Currently Funded Projects:

Aspirin Dosing: A Patient-Centric Trial Assessing Benefits and Long-Term Effectiveness Trial
This trial will compare low vs. standard-dose aspirin therapy on cardiovascular disease events in adults with heart disease.
Funding Source: Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute
Matthew Roe, MD, Duke University; Site PI: Jeffrey VanWormer, PhD

Central Data Collection Center (CDCC) - Continued Follow-up of PLCO (Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, and Ovarian Cancer Screening Trial) Participants
This project involves ongoing followup of a randomized cancer screening trial of more than 20 years duration involving 74,000 females and 74,000 males aged 55-74 at entry at 10 sites around the country. Individuals in the control group received usual medical care. Individuals in the group randomized to screening received screening examinations for lung, and colo-rectal cancers and, depending on sex, either prostate or ovarian cancer. The screening trial was designed to determine whether: 1) screening with flexible sigmoidoscopy can reduce mortality from colo-rectal cancer; 2) screening with chest x-ray can reduce mortality from lung cancer; 3). screening men with digital rectal examination plus serum prostate-specific antigen can reduce mortality from prostate cancer; and, 4). screening women with CA 125 and transvaginal ultrasound can reduce mortality from ovarian cancer. Secondary objectives included: 1) to assess screening variables other than mortality for each of the interventions including sensitivity, specificity, and positive predictive values. 2) To assess incidence, stage, and survival experience of cancer cases. 3) To investigate the mortality predictive value of biologic and/or prognostic characterizations of tumor tissue as intermediate endpoints.  To view publications and results, click here.
Funding Source: Westat/NCI
PI: Robert Greenlee, PhD, MPH

Community-Wide Weight Management Program

This project involves an annual community health challenge as part of the broader Heart of New Ulm Project (based in New Ulm, MN). The Community Challenge program will focus on weight management, and encourage participating residents to improve their nutrition and physical activity behaviors via an incentivized weigh-in system, telephonic coaching, and Internet self-help education.
Funding Source: Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation
PI: Jackie Boucher, Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation; Site PI: Jeffrey VanWormer, PhD

CRN (Cancer Research Network) Pilot: Are 2 Jars Sufficient for Pathology Examination of Extended Core Prostate Biopsy?

The methodology for submitting extended core prostate biopsy (ECPB) varies widely. There is no currently recommended approach. At present, urologists may process tissue cores into between two and twelve jars. The difference in the number of jars can result in a difference of up to $1000 in costs to insurers. This pilot study will determine the patterns of processing ECPB tissue cores for examination, and determine associations between number of jars and key outcomes (e.g.: rates of prostate cancer detection, equivocal diagnoses). Researchers will accomplish this by using data collected clinically. The goal is to determine the variability in the patterns of number of pathology specimens per biopsy within two sites that have mixed insurance and practice patterns.
Funding Source: Kaiser Foundation Research Institute/NCI
PI: Mara Epstein, University of Massachusetts; Site PI: Robert Greenlee, PhD, MPH

CRN4: Cancer Research Resources & Collaboration in Integrated Health Care Systems

The Cancer Research Network (CRN) is a consortium of research organizations within several non-profit health care delivery systems. Originally, CRN was focused on collaborative research made possible through integrated access to clinical datasets from the participating institutions. This new 5-year cycle uses a different funding mechanism and redefines the role of CRN as a broader resource for cancer researchers at large. The uniqueness of CRN as a cancer resource stems from: (1) the integrated access to clinical data for large, stable, and diverse patient populations that are available through the "parent" HMOs; and (2) the expertise of CRN researchers in conducting clinical cancer research involving large sets of clinical data. Through this, the NCI intends to promote further technical and methodological enhancements of CRN informatics infrastructure as well as efforts to facilitate access of non-CRN-affiliated investigators to CRN data and expertise. The goal is to increase the number and scope of research projects that are based on CRN data and the participation of CRN investigators on such projects. In addition to collaborations on projects funded outside of CRN, CRN will directly support pilot projects that may be initiated either by non-CRN-affiliated investigators or by CRN investigators.
Funding Source: Kaiser Foundation Research Institute/NCI
PI: Larry Kushi, KPNC; Site PI: Robert Greenlee, PhD, MPH

