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More than $2 Million in Grants Given to PAMF Research Institute

Funds from the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

The Palo Alto Medical Foundation’s (PAMF) Research Institute has received more than $2 million in grants through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 to support several diverse medical research projects and new research positions.

The projects and professionals the grants will fund include:

  • Pan Asian Cohort Study: Identifying Disparities in Type 2 Diabetes Among Asian Americans
  • Mental Health Communication in Elderly Primary Care Visits
  • Prostate Cancer Navigator Project
  • Breathe Easier through Weight Loss Lifestyle Intervention (Be Well)
  • Support for one post-doctoral Fellow for two years, with focus on pulmonary (lung) medicine
  • Support for one summer college student intern for two summers

 

“These grants provide external validation of the importance of the studies we are conducting. The extra funding will allow us to add critical resources to move forward research on several fronts.” said Hal Luft, Ph.D., director of the PAMF Research Institute. “Our studies not only will help increase knowledge of these important issues, but could also lead to new methods of treatment.”

Details of Medical Research Grants

Prostate Cancer Navigator Project
Principal Investigator: Nancy Brown, Ph.D.
Co-investigators: Frank dela Rama, R.N., and Gordon Ray, M.D.
Grant of $275,000

The goal of this two-year research project is to reduce the confusion and anxiety many patients experience during and following decisions associated with a prostate cancer diagnosis and/or treatment. The project will focus on keeping participants well-informed about their treatment options. Outcomes of two groups will be measured to assess decisional conflict, the interval between the diagnosis and treatment decision, prostate cancer-specific quality of life and related anxiety, general health-related quality of life, and health resource utilization.

Mental Health Communication in Elderly Primary Care Visits and Economic Outcomes
Principal Investigator: Ming Tai-Seale, Ph.D., MPH
Grant of $1 million

As many as one half of older adult patients with a recognized mental disorder fail to receive any mental health services, and even fewer receive evidence-based treatments. Using previously collected data from an integrated health care delivery system in the Midwest, this research will study what occurs during the medical office visit to examine the impact of time and effort spent on addressing mental health and physical health on subsequent clinical outcomes and treatment costs. The study is funded by the National Institute of Mental Health.

Pan Asian Cohort Study: Identifying Disparities in Type 2 Diabetes among Asian Americans
Principal Investigator: Latha Palaniappan, M.D., M.S.
Grant for $613,584

The Pan Asian Cohort Study is a five-year project designed to examine diabetes and its risk factors among Asian Americans by specific race/ethnicity. Asians, although they consist of more than 30 ethnic groups from more than 20 countries of origin, have always been grouped together in previous diabetes studies and reports. Therefore, the prevalence of diabetes and related risk factors, such as obesity, remains largely unknown in specific Asian ethnic groups. The study is funded by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive Kidney Diseases of the National Institutes of Health.

Breathe Easier through Weight Loss Lifestyle Intervention (Be Well) Study
Principal Investigator: Jun Ma, M.D., Ph.D.
PAMF RI Co-Investigator, Sandra Wilson, Ph.D.
Supplement of $297,132

Be Well is a multi-million, five-year, randomized controlled clinical trial funded by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health. In this trial,PAMFRIis collaborating with researchers from Kaiser Permanente, Stanford and Harvard to study whether weight loss, in addition to improving overall health, also improves control of asthma. Supplemental funding was obtained through ARRA to support for two years one post-doctoral fellow with a focus on pulmonary (lung) medicine and one summer college student intern for two summers. Through their involvement in a wide range of research activities in the Be Well trial, these trainees will acquire important knowledge and skills required for future success in patient-oriented research.

Nationwide, $200 million dollars were awarded as part of the ARRA. More details of this national program are available at: http://grants.nih.gov/recovery/

 

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