continuously evolving information related to nicotine and tobacco products (NTPs). This project will result in important and concrete deliverables, including open-source algorithms for future researchers and processes to quickly disseminate actionable data for tailoring community-level interventions.
Funded by the Oregon Health Authority (OHA), $320,633 for one year
Led by PI Sandi Phibbs, Interim Director for the Oregon State University Center for Health Innovation
Healthier Oregon is a program for people ages 19-25 and those 55 and older who may now be eligible for the Oregon Health Plan (OHP) and other medical assistance benefits, regardless of their immigration status. On July 1, 2022, more than 12,000 Citizenship Waived Medical (CWM) members transitioned to full OHP Plus coverage as part of the implementation of Healthier Oregon. With funds from the Healthier Oregon Outreach and System Navigation Grant Program, OHA’s Community Partner Outreach Program is working with community-based organizations to employ traditional health workers and navigators to support the new OHP Plus members in successfully navigating the health system. This project will evaluate the Healthier Oregon program with a focus on the effectiveness of the navigation services to help members access care.
Funded by the Oregon Department of Human Services (ODHS), $246,348 for 18 months
ODHS, the licensing authority for Oregon's Nursing Facilities, is required to conduct a rigorous analysis of the state of Nursing Facility utilization in Oregon. Information will be analyzed for state licensed skilled Nursing Facilities by geographic area within the state and where possible will examine licensed capacity, occupancy rates, length of stay, payer and quality. This information will provide a landscape of Nursing Facilities in Oregon to be used by local and statewide planners and policymakers for long-term care services, staffing and facilities. The research team will analyze data from multiple sources and present findings to ODHS in annual reports based on the State Fiscal Year. ODHS will publish the findings for leadership, stakeholders, the advocate community and the public.
Funded by the Oregon Health Authority (OHA), $150,000 for one year
Led by PI Tao Li, Associate Professor
The overall goal of the proposed project is to assess the needs for Oregon’s health care workforce. The objective is to produce a report in accordance with House Bill 3261, which requires an assessment of Oregon’s health care workforce needs and a biennial report to the legislature. This assessment builds on previous reports and will provide new information and analysis to examine the workforce needs facing Oregon. The investigators will focus analyses on diversity and capacity of Oregon’s health care workforce, barriers for people of color in the health care workforce, impacts of COVID-19 on health care providers and facilities, progress in telehealth, and any specific issues and recommendations by specialty. The OHA will publish the findings and make them available to the Oregon Legislature, stakeholders, the advocate community and the public.
Funded by the International Society for Research in Human Milk and Lactation, $100,000 for one year
Mentored by Dr. Dallas, Dr. Pitino will study how Holder pasteurization affects bioactivity of the released peptides. Using sensitive mass spectrometry techniques, the investigators will determine the extent to which processing, both conventional (Holder pasteurization) and alternative (high-pressure processing), affects: 1) the survival of intact human milk proteins, 2) the abundance, diversity and timing of the release of human milk protein-derived peptides, and 3) the corresponding predicted bioactive functions, prior to, during and after digestion using an in vitro model to simulate digestion of the preterm infant. Understanding how high-pressure processing impacts protein digestion is vital in understanding how this processing could improve the quality of milk for infants.
Funded by the Pacific-12 Conference, $75,971 for one year
Led by PI Mark A. Hoffman, Professor
Previous research has documented that athletic trainers have faced, and continue to face, a unique set of challenges to their mental and social well-being throughout the course of the COVID-19 pandemic. The proposed research quantifies burnout among NCAA athletic trainers who provided care during the pandemic and examines whether burnout among these individuals has impacted their intentions to leave the profession.
Funded by the Playworks Education Energized, $75,000 for 1 year
Led by PI William Massey, Associate Professor
This project will explore the Playworks Recess Reboot program in the Pacific Northwest. The study will focus on three elementary schools that are newly implementing Playworks Recess Reboot in the 2022-23 school year. The overall goal of the study will be to explore the ways Playworks Recess Reboot program affects school recess. The project will determine the facilitators and the barriers to sustaining the implementation of reboot services. The project will also examine the sustainability of reboot services during the school year and determine what follow-up training and services are needed.