Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Grant writing workshop

Nancy Gell thought this could of interest for some CTS Blog followers:

Grant Writing Workshop sponsored by VGN and WT EPSCoR
Saturday November 14
No fee

Workshop Leader:
Robert Milner, PhD

Associate Vice Provost for Professional
Development and Professor of Neurology at the University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS).

Workshop Schedule
9:00-10:00 AM :
Registration, Continental Breakfast
10:00-12:00 PM:
Overview of Proposal Review & Mock Study Session
12:00-1:00 PM:
Buffet Lunch
BPI Coordinator Meeting (Carriage Room)
1:00—3:30 PM:
Crafting Specific Aims Workshop
1:00– 3:30 PM:
Grant Personnel Meeting
(Agenda to be determined)
Please RSVP By November 11, 2015 to

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

NIH Toolbox

From the NIH Toolbox FAQ:
NIH Toolbox is a multidimensional set of measures assessing cognitive, emotional, motor and sensory function from ages 3-85, and meets the need for a standard set of measures that can be used as a “common currency” across diverse study designs and settings.

I'm posting here in the hopes that I'll remember to come back and check it out:

Open Science Workflows for Modern Reproducible Research

Apple Data Scientist and UVM alum Ted Hart speaks at noon on October 5 in the Biology Seminar, room 105 Marsh.

Title: "Open Science Workflows for Modern Reproducible Research”

Abstract: Open Science is a growing practice across scientific disciplines where all aspects of the scientific process are transparent from idea to publication.  The practice of open science can provide benefit to both individual scientists and their field as a whole.  Despite these benefits open science can suffer from apparent and real opportunity costs, often leading to people continuing with closed scientific practices even if they are interested in open science.  In order make open science easier I will present an overview of the “open science stack”, a set of tools and practices that make doing open science easier.  I will discuss each element of open science and some of it’s benefits, along with examples of how you can adopt open science best practices that can lead to better long term project management and increased citation of your work.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Student Research Paper Contest on Preventing Chronic Disease

PCD Now Accepting Submissions for 2016 Student Research Paper Contest

Dear Colleagues,

Do you know an exceptional student who’s doing great work in the field of chronic disease prevention and health promotion? Preventing Chronic Disease (PCD) is currently taking submissions for its 2016 Student Research Paper Contest.

The journal is looking for high school, undergraduate and graduate students as well as medical residency and recent post-doctoral fellows to submit papers relevant to the prevention, screening, surveillance, and/or population-based intervention of chronic disease, including but not limited to arthritis, asthma, cancer, depression, diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease. Help us spread the word by sharing this call for participation with your students, colleagues, and friends.

Papers must be received electronically no later than 5:00 PM on January 18, 2016. Additional information and detailed submission guidelines are available on the PCD website at and in the flyer posted here:

Thank you in advance for your assistance and continued support of PCD.

Best Regards,
Sasha M. Ruiz
PCD Editorial Office

Monday, September 21, 2015

2014 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) data.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Division of Population Health is pleased to announce the release of the
2014 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) data.   
The BRFSS is a unique, state-based surveillance system active in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and Guam. Using both landline and cellular telephones, the survey collects information on health risk behaviors, clinical preventive health practices, and health care access (primarily related to chronic disease and injury) from a representative sample of non-institutionalized adults aged 18 years and older in each state. The BRFSS provides flexible, timely, and ongoing data collection that allows for state-to-state and state-to-nation comparisons. State-specific data--including racial- and ethnic-specific data from the BRFSS--provide a sound basis for developing and evaluating public health programs, including programs targeted to reduce racial and ethnic disparities in addressing health risks. The BRFSS is the largest ongoing telephone-based surveillance system in the world, with more than 460,000 interviews conducted in 2014.  
The 2014 BRFSS data and documentation files are available here:

Friday, September 18, 2015

Scott Hipko, student in MS in CTS contributor in textbook

Kudos to Scott Hipko for being a contributor on newly released textbook.  Imaging Anatomy of the Human Brain; A Comprehensive Atlas Including Adjacent Structures by Neil M. Borden, Scott E. Forssen and Cristian Stefan.

Congratulations to Katherine Cheung, PhD Candidate in CTS, on a recent publication.

