SPH PhD Student News

  • July 26, 2022
Awards & Honors

SPH PhD Student News


Publications, Presentations, Fellowships, and Awards

SPH PhD Students – Year End Review

2020 PhD Cohort

Tina Dharamdasani


  1. Visaria A., Dharamdasani T., Gaur S., Ghoshal B., Singh V., Mathur S., Varghese C., Demissie K. Effectiveness of a Cultural Stroke Prevention Program in the United States-South Asian Health Awareness About Stroke (SAHAS). J Immigr Minor Health. 2021 Aug;23(4):747-754.
  2. Satagopan JM., Stroup A., Kinney AY., Dharamdasani T., Ganesan S., Bandera EV. Breast cancer among Asian Indian and Pakistani Americans: A surveillance, epidemiology and end results-based study. Int J Cancer. 2021 Apr 1;148(7):1598-1607
  3. Smith, J.M., Jarrín, O.F., Lin, H., Tsui, J., Dharamdasani, T., Thomas-Hawkins, C. Racial Disparities in Post-Acute Home Health Care Referral and Utilization among Older Adults with Diabetes. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021,18, 31

Weiyi Xia


  1. Makar, M., Makar, G., Xia, W., Greenberg, P., & Patel, A. V. (2021) Association of Clostridioides difficile with adverse clinical outcomes in patients with acute diverticulitis: A nationwide study. Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, 36: 983– 989. https://doi.org/10.1111/jgh.15240.
  2. Makar, M., Pisano, T. J., Xia, W., Greenberg, P., & Patel, A. V. (2021). The Impact of Obesity on Mortality and Clinical Outcomes in Patients with Acute Diverticulitis in the United States. Journal of Gastrointestinal and Liver Diseases : JGLD, 30(1), 73-80. https://doi.org/10.15403/jgld-2988
  3. Makar, M., Ziga, V., Augustine, T., Xia, W.,Greenberg, P., George A. (2021) S104 Rising Prevalence of Anxiety and Depression in Chronic Pancreatitis: A Nationwide Analysis. The American Journal of Gastroenterology: October 2021 - Volume 116 - Issue - p S43. https://doi.org/10.14309/01.ajg.0000772888.45520.40

Chang Xu


  1. Xu C, Liu T, Driban JB, McAlindon T, Eaton CB, Lu B. Dietary patterns and risk of developing knee osteoarthritis: data from the Osteoarthritis Initiative. Osteoarthritis and Cartilage. 2021, ISSN 1063-4584, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.joca.2021.02.571.
  2. Xu C, Selhub J, Jacques P, Paynter NP, MacFadyen JG, Glynn RJ, Ridker PM, Solomon DH. Adverse Effects Related to Methotrexate Polyglutamate Levels: Adjudicated Results from the Cardiovascular Inflammation Reduction Trial. Rheumatology. 2021, 60(6) 2963–2968.
  3. Feldman CH, Xu C, Costenbader KH. Avoidable Acute Care Use for Vaccine‐Preventable Illnesses among Medicaid Beneficiaries with Lupus. Arthritis Care Res. 2021, 73(9), 1236-1242.
  4. Solomon, D.H., Xu, C., Collins, J. et al. The sequence of disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs: pathways to and predictors of tocilizumab monotherapy. Arthritis Res Ther 23, 26 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1186/s13075-020-02408-4

2019 PhD Cohort

John Aremu


  1. Llanos AAM, Yao S, Singh A, Aremu JB, Khiabanian H, Lin Y, Omene C, Omilian AR, Khoury T, Hong C, Ganesan S, Foran DJ, Higgins MJ, Ambrosone CB, Bandera EV, Demissie K. Gene expression of adipokines and adipokine receptors in the breast tumor microenvironment: associations of lower expression with more aggressive breast tumor features. Breast Cancer Res Treat 2021;185(3):785-798. PMCID: PMC7925351. 
  2. Aremu JB, Gabriel Jacob, Adana A.M. Llanos, Vitamin D and Head and Neck Cancer Survival: A systematic review Protocol, PROSPERO, https://www.crd.york.ac.uk/prospero/disp 

Kyungdo Lee


  1. Lee K, Eyal N. COVID-19 controlled human infection studies: worries about local community impact and demands for local engagement. J Med Ethics. 2021 Aug;47(8):539-542. doi: 10.1136/medethics-2021-107229. Epub 2021 May 12. PMID: 33980657; PMCID: PMC8117466.

