Active Research Grants

M. Carolyn Baum, PhD, OTR, FAOTA

Project Title: Schultz Lifestyle Profile Series

Principal Investigator: M. Carolyn Baum, PhD, OTR, FAOTA
Funding Source: Schultz Family Support Fund
Project Period: 5/09-present
Total Award: $354,675

Jessie Bricker, OTD, OTR/L

Project Title: WUOT School-Based Scholars Program
Principal Investigator: Jessie Bricker, OTD, OTR/L
Funding Source: US Department of Education - Special Education - Personnel Development to Improve Services and Results for Children with Disabilities, H325R230056
Project Period: 10/1/23-9/30/28
Total Award: $1,096,128 (y1 $100,000, y2-5 $996,128)
Project Goals: The grant will fund the School-Based Scholars Program, designed to improve the recruitment and retention of diverse occupational therapy students while increasing competencies to serve children with high-intensity needs in school-based settings. The program will provide tuition remission to up to five scholars per year, who will take specific courses supporting career development and academic performance while they work with community partner schools serving marginalized K-12 students. Scholars who receive funding agree to work in special education or related services for two years for each year of support they receive. Data will be collected on scholars to measure program success and report outcomes until their service obligations are fulfilled or they are referred for repayment of funding received.

Erin Foster, PhD, OTD, OTR/L

Project Title: Prospective memory impairment in Parkinson disease-related cognitive decline: Intervention and mechanisms
Principal Investigator: Erin Foster, PhD, OTD, OTR/L
Funding Source: NIH/NIA R01AG065214
Project Period: 09/15/2020-05/31/2025
Total Award: $2,378,444
Project Goals: The long term goal of this research is to reduce disability, improve quality of life, and delay dementia onset among people with Parkinson disease (PD) by enabling them to cope with cognitive decline to maintain daily function. The primary objective of the current project is to determine the efficacy of a mechanistically-targeted strategy training intervention on prospective memory among people with PD-related mild cognitive impairment (PDMCI). It is a single-blind randomized controlled trial comparing the effects of strategy training to the traditional process training approach on objective laboratory prospective memory performance (Aim 1) and reported everyday prospective memory function (Aim 2). Additional objectives of the current project are to investigate neural mechanisms of prospective memory impairment in PD (Aim 3) and neural and behavioral predictors of prospective memory training response (Aim 4). This project leverages participants, data and infrastructure from an existing longitudinal cohort of PD and control participants to evaluate short-term and long-term training effects, neurobiological mechanisms, and predictors of treatment response.

Project Title: Brain Health Across the Metabolic Continuum in Youth at Risk for T2D
Principal Investigator: Tamara Hershey, PhD (WU)
OT Investigator: Erin Foster, PhD, OTD, OTR/L
Funding Source: US NIH/NIDDK R01DK126826
Project Period: 9/11/21-6/30/26

Project Title: Understanding Engagement in Research, Clinical Care, and Community Services Among People of Color with Parkinson Disease
Principal Investigator:
Erin Foster, PhD, OTD, OTR/L
Funding Source: 
American Parkinson Disease Association
Project Period:
OT Total Award:
Project Goals:
In this qualitative study, we will use a community and patient engaged research process with a socioecological perspective (working with the St. Louis APDA and other key community stakeholders) to understand the reasons for underrepresentation among Black and African American people with PD in research, clinical care, and community services in the St. Louis area.

Project Title: The Black and African American Connections to Parkinson's Disease
Principal Investigators: Erin Foster, PhD, OTD, OTR/L, and Scott A. Norris, MD
Funding Source: The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research
Project Period: 1/1/24-12/31/24
Total Award: $90,000
Project Goals: To increase representation of Black and African American genetic data in the GP2 data repository, where researchers can utilize this data to discover greater understanding of PD.

