Active Studies

Study of Women’s Health Across the Nation V

Originating Department: University of Pittsburgh
Principal Investigator Coordinating Center: Maria Brooks, PhD

Principal Investigator Pittsburgh Site: Karen Matthews, PhD
EDC Project Coordinator: Emma Barinas-Mitchell, PhD

SWAN V represents the competitive renewal of the ongoing multi-center, multi-ethnic longitudinal cohort study of the menopausal transition. The URL will be the training and reading site for carotid IMT measurements for four sites.


Long Life Family Study (LLFS)

Originating Department: University of Pittsburgh
Principal Investigator: Anne Newman, MD, MPH

URL Co-Investigator: Emma Barinas-Mitchell, PhD

The LLFS is a multi-centered proband study evaluating successful aging in an elderly cohort. Vascular aging will be assessed by carotid ultrasound to assess vascular structural changes. The URL will function as the carotid ultrasound training and reading center for three U.S. sites and the Denmark site.


Resistance and Cardiorespiratory Time-matched Exercise in Youth: A Randomized Clinical Trial (RCT:RCT)

Originating Department: Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh
Principal Investigator: SoJung Lee, PhD
URL Co-Investigator: Emma Barinas-Mitchell, PhD

This is an exercise intervention to examine the effect of aerobic exercise, resistance exercise and standard care control (no exercise) on traditional and non-traditional risk factors for CVD and subclinical vascular changes in overweight youth.


A Phase I/II Pilot Study of Dipyridamole as a Modulator of Immune Activation and Systemic Inflammation in HIV-1-Infected Subjects on Antiretroviral Therapy (DIPY)

Originating Department: University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC)
Principal Investigator: Sharon Riddler
URL Co-Investigator: Emma Barinas-Mitchell, PhD

This is a Phase I/II, randomized, double blind, two-arm, partial cross-over, single-site, pilot study evaluating the effect of oral dipyridamole (DP) on immune activation and inflammation in HIV-1-infected, ART-treated subjects with HIV-1 RNA less than 50 copies/mL and CD4+ cell counts less than or equal to 500/mm3.


A Novel Risk Factor for Cardiovascular Disease: The Insomnia-Short Sleep Phenotype (KINETICS)

Originating Department: University of Pittsburgh
Principal Investigator: Christopher Kline, PhD

URL Co-Investigator: Emma Barinas-Mitchell, PhD

This is a case control study based on a K23 award to determine if insomnia or short sleep duration is associated with subclinical cardiovascular disease. The outcome measures are HOMA-based insulin resistance and brachial artery flow-mediated dilation with the hypothesis that those with insomnia and short sleep duration will exhibit lower insulin sensitivity and lower FMD. This study is partially funded by the URL.


Neurological Pathways Linking Stress to Atherosclerosis (PIP)

Originating Department: University of Pittsburgh
Principal Investigator: Peter Gianaros, PhD
URL Co-Investigator: Emma Barinas-Mitchell, PhD

This study tests the central hypothesis that exaggerated blood pressure reactivity to psychological stress and greater preclinical carotid atherosclerosis are commonly associated with stress-induces hyperactivity in a network of brain systems that both process psychological stressors and regulate autonomic, neuroendocrine, and cardiovascular activity. This is the second visit of these participants.


Sleep, Circadian Rhythms & Cardiometabolic Risk in Retired Shift Workers (SIR)

Originating Department: University of Pittsburgh
Principal Investigator: Daniel Buysse, MD
URL Co-Investigator: Emma Barinas-Mitchell, PhD

The SIR study is being conducted to see if a past history of shift work (working at night on a permanent or rotating basis) has any long-term effect on a person’s sleep patterns, and daily rhythms in physiology (circadian rhythms), as well as on their health and well-being Poor sleep health can increase the risk of health issues such as depression, cognitive impairment, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. The URL performs Carotid Intima-Media Thickness measures, as well as Brachial Artery flow mediated dilatation FMD to assess cardiovascular risk.


In Vivo PIB PET Amyloid Imaging: Normals, MCI, and Dementia Program Project Grant Clinical Core III, Vascular Studies (PPG III)

Originating Department: University of Pittsburgh
Principal Investigator: Beth Snitz, PhD
URL Co-Investigator: Emma Barinas-Mitchell, PhD

This Program Project Grant (PPG) Clinical Core III will perform vascular tests to assess overall vascular health. The research is being done to determine why a person with a certain amount of protein in their brain show no symptoms of memory loss, and another person with similar amounts may show more sever symptoms. The particular focus is the possibility that subtle deficiencies in the vascular system (blood supply) of the brain can determine whether a person will show memory symptoms or not. The URL performs ABI’s and IMT measures to assess the person’s vascular system.