Molly Nowels


  1. Crystal, S., Nowels, M., Olfson, M., Samples, H., Williams, A.R., Treitler, P. (2021). Medically-treated opioid overdoses among New Jersey Medicaid beneficiaries: Rapid growth and complex comorbidity in a setting of growing fentanyl penetration. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, 131: 108546.
  2. Lei, R.Y., Carter, D.L, Antell, A.G., Nowels, M.A., Tole, S.P., Bennett, J.P., Turner, M., Baehner, F.L., Leonard, C.E. (2021). A comparison of predicted ipsilateral tumor recurrence risks in patients with ductal carcinoma in situ of the breast after breast-conserving surgery by breast radiation oncologists, the Van Nuys Prognostic Index, the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center DCIS Nomogram, and the 12-Gene DCIS Score Assay. Advances in Radiation Oncology, 6(2).
  3. Dolan, P.T., Abelson, J.S., Symer, M., Nowels, M., Sedrakyan, A., Yeo, H. (2021). Colonic stents as a bridge to surgery compared with immediate resection in patients with malignant large bowel obstruction in a NY state database. Journal of Gastrointestinal Surgery 25(3):809-817.
  4. Friedlander, D.F., Brant, A., McClure, T., Del Pizzo, T., Nowels, M., Trinh, Q.D., Sedrakyan, A., Chughtai, B. (2021). Real-world effectiveness of shockwave lithotripsy versus ureterosrenoscopy for the treatment of urinary stones. World Journal of Urology, 39(6):2177- 2182.
  5. Crystal, S., Nowels, M., Samples, H., Olfson, M., Williams, A.R., Treitler, P. (accepted). Opioid Overdose Survivors: Medications for Opioid Use Disorder and Risk of Repeat Overdose in Medicaid Patients. In press, Drug and Alcohol Dependence.

Nimit Shah


  1. Kadiwar P, Shah N, Black T, Caban-Martinez AJ, Steinberg M, Black K, Sackey J, Graber J. Dietary Intake Among Members of a Volunteer Fire Department Compared With US Daily Dietary Recommendations. J Occup Environ Med. 2021 Feb 1;63(2):147-150. doi: 10.1097/JOM.0000000000002102. PMID: 33273397.


  1. Shah N, Black TM, Wackowski OW, Jahnke SA, Steinberg MB, Udasin IG, Graber JM. Barriers and Predictors of Physical Fitness Among Volunteer Firefighters. Webinar presentation for New York - New Jersey Occupational Safety and Health Center (NIOSH Education and Research Center), 2021 Special Webinar for Research Presentations and Center Updates, December 2021.


NHLBI F31HL160196-01

Link: https://reporter.nih.gov/search/MoJ0lJEvMEmBZGGkoN1Zfg/project-details/10314462

