Overview of the study: University of Virginia for the Community Collaborations core, Boston University for the Study Coordinating Center and Pulmonary Core, LABioMed, Johns Hopkins, and Duke for the Imaging Core, University of Vermont for the Biorepository and Assay Core, Johns Hopkins and UMass for the mHealth core, LA Biomed for the Genomics Core, Berkeley and Emory for the Social Determinants Core, Wake Forest for the ECG Core, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill at the sampling Core, UPenn at the Statistical Data Coordinating Core, the Ethics Advisory Board, and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute; UAB for the Recruitment and Retention Core and the state of Alabama, Pennington Biomedical Research Center at LSU for the state of Louisiana, University of Louisville school of public health and Information Sciences for the state of Kentucky, and University of Mississippi Medical Center at the state of Mississippi.

The RURAL Cohort Study team has 16 member institutions made up of researchers across the nation.

These institutions include professionals in a variety of fields, all working to promote the health of your community. Each institution works as an important component, providing research answers and community engagement for participants and community members.

 


Study Coordinating Center and Pulmonary Core at Boston UniversityThe Study Coordinating Center (SCC) of the RURAL Cohort Study will be at the School of Medicine at Boston
University under the leadership of principal investigator, Vasan Ramachandran, MD. The SCC will be
responsible for overseeing the overall management of the study, including the investigators, the cores, and the
RURAL infrastructure. It will also be responsible for coordination with the NHLBI project office and the various external monitoring boards/committees.

The Pulmonary Core of the RURAL Study will be led by the School of Medicine at Boston University under the
leadership of George O’Connor, MD along with his colleague, Hector Marquez, MD. The core will be
responsible for the measurements of minor and major spirometry and the interpretation of lung CT
abnormalities.

 


Recruitment and Retention Core and the State of Alabama at UABThe Alabama State and Recruitment and Retention Core (RRC) of the RURAL Study will be led by the School of Public Health at University of Alabama (UAB) at Birmingham under the leadership of Drs. Suzanne Judd, Shauntice Allen, and David Rhodes. The UAB will be responsible for leading the RURAL efforts within the state of Alabama, including recruiting and examining a sizable number of participants in two counties. Additionally, the RRC will be responsible for the overall strategy of recruiting and retaining participants across the 4 states. The RRC will also lead participant surveillance and endpoint adjudication, an area where it has demonstrated considerable efficiency and effectiveness in multiple studies. A third area of collaboration involving the RRC is the handling of clinically actionable non-genetic medical alerts, where UAB has specific domain-expertise because of its role in the REGARDS study.

 


Mississippi at the University of Mississippi Medical CenterThe Mississippi Core of the RURAL Study will be led by the University of Mississippi Medical Center under the leadership of Ervin Fox, MD, MPH, along with his colleagues, Frances Henderson, RN, EdD; Sandra Melvin, DrPH, MPH, MCS; and Bettina Beech, DrPH, MPH. The core will be responsible for leading the effort within the state of Mississippi, including recruiting and measuring a sizeable number of participants in the two counties in Mississippi.

 

 

 


Louisiana at Pennington Biomedical Research Center at LSUThe Louisiana Core of the RURAL Study will be led by the Pennington Biomedical Research Center (PBRC) at Louisiana State University under the leadership of Stephanie Broyles, PhD, along with her colleagues, Corby Martin, PhD and Denise Holston, PhD of the LSU AgCenter. The core will be responsible for leading the effort within the state of Louisiana, including recruiting and measuring a sizeable number of participants in two parishes in Louisiana.

 

 

 


Kentucky at the University of Louisville School of Public Health and Information SciencesThe Kentucky Core of the RURAL Study will be led by the School of Public Health and Information Sciences at University of Louisville under the leadership of Stephanie Boone, PhD, MPH, along with her colleagues, Kathy Baumgartner, PhD, and Richard Baumgartner, PhD. The core will be responsible for leading the effort within the state of Kentucky, including recruiting and measuring a sizeable number of participants in the four different rural counties in Kentucky.

