The overarching goal of this K07 Academic Career Leadership Award is to develop a sustainable Program in Translational Nutrition and Aging based at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) and in partnership with organizations and individuals within the state of Alabama who have an interest in collaborating on nutrition and aging research initiatives.
Specific Aims are to: 1) provide leadership, core faculty, and resources that support innovative, integrated, interdisciplinary, clinical, behavioral, and policy-related collaborations focused on translational nutrition and aging research; 2) provide high quality educational experiences related to translational nutrition and aging research for pre-doctoral trainees, post-doctoral fellows, junior and transitional faculty, and community stakeholders, including policy makers and the geriatric workforce; and 3) identify gaps in the current evidence base, address methodological issues, and set priorities for translational nutrition and aging research. The candidate, Julie L. Locher, is a Medical Sociologist and Health Services Researcher whose work as an independent investigator has been devoted to the study of: 1) eating behaviors and nutrition issues of older adults and 2) the various dimensions through which nutrition affects patient-centered outcomes in older adults. Most of her work focuses on social and environmental factors, including community and health care practices and policies that affect eating behaviors and nutrition-related health outcomes in this population. She is uniquely trained in mixed quantitative and qualitative applied research methods. Dr. Locher possesses the professional qualifications and personal qualities necessary for developing and leading a substantive and sustainable Program in Translational Nutrition and Aging Research that is both timely and cutting-edge. UAB is a world leader in: 1) geriatrics, gerontology, palliative and supportive care research, education, and clinical care; 2) nutrition and obesity research, education, and clinical care; and 3) patient-centered outcomes and comparative effectiveness research and training. The candidate and UAB, with the support of a stellar External Advisory Committee, are particularly well-poised to carry out the proposed aims of the program. Demographic and economic imperatives highlight the reality that nutritional matters are too costly to ignore in our rapidly aging society. This is especially true in consideration of:1) increasing efforts to improve transitions of care linking hospital and home health services with community-based services in order to reduce preventable healthcare utilization and 2) increasing initiatives to rebalance long-term care so that older adults can remain in the community versus having to enter an institution. Rising rates of overweight and obese Baby Boomers who enter into older adulthood with concomitant obesity-related comorbidities and disability present additional and complicating challenges to these trends wherein nutritional matters figure prominently.

Public Health Relevance

The expected outcome of this award is to produce a community of scholars representing diverse backgrounds and interests who possess the knowledge and skills necessary to conduct relevant and impactful research in the area of translational nutrition and aging research relevant to clinical care and population-based health initiatives. Accomplishments of the Program in Translational Nutrition and Aging Research ultimately have the potential to reduce burdens on older individuals and their caregivers and society as a whole.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Aging (NIA)
Academic/Teacher Award (ATA) (K07)
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Study Section
Neuroscience of Aging Review Committee (NIA)
Program Officer
Patmios, Georgeanne E
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University of Alabama Birmingham
Internal Medicine/Medicine
Schools of Medicine
United States
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Buys, David R; Kennedy, Richard E; Williams, Courtney Phillips et al. (2018) Social and Demographic Predictors of Nutritional Risk: Cross-sectional Analyses From the UAB Study of Aging II. Fam Community Health 41 Suppl 2 Supp:S33-S45
Bush, Nikki C; Resuehr, Holly E S; Goree, Laura Lee et al. (2018) A High-Fat Compared with a High-Carbohydrate Breakfast Enhances 24-Hour Fat Oxidation in Older Adults. J Nutr 148:220-226
Demark-Wahnefried, Wendy; Cases, Mallory G; Cantor, Alan B et al. (2018) Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial of a Home Vegetable Gardening Intervention among Older Cancer Survivors Shows Feasibility, Satisfaction, and Promise in Improving Vegetable and Fruit Consumption, Reassurance of Worth, and the Trajectory of Central Adipos J Acad Nutr Diet 118:689-704
Buys, David R; Campbell, Anthony D; Godfryd, Alice et al. (2017) Meals Enhancing Nutrition After Discharge: Findings from a Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial. J Acad Nutr Diet 117:599-608
Ard, Jamy D; Gower, Barbara; Hunter, Gary et al. (2017) Effects of Calorie Restriction in Obese Older Adults: The CROSSROADS Randomized Controlled Trial. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci 73:73-80
Aaron, Kristal J; Colantonio, Lisandro D; Deng, Luqin et al. (2017) Cardiovascular Health and Healthcare Utilization and Expenditures Among Medicare Beneficiaries: The REasons for Geographic And Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS) Study. J Am Heart Assoc 6:
Locher, Julie L; Goldsby, TaShauna U; Goss, Amy M et al. (2016) Calorie restriction in overweight older adults: Do benefits exceed potential risks? Exp Gerontol 86:4-13
Roth, David L; Skarupski, Kimberly A; Crews, Deidra C et al. (2016) Distinct age and self-rated health crossover mortality effects for African Americans: Evidence from a national cohort study. Soc Sci Med 156:12-20
Lee, Loretta T; Willig, Amanda L; Agne, April A et al. (2016) Challenges to Healthy Eating Practices: A Qualitative Study of Non-Hispanic Black Men Living With Diabetes. Diabetes Educ 42:325-35
Ellis, Amy Cameron; Dudenbostel, Tanja; Locher, Julie L et al. (2016) Modulating Oxidative Stress and Inflammation in Elders: The MOXIE Study. J Nutr Gerontol Geriatr 35:219-242

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