Peng Wang


  1. Babel, R.A., Wang, P., Alessi, E.J. et al. (2021). Stigma, HIV Risk, and Access to HIV Prevention and Treatment Services Among Men Who have Sex with Men (MSM) in the United States: A Scoping Review. AIDS Behav. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10461-021-03262-4.
  2. Raymond, H.F., Datta, P., Ukey, R., Wang, P., Martino, R.J., Krause, K.D., Rosmarin-DeStefano, R., Pinter, A., Halkitis, P.N., Gennaro, M.L. (2021). Self-reported symptoms, self-reported viral testing result and seroprevalence of SARS CoV-2 among a community sample in Essex County New Jersey: A brief report. Medrvix (Preprint). doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/2021.03.02.21252766.
  3. Wang, P., Wogayehu, A., Fahad, A., Menschner, C, Rosemarin-DeStefano, C, Raymond, H.F. (2021). HIV Prevalence and Associated Factors Among Men Who Have Sex With Men (MSM) in New Jersey, U.S., 2017. AIDS Behav. doi: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10461-021-03516-1.
  4. Wang, P., McGovern, M., Togo, Y. (2021). (2021). Geographic diversity in authorship of HIV randomized control trial publications. AIDS. doi: https://doi.org/10.1097/qad.0000000000003038.
  5. Raymond, H.F., Datta, P., Ukey, R., Wang, P., Martino, R.J., Krause, D.K., Richard J. Rosmarin-DeStefano, C.,  Pinter, A., Gennaro, M.L., & Halkitis, P.N. (2021). Prevalence and Correlates of SARS CoV-2 Among a Community-Based Sample Recruited Using Randomized Venue-Based Sampling. Essex County, NJ, 2020. J. Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40615-021-01175-5.

Peng Zhang


  1. Tai Xie, Peng Zhang, Weichung Joe Shih, Yue Tu & K. K. Gordon Lan (2021) Dynamic Monitoring of Ongoing Clinical Trials, Statistics in Biopharmaceutical Research, DOI: 10.1080/19466315.2021.1880965

Dissertation Defense (Passed)

Date :12/17/2021

Title: Monitoring Ongoing Clinical Trials under Fractional Brownian Motion with Drift”

Thesis Committee Members:  

Dr. Yong Lin, (Chair),

Dr. Weichung Joe Shih,

Dr. Shou-en Lu,

Dr. Yaqun Wang,

Dr. Tai Xie, (Outside Member),

Dr. Gordon Lan (Outside Member)

2018 PhD Cohort

Caleb LoSchiavo


  1. Hascher, K., Jaiswal, J., Lorenzo, J., LoSchiavo, C., Burton, W. M., Griffin, M. & Halkitis, P. N. (In press) “Why aren’t you on PrEP? You’re a gay man”: Reification of HIV 'risk’ influences perception and behavior of young sexual minority men and medical providers. Culture, Health, and Sexuality. https://doi.org/10.1080/13691058.2021.2018501
  2. Martino, R. J., Krause, K. D., Griffin, M., LoSchiavo, C., Comer-Carruthers, C., & Halkitis, P. N. (2021). Employment loss as a result of COVID-19: A nationwide survey at the onset of COVID-19 in US LGBTQ+ populations. Sexuality Research and Social Policy, 1–12.
  3. Griffin, M., Martino, R., LoSchiavo, C., Comer-Carruthers, C., Krause, K. D., Stults, C. B., & Halkitis, P. N. (2021). Ensuring survey research data integrity in the era of internet bots. Quality and Quantity, 1–12. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11135-021-01252-1
  4. Jaiswal, J., LoSchiavo, C., Meanley, S., Hascher, K., Cox, A. B., Dunlap, K. B., Singer, S. N., & Halkitis, P. N. (2021). Correlates of pre-exposure prophylaxis uptake among urban young sexual minority men and transgender women: The need to reframe “risk” messaging and normalize preventative health. AIDS and Behavior, 25(10), 3057–3073. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10461-021-03254-4
  5. Jaiswal, J., Dunlap, K., Griffin, M., Cox, A., Singer, S. N., Hascher, K., LoSchiavo, C., Walters, S. M., & Mumba, M. (2021). Pre-exposure prophylaxis awareness, acceptability and potential stigma among medical and non-medical clinic staff in methadone treatment settings: The key role of non-medical staff in enhancing HIV prevention. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, 129, 108371. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jsat.2021.108371
  6. Martino, R., Krause, K. D., Griffin, M., LoSchiavo, C., Comer-Carruthers, C., Karr, A., Bullock, A., & Halkitis, P. N. (2021). A nationwide survey of COVID-19 testing in LGBTQ+ populations in the United States. Public Health Reports, 136(4), 493-507. https://doi.org/10.1177/00333549211018190
  7. Halkitis, P. N., LoSchiavo, C., Martino, R., De La Cruz, B. M., Stults, C. B., & Krause, K. D. (2021). Age of sexual debut among young sexual minority men: The P18 cohort study. Journal of Sex Research, 58(5), 573–580. https://doi.org/10.1080/00224499.2020.1783505
  8. LoSchiavo, C., Acuna, N., & Halkitis, P. N. (2021). Evidence for the confluence of cigarette smoking, other substance use, and psychosocial and mental health in a sample of urban sexual minority young adults: The P18 cohort study. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 55(4), 308–320. https://doi.org/10.1093/abm/kaaa052