Kelly Harris, PhD, CCC-SLP

Project Title: Development of a School-Based Care Coordination Service Model to Support Youth with Asthma
Principal Investigator: Kelly Harris, PhD, CCC-SLP
Funding Source: NIH CTSA UL1TR002345 WU Clinical & Translational Research Funding Program (CTRFP): Award # CTRFP1605
Project Period: 03/01/23-02/29/24
Total Award: $49,959.00
Project Goals : Using a mixed methods approach guided by human centered design, our overall objective is to develop a care coordination service model with accompanying implementation strategies to addresses identified barriers, improve asthma management and reduce asthma impact for school aged youth. Aim 1: Identify determinants impacting care coordination and communication between providers, school personnel, and families across educational, medical, and home settings, and map the existing data infrastructure supporting youth with asthma. Aim 2: Co-develop a framework for a service model to support and facilitate care coordination and communication between school, home, and medical settings for youth with asthma.

Catherine Hoyt, PhD, OTD, OTR/L

Project Title: Perinatal Arterial Stroke: A Multi-site RCT of Intensive Infant Rehabilitation (I-ACQUIRE) "Study"
Principal Investigators: Warren David Lo, M.D. and Sharon Landesman Ramey, PhD at the University of Cincinnati on behalf of the Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State Univ, dba Virgina Tech
WU Co-Principal Investigator: Alyssa E. Smith, M.D. Asst Professor of Neurology
OT Co-Principal Investigator: Catherine Hoyt, PhD, OTD, OTR/L
Funding Source: DHHS NIH U01NS106655
Project Period: 05/01/2021-01/31/2024
Project Goals: The I-ACQUIRE Trial is a rigorous, adequately powered, multi-site randomized controlled trial comparing 2 dosages of a pediatric rehabilitation - known as Infant ACQUIRE - to Usual and Customary treatment (U&CT). The specific aims are: 1) Primary: Determine the efficacy of I-ACQUIRE at 2 dosage levels compared to U&CT to increase upper extremity skills on the hemiparetic side (using a minimal clinically meaningful threshold that is achieved at end of treatment and 6 mos later); 2) Secondary: Determine the efficacy of I- ACQUIRE at 2 dosage levels compared to U&CT to improve use of the hemiparetic upper extremity as an “assisting hand” in bimanual activities; and 3) Exploratory: Explore the association between I-ACQUIRE treatment at Moderate and/or High Doses and the infant's gross motor development and cognition (i.e., potential cross-domain effects of treatment).
Project Title: Expanding Access to Early Intervention (EI) Services in Missouri
Principal Investigator: Catherine Hoyt, PhD, OTD, OTR/L
Funding Source: Missouri Foundation for Health
Project Period: 8/1/22-7/31/24
OT Total Award: $74,923
Project Goals: This project aims to generate change on various levels: a) for children with indicators of developmental delay during screening, the project will create a referral toolkit that includes a ready to submit “informal clinical opinion form” for EI to support their qualification for services; b) for EI leadership and FQHC staff, the project will raise awareness of racial disparities and challenges faced by families living with SCD and anticipate that these relationships will lead to further collaboration to enhance services for families with young children with SCD in the St. Louis region and more broadly in MO; c) at the organizational and system level, this project will implement a pilot screening and referral program that provides linkage between our community partners (EI and a local FQHC), identify strategies to address implementation barriers, and provide guidance on how to best help children qualify for EI services; d) at the policy level, the project will also gather meaningful information to generate change to expand EI eligibility criteria.


Project Title: Early Identification Of Developmental Delay Among Infants And Toddlers With Sickle Cell Disease
Principal Investigator: Catherine Hoyt, PhD, OTD, OTR/L
Funding Source: NIH/NHLBI K23HL161328
Project Period: 7/1/23-6/30/28
Total Award: $701,343.00
Project Goals: The goal of the proposed study is to determine the incidence and severity of developmental deficit at 9, 18 and 30 months of with sickle cell disease and test a 12-month, home-based caregiver intervention with this disproportionately affected population. Aim 1. Determine incidence and severity of developmental delay in children with SCD compared to peers (n=100). Aim 2. Evaluate effects of monthly caregiver driven intervention over 1 year for children with SCD (n=25). Aim 3. Identify contextual determinants (i.e., facilitators and barriers) related to implementing a home-based caregiver intervention.

