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NIOSH Awards $5.4 Million in Grants for New Research Projects Under NORA

NIOSH Update:

Contact: Fred Blosser (202) 260-8519
October 21, 1999

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) today announced the award of approximately $5.4 million in competitive research grants under the National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA). NORA is the nation’s blueprint for new research that have the greatest impact in preventing and reducing job-related injuries, illnesses, and deaths over the next decade.

The NIOSH grants announced today will support 23 research projects in seven NORA areas: asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, exposure assessment methods, fertility and pregnancy abnormalities, intervention effectiveness research, organization of work, special populations at risk, and surveillance research methodology.

“Today’s award represents a smart investment in national research that is essential for protecting workers from injury, illness, and death on the job as we enter the new century,” said NIOSH Director Linda Rosenstock, M.D., M.P.H. “As the range of projects illustrates, the award also reaffirms NORA’s ongoing importance for catalyzing fresh, incisive, and timely research by the U.S. scientific community.”

Among the studies funded under the 23 new NIOSH grants are projects addressing workplace violence in the growing home health care and mental health services industries, musculoskeletal disorders in video display terminal operators, shiftwork, work organization, bloodborne pathogen exposure, and occupational asthma, the most frequently diagnosed workplace respiratory disease.

The NIOSH grants were awarded under a joint March 1999 Request for Applications (RFA) in NORA topic areas with five partners from the National Institutes of Health (NIH): the National Cancer Institute (NCI), the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), the National Institute on Aging (NIA), the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD), and the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS). NIOSH, which is located in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), regularly partners with NIH for RFAs and other competitive grant announcements. Final decisions are pending on funding by the NIH partners for several proposals.

The grants under today’s award are supported by funds specifically provided by Congress in NIOSH’s Fiscal Year 1999 appropriations for research under NORA. This is the second consecutive year of NORA grants funding by NIOSH and partner institutes from NIH. NORA was developed by NIOSH and the occupational safety and health community with extensive input and review by more than 500 organizations and individuals.

A list of the new NIOSH grants is attached by topic area. For further information about the award, NORA, and other NIOSH research, call the toll-free NIOSH information number, 1-800-35-NIOSH (1-800-356-4674).


Asthma and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease

Occupational Asthma Associated with Seafood Processing
Robins, Thomas , M.D.
University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, Michigan
FY99 funding: $276,875

Irritant-Induced Asthma: Epidemiology and Pathogenesis
(Announcement of this award is pending State Department clearance)
FY99 funding: $125,000

Exposure Assessment Methods

Temporal and Impulsive Characteristics of Hand Tools
Cherniack, Martin, M.D.
University of Connecticut
Farmington, Connecticut
FY99 funding: $220,294

Tools for Exposure Assessment of Physical Risk Factors in VDT Work
Dennerlein, Jack, Ph.D.
Harvard University
Boston, Massachusetts
FY99 funding: $137,131

Peak Exposures in Aluminum Smelting
Seixas, Noah , Ph.D.
University of Washington
Seattle, Washington
FY99 funding: $239,497

Fertility and Pregnancy Abnormalities

Portability of Biochemical Markers of Sperm Maturity
Huszar, Gabor, M.D.
Yale University
New Haven, Connecticut
FY99 funding: $232,937

Intervention Effectiveness Research

Wisconsin Production Agriculture Intervention Evaluation
Chapman, Larry, Ph.D.
University of Wisconsin
Madison, Wisconsin
FY99 funding: $216,000

Healthy Work Organization: Intervention Effectiveness
DeJoy, David , Ph.D.
University of Georgia
Athens, Georgia
FY99 funding: $281,940

Reducing Violence Against Nursing Home Caregivers
Gates, Donna , Ed.D.
University of Cincinnati
Cincinnati, Ohio
FY99 funding: $175,702

Preventing Musculoskeletal Disorders Among VDT Operators
Gerr, Fredrick, M.D.
Emory University
Atlanta, Georgia
FY99 funding: $441,509

Outcomes of the Revised CA Bloodborne Pathogens Standard
Gillen, Marion, Ph.D.
University of California
San Francisco, California
FY99 funding: $247,603

Effects of OSHA Guidelines on Violence Prevention in Mental Health
Lipscomb, Jane, Ph.D.
University of Maryland
Baltimore, Maryland
FY99 funding: $236,027

Evaluation of Dust Control Technologies in Construction Tasks
Seixas, Noah , Ph.D.
University of Washington
Seattle, Washington
FY99 funding: $90,104

OSH Program Evaluation in Manufacturing and Small Business
Sorensen, Glorian, Ph.D.
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Boston, Massachusetts
FY99 funding: $189,600

Organization of Work

Practical Circadian Interventions for Night Shift Work
Eastman, Charmane , Ph.D.
Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke’s Medical Center
Chicago, Illinois
FY99 funding: $286,000

Work Schedules and Workplace Injuries
Pergamit, Michael , Ph.D.
National Opinion Research Center
Washington, DC
FY99 funding: $219,000

Caffeine and Naps: Practical Shiftwork Interventions
Walsh, James , Ph.D.
St. Luke’s Hospital
Chesterfield, Missouri
FY99 funding: $225,000

Special Populations at Risk

Injury and Musculo-Skeletal Disorders Among Aging Workers in an Industrial Workforce
Cullen, Mark , M.D.
Yale University
New Haven, Connecticut
FY99 funding: $222,520

Surveillance Research Methods

Injury and Illness Surveillance in Migrant Farmworkers
Cooper, Sharon , Ph.D.
University of Texas
Houston, Texas
FY99 funding: $232,937

Laboratory Reporting for Pesticide Illness Surveillance
Das, Rupali, M.D.
Public Health Institute
Oakland, California
FY99 funding: $206,150

Work Related Risk Factors Associated with Falls During Pregnancy
Lemasters, Grace, Ph.D.
University of Cincinnati
Cincinnati, Ohio
FY99 funding: $303,318

National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health Surveillance Research Methodology
Parker, David , M.D.
Minnesota Department of Health
Minneapolis, Minnesota
FY99 funding: $234,056

Claims-Based Surveillance to Identify Injury Precursors
Tollerud, David , M.D.
MCP Hahnemann University
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
FY99 funding: $221,740