Clemson University researchers from the College of Behavioral, Social and Health Sciences (CBSHS), the College of Engineering, Computing and Applied Sciences (CECAS), The Wilbur O. and Ann Powers College of Business, and College of Science (COS) have been awarded 14 seed grants from the Health Sciences Center (HSC) at Prisma Health. The grants are funding projects on various topics from health informatics and substance use disorder to addiction recovery and rare genetic diseases.
This is the sixth year the HSC has granted seed funding to researchers affiliated with the Center’s partners, Clemson University, Furman University, Prisma Health and the University of South Carolina (UofSC). The grant program has required investigators to collaborate with clinical faculty from Prisma Health or other academic partners in order to facilitate the partnerships required for large extramural proposal submissions. With financial support from Clemson University, Prisma Health and the University of South Carolina School of Medicine Greenville, the HSC awarded 16 grants totaling $466,438.
This year, collaborations between Clemson faculty and other institutions has resulted in unique and potentially groundbreaking research, said Windsor Westbrook Sherrill, Clemson’s Associate Vice President for Health Research and Chief Science Officer at Prisma Health.
“This year has boasted many diverse research projects, from focuses on COVID to cancer care delivery, as well as healthcare equity,” Sherrill said. “These seed grants have been a critical source of funding for our Clemson health researchers who are engaging with clinical research partners in unique research.”
The Clemson researchers and their research partners are:
- Benjamin Grant, an assistant professor in the Department of Management in The Wilbur O. and Ann Powers College of Business, and Prisma Health physician Peter Tilkemeier were funded for their project, “Improving Health and Healthcare Equity through System Analytics.”
- Sudeep Hegde, an assistant professor in the Department of Industrial Engineering in CECAS, and Prisma Health physician John Absher were funded for their project, “User-Centered Interface Design for Neuroimaging Research and Training in a High-Performance Computing Environment.”
- Tugce Isik, an assistant professor in the Department of Engineering within CECAS, and Kevin Taaffe, the Harriet and Jerry Dempsey Professor and Interim Industrial Engineering Department Chair within CECAS, received funding for their project, “Risk-based Staffing for Effective Pandemic Response.”
- Jeffery Anker, the Wallace R. Roy Distinguished Professor in College of Science’s Department of Chemistry, and Jeremy Tzeng, an associate professor in College of Science’s Department of Biological Sciences, along with Prisma Health physicians Philip Moschella and Ron Pirrallo received funding for their project, “Buoyant and Magnetic (BAM) Assays for On-Site Sensitive Rapid Diagnostics of Peritoneal Infection.”
- John Whitcomb, a School of Nursing professor in the College of Behavioral, Social and Health Sciences, and Prisma Health physician John Cull were funded for their project, “Automated Quality Assessment of FAST Exams.”
- Brian Booth, an assistant professor in CECAS’s Department of Bioengineering, and Prisma Health Physician John Joseph O’Connell were funded for their project, “Optimization of Oscillating Electric Field (OEF) Delivery in Tissue Culture with the Goal of More Safely and Effectively Eradicating Deposits of Metastatic Cancer in Combination with Other Proven Cancer Therapies.”
- CBSHS’s School of Nursing Lecturer Tracy Brock Lowe and nursing Associate Professor Jane DeLuca received funding for their project, “Translational Science for Newborn Screening: Understanding Health Systems Infrastructure Guiding the Newborn Screening Process.”
- Lesley Ross, associate professor and SmartLife Endowed Chair in Aging and Cognition in CBSHS’ Department of Psychology, received funding for her project, “An Ecologically-valid Monitoring of Everyday Function App Solutions.”
- Kaileigh Byrne, an assistant professor in CBSHS’ Department of Psychology, Irene Pericot-Valverde, a CBSHS psychology research assistant professor and Prisma Health physician Alain Litwin received funding for their project, “Effects of an Integrated Intervention Involving Cognitive Behavioral Therapy + Recovery Coaching on Neurocognitive and Neurophysiological Responses Among Individuals with Opioid Use Disorder Receiving Medications for Opioid Use Disorder.”
- CBSHS’ School of Nursing Lecturer Luigi Boccuto and Prisma Health physician Jeffery Edenfield were funded for their project, “Metabolic Profiling of Breast Cancer Cells and New Treatment Approaches.”
- Lu Zhang, an assistant professor in CBSHS’ Department of Public Health Sciences, and Prisma Health physician Greg Matthews received funding for their project, “Impact of Sarcopenia as Assessed by CT on the Outcomes of Cancer Patients Undergoing Treatment.”
- Sara Sarasua, an assistant professor of healthcare genetics in CBSHS’ School of Nursing, and nursing Lecturer Luigi Boccuto received funding for their project, “Pilot Study to Classify and Quantify Language Delay and Genetic Contributions in Phelan-McDermid Syndrome.”
These Clemson researchers are also serving as co-investigators on projects led by Prisma Health and UofSC researchers:
- Karen Kemper, Department of Public Health Sciences associate professor in CBSHS
- Thomas Britt, Department of Psychology professor in CBSHS
- Ronald Gimbel, Department of Public Health Sciences Chair in CBSHS
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