Project Title: Implementation of Science for Pediatric CIMT
Principal Investigator: Sharon L. Ramey, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
OT Investigator: Catherine Hoyt, PhD, OTD, OTR/L
Funding Source: NIH
Project Period: 8/1/23-7/31/24
Total WU Subaward: $25,000.00
Project Goals: Given the established efficacy of Constraint-Induced Movement Therapy (CIMT) and the urgency to implement this effective intervention for all eligible children, the proposed study will 1) systematically analyze the extent to which CIMT is being provided around the United States, and 2) describe what adaptations to standard protocols are necessary to increase uptake of CIMT as standard care for children with HCP. The long-term goal of this research is to increase the availability of CIMT for children with HCP. The purpose of this study is to use a rigorous implementation science methodology to understand the current landscape of CIMT and perceived determinants of implementation.

Project Title: From Theory to Practice: A Scoping Review of Implementation Strategies in Pediatric Rehabilitation
Principal Investigator: Catherine Hoyt, PhD, OTD, OTR/L
Funding Source: WU Institute of Public Health, Center for Dissemination and Implementation, Conceptual and Methodological Review (CAM) Funding Program
Project Period: 10/15/23-10/14/24
Total WU Subaward: $20,000.00
Project Goals: The goal of this study is to complete a scoping and realist review to understand how and why complex interventions work in clinical practice. The objective of this review is to assess the breadth of implementation strategies that have been deployed in the context of pediatric rehabilitation. This review serves as a first step towards (a) understanding what strategies have been used to promote the uptake of pediatric rehabilitation research findings and (b) applying a realist review methodology to understand how to replicate effective implementation in pediatric rehabilitation care settings.

Jessica Kersey, PhD, OTR/L

Project Title: Addressing Disparities in Social Determinants of Health among People with Disabilities
Principal Investigator:  Jessica Kersey, PhD, OTR/L
Funding Source: Missouri Foundation for Health
Project Period:
Total Award:
Project Goals: This project aims to identify the social and community factors that affect the health and participation of people with disabilities and seek their input on unmet rehabilitation needs and priorities. We will use these findings to strengthen a Chronic Care Model relevant to community-based rehabilitation services.

Kerri Morgan, PhD, OTR/L, ATP

Project Title: Wheelchair User Physical Activity Training Intervention to Enhance Cardiometabolic Health (WATCH): A Community-Based Randomized Control Trial
Principal Investigator: Kerri Morgan, PhD, OTR/L, ATP
Funding Source: NIH/NICHD R01HD111022
Project Period: 2/1/23-1/31/28
Total Award: $2,721,542.00
Project Goals: Low levels of physical activity (PA) are common in Wheelchair users (WU) due to physical disability. WU are also at greater risk for obesity and cardiometabolic health-related diseases compared to the general population. This study proposes a hybrid I randomized controlled trial to test the cardiometabolic effects of a tailored intensity-controlled physical activity training (IPAT) intervention compared to education and access to a community-based accessible gym (EA). Aim #1: To compare the effectiveness of the IPAT to EA on cardiorespiratory fitness, vascular function, and body composition. Aim #2: To identify barriers and facilitators to WU engaging in PA at a community-based, accessible gym. Aim #3: To examine the mediators (e.g., self-efficacy) and moderators (e.g. age, race, duration of disability) of the expected intervention effect to understand differences in physiologic response.

Dr. Morgan would like to acknowledge her research team who have supported and are a part of this grant: Kim Walker, OTD, OTR/L, ATP;  Sue Tucker,OTD, OTR/L, ATP; Carla Walker, OTD, OTR/L, ATP; Rachel Heeb Desai, OTD;  Yan Yan, MD, PhD; Todd Cade (Co-I),  PT, PhD; Joe Klaesner, MS, PhD; and Graham Colditz, MD, DrPH.

Community Partner: Paraquad

Project Title: Disabilities in Missouri: Identifying Current Practices and Future Strategies
Principal Investigator: Kerri Morgan, PhD, OTR/L, ATP
Funding Source: Missouri Foundation for Health’s Opportunity Fund
Project Period: 9/1/23-8/31/24
Total Award: $63,310.00
Total Award: This project will identify strategies to improve physical activity services for persons with mobility disabilities (PwMD) through education and resource referral during the transition from rehabilitation to the community.

