HBIC Award 2019 Winners

Media Release
2019 HBIC Award Winners

July 10, 2010 – The Health and Behavior International Collaborative (HBIC) Award committee, along with our five sponsoring organisations (including the International Behavioural Trials Network and its key partner, Dr. Simon Bacon’s CIHR-SPOR Chair in Innovative, Patient-Oriented, Behavioural Clinical Trials, which is based out of Concordia University), are pleased to announce the 2019 Health and Behavior International Collaborative Award winners.

The winners and their sponsoring organisations are:

  • Tess Langfield (International Behavioural Trials Network + CIHR-SPOR Chair in Innovative, Patient-Oriented, Behavioural Clinical Trials)
  • Suzanne Tanya Nethan (International Society of Behavioral Medicine)
  • Thomas Kraynak (American Psychosomatic Society)
  • Leslie Johnson (Society for Behavioral Medicine (USA))
  • Chloe Huelsnitz (Society for Health Psychology)

Winners are each awarded USD$3000 to facilitate a minimum of a one-week visit to an international laboratory or research group under the guidance of an identified international mentor. 21 applications were received in total. The quality of the applications was outstanding, with a spread of applications from graduate students and postdoctoral researchers/assistant professors. Applicants were from 10 countries including Australia, Canada, Finland, India, South Korea, UK and the USA, and applied to 8 different host countries, highlighting the international reach of the award.

One winner is from a low- and middle-income country (LMIC), 3 are graduate students and 3 are based in the USA. As part of their award, 2 will visit Australia, 1 will visit the USA and 1 will visit Switzerland.

Details about each winner, their home institution, mentor institution and project are provided below. Winner photos available upon request.

Key contact: International: Dr Briony Hill, HBIC Chair, briony.hill@monash.edu.au, +614 21 012 283

Local: Dr. Simon Bacon, CIHR-SPOR Chair and Professor at Concordia University, simon.bacon@concordia.ca, +1-514-242-2152



Winner details:

International Behavioural Trials Network and CIHR-SPOR Chair

Winner: Tess Langfield
Home institution: University of Cambridge, UK
Host/mentor institution: Dr Philippe Gilchrist, Macquarie University, Australia
Position: PhD Student
Project: To investigate the impact of glassware design on drinking behaviours.
Email: Tirl2@medschl.cam.ac.uk

Biographical and project sketch: Tess Langfield is an MRC-Sackler funded Ph.D. student supervised by Professor Theresa Marteau at the Behaviour and Health Research Unit, University of
Cambridge. Tess will be using the HBIC award to support a trip to Macquarie University, Sydney, to work with Dr Philippe Gilchrist and A/Prof Melissa Norberg on a project investigating drinking behaviour using psychophysiological measures. This project builds on her Ph.D. research, which investigates the impact of glass shape on drinking behaviours for soft drinks. The experiment she will conduct during her visit to Macquarie University will use facial electromyography (EMG) to measure activity in the orbicularis oris during sipping from glasses of different shapes.

International Society of Behavioral Medicine

Winner: Suzanne Tanya Nethan
Home institution: ICMR-National Institute of Cancer Prevention and Research, Noida, India, LMIC applicant
Host/mentor institution: Dr Tami-Maury, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Centre, USA
Position: Scientist
Project: To contribute to a project based on assessing the use pattern of betel quid (BQ) among Asian immigrants and Asian descents living in Texas (USA).
Email: suzanne.nethan@gmail.com

Biographical and project sketch: Dr. Suzanne Tanya Nethan is a trained dentist with a specialization in Oral Medicine & Radiology, and employed with the Indian Council of Medical Research – National Institute of Cancer Prevention & Research, India (in the division of clinical oncology). Her research interest includes screening and early diagnosis of oral cancer and precancer, and tobacco (& areca nut/betel quid- BQ) cessation. This travel award will be utilised to fund her visit to the MD Anderson Cancer Center, Texas (USA), to contribute to a project assessing the knowledge, attitudes, consumption and purchase patterns, and the health risk perceptions associated with BQ use among a sample of Asian immigrants or descents living in Texas, under the able mentorship of Dr. Irene Tami-Maury, Assistant Professor, Department of Behavioral Science, MD Anderson Cancer Center.

American Psychosomatic Society

Winner: Thomas Kraynak
Home institution: University of Pittsburgh, USA
Host/mentor institution: Professor Hugo Critchley, Brighton and Sussex Medical School, UK
Position: Graduate Student
Project: To adapt a standard psychological stress paradigm to experimentally manipulate cardiac viscerosensory signaling.
Email: tekraynak@pitt.edu

Biographical and project sketch: Thomas Kraynak is a graduate student in the Biological and Health Program in the Department of Psychology at the University of Pittsburgh. He is co-mentored by Pete Gianaros and Anna Marsland. Thomas has deep interests in brain-body interactions in the context of emotion, stress, and physical health. As part of this award, Thomas will travel to the laboratories of Professors Sarah Garfinkel and Hugo Critchley at Brighton and Sussex Medical School in the United Kingdom. His proposed project will adapt a standard psychological stress paradigm to experimentally manipulate cardiac afferent signaling. The proposed project will explore the impact of this manipulation on subjective and cardiovascular responses to psychological stress.

Society for Behavioral Medicine (USA)

Winner: Leslie Johnson
Home institution: Emory University, USA
Host/mentor institution: Professor Brian Oldenburg, University of Melbourne, Australia
Position: Post-doctoral Fellow
Project: To examine the prevalence and correlates of depression and anxiety among participants in the Kerala Diabetes Prevention Program (K-DPP) and conduct a culturally-sensitive qualitative
analysis identifying anxiety triggers related to diabetes care among adults with T2DM in India.
Email: lmunoz@emory.edu

Biographical and project sketch: Dr. Leslie Johnson is currently a postdoctoral fellow at Emory University’s Rollins School of Public Health in the Hubert Department of Global Health, working primarily with the Emory Global Diabetes Research Center. Dr. Johnson plans to use this award to enhance her implementation research competencies, develop collaborative partnerships with international chronic disease researchers working in India, and build mixed-methods research capacity within the Non-Communicable Disease Unit (NCDU) during her visit to the University of Melbourne in Australia. Using data from two implementation trials conducted in India, Dr. Johnson will partner with NCDU researchers to conduct novel mixed-methods analyses examining the prevalence and persistence of anxiety and depression among adults at risk for developing type 2 diabetes mellitus and to identify triggers of diabetes-related anxiety within the Indian context. Findings from this project aim to improve diabetes management interventions in India, where there is the highest absolute burden of diabetes in the world, by advancing knowledge of physical and mental comorbidity.

Society for Health Psychology

Winner: Chloe Huelsnitz
Home institution: University of Minnesota, USA
Host/mentor Institution: Professor Urte Scholz, University of Zurich, Switzerland
Position: Graduate Student
Project: To understand how to optimize social control to improve individual and dyadic health while also maintaining or improving relationship functioning.
Email: MIRO0047@UMN.EDU

Biographical and project sketch: Chloe Huelsnitz is a PhD candidate at the University of Minnesota, where she conducts research examining the effects of interpersonal processes (e.g., social support, social control) on promoting health behaviors such as sun protection, sleep, dietary behavior, and physical activity. Chloe will be using the award funding to visit Dr. Urte Scholz at the University of Zurich, Switzerland. At the University of Zurich, Chloe will receive training in the design and implementation of dyadic daily diary studies that use ambulatory assessments to capture audio recordings of social control attempts. Chloe and Dr. Scholz will also collaborate on a study examining motivational determinants of social control attempts in romantic relationships.