Current Studies

ReACT: An Adaptive Mobile Health Intervention for Adolescent Asthma

Asthma  is  a  leading  cause  of  youth  morbidity  in  the  United  States,  affecting  >  8%  of  youth. Adherence  to inhaled  corticosteroids  (ICS)  can  prevent  asthma-related morbidity,  however,  the  typical  adolescent  with  asthma  takes  fewer  than  50%  of  their  prescribed  doses  of  ICS  when  assessed  objectively.  While  there  are  effective  in-person  interventions  for  promoting  ICS  adherence,  the  fact  that  most  adolescents  do  not  take  their  medication  as  prescribed  signals  a  clear  problem  disseminating  these  solutions  at  a  population  scale. The goal of this project is to develop a scalable just-in-time adaptive mobile health adherence promotion intervention for adolescents with persistent asthma.

AIM2ACT: Applying Interactive Mobile health to Asthma Care in Teens

This longitudinal study aims to develop and test a mobile health (mHealth) tool, implemented via smartphones for early adolescents with persistent asthma. The goal of this tool is to foster helpful family support as adolescents develop and master asthma self-management behaviors. Funding for this study is provided by the National Institutes of Health.

mCHAMP: Development of a Nurse-Delivered Mobile Health Intervention for Children with Asthma and Obesity

The goal of this project is to develop a mobile health intervention for 6-12 year-old children with asthma and obesity that can be delivered by nurses at the point-of-care. We will identify the structural components of our mobile health intervention protocol by conducting a needs assessment with parents of children with asthma and obesity. Subsequently, we will develop and test our supplemental mobile health intervention using an iterative process that includes usability testing with target users and gathering feedback from pediatric nurses.


CHAMP: The Childhood Health and Asthma Management Program

Youth that are overweight/obese diagnosed with asthma are more likely to experience a multitude of poor health outcomes, including poorer quality of life, reduced physical activity, and increased likelihood of being treated with inhaled corticosteroids. This intervention study aimed to adapt an existing intervention program from Dr. Janicke’s Lab for youth with both asthma and overweight or obesity. A 16-week randomized controlled trial of a behavioral family-based lifestyle intervention was compared to a health education control group. Funding for this study was provided by the American Lung Association and the National Instistutes of Health.

Master’s and Dissertation Projects


The Role of Food Allergy Management and Caregiver Distress in Caregiver-Provider Communication (Mallory Netz)

This project examines health communication during pediatric outpatient allergy encounters. The study is a novel, observational investigation of the impact of caregiver distress and family food allergy management on health communication among youth, parents, and healthcare providers.

The Role of Sleep-Disordered Breathing and Oxygen Desaturation in Neurocognitive Functioning among Youth with Sickle Cell Disease (Elise Turner)

Youth with sickle cell disease experience impairment in neurocognitive functioning, which may reduce academic achievement, social functioning and quality of life. This study aims to better understand the contribution of sleep-disordered breathing in both executive and attentional functioning within pediatric sickle cell disease.

Intergenerational Coping and Resilience in Pediatric (Rachel Sweenie)

Youth with asthma from socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds have the highest asthma prevalence rates. A “shift-and-persist” coping orientation may serve as a protective factor for youth from these types of backgrounds. This study will examine relationships between youth and caregiver coping strategies, SES, youth-caregiver relationships, and pediatric asthma outcomes.


Using Mobile Phones to Better Understand Asthma (Rachel Sweenie)

Adolescence is often a period of poor adherence to asthma medication. This study uses mobile inhaler tracking coupled with daily smartphone surveys to examine relationships between mood, stress, and medication adherence among adolescents with asthma. The study received funding from an American Psychological Association of Graduate Students annual Psychological Science Research Grant.

Externalizing Behaviors in Children and Adolescents with Cystic Fibrosis (Andrea Fidler)

Oppositional behaviors have been identified as a barrier to treatment adherence, and the repercussions of non-adherence contribute to increased symptomatology as well as an acceleration of the disease process. This study aims to assess the frequency of externalizing behaviors in children with CF and examine whether those behaviors are associated with disease management, CF-related exacerbations, lung functioning, and BMI percentile.

Self-Management of Asthma Among Emerging Adolescents (Mallory Netz)

The division of responsibility for asthma management tasks is a critical component of asthma management particularly as youth transition to adolescence given that adolescents have advancing cognitive skills, increased autonomy, decreasing parental supervision, and are known to have poor adherence. The objective of this study was to examine differences in parent- and youth-reported division of responsibility for asthma management tasks, identify factors that may predict the division of responsibility among youth and their caregivers, and examine associations between the division of responsibility and asthma-related outcomes.

Family Functioning, Sleep, and Physical Activity among Children with Cystic Fibrosis (Casey Lawless & Alyssa Fritz)

Caregivers of children with CF are responsible for helping their child adhere to a multi-faceted and arduous treatment regimen. This goal of this longitudinal study is to assess the impact of parental psychological distress and lifestyle factors on their children’s disease morbidity, adherence, health-related quality of life, sleep, and physical activity. Funding for this study was provided in part by a Society for Pediatric Psychology Marion and Donald Routh Student Research Grant and a Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Student Traineeship Grant.