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Healthy Volunteer Studies

If you would like to participate in health research as the healthy volunteer, below is a list of studies accepting healthy volunteers.

Aging and Information Processing

Lead Researcher: Robert Chapman

The purpose of our study is to better understand functional differences in brain activity between healthy aging and neurodegenerative conditions, such as Alzheimer's Disease. To do this, our lab uses a noninvasive and inexpensive technique to collect brain measurements called electroencephalogram (EEG). By recording EEG while participants do certain memory and other cognitive tests, we can link specific brain signals by brain location and time to cognitive activities (such as trying to memorize a stimulus). We collect the EEG, as well as traditional pen-and-paper cognitive test results, from participants every year. Using these brain measurements, we aim to discover differences between the healthy aging brain and brains struck by age-related cognitive disorders. Combining different brain measures together may help us develop better tests for these disorders.

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An EEG Study of Auditory Perception in People with and without Schizophrenia

Lead Researcher: Judy Thompson

The purpose of our study is to better understand how the brain processes sounds, including speech. We are investigating this in people with and without psychiatric conditions. One of our primary aims is to determine how these processes may relate to specific experiences and symptoms in conditions such as schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, and schizophreniform disorder, with the goal of using this knowledge to develop more effective treatments. In order to study how the brain processes sounds, we use a technique called electroencephalography, or EEG. For EEG, a person wears a comfortable elastic cap with sensors attached to it that are able to record brain activity. In these sessions, subjects listen to short audio clips while EEG is recording; this allows us to measure brain responses to sounds. This study also includes interviews about current and past psychiatric symptoms and treatment, as well as a few short tasks, questionnaires, and a hearing test. The study typically involves 4-5 visits, with each about 2-3 hours long. Subjects are paid $30 an hour, as well as a $30 bonus if they complete all study activities. Transportation costs are also covered, and free snacks are provided.

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BEGIN - A Breastfeeding Study

Lead Researcher: Bridget Young

This study will enroll 120 breastfeeding mothers into a study that lasts between 1-4 months postpartum. Mothers will collect a small breast milk sample very single day and store it in their freezer for researchers. They will also collect samples from their infant including urine and stool from the diaper. All sample collections are done in the home.

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COVID-19 Vaccine Studies

Lead Researcher: Ann Falsey

URMC is studying several variations of a COVID-19 vaccine. Compensation: $500-$900. Participation Requirements: Age 18+; Have not been infected with COVID-19. To volunteer, take our survey to find out if you qualify:

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Development of Personal Choice in Adolescents

Lead Researcher: Loisa Bennetto

In this online study, a parent and their adolescent will independently complete brief surveys. The adolescent will complete their survey first, and it may take up to 15 minutes. Afterwards, the parent will complete their survey, which may take up to 20 minutes. We hope this research will lead to expanding resources that support autonomy and independence as adolescents transition into adulthood.

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Longitudinal Subtyping Of Atopic Dermatitis Through Skin Analysis

Lead Researcher: Lisa Beck

This is a study which will characterize the gene expression profiles that underlie mild and moderate-severe Atopic dermatitis (AD). It will determine changes in these expression patterns in response to standard-of-care treatment. Participants will complete up to ten study visits with assessment of topical steroid response and dupilumab response (if uncontrolled with topical steroids). Skin samples will be collected at all study visits to determine the gene expression profiles that underlie mild vs. moderate-severe atopic dermatitis. Healthy participants without atopic dermatitis will serve as a control population and must agree to apply a topical moisturizer (Vanicream) at least twice daily for 7 days. Atopic dermatitis patients must have chronic AD with active lesions.

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Lung Health Cohort

Lead Researcher: Sandhya Khurana

Because lung function reaches its peak level between the ages of 25-35 years old, we are beginning our study with people only in this age range. If you are in this age range and have no history of chronic (i.e. long-lasting) lung diseases - other than mild asthma - and no history of cardiovascular disease, you may be eligible to join this study. This study involves a combination of in-person exams (during a single visit), at-home tasks, and remote contact (via video conference, text message, email, phone, or mail). During the in-person visit, we will test your lung function, take images of your chest (CT scans), and ask you to provide biospecimen samples (blood, urine, and nasal samples). There is an at-home portion to this study where you will wear an activity monitor for one week, and you will perform breathing tests at home. We will follow-up with you remotely every 3 to six months (up to 4 times per year) until the end of the study.

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Lead Researcher: Giovanni Schifitto

We are recruiting individuals 65 or older to learn more about how Covid impacts our brains! COVID is caused by a virus that enter many cells including cells of blood vessels. This can make vessels leaky and in the brain this leakage can cause inflammation. The damaged blood vessels are also more likely to form blood clots, causing tiny strokes. The purpose of this study is to understand if after initial COVID infection these leaky brain vessels fully recover or remain permanently damaged. If you decide to take part in this study, you will be asked to come to the Clinical Research Center (CRC) at URMC three different times: Baseline, 12 months, and 24 months - and you will participate in two telephone calls over a 2 year period. At the baseline visit, there is a blood draw and testing to assess your memory, attention, and movement (approximately 2.5 hours) as well as an MRI (approximately 1.5 hours). At the 12 month visit, there is a blood draw and memory tests. At the 24 month visit, there is a blood draw, memory testing, and an MRI.

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PRG Contact Database

Lead Researcher: Brian Keane

This future contact database will facilitate contact with prospective subjects, giving them greater opportunities to participate in behavioral and neuroimaging studies for which they may be eligible.

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Puerto Rican Parent-Child Feeding Interactions Study

Lead Researcher: Susan Groth

Parents will be asked to complete a series of surveys in Spanish that include questions about their cultural values, parenting style, and feeding practices. We will also ask questions about their feeding interactions with their child and collect height, weight, and waist circumference measurements for both parent and child. Eligibility: 1) Identify as a Puerto Rican parent; 2) Have a 2-5-year-old child; 3) Be the child’s primary caregiver; 4) Be responsible for feeding this child; 5) Be fluent in Spanish

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Spoken Language Comprehension in Adolescents​

Lead Researcher: Loisa Bennetto

​In this online study, an adolescent will schedule a Zoom appointment with a researcher and complete a computer-based listening study that may take up to 45 minutes. The parent will then complete background information surveys, which may take up to 20 minutes. Participants will be compensated via an electronic gift card. We hope that this research will lead to a better understanding of everyday spoken language communication and social interactions in adolescents with and without autism. We are currently recruiting adolescents aged 13-17 without autism. Please make sure to add an email address so that we can contact you!

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Text Messaging Program to Support Latino Young Adults in Quitting Vaping

Lead Researcher: Francisco Cartujano

All participants will receive a 12-week text messaging intervention. Participants will be asked to complete a baseline survey and a follow-up survey 3 months after enrollment. Eligible individuals self-identify as Latino, are 18-25 years old, and currently use electronic cigarettes. An active cellphone with unlimited text messaging capability is required to participate.

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