|BioSocial Methods Newsletter – March 2017 – Issue #14|
An Interview with Dr. Hallie Prescott
Dr. Hallie Prescott embodies the rare combination of intellect, precision in execution and collaborative spirit. Dr. Prescott’s research focuses on improving the clinical management and understanding the mechanisms of long-term morbidity in sepsis survivors. She graciously agreed to be interviewed for our newsletter in March 2017.
The Collaboration Journey with BioSocial Methods
Discuss the problem together
explore the methods
change the plan over time
Dr. Prescott’s work with Collaborative Director Dr. Richard Gonzalez began with conversations about heterogeneity of sepsis patients and then the submission of a K08 award in the summer of 2014 – General pathways and personalized risk of morbidity after sepsis – which was funded in 2015.
When asked why she sought out a connection with the BioSocial Methods Collaborative at the Institute for Social Research, Dr. Prescott said because she was looking for a mentor to provide methodological insights. Through this collaboration, she noted that she has learned a lot about methodology, drawing tools from many different academic disciplines, and as a result we’ve learned a lot about sepsis.
The rest of this article is in her words….
Every discipline has it’s own traditions
For example, the common statistical methods used in medical research may differ from the approaches taken in psychology or sociology. Working with the BioSocial Methods collaborative, I’ve learned new ways to approach questions.
Is this interesting to you?
Rich’s approach is to ask “Is this interesting to you?” throughout the process of exploring various questions and possibilities for methodological approaches.
Methodological rigor and applicability
So much in Medicine is about interpretability and applicability to the clinical setting, so methodological rigor becomes a secondary issue. The best research, however, is that which has both applicability and strong methodological rigor.
Moving the Needle for Sepsis
Over the past few decades, many studies of targeted sepsis therapies have failed. The most common explanation for these negative studies is patient heterogeneity. Therapies may help some, but hurt others. In the end, it’s a wash.
The best way to subtype sepsis is not clear. To tackle the problem of heterogeneity, we took a new approach and decided to place the sepsis hospitalization within the broader context of a patient’s overall trajectory. We started by looking at patterns of healthcare use leading into sepsis hospitalization. Two patients may have similar age, comorbidity burden, and acute illness severity, but arrive at sepsis hospitalization from very different paths. This context is not frequently considered in sepsis research.
My intuition was that we weren’t capturing the difference
My hypothesis is that typical pathways into sepsis can be identified from patterns of medical care in the year leading up to sepsis hospitalization. We worked with a derivation sample from the Institute for Social Research’s Health and Retirement Study (HRS) where we found three typical trajectories of healthcare use. Then we examined data from two different datasets, a later sample from HRS and VA hospitalization records, and were able to replicate these three archetypical patterns. Importantly, these different paths into sepsis hospitalization are strongly associated with mortality.
We used both clinical and statistical rationale.
Future work involves building the translational links. We’ve interrogated large data sets and found meaningful signals. The next step is a cohort study and to examine whether pre-sepsis paths are associated with patients’ physiological responses during sepsis. These pre-sepsis paths open an opportunity for a more complex understanding of sepsis and treatments, as well as better quality measurement.
MEMBERSHIP IN THE NEWS
How East and West think in profoundly different ways
Brian Athey and Brahmajee Nallamothu
Projects use Big Data to predict diseases, advance genomics analysis
Stuart Neil Soroka
Media Motivation and Elite Rhetoric in Comparative Perspective
Autonomous electric vehicle sharing system design
Goncalo Abecasis and Jessica Faul
Rare and low-frequency coding variants alter human adult height
Julie Lumeng, Niko Kaciroti, and Alison Miller
Longitudinal associations between maternal feeding and overweight in low-income toddlers
Brenda Volling and Richard Gonzalez
Gender Role Beliefs, Work–Family Conflict, and Father Involvement After the Birth of a Second Child.
The Guilty Secret of Distracted Parenting
Congratulations Jan Van den Bulck
Dr. Jan Van den Bulck has won the 2017 Senior Scholar Award from the Children, Adolescents, and Media Division of the International Communication Association.
The Children, Adolescents, and Media (CAM) division is an intellectual forum for academics from all over the world who study the role of media in the lives of children and young people. The Senior Scholar Award recognizes an established scholar who has made significant contributions to the development and status of such scholarship. The nominee has made clear, coherent, and sustained contributions to the advancement of Children, Adolescents, and Media scholarship over time.
Van den Bulck is a professor in Communication Studies at the University of Michigan. He is interested in involuntary and incidental media effects and has studied how the entertainment media, in general, and fiction, in particular, affect our perception of the real world. He is particularly interested in how TV viewing affects our knowledge of violence and the world of law enforcement, and of health and the world of emergency medicine. Dr. Van den Bulck’s recent research has studied the relationship between media use and sleep.
Dr. Van den Bulck will receive his award and be recognized at the upcoming CAM Business Meeting conference in San Diego in May. Congratulations!
Congratulations Hallie Prescott
Dr. Hallie Prescott will be honored with the Jo Rae Wright Award for Outstanding Science at the American Thoracic Society Conference in May.
The Jo Rae Wright Award recognizes demonstrated potential for significant achievement and contributions. This award is aimed at the rising generation of individuals who will be tomorrow’s leaders in science.
Dr. Prescott is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Internal Medicine. Congratulations!
EDUCATION AND TRAINING OPPORTUNITIES
June 19-23, 2017
NETSCI 2017 (The International School and Conference on Network Science)
NetSci 2017 is a combination of:
– Satellite Symposia (June 19 & 20)
– An International School for students and non-experts (June 19 & 20)
– A 3-day Conference (June 21-23) featuring research in a wide range of topics and in different formats, including keynote and invited talks, oral presentations, posters, and lightning talks.
July 24-26, 2017
T4 Human Physiology Conference
Who should attend
Anyone who records and analyzes human physiology data as part of their research and/or those who teach human physiology or related subjects: academic scientists, industry applied researchers, and educators.
What you will learn
The T4 conference is unique in that attendees will receive practical “how-to” instruction in key skills necessary for recording and analyzing great data.
Workshops are interactive and include the tools, tips, and strategies for recording high quality data from study participants. The conference focuses on technology and trends in the industry and provides physiologists with an opportunity to develop their skills and knowledge. The workshops cover preparation, acquiring data, and analysis. Physiology educators will learn-by-doing the proven, high engagement, student-centered strategies for incorporating physiology education into their program of instruction.
For More Information, click here
Our mission is the innovation of new methods to integrate biology and behavior.
Biosocial research is complex and challenging given the many different ways and types of data that is collected. It requires expertise in many domain areas. The Collaborative is developing expertise in the various modes with staff expertise and through collaboration with our membership.
The Collaborative provides comprehensive, customized support to researchers working to connect biological data and social/behavioral data. Support includes:
- Identification of researchers/experts for collaboration
- Scoping a study
- IRB application support
- Boilerplate Facilities and Resources document for grant applications
- Study design
- Participant recruitment & scheduling
- Data collection
- Data management
- Data analysis
- Methods innovation
- Coordinating methods problem solving sessions
- Full-time staff with expertise in biosocial research processes and methods
Wherever you are in your research process the Collaborative has the capability to assist you.
Visit our website for more information.
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