URBAN ARCH Newsletter

Volume 4, Issue 4

October 2017 – December 2017

Check out the current issue of URBAN ARCH News, the quarterly newsletter bringing you news based on the latest URBAN ARCH and related research.

URBAN ARCH Grows with Several New NIAAA-funded Studies

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This issue of the URBAN ARCH quarterly newsletter will focus on 5 new grants awarded by the NIAAA this fall. Click here to learn more. 

In the News

Sara LodiSpotlight on…Sara Lodi

In this issue, we interview Sara Lodi, PhD, a Biostatistician from the BDM Core and Assistant Professor of Biostatistics at Boston University School of Public Health. 


On The Ground

Click on the buttons to see what the URBAN ARCH Cohorts and Cores have been working on.

Save the Date for the 2018 URBAN ARCH Annual Meeting

The seventh URBAN ARCH Annual Meeting will be held on March 27-28, 2018. Contact carly.bridden@bmc.org for more details.

New URBAN ARCH Publications 

Article Spotlight
This section highlights and provides brief summaries of URBAN ARCH research and their clinical significance.

Novel Text Messaging Application for Clinical Trial Adherence in Russia

Sending text message reminders to study participants has been shown to improve clinical trial adherence in the United States and elsewhere, but these systems are not easily translated to international settings. URBAN ARCH researchers, led by the BDM Core, developed SMSMessenger, an automated Android application that uses a US server to send medication reminders to study participants. SMSMessenger was developed for the URBAN ARCH ZINC RCT, which was conducted in St. Petersburg, Russia. With a few clicks by the study coordinator in Russia, pre-specified text messages are automatically sent to participants from the US server. No sensitive data are stored on the phone, as outgoing messages are sent through the application and not by messaging features on the phone itself. Costs and setup are minimal. The only local requirements are an Android phone and a data plan.

Conclusions: The SMSMessenger technology could be modified to be applied around the world, in any language, script, or alphabet, and for many different purposes. The novel application of this existing low-cost technology can improve the usefulness of text messaging in advancing the goals of international clinical trials.

Reference: Forman LS, Patts GJ, Coleman S, Blokhina E, Lu J, Yaroslavtseva T, Gnatienko N, Krupitsky E, Samet JH, Chaisson CE. Use of an android phone application for automated text messages in international settings: a case study in an HIV clinical trial in St. Petersburg, Russia. Clin Trials. 2017. [Epub ahead of print].

Article Spotlight summary by URBAN ARCH editor Katherine Calver, PhD

Selected NIH Notices and Funding Opportunities

  • Accelerating the Pace of Drug Abuse Research Using Existing Data (R01) (PAR-16-234)
    National Institutes on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism/National Institute of Drug Abuse
    Application Due Date: Standard dates
  • Alcohol Research Resource Awards (R24) (PAR-17-170)
    National Institutes on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
    Application Due Date: Standard dates
  • Optimization of Monoclonal Antibodies for Eliminating the HIV Reservoir (R01) (PAR-16-115)
    National Institute of Allergy and Infection Disease/National Institute of Mental Health
    Application Due Date: January 9, 2018

Click here for more funding announcements related to HIV and alcohol research.

Events and Conferences

Please email Carly Bridden if you will be attending any these meetings, so we can connect you with our investigators.

Click here for more events and conferences.

This issue of the newsletter concludes our fourth year of publication. Thanks for a great year and…happy holidays