Improving Diabetes Quality Reports for Persons with Multiple Chronic Conditions
The specific aim of this developmental work will be to evaluate the utility of existing health care quality reporting data from 3 healthcare systems in Wisconsin to support a more meaningful assessment of health care quality for subjects with multiple chronic conditions. The specific target for this initial work will be retrospective data from the pool of subjects with diagnosed diabetes. To view publications, click on links below:
1. Stratifying Patients with Diabetes into Clinically Relevant Groups by Combination of Chronic Conditions to Identify Gaps in Quality of Care
2. Increasing Consumer Engagement by Tailoring a Public Reporting Website on the Quality of Diabetes Care: A Qualitative Study
3. The Relationship of Individual Comorbid Chronic Conditions to Diabetes Care Quality
Funding Source: University of Wisconsin/AHRQ
PI: Maureen Smith, University of Wisconsin; Site PI/Co-Investigator: Robert Greenlee, PhD, MPH

National Cancer Institute (NCI) Cohort Study - Planning Phase
Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States and has substantial negative impact on human health and well-being. Yet much remains to be learned regarding the factors that influence a person's risk of developing or dying from cancer. Marshfield Clinic Research Institute (MCRI) and two other Midwestern health care systems, HealthPartners (Minneapolis) and Henry Ford Health System (Detroit), have been funded by the U.S. National Cancer Institute to plan a large national cohort study of cancer occurrence and outcomes in adults. At these sites and others across the U.S., participants will be followed over a decade or more to provide new information on cancer causes and strategies to improve survival and quality of life. The MCRI research team will develop and test study recruitment and follow-up procedures during the planning phase.  
Funding Source: National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Consortium PI: Ben Rybicki, PhD, Henry Ford Health System; Site PI: Pamala Pawloski, PharmD, BCOP, FCCP, HealthPartners; Site PI: Robert Greenlee, PhD, MPH

Molecular Profiling of Ductal Carcinoma in Situ (DCIS) and Risk of Subsequent Invasive Breast
The goal of this multi-site study is to identify tumor markers for risk of progression from having DCIS to developing subsequent invasive breast cancer. This work follows extensive collaborative pilot work with Einstein College of Medicine and several other sites in the Cancer Research Network.
To view publication: click here
Funding Source: Einstein College of Medicine/NCI
PI: Thomas Rohan, Einstein College of Medicine; Site PI/Co-Investigator: Robert Greenlee, PhD, MPH

Preparing to Prioritize CVD (Cardiovascular Disease) Strategies in Rheumatoid Arthritis and Lupus: P2P-CVD
In the general population, attributable risks have been critical to identify U.S. and global preventive care priorities. However, attributable risks in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) are unknown. Filling the critical knowledge gap of attributable risks for CVD and death in RA and SLE will inform selecting the most important targets for a clinical intervention study to improve risk factor control and event-free survival.
Funding Source: University of Wisconsin/Rheumatology Research Foundation
PI: Christie Bartels, University of Wisconsin; Co-Investigator: Robert Greenlee, PhD, MPH

Surveillance of Pediatric Obesity Patterns in Wisconsin
This study will characterize circannual trends in body weight among children and adolescents using electronic health records.
Funding Source: University of Wisconsin Institute for Clinical and Translational Research
PI: Jeffrey VanWormer, PhD

Recently Completed Projects:

CVRN-Risks with ICD Placement and Outcomes in Kidney Disease (CVRN-RISK) Study

The aims of this bridge award were: 1) to understand the extent to which patients with heart failure with reduced left ventricular ejection fraction and concomitant reduced kidney function receive guideline-based primary prevention ICDs (implantable cardioverter defibrillators) compared with patients with preserved kidney function; 2) to clarify the effect of kidney function level on complications, hospitalization and death among heart failure patients who do and do not receive an ICD. To view publication and results: click here 
Funding Source:
University of Washington/NHLBI
Nisha Bansal, University of Washington; Site PI: Robert Greenlee, PhD, MPH

Anticoagulation Treatment and Long-Term Outcomes After Venous Thromboembolism
This project developed a cohort of adults with Venous Thromboembolism (VTE) that was used to answer numerous research questions about optimal VTE management within real-world practice settings. Treatment patterns and risk factors were used to predict recurrent VTE and major hemorrhagic complications.
Funding Source: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
PI: Margaret Fang, MD, UCSF School of Medicine; Site PI: Jeffrey VanWormer, PhD

ESA Outcomes Among Anemic CKD Patients
This retrospective cohort study examined outcomes associated with differential use of Erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESAs) in patients with chronic kidney disease who are anemic.
Funding Source: Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality
PI: Dennis Cotter, Medical Technology and Practice Patterns Institute; Site PI/Co-Investigator: Jeffrey VanWormer, PhD