Leslie Schulz: Principal Investigator
Leslie Schluz was featured in NAU's A community of distinction - Pioneers: Preventing Diabetes and Helping Native Populations.
Dr. Bennett is Scientist Emeritus and former Chief of the Phoenix Epidemiology and Clinical Research Branch. The Branch is located in Phoenix, Arizona, because of its emphasis on research in American Indian populations. The branch develops and applies epidemiological and clinical methodologies in the investigation of diabetes and its complications, obesity and kidney diseases, which are particularly prevalent among southwestern American Indians.
Major areas under study are diabetes mellitus and obesity. Field studies, clinical trials and clinical research are conducted in Arizona and collaborative investigations on other selected populations are underway. Inpatient and outpatient clinical studies of diabetes and obesity are carried out in the Phoenix Indian Medical Center.
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Dr. Ravussin is recognized internationally as a clinical investigator in the field of obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus. His research now focuses on the genetic and molecular basis of obesity and its co-morbidities. His studies are aimed at understanding the molecular mechanisms that determine the inter-individual variability in energy expenditure, fat oxidation and in the activity of the sympathetic nervous system. He also concentrates on the relationship between physiology and gene expression in response to diet and physical training.
R. Cruz Begay is an assistant professor in the Health Sciences Department at Northern Arizona University. She is a member of the Tohono O'odham Nation in Arizona and has completed MPH and DrPH degrees in Public Health from the University of California, Berkeley. Before her academic career, she worked for the Indian Health Service and the Navajo Nation in rural communities on the Navajo Reservation and in a community health center in Arizona. Dr. Begay has taught courses in rural health, sociocultural and behavioral aspects of public health, health disparities, health principles, and methods of community health promotion. She is currently involved in qualitative research about environmental changes and diabetes in indigenous populations. Her interests are in research about the mitigating of health disparities in American Indian populations and in the socio-cultural and environmental factors influencing health disparities.
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Lisa Chaudhari is the project director. She is completing her Ph.D. in anthropology and GIS graduate certificate from the University of Georgia. Her dissertation looks at the ethnohealth of the transnational Atlanta-Trinidad and Tobago community. Her research interests are in biocultural and medical anthropology, environmental and ecological anthropology, ethnoecology, migration issues, GIS, and applied approaches.
Rene Urquides Romero:
My research focuses on studying the spatial variation of environmental processes and their connections with human actions and decisions. I am interested in looking at the local effects of land use and different vegetation cover in the water cycle. I gained some experience in the analysis of the spatial variation of human diseases in a research project mapping colon rectal cancer in the state of Georgia.
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