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Scientists at TORC

Director

hamilton
Marc Hamilton, Ph.D.
Professor
hamiltonmarc@mac.com
Office: 133 MEL
Area of Interest:
Inactivity physiology
Lipids and gene regulation in skeletal muscle
Gene expression during physical inactivity
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Daniel P. O'Connor, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Health & Human Performance
(713) 743-2377
(713) 743-9860 fax
dpoconno@Central.UH.EDU

Office: 145 MEL
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Bio-statistical models
The effectiveness of clinical interventions
Evaluate subject-level changes in health measures
Contextual effects
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Daphne Hernandez, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor 
Health & Human Performance
(713) 743-9058
(713) 743-9860 fax
dherna32@Central.UH.EDU
Office: 135 MEL
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Influence of family-related factors in food insecurity and program participation
Child and adult health outcomes based on family-related factors
Evaluate individual-level contextual factors to predict gender differences in obesity
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Tracey Ledoux, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Health & Human Performance
(713) 743-1870
(713) 743-9860 fax
taledoux@uh.edu
Office: 137 MEL
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Bio-statistical models
The effectiveness of clinical interventions
Evaluate subject-level changes in health measures
contextual effects
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Richard Simpson, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Health & Human Performance
(713) 743-9270
(713) 743-9860 fax 
rjsimpson@uh.edu
Office: 141 MEL
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Effects of exercise on immune function
Effects of age on immune function
Effects of disease on immune function
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Lisa Alastuey, Ph.D. 
Clinical Associate Professor
Health & Human Performance
(713) 743-0456
(713) 743-9860 fax 
lalastuey@uh.edu
Office: 139 MEL
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Obesity
Women's Health
Physical activity interventions
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Sharon Bode,  Ph.D.
Clinical Associate Professor
Health & Human Performance
(713) 743-4112
(713) 743-9860 fax 
sbode@uh.edu
Office: 233 CAM
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Nutritional Sciences
Dietetics Education
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Jodi Berger Cardoso, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Social Work
Graduate College of Social Work
(713) 743-1157
jabergercardoso@uh.edu
Office: 419 Social Work Building
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Immigration, health and well-being of Latino immigrant families
International and circular migration
Deportation enforcement and family separation
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Mark Clarke, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Health & Human Performance
(713) 743-9854
(713) 743-9860 fax 
mclarke@uh.edu
Office: 133 MEL
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Muscle physiology
Muscle adaptation to mechanical loading
Cellular basis of muscle function in health and disease
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Allison Dempsey, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Educational Psychology
(713) 743-8636
(713) 743-9860 fax 
adempsey@mail.coe.uh.edu
Office: 472 FH
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Pediatric psychology
Peer Victimization
Influences of Social Experience on Adjustment and Health Behaviors
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Donald A. Fox, Ph.D.
Professor
College of Optometry Department
(713) 743-1964
dafox@uh.edu
Office: 2156 JDA
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Developmental origins of adult disease, retinal development, aging and degeneration
Drug- and toxicant-induced obesity and metabolic syndrome
Nutrition, pharmacology and toxicology
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Romi Ghose, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Pharmaceutics
Department of Pharmacological and Pharmaceutical Sciences
(832) 842-8343
(832) 842-8305 fax 
rghose@uh.edu
Office: Rm 517
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Drug metabolizing enzymes
Drug metabolism and toxicity
Cell-signaling and innate immunity
Nuclear receptors
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Stacey Gorniak, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Health & Human Performance
(713) 743-4802
(713) 743-9860 fax 
sgorniak@central.uh.edu
Office: 104U Garrison
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Understanding healthy and pathological neuromuscular control
Sensorimotor challenges in hand function
Effect of neural changes due to aging, traumatic brain injury, and neuropathy on functional hand use
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Mitzi Laughlin, Ph.D.
Research Assistant Professor
Health & Human Performance
(713) 743-0405
(713) 743-9860 fax 
mslaughlin@uh.edu
Office: 105R GAR
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Risk factors and rates of orthopedic injuries
Rate of muscle atrophy during 6-month NASA missions
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Charles S. Layne, Ph.D.
Professor and Chair of the Department of Health & Human Performance
(713) 743-9868
(713) 743-9860 fax 
clayne2@uh.edu 
Office: 129 MEL
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Human coordination
Neuromuscular perspective
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J. Leigh Leasure, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Director of Behavioral Neuroscience Lab
(713) 743-8616
jlleasure@uh.edu 
Office: Heyne Building 231 D
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Exercise driven neuroplasticity
Binge alcohol damage
Gliovascular complex
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Qian Lu, M.D., Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Director of Culture and Health Research Center
Director of Health Psychology Lab
(713) 743-5555