John Palatucci


  1. Palatucci, J.S., Monheit, A.C. (2021) The Impact of Increasing Community-Directed State Mental Health Agency Expenditures on Violent Crime. Community Ment Health Journal. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10597-021-00911-9


  1. Palatucci, J.S, Lontok, O., Ahmad, S., and Mackie, T. (June 16th, 2021). Practice-Based Recommendations for Implementing a System-Wide Trauma Informed Intervention. Poster Presented at AcademyHealth 2021 Virtual Annual Research Meeting.  Available online: https://academyhealth.confex.com/academyhealth/2021arm/meetingapp.cgi/Paper/46934

Grace Ibitamuno

Book Chapter

  1. Rodgers, D., & Ibitamuno, G. (2021). Marilyn Gaston: Changing the Face of Healthcare through Research, Public Service and Community Health in Junctures in Women’s Leadership: Healthcare & Public Health. Rutgers University Press.

2017 PhD Cohort

Riddhi Babel


Babel, R.A., Wang, P., Alessi, E.J. et al. (2021). Stigma, HIV Risk, and Access to HIV Prevention and Treatment Services Among Men Who have Sex with Men (MSM) in the United States: A Scoping Review. AIDS Behav. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10461-021-03262-4.


RBHS-Doctoral Student Academic Advancement Support Program, Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences 

Dissertation Defense (Passed)

Date: November 8, 2021

Title: Experiences of stigma and the risk of HIV and other HIV related outcomes among Men Who Have Sex with Men (MSM) in the United States

 Committee members:

 Committee Chair:

Dr. Henry F. Raymond

 Committee Members: 

Dr. Chongyi Wei

Dr. Jaya Satagopan

Dr. Edward J. Alessi (Outside member)

2016 PhD Cohort

Camilla Comer-Carruthers


  1. Martino RJ, Krause KD, Griffin M, LoSchiavo C, Comer-Carruthers C, Karr AG, Bullock AF, Halkitis PN.  A Nationwide Survey of COVID-19 Testing in LGBTQ+ Populations in the United States. Public Health Rep. 2021 Jul-Aug;136(4):493-507.
  2. Griffin M, Martino RJ, LoSchiavo C, Comer-Carruthers C, Krause KD, Stults CB, Halkitis PN. Ensuring survey research data integrity in the era of internet bots. Qual Quant. 2021 Oct 5:1-12. Epub ahead of print.
  3. Martino RJ, Krause KD, Griffin M, LoSchiavo C, Comer-Carruthers C, Halkitis PN. Employment Loss as a Result of COVID-19: a Nationwide Survey at the Onset of COVID-19 in US LGBTQ+ Populations. Sex Res Social Policy. 2021 Nov 13:1-12. Epub ahead of print.

2015 PhD Cohort

Ryan White


  1. White RD, Keahey D, Luck M, Dehn R (in press). The Primary Care Workforce Paradox: Physician shortages in the context of a PA and NP surplus. Journal of the American Academy of PAs.
  2. Valentin V, Najmabadi S, Warner M, White RD, Dehn R (in press). Survey of the Initial Impact of Covid-19 Pandemic on Physician Assistant Education. Journal of Physician Assistant Education.