The Center for Women's Health Research and K12 Building Research Careers in Women's Health (BIRCWH) Program utilize a multi-PI leadership structure.
Dr. Berge is a professor and vice chair for research in the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health as well as the inaugural holder of the Carole J. Bland, PhD Endowed Chair at the University of Minnesota Medical School. Dr. Berge is both a researcher and behavioral medicine clinician. She is a licensed mental health therapist and supervisor who specializes in integrated care and community-based partnerships to address family health issues. Her NIH research agenda focuses on conducting both childhood obesity prevention and treatment studies within primary care settings with the ultimate goal of decreasing childhood obesity disparities in low-income and minority households. She is also the director of the Healthy Eating and Activity across the Lifespan (HEAL) Center and the Principal Investigator of the Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women's Health (BIRCWH) K-12 grant. Additionally, she is the director of the Center for Women in Medicine and Science (CWIMS) at the University of Minnesota Medical School.
Dr. Berge's NIH research agenda focuses on weight and weight-related health behaviors across the lifespan, families and health, women's health, and integrated care. She conducts both childhood obesity prevention and treatment studies within primary care settings with the ultimate goal of decreasing childhood obesity disparities in low-income and minority households. Dr. Berge has expertise in conducting mixed methods studies that include observational methods such as, ecological momentary assessment (EMA) and video-recorded family tasks, as well as quantitative survey data to more fully understand the complex family dynamics and processes related to physical activity and dietary behaviors in children and adolescents. Dr. Berge is one of the most cited authors on family dynamics and childhood obesity with over 125 publications, 300 presentations and 20 book chapters on related topics. She has an impressive funding trajectory including NIH K12, R03, R13, R21, R56, and R01 grants funded across several different institutes including NHLBI, NIDDK, and NICHD. Dr. Berge also serves on several NIH study sections including the Psychosocial Risk and Disease Prevention study section at NIH and several special interest study sections.
Depression, anxiety, PTSD/stress response, and weight-related behaviors.
Fellowships, Residencies, and Visiting Engagements
Licensures and Certifications
Address717 Delaware St SE, Room 420
Minneapolis, MN 55414-2959
Sharon Allen, MD, PhD, co-directs the University of Minnesota Medical School Essentials of Clinical Medicine course. As an NIH-funded researcher for over 25 years, she has focused on factors that contribute to smoking, specifically looking at the influence of sex hormones on smoking cessation and addictive behaviors. Her research explores novel treatments for smoking cessation, examines underlying traits that fuel nicotine addiction, combines treatments to maximize effectiveness, and recognizes sex and hormonal influences on the treatment of nicotine addiction. Dr. Allen sees patients at the University of Minnesota Physicians Women's Health Specialists Clinic and Clinics and Surgery Center, where she also precepts residents in family medicine, internal medicine, OB/GYN, and pharmacy.
Tobacco cessation in women and sex hormones
Women's health; osteoporosis; smoking cessation
Address6-145 Phillips-Wangensteen Building
420 Delaware Street SE, MMC 381
Minneapolis, MN 55455-0356
Dr. Thyagarajan is director of the Division of Molecular Pathology and Genomics and director of the Advanced Research and Diagnostic Laboratory (ARDL). The MDL processes some 25,000 specimens annually related to inherited and infectious diseases, bone marrow engraftment, and blood and solid tumor malignancies. Thyagarajan and his MDL colleagues are implementing next-generation DNA sequencing (NGS) for diagnosing genetic disease.The MDL has the capacity to test some 5,000 genes implicated in monogenic disorders with the goal of testing all the genes in the human genome (>20,000) and has implemented DNA sequence-based tumor diagnostics. MDL clinicians have issued hundreds of patient molecular pathology reports based on individual genetic tests and expect that pace of reporting to increase as NGS technology is mainstreamed into clinical medicine. Thyagarajan's team collaborates in this effort with the University of Minnesota Genomics Center, which produces the raw sequence from DNA extracted from clinical samples, and the bioinformatics group at the Minnesota Supercomputing Center, which puts the raw sequence data in a readable format from which clinicians can interpret the diagnostic and prognostic value of genetic variants.At ARDL, Dr. Thyagarajan is principal laboratory investigator for the Hispanic Community Health Study, an NIH-funded multicenter epidemiologic study of Hispanic/Latino populations, and the NIH-funded Long Life Family Study, an international collaborative study of the genetics and familial components of exceptional survival, longevity, and healthy aging. Thyagarajan's personal research program focuses on the role of mitochondria in breast and colorectal cancer.
