Media Briefings

Pay to Play – A New Approach in Diabetes Prevention

December 18, 2014

OU research aims to find out if incentives lead to lasting lifestyle changes  

t’s not unusual to pay a teenager in your neighborhood to mow your yard, but would you ever consider paying one to go to the gym?  That’s exactly what researchers at Harold Hamm Diabetes Center at the 0016blUniversity of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center are doing, but for reasons you might not expect.

The research, funded by a grant from the National Institutes of Health, focuses on how to motivate young people to make lifestyle changes that can help them avoid health problems, including overweight, obesity and diabetes. 

It’s called the MOVE study, a research project that, as the name suggests, aims to motivate teens to get moving more.

“We’ve developed new protocols for treating diabetes in children, but nothing in terms of teaching those at risk to avoid the disease,” said Kenneth Copeland, M.D., co-principal investigator of the study. Copeland holds the Paul and Ann Milburn Chair in Pediatric Diabetes at the OU College of Medicine and director of pediatric programs at Harold Hamm Diabetes Center.

Helping Those with Alzheimer’s Remain Independent Longer

November 20, 2014

New funding helps advance OU research aimed at improving cognitive function

A new grant will help advance research at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center aimed at helping individuals with Alzheimer’s retain their independence longer.

Alzheimer’s affects 60,000 Oklahomans, a number that is projected to grow by more than 25 percent in the next decade. 

Now, the Alzheimer’s Association has awarded almost $100,000 to the OU College of Allied Health. The grant funds a new phase of research into a method known as Skill-building through Task-Oriented Motor Practice or STOMP, a non-drug therapy that showed promise in earlier research in preserving cognitive function in people with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. It is one of only three non-medication studies awarded grants by the Alzheimer’s Association this year. 

Senior Health Care in Oklahoma Receives $11.5 Million in Support

Tuesday, September 23, 1 p.m.

OU Health Sciences Center awarded new grant to fund Oklahoma Healthy Aging Initiative 

The University of Oklahoma Health and Sciences Center has been awarded a three-year $11.5 million grant by the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation to further efforts to improve the health of seniors in senior health webOklahoma.

The grant will provide critical funding for the Oklahoma Healthy Aging Initiative, a senior health initiative of the OU College of Medicine’s Department of Geriatric Medicine.

“As the population of our state and nation continues to age, it is vital that academic-based medical centers, like ours, remain at the forefront of advancing scientific knowledge of the aging process and evidence-based treatment of health concerns that may arise with advancing age,” said Dr. M. Dewayne Andrews, senior vice president and provost of the OU Health Sciences Center and executive dean of the OU College of Medicine. “The Donald W. Reynolds Foundation has been a valued ally as we work to improve senior health in Oklahoma and we are honored to be the recipients of this generous grant.”

Children's Experts Note Uptick in Respiratory Virus Infections

Monday, September 5, 2014

State and Federal Health Officials Studying Whether Illnesses Are Related to EV-D68

Oklahoma City—Experts at The Children’s Hospital at OU Medical Center are reporting an increase in the number of hospitalizations from respiratory viruses while state and national health officials are Dr Curtis Knoles, Children's Hospital at OU Medical Centertrying to identify if those illnesses are related to a virus that has sickened more than 1,000 children across the Midwest. 

From Aug. 1-28 this year, 115 patients have tested positive for rhinovirus/enterovirus illnesses compared to 75 during the same time last year. Most of those patients were at The Children’s Hospital, though some were also at OU Medical Center, the adult hospital. Some of those patients were sent to the pediatric intensive care unit at Children’s. 

Health officials in Oklahoma are currently testing samples from Children’s patients to determine if any are Enterovirus 68, or EV-D68, a viral illness that has been identified most recently in Missouri, where it sickened more than 300 children, sending as many as 15 percent to the intensive care unit at a pediatric hospital in Kansas City. 

Family Structure Impacts Obesity Risk in Children

Thursday, August 27th, 1 p.m.

OU research details how parents and siblings affect behaviors that can lead to obesity

The family structure in which a child is raised is significantly associated with behaviors that put him or her at risk for obesity, according to a study by researchers at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.

Childhood obesity is a growing issue in the United States. Statistics from the Centers for Disease Control show that obesity has more than doubled in children and quadrupled in adolescents in the past 30 years. Despite this, few studies have examined the relationship between family structure, environment and behaviors linked to obesity, said principal investigator Susan Sisson, Ph.D., an assistant professor of behavioral nutrition in the OU College of Allied Health.

“Before the study we did not know if one size fit all, but we now know some kids are at a higher risk for obesity-promoting behaviors because the risk is not equally distributed among all the family structures,” Sisson said.

Back to School Boosters

Friday August 1, 2014

With resurgence of whooping cough, concerned parents, doctors and health officials urge boosters

Parents of an Elk City toddler hospitalized as an infant with severe symptoms of a potentially deadly disease have joined doctors and health officials in urging widechildren, pregnant women and other adults to join a different sort of booster club this year.


This club has nothing to do with sports and everything to do with protecting infants from a potentially fatal illness – pertussis, also commonly known as whooping cough.


Pertussis is a bacterial infection characterized by fits of coughing, followed by a “whoop” sound from the attempt to inhale.


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention saw a 24 percent increase in reported cases of pertussis in the first six months of this year compared to the same time period last year with 9,964 cases reported in 50 states and Washington, D.C. between January 1 and June 16 of this year.


11 Year Old Girl Seizure Free Following Brain Surgery

Friday July 11th, 1 p.m.

The Surgery Was Among the First Ever to be Performed in the State on a Pediatric Patientep brief wide web

Oklahoma City- They ranged from small, nearly unnoticeable twitches to terrifying and life-threatening grand mal seizures, and for nearly her entire life, seizures have been a near-daily event for 11-year-old Hermoinee Lorett.

But following one of the first pediatric surgeries ever performed in Oklahoma attaching electrodes directly to the brain’s surface, Hermoinee had a successful epilepsy brain surgery at The Children’s Hospital at OU Medical Center. She’s been seizure free since May.

Hermoinee’s mother, Deena Lorett, said her little girl is improving in leaps and bounds. She’s laughing more, her personality is blooming. Hermoinee is learning, developing and growing cognitively as an 11 year old should.  

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