Tag Archives: RWJF Health & Society scholar

How can global obesity epidemic be reversed? A call for “smart food policies.”

robertoHarvard RWJF Health & Society Scholar program alumna and current Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health faculty member Christina Roberto, PhD, is lead author of a paper that is one in a six-part series devoted to obesity in The Lancet. The paper has received much attention in the press including articles in Harvard Gazette, reuters.com, FoxNews, skynews, livescience, medicalnewstoday, The Toronto Star, and medicalXpress. Learn more from this Harvard Chan School press release.

Can we predict how long phase of menopausal hot flashes & night sweats will last?

thurstonHarvard RWJF Health & Society Scholar alumna Rebecca Thurston, PhD, is co-author of a study published in JAMA Internal Medicine that found that more than half of the women in the study who experienced frequent vasomotor symptoms (VMS) – which include hot flashes and night sweats – experienced these symptoms for more than 7 years. African American women reported the longest duration of symptoms, compared to other racial/ethnic groups. Women who experienced frequent symptoms early in premenopause or perimenopause, who also experienced greater negative affective factors, such as depressive symptoms and anxiety, had a higher chance of hot flashes spanning over an even longer duration. The study has received attention in newsworks.org.

Fullwiley on emergence of contemporary synthesis regarding racial thinking in genomic science & society

rwjf-hss-dark-green.resizedHarvard RWJF Health & Society Scholars program alumna Duana Fullwiley, PhD, has published an essay in the journal Isis entitled “The ‘contemporary synthesis': when politically inclusive genomic science relies on biological notions of race.

Harvard RWJF HSS program alumni edit special edition of Social Science & Medicine journal

montezHarvard RWJF Health & Society Scholar alumni Jennifer Karas Montez, PhD, and Esther Friedman, PhD, are editors of a special issue of Social Science & Medicine entitled “Educational Attainment and Adult Health: Contextualizing Causality.” Montez and Friedman wrote the introduction to the special issue, Pop Center faculty member David Cutler, PhD, is lead author on a study on the protective effect of education for cohorts graduating in bad times, and Pop Center faculty members Laura Kubzansky, PhD, and Maria Glymour, PhD, are co-authors on a study that explores whether education offsets the risk of genetic vulnerability to diabetes and obesity.

Course designed to help prevent perinatal depressive symptoms looks to be helpful

mendelson.jpegHarvard RWJF Health & Society Scholar alumna Tamar Mendelson, PhD, is co-author of a study published in Maternal and Child Health Journal that evaluates the results of a course, Mothers and Babies, designed to help prevent perinatal depression in high risk women by teaching them mood-regulation skills.

Can education help reduce adulthood health risks for those who were socioeconomically disadvantaged as children?

friedmanHarvard Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health & Society Scholar alum Esther Friedman, PhD, is lead author on a study published in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine that found that while adults who experienced childhood socioeconomic adversity had markers associated with increased health risks, their health risks were greatly reduced by adult education. The study also included those who experienced childhood physical abuse; the physiological consequences of this type of early-life adversity did not appear to be attenuated by adult educational attainment.

Sheridan explores neurogenetics approach to defining differential susceptibility to institutional care

sheridan.MHarvard Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health & Society Scholar program alum Margaret A. Sheridan, PhD, has co-authored a study published in the International Journal of Behavioral Development that explores how genetic susceptibility interacts with extreme differences in the early caregiving environments (institutional vs. non-institutional) to predict distinct outcomes of neurodevelopment at age 8.

Study shows using machine learning algorithms can reliably predict air quality during major wildfire

Reid_ColleenHarvard Robert Wood Johnson Health & Society Scholar Colleen Reid, PhD, is lead author on a study published Environmental Science & Technology that applied machine learning algorithms that combine data from satellites and chemical transport models (CMTs) – a type of computer numerical model – to predict fine particulate matter during the 2008 northern California wildfires.

Chicago police use Papachristos’ theories to target those at highest risk & curb violence

papachristos.resizedThe research of Harvard Robert Wood Johnson Health & Society Scholar program alum Andrew Papachristos, PhD, on social-network violence is featured in this article in the Chicago Sun Times. Papachristos and colleagues published a study in Social Science & Medicine that revealed that 70 percent of nonfatal injuries occur within networks containing 6 percent of the city’s population. Based on Papachristos’ social-network theories, the Chicago Police Department is generating lists of at-risk people, beat officers are paying closer attention to those individuals to try and prevent violence, and some social service intervention is being offered.

Obesity experts weigh in on influences & nuances of framing on obesity-prevention discourse

selena_310_x_440Harvard RWJF HSS Selena Ortiz, PhD, is lead author on a study published in the American Journal of Public Health that examines the influence of framing on the obesity prevention discourse. She and her colleagues conducted interviews with experts to learn more about two dominant frames: personal responsibility and environmental, looking closely at the environmental subframe of taste-engineering – food industry strategies designed to influence the overconsumption of certain foods and beverages.