Research Studies

Please follow the links below for complete information on each of our listed studies.  Studies are listed alphabetically.

Analyses/Archiving of BDS (PHIS) Data
The Birth Defects Study (BDS) / Pregnancy Health Interview Study (PHIS) ceased data collection in November 2015, after 39 years of activity that involved over 51,000 mothers of infants with and without major birth defects. However, activities continue on this valuable resource, which represents the largest case-control study of risk factors for birth defects (primarily medications) ever conducted in North America.

An Assessment of Whether Aspirin and/or Vitamin D Improves Breast Cancer Outcomes in Black Women and the Modifying Effect of Genetic Variants
The effects of the use of aspirin and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or of vitamin D status on breast cancer recurrence and mortality are unknown. Such research is critical because breast cancer mortality is disproportionately high in Black women, Black Americans are more likely to be vitamin D deficient, and evidence from White populations suggest that aspirin/NSAID use and higher vitamin D levels may improve prognosis.

Behavioral Surveillance of Acetaminophen Users: Knowledge, Attitudes, and Dosing Behavior
The behavioral surveillance program is designed to ascertain the characteristics of acetaminophen users, with a focus on those who exceed the maximum recommended daily dose.  The data will suggest areas for potential consumer interventions and allow for the monitoring of user attitudes, knowledge, and dosing behavior over time as interventions are undertaken.

Black Women’s Health Study (BWHS)
The BWHS is the largest follow-up study of the health of African-American women yet conducted. The purpose is to identify and evaluate causes and preventives of cancers and other serious illnesses in African-American women. (Follow the link to learn more and to see a list of special BWHS studies that are currently active.)

Centers for Excellence in Birth Defects Research and Prevention
The Slone Epidemiology Center is participating in the Massachusetts Center for Birth Defects Research and Prevention, one of seven such centers currently funded by the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (CDC). These centers conduct surveillance and research aimed at the prevention of birth defects.

Epidemiology of Breast Cancer Subtypes in African-American Women
The purpose of this collaborative Program Project is to understand the etiology of specific subtypes of breast cancer in African American women, in particular, the basal-like subtype, which occurs about twice as often in African American women as in other ethnic groups and is associated with a worse prognosis than other subtypes.

Evaluation of the Feasibility of a Study of Potential Clinical Sequelae from Brain Hyperintensity Due to Gadolinium-Based Contrast Agents

Expanding the Inclusion of Religiosity/Spirituality Measures within National Cohort Studies in the U.S.

Exploring Factors Related to Racial Disparities in Ovarian Cancer Incidence and Survival: The OCWAA Consortium
The goal of this NCI-supported project is to assess racial differences in incidence of ovarian cancer and survival from the cancer in relation to reproductive and lifestyle factors that differ in prevalence or timing between African American and white women.

Follow-up of DES Exposed Cohorts
The Slone Epidemiology Center is participating in a collaborative follow-up study of the long-term health effects of diethylstilbestrol (DES) exposure, with 4 other academic research centers and the National Cancer Institute.

Intermittent Hypoxia and Caffeine in Infants Born Preterm (ICAF)

Mammographic Density and Breast Cancer Risk in African American Women
The purpose of this project is to evaluate associations of quantitative measures of mammographic density with breast cancer risk, by subtype, in African American women.

Oral Microbiome and Lung Cancer Risk
The goal of this study is to assess the relation of the oral microbiome to incidence of lung cancer using data from the Black Women’s Health Study (BWHS) and the Southern Community Cohort Study (SCCS).

Prevention of Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms in Women: Bladder Health Scientific and Data Coordinating Center

A Prospective Investigation of the Oral Microbiome and Pancreatic Cancer
The emergence of new microbial gene sequencing and bioinformatics methods provides an opportunity to study how oral microbial communities may contribute to pancreatic cancer risk and disparities. Leveraging the existing resources of two prospective, epidemiologic studies, the Black Women’s Health Study (BWHS) and the Southern Community Cohort Study, we propose to substantially advance this emerging line of enquiry by conducting a comprehensive investigation of the oral microbiome and pancreatic cancer.

Psychosocial Stressors in Relation to Oral Health in African American Women

Social Media and Risk-reduction Training for Infant Care Practices (SMART)
The purpose of this project is to address serious and ongoing challenges related to adherence to public health recommendations known to reduce the risk of Sudden Unexpected Infant Deaths.

Sociodemographic Disparities in SLE Incidence: Behavioral and Psychosocial Factors
The goal of this project is to assess whether western dietary pattern, obesity, and psychosocial stress are associated with incidence of systemic lupus erythematosus in the Black Women’s Health Study (BWHS) and in the Nurses’ Health Study.

Uncoupling Obesity from Breast Cancer in African American Women
The main goal of this project is to determine whether the associations of different types of obesity with risk of breast cancer differ, i.e., whether “metabolically healthy” obese women (who have a reduced inflammatory profile relative to most obese women) differ in risk of breast cancer from obese persons with the more common obesity-associated inflammatory profile.

Understanding the Genetic Risk Underlying Racial Disparities in Uterine Fibroids
The goal of this study is to identify genetic risk factors for uterine fibroids among European American and African American women from Vanderbilt’s BioVU electronic medical record database and the Black Women’s Health Study (BWHS).

Vaccines And Medications in Pregnancy Surveillance System (VAMPSS)
VAMPSS is a nationwide post-marketing surveillance system established to comprehensively monitor the use and safety of vaccines and medications during pregnancy.