- Figueiredo JC, Hirsch FR, Kushi LH, Nembhard WN, Crawford JM, Mantis N, Finster L, Merin NM, Merchant A, Reckamp KL, Melmed GY, Braun J, McGovern D, Parekh S, Corley DA, Zohoori N, Amick BC, Du R, Gregersen PK, Diamond B, Taioli E, Sariol C, Espino A, Weiskopf D, Gifoni A, Brien J, Hanege W, Lipsitch M, Zidar DA, Scheck McAlearney A, Wajnberg A, LaBaer J, Yvonne Lewis E, Binder RA, Moormann AM, Forconi C, Forrester S, Batista J, Schieffelin J, Kim D, Biancon G, VanOudenhove J, Halene S, Fan R, Barouch DH, Alter G, Pinninti S, Boppana SB, Pati SK, Latting M, Karaba AH, Roback J, Sekaly R, Neish A, Brincks AM, Granger DA, Karger AB, Thyagarajan B, Thomas SN, Klein SL, Cox AL, Lucas T, Furr-Holden D, Key K, Jones N, Wrammerr J, Suthar M, Yu Wong S, Bowman NM, Simon V, Richardson LD, McBride R, Krammer F, Rana M, Kennedy J, Boehme K, Forrest C, Granger SW, Heaney CD, Knight Lapinski M, Wallet S, Baric RS, Schifanella L, Lopez M, Fernández S, Kenah E, Panchal AR, Britt WJ, Sanz I, Dhodapkar M, Ahmed R, Bartelt LA, Markmann AJ, Lin JT, Hagan RS, Wolfgang MC, Skarbinski J. Mission, organization, and future direction of the Serological Sciences Network for COVID-19 (SeroNet) epidemiologic cohort studies. Open Forum Infect Dis. 2022 Apr 27;9(6):ofac171. doi: 10.1093/ofid/ofac171.
- Karger AB, Brien JD, Christen JM, Dhakal S, Kemp TJ, Klein SL, Pinto LA, Premkumar L, Roback JD, Binder RA, Boehme KW, Boppana S, Cordon-Cardo C, Crawford JM, Daiss JL, Dupuis AP 2nd, Espino AM, Firpo-Betancourt A, Forconi C, Forrest JC, Girardin RC, Granger DA, Granger SW, Haddad NS, Heaney CD, Hunt DT, Kennedy JL, King CL, Krammer F, Kruczynski K, LaBaer J, Lee FE, Lee WT, Liu SL, Lozanski G, Lucas T, Mendu DR, Moormann AM, Murugan V, Okoye NC, Pantoja P, Payne AF, Park J, Pinninti S, Pinto AK, Pisanic N, Qiu J, Sariol CA, Simon V, Song L, Steffen TL, Stone ET, Styer LM, Suthar MS, Thomas SN, Thyagarajan B, Wajnberg A, Yates JL, Sobhani K. The Serological Sciences Network (SeroNet) for COVID-19: Depth and breadth of serology assays and plans for assay harmonization. mSphere. 2022 Jun 15:e0019322. doi: 10.1128/msphere.00193-22.
- Thomas SN, Karger AB, Altawallbeh G, Nelson KM, Jacobs DR Jr, Gorlin J, Barcelo H, Thyagarajan B. Ultrasensitive detection of salivary SARS-CoV-2 IgG antibodies in individuals with natural and COVID-19 vaccine-induced immunity. Sci Rep. 2022 May 25;12(1):8890. doi: 10.1038/s41598-022-12869-z.
- Mroz P, Michel S, Allen JD, Meyer T, McGonagle EJ, Carpentier R, Vecchia A, Schlichte A, Bishop JR, Dunnenberger HM, Yohe S, Thyagarajan B, Jacobson PA, Johnson SG. Development and implementation of in-house pharmacogenomic testing program at a major academic health system. Front Genet. 2021 Oct 20;12:712602. doi: 10.3389/fgene.2021.712602.
- Martinez RJ, Pankratz N, Schomaker M, Daniel J, Beckman K, Karger AB, Thyagarajan B, Ferreri P, Yohe SL, Nelson AC. Prediction of false positive SARS-CoV-2 molecular results in a high-throughput open platform system. J Mol Diagn. 2021 Jun 8:S1525-1578(21)00166-5. doi: 10.1016/j.jmoldx.2021.05.015
- Ryan J. Martinez, Qing Kang, Davis Nennig, Nathanael G. Bailey, Noah A. Brown, Bryan L. Betz, Muneesh Tewari, Bharat Thyagarajan, Veronika Bachanova, Pawel Mroz. One-Step Multiplexed Droplet Digital Polymerase Chain Reaction for Quantification of p190 BCR-ABL1 Fusion Transcript in B-Lymphoblastic Leukemia. Arch Pathol Lab Med2021; doi:https://doi.org/10.5858/arpa.2020-0454-OA
- Thomas SN, Altawallbeh G, Zaun CP, Pape KA, Peters JM, Titcombe PJ, Dileepan T, Rapp MJ, Bold TD, Schacker TW, Arbefeville S, Ferrieri P, Thyagarajan B, Jenkins MK, Karger AB. Initial determination of COVID-19 seroprevalence among outpatients and healthcare workers in Minnesota using a novel SARS-CoV-2 total antibody ELISA. Clin Biochem. 2021 Feb 1:S0009-9120(21)00027-8. doi: 10.1016/j.clinbiochem.2021.01.010
Fellowships, Residencies, and Visiting Engagements
Address1-142 Moos Tower
515 Delaware Street SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455
Kait Macheledt, MPH, Research Manager 1