Benjamin Philip, PhD

Project Title: Interhemispheric Communication and Compensation in Peripheral Nerve Injury
Principal Investigator: Benjamin Philip, PhD
Funding Source: NIH NINDS R01NS114046
Project Period: 12/15/20-11/30/25
Total Award: $2,114,436
Project Goals: Our short-term goal is to identify interhemispheric mechanisms that support left hand compensation (both performance and use), and determine whether the mechanisms arise from cortical asymmetry for movement (i.e. hand dominance). This will provide the foundation for our long-term goal to develop and target therapies to improve LH compensation for patients who face challenges to rehabilitation due to chronic RH impairment. Aim 1: Identify the interhemispheric mechanisms that support LH performance after RH injury. Aim 2: Identify the interhemispheric mechanisms that support increased usage of the LH after RH injury. Aim 3: Determine whether the interhemispheric mechanism arises from cortical asymmetry.

Project Title: Neuroimaging Predictors of Upper Limb Prosthesis Adoption
Principal Investigator: Benjamin Philip, PhD
Funding Source: Washington University Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology (MIR) Pilot Fund
Project Period: 10/7/21-12/31/23
Total Award: $8,190

Susy Stark, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA

Project Title: Washington University Institute of Clinical and Translational Sciences -Hub Research Capacity Component- Integrating Special Populations (ISP) (Subproject)
Principal Investigator: William Powderly, MD (WU)
OT Investigator: Susy Stark, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA, Sub Project Co-Lead
Funding Source: US NIH/NCATS UL1TR002345
Project Period: 3/01/22-2/28/27

Project Title: Washington University Institute of Clinical and Translational Sciences, Clinical Translational Science Award Training Core
Principal Investigator: Jay Piccirillo, MD, FACS
OT Investigator: Susy Stark, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA, TL1 Associate Lead
Funding Source: US NIH/NCATS TL1TR002344
Project Period: 3/01/22-2/28/27

Project Title: COMPASS: A Novel Transition Program to Reduce Disability After Stroke
Principal Investigator: Susy Stark, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA
Funding Source:
R01HD092398 National Institutes of Health’s Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD) and The National Center for Medical Rehabilitation Research (NCMRR)
Project Period: 8/28/17-5/31/24
Total Award: $1,354,946

Project Title: Building Capacity to Improve Community Participation for People Aging with Long-Term Disability Through Evidence-Based Strategies
Principal Investigator: Susy Stark, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA
OT Investigators: Kerri Morgan, PhD, OTR/L, ATP, and Jessica Dashner, OTD, OTR/L
Funding Source: US DHHS NIDILRR 90DPCP0001
Project Period: 9/30/17-3/31/24
Total Award: $2,482,013

Project Title: FALLS: A Marker of Preclinical Alzheimer’s Disease
Contact Principal Investigator: Susy Stark, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA
Other Principal Investigator: Beau M. Ances, MD, PhD, MSc
Funding Source: NIH/NIA R01AG057680
Project Period: 8/15/18-4/30/24
Total Award: $3,420,575

Project Title: Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center/ Research Education Component
Principal Investigator: John C. Morris, MD
OT Investigator: Susy Stark, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA
Funding Source: US NIH P30AG066444
Project Period: 05/15/20-04/30/25
Project Goals: The goal of the Knight Alzheimer Disease Research Center Research Education Component is to provide a one-stop training center for comprehensive Alzheimer disease and related dementias research training for individuals along the training pipeline, including underrepresented minorities, and the development of a team of well-trained, highly effective mentors.

Project Title: Successful Aging in Place: PACE and Washington University
Principal Investigator: Susy Stark, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA
Co-Investigator: Stacy West-Bruce, OTD, MSW, OTR/L
Funding Source: Washington University Institute of Clinical and Translational Sciences (WU ICTS) and the Institute of Public Health (IPH): Partnership Development & Sustainability Support (PDSS) Funding Program
Project Period: 6/1/22-8/31/24
OT Total Award: $10,000
This partnership development award between the new New Horizons’ Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) (Dr. Williams) and the Stark Lab at Washington University (Drs. Stark and West-Bruce) aims to identify unmet needs among PACE participants. It will seek to test and develop innovative programming focused on reducing barriers in the community to promote successful aging in place.

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