 

 

 


 LABioMed, Johns Hopkins, and Duke for the Imaging CoreThe Imaging Core represents a tripartite collaboration between the Institute for Translational Genomics and Population Sciences at Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center (LA BioMed), the School of Medicine at Duke University, and the Johns Hopkins University. The core will be led by Matthew Budoff, MD and Pamela Douglas, MD, along with their colleague, Michael Blaha, MD, MPH. The Imaging Core will be responsible for:

  • obtaining the CT scans in the environment of the mobile exam unit (MEU)
  • the storage and processing of medical images
  • the operation of mobile CT scanner
  • the image management, transmission, storage, and access

 


University of Vermont for the Biorepository and Assay CoreThe Biorepository and Assay Core of the RURAL Study will be led by the Larner College of Medicine at University of Vermont under the leadership of Russell Tracy, PhD, along with his colleagues, J. Peter Durda, PhD and Elaine Cornell. The core will be responsible for:

  • collecting and processing biological samples
  • measuring selected key metabolic and cardiovascular biomarkers
  • storing samples for future use

 

 


 Johns Hopkins and UMass for the mHealth coreThe mHealth Core represents a collaboration between the University of Massachusetts Medical School and the School of Medicine at Johns Hopkins University. The core will be led Michael Blaha, MD, MPH and David McManus, MD, along with their colleague, Jomol Mathew, PhD. The mHealth Core will be responsible for:

  • the contribution of mobile technology development and deployment
  • monitoring adherences and developing training material for participants on the use of wearable activity monitors

 

 


LA Biomed for the Genomics CoreThe Genomics Core for the RURAL study will be led by the Institute for Translational Genomics and Population Sciences at Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center (LA BioMed) under the leadership of Jerome Rotter, MD, along with his colleagues, Yii-Der Ida Chen, PhD, Xiuqing Gua, PhD, Henry Lin, MD, and Kent Taylor, PhD. The genomics core will be responsible for the production of large scale genotype data, quality control, imputation, and statistical genetic analyses on RURAL participants.

 

 

 


Berkeley and Emory for the Social Determinants CoreThe Social Determinants Core represents a multi-institutional collaboration between the School of Public Health at University of California, Berkeley and the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University. The core will be led by Mahasin Mujahid, PhD, along with her colleagues Viola Vaccarino, MD, MPH, Gene Brody, PhD, Ana Diez Roux, MD, PhD, MPH, Joel Kaufman, MD, MPH, and Tené Lewis, PhD. The Social Determinants Core will be responsible for assessing multi-level contextual, psychological, social, environmental determinants of health among RURAL participants.

 

 

 


ECG Reading Core at Wake ForestThe ECG Reading Core for the RURAL Study will be led by the School of Medicine at Wake Forest University under the leadership of Elsayed Soliman, MD. The core will be responsible for collecting digital ECG tracings using mobile electrocardiographs in the MEU that are transmitted over a secure network to the EPICARE Center, and storing data for later electronic sharing of tracings in NHLBI data repositories (BioLINCC and dbGaP).

 

 

 


Sampling Core at the University of North Carolina at Chapel HillThe Sampling Core of the RURAL Study will be led by the Gilling School of Global Public Health at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill under the leadership of Robert Agans, PhD, along with his colleague, William Kalsbeek, MPH, PhD. The core will be responsible for designing the sampling strategy for RURAL, ensuring we meet our study targets across ten counties.

 

 

 

 


Statistical Data Coordinating Core at University of Pennsylvania The Statistical and Data Coordinating Core for the RURAL Study will be led by the Perelman School of Medicine at University of Pennsylvania under the leadership of Richard Landis, PhD, along with his colleague, Qi Long, PhD. The SDCC will be responsible for:

  • data collection, processing, and analysis for multidisciplinary research projects across the cores, working groups, and repositories
  • operational support and training to each RURAL site for implementing protocols; quality assurance and control
  • biostatistical supports and methodological innovation

 


Ethics Advisory Board in Collaboration with National Heart, Lung, and Blood InstituteThe Ethics Advisory Board reviews plans for areas of RURAL research, consent, participants’ conflicts of interest, alert proposals and return of results to participants, protocol deviations, and advises the RURAL Steering Committee.

 

 

 

 


Community Collaboration Core at University of VirginiaThe Community Collaboration Core of the RURAL Study will be led by the School of Medicine at University of Virginia under the leadership of Paul Targonski, MD, PhD. The core will be responsible for facilitating participant recruitment and retention, community engagement, and results dissemination and conducting standardized centralized training of all community health workers across the 4 states prior to their deployment.