Arce CM, Rhee JJ, Cheung KL, Hedlin H, Kapphahn K, Franceschini N, Kalil RS, Martin LW, Qi L, Shara NM, Desai M, Stefanick ML, Winkelmayer WC; Women’s Health Initiative Investigators.
Am J Kidney Dis. 2015 Sep 1. pii: S0272-6386(15)01043-4. doi: 10.1053/j.ajkd.2015.07.020. [Epub ahead of print]
PMID: 26337132 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Clinical Research Oriented Workshop (CROW) Meeting: September 3, 2015

Start Up: End of summer stories…
1.                  Discussion: Kairn Kelley on Dichotic Listening Statistics
a.       A foundational understanding in auditory processing includes:
                                                  i.      Low left ear score: integration problem (corpus callosum) or right hemisphere problem; this is where the problems usually lie
                                                ii.      Low left and right ear score: auditory cortex problem
                                              iii.      Low right ear score: undefined; may be that language is localized in the left hemisphere instead of the right (unusual) or something else is happening
                                              iv.      So the score of each ear is important, but for different reasons
1.      The difference between scores is also important
b.      The confidence interval of joint distribution is described here as the Joint CI
                                                  i.      Presented on a Cartesian plane, the Joint CI can be diagrammed as a diamond shaped octagon
1.      94% of scores should fall within this octagon; Kairn’s data demonstrate this
                                                ii.      Recommendation: plot 6 diagrams for each child (6 * 60 = 360 diagrams), color coded for how close or beyond the threshold for each test/kid
c.       Purpose: how to answer the questions
                                                  i.      How reliable are the raw scores (not just the left ear scores)
1.      No less reliable than the binomial distribution says it should be
2.      Straight-up reliability
                                                ii.      What is the impact of this randomness on clinical decision making (Note: the approved topic is: how well are tests in agreement with each other – Kairn now knows they are different)
1.      Does “ear advantage” (dominance) show up the same on each of the three tests?  (Not true, based on Kairn’s data)
a.       Dominance within a test was always the same
b.      Dominance between tests flipped, usually to “indeterminate” but sometimes to opposite side
                                              iii.      This analysis can lend itself to adaptive testing, to increase “n” tests in the ear that appears to be underperforming in order to be clear about the clinical threshold
d.      Summary:
                                                  i.      Capture reliability with CI
                                                ii.      CI, in retest, overlap substantially
                                              iii.      CI, across different tests, may have different or little overlap
1.      Each test is converted to a % of correct answers (so all have the same scale)
2.      Center points should be the same, size of zone will change by number of items in test
                                              iv.      Develop the CI for each possible “indeterminate” score and plot to create ranges of scores that will fall into clinically distinct zones; repeat for “test size,” i.e. number of items on a test
                                                v.      Future: measure children with known auditory processing disorders (using existing data)
2.                  Next Workshop Meeting(s): Fridays, 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m., at Given Courtyard South Level 4.   
a.       September 10: Marianne – abstract submission for presentation on methodology
b.      September 17: (no Kairn)
c.       September 24: Kairn – update
d.      October 1:
e.       Future: Connie’s Pfizer application and reviewer comments

Recorder: Connie van Eeghen

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Webinar-Fundamentals of NIH and NIH Grant Process on Sept 11

Megan Columbus, Director of Communications and Outreach, Office of Extramural Research, and NIH Program Manager for Electronic Receipt of Grant Applications, will present a webinar: 

Fundamentals of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the NIH Grants Process

Friday, September 11, 2015, 1:00-3:00 pm.


We have reserved communal viewing space in the Davis Center - Williams Room 403.  Participants are also welcome to view from the comfort of their own offices.  

* Registration is required, regardless of whether you participate at the Davis Center or from your office.

New faculty, post doctoral scholars, graduate students and anyone new to the NIH grants process are invited to learn about:

  • mission and organization of the NIH
  • finding the right funding opportunity
  • identifying the right NIH contacts
  • how the application and review processes work
  • understanding NIH resources
  • using the RePORT tool to your advantage

* To participate from your office:

1.      Register with the host institution, UNH (above)

2.      AND also register directly at GoToWebinar:

This event is being hosted by the University of New Hampshire, and UVM’s participation is coordinated by the Office of the Vice President for Research and Sponsored Project Administration. Please contact Jeralyn Haraldsen ( ) with any questions and feel free to use the attached flyer for distribution.

Thanks for your help in promoting this opportunity.


Hilda Alajajian, MLS
Grant Resources Specialist

Jeralyn Haraldsen, PhD
Grant Proposal Manager


Tuesday, September 1, 2015

New article by Kat Cheung

Congratulations to CTS doctoral candidate Katherine Cheung, MD, on her recent publication!

Cheung KL; Stefanick ML; Allison MA; LeBlanc ES; Vitolins MZ; Shara N; Chertow GM; Winkelmayer WC; Kurella Tamura M. Menopausal symptoms in women with chronic kidney disease. Menopause. 22(9):1006-11, 2015 Sep.