Candidate: Mae Lynn Reyes-Rodriguez, Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, has a Minority Supplement from the National Institute of Mental Health to adapt a novel couple- based intervention for adults with anorexia nervosa for Latinos [UCAN: Uniting Couples (in the treatment of) Anorexia Nervosa]. Career goals: To become an independent investigator in the field of eating disorders specializing in working with the Latino population. Career Development: This award will enable Dr. Reyes- Rodriguez to continue her development as a patient-oriented researcher. The candidate plans to: 1) gain new competencies in health disparities, design and conduct of clinical trials, statistical analysis of clinical trial data, and theories of community-based intervention;2) gain further training and experience in the responsible conduct of research relevant for a clinical trials investigator, cultural diversity, family-based intervention models, Latino mental health, and integrating biomarker studies into clinical trials;and 3) develop the necessary research skills, preliminary data, grant writing skills and record of scholarly productivity to become competitive for independent NIH funding. Mentorship: These goals will be achieved through: 1) the mentorship of Drs. Cynthia Bulik (eating disorders). Marci Campbell (health disparities), Donald Baucom (clinical trials) and Kimberly Brownley (biomarkers);2) consultation with Drs. Robert Hamer (statistical methods), and Drs. Margarita Alegria, Concepcion Barrio, Anne Becker and Debra Franko (Latino health and cultural adaptation);3) coursework, workshops, and other structured didactic activities;and the execution of the proposed research project. Research Study: Research on culturally sensitive assessment and treatment of eating disorders among Latinos is scarce. Providing culturally sensitive treatments for Latinos with psychiatric disorders is essential to reverse public health disparities.
The specific aims of this study are: 1) to gather comprehensive qualitative information about the appropriate role for family members in the treatment of eating disorders in Latino adults;2) to develop and manualize an adjunctive family intervention to augment Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) for eating disorders for Latino adults;3) to pre-test the family intervention adjunctive intervention;and 4) to compare individual CBT + FE versus individual CBT in a proof-of-principle study. Environment: This study will take place at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with the collaboration of Latino community centers in Chapel Hill. Relevance: The proposed series of investigations will yield a culturally sensitive evidence-based treatment model for Latinos with eating disorders ready for testing in a larger multi-site clinical trial as well as for adaptation for community delivery. The use of a community-based approach will enable a practical treatment model in order to enhance engagement and retention in treatment in the Latino population while delivering high quality mental health intervention.

Public Health Relevance

Given the need for further research on the assessment and treatment of eating disorders within the Latino population, as well as culturally appropriate treatment of eating disorders, this project intends to contribute to our knowledge and to provide culturally sensitive treatments of eating disorders in Latinos. Appropriate treatment will be important tools for use in future evidence-based treatment studies.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Mentored Patient-Oriented Research Career Development Award (K23)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZMH1-ERB-N (04))
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Chavez, Mark
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University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
Schools of Medicine
Chapel Hill
United States
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Tagay, Sefik; Schlottbohm, Ellen; Reyes-Rodriguez, Mae Lynn et al. (2014) Eating disorders, trauma, PTSD, and psychosocial resources. Eat Disord 22:33-49
Reyes-Rodriguez, Mae Lynn; Rivera-Medina, Carmen L; Camara-Fuentes, Luis et al. (2013) Depression symptoms and stressful life events among college students in Puerto Rico. J Affect Disord 145:324-30
Sala, Margarita; Reyes-Rodriguez, Mae Lynn; Bulik, Cynthia M et al. (2013) Race, ethnicity, and eating disorder recognition by peers. Eat Disord 21:423-36
Reyes-Rodriguez, Mae Lynn; Bulik, Cynthia M; Hamer, Robert M et al. (2013) Promoviendo una Alimentacion Saludable (PAS) design and methods: engaging Latino families in eating disorder treatment. Contemp Clin Trials 35:52-61
Reyes-Rodriguez, Mae Lynn; Von Holle, Ann; Ulman, Teresa Frances et al. (2011) Posttraumatic stress disorder in anorexia nervosa. Psychosom Med 73:491-7