qlu3@uh.edu
Office: Heyne Building 103C
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Bio psychosocial model of pain and chronic illness
Psychological intervention for ethnic minorities
Cancer survivorship among Chinese
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Thomas Lowder, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Health & Human Performance
(713) 743-4187
(713) 743-9860 fax 
twlowder@uh.edu
Office: 104 W GAR
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Exercise/stress affects on the immune system in young and aged subjects
Role of regulatory T cells and influence of exercise on the functional ability of these cells
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Melissa Markofski, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Health & Human Performance
(713) 743-6658
(713) 743-9860 fax 
mmarkofs@central.uh.edu
Office: 104U GAR
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Acute and Chronic effects of exercise on muscle function
Impact of monocytes and inflammation on muscle and adipose tissue
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William Paloski, Ph.D.
Professor
Health & Human Performance
(713) 743-9272
(713) 743-9860 fax 
whpaloski@uh.edu
Office: 104 R GAR
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Understanding normal and abnormal sensory-motor control of balance and locomotion
Manifestations of altered sensory-motor control
Understanding multi-system physiological adaptations to acute and/or chronic changes in gravito-inertial loading
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Lorraine Reitzel, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Educational Psychology
(713) 743-6679
lrreitzel@uh.edu
Office: 318 D Farish Hall
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Social determinants of health and health risk behaviors among minority groups
Health disparities related to tobacco use, alone or comorbid with other substance dependence and health risk behaviors.
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Ling Zhu, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Political Science
(713) 743-2649
lzhu4@central.uh.edu
Office: PGH436
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Public management
Social equity in healthcare access
Implementation of public health policies at the state and local level
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Alok Bhargava, Ph.D.
Professor
University of Maryland School of Public Policy
(301) 405-4764
(713) 403-4675 fax 
Bhargava@umd.edu
Office: 141 MEL
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Econometric and statistical methods
Nutrition, food policy, population health, child development, demography, epidemiology, AIDS, and finance in developing and developed countries
Coleen Carlson
Coleen D. Carlson, Ph.D.
Research Assistant Professor
Texas Institute for Measurement, Evaluation, and Statistics
(832) 842-7037
coleen.carlson@times.uh.edu
Office: 100 TIMES
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Research design and Statistics
Early identification of reading disabilities
Modeling individual growth and structural equation modeling
Home and community influences on literacy and language development
Early English and Spanish literacy and language development and second language acquisition
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Rosemary B. Hughes, Ph.D.
Senior Research Scientist
Department of Psychology, The University of Montana Rural Institute
rosemary.hughes@mso.umt.edu
(406) 243-2898
Office: 52 Corbin Hall
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Disability, health and mental health
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Dennis Kao, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
California State University Fullerton
Department of Social Work
(657)-278-2403
dtkao@fullerton.edu
Office: 141 MEL
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Health and health care disparities
Immigration
Health and social policy
Geographic information systems, mapping, and special analysis
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Rebecca Lee, Ph.D.
Professor
College of Nursing and Health Innovation
(602) 496-0910
(602) 496-0886 fax 
releephd@yahoo.com
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Ecologic Model of Physical Activity that incorporates environmental and policy determinants of physical activity, dietary habits and obesity in communities of color and underserved populations.
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Margaret A. Nosek, Ph.D.
Executive Director, Center for Research on Women with Disabilities
(832) 819-0232
mnosek@bcm.edu
Office: BCM Suite 635
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Aging with Disabilities
Health Promotion for Women with Disabilities
Psychological health
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Thomas Nosek, Ph.D.
Professor
The Ohio State University
Department of Physiology and Biophysics, Case Western University School of Medicine
(216) 368-3242
(216) 368-5586 fax 
thomas.nosek@case.edu
Office: E517 School of Medicine
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Cellular basis of muscle fatigue
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Teresia M. O'Connor, M.D., M.P.H., F.A.A.P.
Assistant Professor
Baylor College of Medicine, Children's Nutrition Research Center
(832) 822-3436
teresiao@bcm.edu
Office: 2034 CNRC
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Identifying strategies to best prevent and treat childhood obesity
Understanding how parents influence their children's obesity-related behaviors through the framework of parenting styles and parenting practices.
 DThompson
Deborah Thompson, Ph.D., R.D.
Associate Professor
Baylor College of Medicine, Children's Nutrition Research Center
(713) 798-7076
dit@bcm.edu
Office: CNRC
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Design, development, and evaluation of digital media
Health message design
Theory and measurement of youth diet and physical activity behavior
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Susan Robinson-Whelen, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Baylor College of Medicine
susanrw@bcm.edu
Office: 141 MEL
Home Page
Area of Interest:
Health Promotion for women with disabilities