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Translational Applications in Public Health

The NUCATS Institute is committed to creating a collaborative space for investigators at Northwestern and in the community to discuss current issues at the intersections of translational research. To support this endeavor, we record a number of workshops and seminars and maintain this archive of video and presentations for those who could not attend or those who want to refer back. The Translational Applications in Public Health monthly lecture series is a collaboration between the Northwestern University Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute and the Institute for Public Health and Medicine.

June 24, 2021: "Reversing the Flow: How Implementation Science can Improve Health Equity" with Hendricks Brown

Presented by: C. Hendricks Brown, PhD
Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and Medical Social Sciences
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine


Much of our scientific enterprise is directed towards innovations to improve health outcomes. We are leaving behind many, especially those with historical disparities in health, who could benefit from what we already know We discuss how implementation science can – and must address equity.

May 20, 2021: Why is There More Funding for Police than Public Health? Questions & Actions for a Transformative Public Health

Presented by: Paul J. Fleming, PhD, MPH
Assistant Professor
University of Michigan School of Public Health


Across the nation, our governments invest billions of dollars in policing & carceral systems we know cause health inequities and then invest only a fraction of that for public health to address those inequities. This public health funding paradox has historical roots and demands new imaginative ways of thinking. This presentation will detail this funding paradox and identify actions for public health to help transform our current systems.

April 8, 2021: "Leveraging Existing Research Programs to Combat a Pandemic"

Presented by: Michael Ison, MD, MS
Professor, Divisions of Infectious Diseases and Organ Transplantation
Medical Director, Transplant & Immunocompromised Host Infectious Diseases Service
Northwestern University Comprehensive Transplant Center
Director, Center for Clinical Research
Northwestern University Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute


We will discuss ongoing programs related to respiratory viral infections that contributed to our response to COVID-19. I will start with hospital epidemiology studies of influenza and respiratory viruses. We will then show how these studies led to the development of the Ordinal Scale that has been so widely used for COVID-19. We will finish with studies of influenza in transplant patients that helped us quickly established the SARS-CoV-2 BioBank.

March 18, 2021: "From Discovery to Implementation Science to End the HIV Epidemic"

Presented by: Brian Mustanski, PhD (He/Him/His)
Director, Institute for Sexual and Gender Minority Health and Wellbeing (ISGMH)
Co-Director, Third Coast Center for AIDS Research (CFAR)
Professor, Department of Medical Social Sciences (MSS)


We have discovered effective prevention and treatment approaches for HIV/AIDS, yet the number of new HIV infections each year in the US has remained relatively stable over more than a decade. In this talk I will describe two hybrid effectiveness-implementation trials of HIV prevention programs for teen and young adult gay/bisexual men. I will also discuss our approach to supporting the use of implementation science in the federal initiative for Ending the HIV Epidemic in the US by 2030.

February 18, 2021: "Supporting the Critical Role of Community Organizations During COVID-19" 

Presented by: Jessica Davenport-Williams
Black Girls Breaking Bread (BGBB)

James Rudyk, Jr.
Executive Director
Northwest Side Housing Center (NWSHC)

Suzanne Akhras Sahloul
Founder & Executive Director
Syrian Community Network (SCN)


A candid discussion with community-based organizations (CBOs) filling critical resource and service gaps for vulnerable individuals and communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. Panelists of this seminar are all recipients of the Center for Community Health (CCH) Response and Recovery Fund award.

February 4, 2021: "Patient-Centered Outcomes Research at Northwestern: Exemplars and Early Findings"

Presented by: Zeeshan Butt, PhD
Vice Chair for Research, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
Owen L. Coon Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine


January 21, 2021: "Reducing Disparities in Perinatal Depression: Impact and Innovation of the Mothers and Babies Program"

Presented by:
Darius Tandon, PhD
Associate Professor
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

Alicia Diebold, MSW
Research Data Analyst

Jaime Hamil, MPH
Research Project Manager

Jessica Johnson, MPH
Senior Program Administrator

Erin Ward, MA, MSW
Clinical Research Associate


December 3, 2020: “Translational Applications in Public Health - CAHRA from Afar: Updates on Aging Research...Pandemics, Peppers, and More”

Presented by: Michael S. Wolf, PhD, MPH, MA
James R. Webster, Jr. Professor of Medicine
Director, Center for Applied Health Research on Aging (CAHRA)
Associate Vice Chair, Department of Medicine
Associate Division Chief
General Internal Medicine & Geriatrics


November 5, 2020: “Translational Applications in Public Health: The SCAN Study and What Genetics Might Teach Us About COVID-19”

Presented by: Elizabeth McNally, MD, PhD
Director, Center for Genetic Medicine
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine


October 15, 2020: “Translational Applications in Public Health: Public Health Practice in the Time of COVID-19 with Nicholas Soulakis”

Presented by: Nicholas Soulakis, PhD
Epidemiologist, Illinois Department of Public Health
Assistant Professor, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine


This will be a discussion and moderated Q&A session with Nicholas Soulakis, PhD. Nicholas Soulakis has spent the past six months working with the Illinois Department of Public Health, where he has helped lead contact tracing efforts for the state. As an epidemiologist, he will discuss how public health practice continues to inform health officials as they battle the pandemic.

Participating Institutions: