Srijan Sen, MD, PhD, is the Frances and Kenneth Eisenberg Professor of Depression and Neurosciences. Dr. Sen’s research focuses on the interactions between genes and the environment and their effect on stress, anxiety, and depression. He also has a particular interest in medical education, and leads a large multi-institution study that uses medical internship as a model of stress.
Jun Li, PhD, is Professor and Chair for Research in the department of Computational Medicine and Bioinformatics and Professor of Human Genetics in the Medical School at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
Daniel Forger is a Professor in the Department of Mathematics. He is devoted to understanding biological clocks. He uses techniques from many fields, including computer simulation, detailed mathematical modeling and mathematical analysis, to understand biological timekeeping. His research aims to generate predictions that can be experimentally verified.
Jon Zelner, PhD, is Assistant Professor in the department of Epidemiology in the University of Michigan School of Public Health. Dr. Zelner holds a second appointment in the Center for Social Epidemiology and Population Health.
Dr. Zelner’s research is focused on using spatial analysis, social network analyisis and dynamic modeling to prevent infectious diseases, with a focus on tuberculosis and diarrheal disease. Jon is also interested in understanding how the social and biological causes of illness interact to generate observable patterns of disease in space and in social networks, across outcomes ranging from infection to mental illness.
The goal of my research is to leverage network analysis techniques to uncover how the brain mediates sex hormone influences on gendered behavior across the lifespan. Specifically, my data science research concerns the creation and application of person-specific connectivity analyses, such as unified structural equation models, to time series data; these are intensive longitudinal data, including functional neuroimages, daily diaries, and observations. I then use these data science methods to investigate the links between androgens (e.g., testosterone) and estradiol at key developmental periods, such as puberty, and behaviors that typically show sex differences, including aspects of cognition and psychopathology.
Sebastian Zöllner is a Professor of Biostatistics. He also holds an appointment in the Department of Psychiatry. Dr. Zöllner joined the University of Michigan after a postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Human Genetics at the University of Chicago. His research effort is divided between generating new methods in statistical genetics and analyzing data. The general thrust of his work is problems from human genetics, evolutionary biology and statistical population biology.
My core intellectual interest is the way in which parenting behaviors, like the use of physical punishment, or parental expressions of emotional warmth, have an effect on child outcomes like aggression, antisocial behavior, anxiety and depression, and how these dynamics play out across contexts, neighborhoods, and cultures. A lot of my work is done with international samples. In my work I use statistical models, like multilevel models and some econometric models, and software like Stata, R, HLM and ArcGIS, to examine things like growth and change over time, or community, school or parent effects on children and families. I have emerging interests in text-mining and natural language processing.
Joseph A. Himle, PhD, is the Associate Dean for Research and the Howard V. Brabson Collegiate Professor of Social Work, School of Social Work, and Professor of Psychiatry, Medical School, at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
The goal of Prof. Himle’s research is to design, develop and test a inconspicuous, awareness-enhancement and monitoring device (AEMD) which will assist the treatment of trichotillomania (TTM), a disorder involving recurrent pulling of one’s hair resulting in noticeable hair loss. TTM is associated with significant impairments in social functioning and often has a profound negative impact on self-esteem and well being. Best practice treatment for TTM involves a form of behavioral therapy known as habit reversal therapy (HRT). HRT requires persons with trichotillomania to be aware of their hair pulling behaviors, yet the majority of persons with TTM pull most of their hair outside of their awareness . HRT also requires TTM sufferers to record the frequency and duration of their hair pulling behaviors yet it is obviously impossible for a person to monitor behaviors that they are unaware of. Our Phase I efforts have produced a prototype device (AEMD) that solves these two problems. The prototype AEMD signals the TTM sufferer if their hand approaches their hair, thereby bringing pulling-related behavior into awareness. The prototype AEMD also logs the time, date, duration, and user classification of hair pulling related events and can later transfer the logged data to a personal computer for analysis and data presentation. He continues to refine this device and seek to integrate it with smart-phones to better understand activities and locations associated with hair pulling or other body-focused repetitive behaviors (e.g., skin picking). In the future, he seeks to pool data from users to get a better sense of common situations and other factors associated with elevated pulling rates. He intends to develop other electronic tools to detect, monitor and intervene with other mental disorders in the future.
Dr. Nalliah’s research expertise is process evaluation. He has studied various healthcare processes, educational processes and healthcare economics. Dr. Nalliah’s research studies were the first time nationwide data was used to highlight emergency room resource utilization for managing dental conditions in the United States. Dr. Nalliah is internationally recognized as a pioneer in the field of nationwide hospital dataset research for dental conditions and has numerous publications in peer reviewed journals. After completing a masters degree at Harvard School of Public Health, Dr. Nalliah’s interests have expanded and he has studied various public health issues including sports injuries, poisoning, child abuse, motor vehicle accidents and surgical processes (like stem cell transplants, cardiac valve surgery and fracture reduction). National recognition of his expertise in these broader topics of medicine have given rise to opportunities to lecture to medical residents, nurse practitioners, students in medical, pharmacy and nursing programs about oral health. This is his passion- that his research should inform an evolution of health education curriculum and practice.
Dr. Nalliah’s professional mission is to improve healthcare delivery systems and he is interested in improving processes, minimizing inefficiencies, reducing healthcare bottlenecks, increasing quality, and increase task sharing which will lead to a patient-centered, coherent healthcare system. Dr. Nalliah’s research has identified systems constraints and his goal is to influence policy and planning to break those constraints and improve healthcare delivery.