Menopausal Vasomotor Symptoms and Brain Aging in Women (MS Brain)

Originating Department: University of Pittsburgh
Principal Investigator: Rebecca C. Thurston, PhD
URL Co-Investigator: Emma Barinas-Mitchell, PhD

This is an R01 that will be the first to rigorously test the longitudinal relations between VMS, cognition, and brain health in a cohort of midlife women whose physiologic VMS, cardiovascular risk, and markers of brain and cognitive health will be prospectively characterized over time. The URL performs both carotid IMT and Pulse Wave Velocity measure to assess arterial stiffness and cardiovascular risk.


Pediatric Depression and Subsiquent Cardiac Risk Factors: A Longitudinal Study (HuCardio)

Originating Department: Semmelweis University Budapest, Hungary
Principal Investigator: Maria Kovacs, PhD
URL Co-Investigator: Emma Barinas-Mitchell, PhD

This study is a follow-up of an existing cohort of young adults, who have had juvenile-onset depression, with average age at first depression episode onset at 9 years (n=325); their never depressed siblings (n=325); and unrelated normal control peers (n=155). The hypotheses address the levels of CHD risk markers as a function of subject group, the role of behavioral risk factors in adolescence in the link between depression and preclinical physiological outcomes, the impact of developmental trajectories of stress and risk variables on physiological outcomes among probands-sibs, and the most “cardiotoxic” clinical features of depression. The URL is the training and QC center for the arterial stiffness assessment utilizing the Complior machines.


Tobago Cardiovascular Study (TCVS)

Originating Department: University of Pittsburgh
Principal Investigator: Allison Kuipers, PhD
URL Co-Investigator: Emma Barinas-Mitchell, PhD

The TCVS is an ancillary study of the Tobago Health Study (THS) evaluating the association of ectopic fat (muscle, liver, abdominal and pericardial) with coronary artery calcification in 1200 African American men at high risk for type 2 diabetes in the Tobago Health Study. Dr. Kuiper’s study funded by K01 award will quantify the association between blood levels of Wnt pathway gene and protein expression with measures of subclinical CVD (Carotid IMT, PWV, CAC and AC) in a subsample of 365 men. This study is partially funded by the URL for carotid IMT reading.


Mechanism Underlying the impact of Stress and Experiences on Women’s Health (M.U.S.E. Women’s Health Study)

Originating Department: Emory University
Principal Investigator: Tene T. Lewis, PhD
URL Co-Investigator: Emma Barinas-Mitchell, PhD

This is an R01 designed to determine whether a novel, racism-related stressor-“expectations of racism”- is a risk factor for early CVD in 400 African-American women aged 30-45. The URL is the reading center for this study.


Social Stressors and Atherosclerosis in African-American Women with Lupus (VISTA)

Originating Department: Emory University
Principal Investigator: Tene T. Lewis, PhD
URL Co-Investigator: Emma Barinas-Mitchell, PhD

This is an R01 designed to determine whether aspects of the African-American lived experience-i.e. social stressors such as discrimination, financial strain, inadequate social support and early adversity – contribute to atherosclerotic progression and inflammation (markers of early atherosclerosis) over a 2-year follow-up in 200 African-American women with SLE and 200 comparison women from similar environments.


Epidemiology of Diabetes Complications Phase II: Renewal (EDC)

Originating Department:University of Pittsburgh
Principal Investigator: Trevor Orchard MD, M Med Sci, FAHA, FACE
URL Co-Investigator: Emma Barinas-Mitchell, PhD

The main objectives of this study are to determine the distribution of PWV in the Type 1 diabetics patients, the association with clinical and subclinical (CAC) CVD, other diabetes complications and 30 year history of risk factors including glycemic control. The URL will be responsible for training and certification of staff on the SphygomoCor XCEL EM4C PWV machine.


Dementia. Vascular Moderators of Amyloid-Related Decline: From normal cognition to dementia (GEMS)

Originating Department: University of Pittsburgh
Principal Investigator: Oscar Lopez, MD
URL Co-Investigator: Emma Barinas-Mitchell, PhD

This is a renewal of the PPG-Dementia study to examine the interaction between vascular factors and amyloid deposition in the transition from normal aging to cognitively-impaired aging. These participants will undergo PET/PiB scans, a battery of neuropsychological and physical functioning assessments, as well as carotid IMT and aortic PWV testing.


Subclinical vascular disease and AD pathology in the transition from midlife to old age (HEARTSCORE)

Originating Department: University of Pittsburgh
Principal Investigator: Oscar Lopez, MD
URL Co-Investigator: Emma Barinas-Mitchell, PhD

This is an R01 to test the hypothesis that midlife systemic atherosclerosis and arteriosclerotic vascular disease, irrespective of subsequent treatment, is a major risk factor for the development of AD pathology, and its clinical expression.