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University of Louisville

Superfund Research Program

Data Management and Analysis Core

Project Leader: Shesh N. Rai
Grant Number: P42ES023716
Funding Period: 2022-2027
View this project in the NIH Research Portfolio Online Reporting Tools (RePORT)

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Project Summary (2022-2027)

The primary objective of the Sample and Data Management Core (DMAC) is to provide statistical support and data management and storage capabilities to all components of the University of Louisville Superfund Research Center (ULSRC). The functions of the Core are matched to the needs of each project and cover a full range of services from collaboration and routine service to protocol preparation to procedural review and oversight. The Core provides two main services: it establishes a repository for the long-term storage and archiving of data; and it assists Center investigators in the statistical analysis of their results. The core assures the authenticity and quality of specimens and prepares the samples for long-term storage, or dispenses samples as needed. The Core also provides scientifically valid and rigorous statistical analysis of data and support the development of innovative methods to enhance the basic and translational research efforts of Center investigators. It provides state-of-the-art biostatistics and bioinformatics expertise and analytical support. Core biostatisticians also develop new statistical methods, such as quantitative risk assessment models, multipollutant exposure analysis, and land-use regression models, for estimating cardiometabolic disease risk in exposed populations and for the analysis and evaluation of exposures and health effects.

In collaboration with other projects and cores, DMAC statisticians harmonize the data by defining standards (e.g., creating searchable data dictionaries and defining variables relevant for each project). The Core serves as a unique educational resource for training graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, residents and junior faculty and in collaboration with the Research Experience and Training Coordination Core and Administrative Core. This Core allows Center investigators easy access to high quality, centralized data management and statistical services, and thereby strengthens the organizational cohesion of the Center. This comprehensive and integrated service permits one or more biostatisticians to be involved from the initial planning stage of a project (when statistical consultation is most beneficial) throughout its implementation, analysis and completion. The Core provides a stable and collegial environment that fosters long-term working relationships between biostatisticians and investigators, and continues to promote sophisticated approaches to experimental design and analysis. The biostatisticians of the Core are knowledgeable about clinical research and have broad expertise in statistical applications for epidemiological investigations, clinical trials, pre-clinical studies, and prevention and control research. Their interdisciplinary interactions with basic scientists and clinical investigators adds a new dimension to the interpretation of experimental results, one that is only possible when collaborators share a mutual appreciation of problems and issues.

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