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A look at research facilities at Penn State College of Medicine

Note: This post is written by the team of The ONE Group (Oncology – Nutrition – Exercise) at Penn State College of Medicine as part of a first-person blog about their work. Learn more about the group here.

Welcome back to the ONE Blog and all things research with the Community Health Equity & Engagement in Research (CHEER) team! In previous posts, we talked about why participating in research matters and how research can work for everyone. In this edition, we are going to highlight a few exceptional facilities where research takes place across Penn State.

Clinical Research Centers

Penn State Clinical and Translational Science Institute’s Clinical Research Centers (CRCs) are state-of-the-art facilities that provide Penn State researchers and research participants with safe spaces to work together during clinical studies. With locations at University Park and at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, Penn State CRCs are well-designed for important studies to be conducted that impact volunteers who are part of the research and the health and wellbeing of the community-at-large.

Research that is performed at CRCs includes studies focused on human behavior and the cause, progression and cure of diseases. Each center includes laboratory space and equipment for research support, private study participant rooms with beds, general procedure rooms, medical examination areas for participant screening, equipment for exercise testing, electrocardiography, bone densitometry and a metabolic kitchen area.

The CRCs are staffed by researchers and nursing teams who help with clinical trials. Last year, nearly 150 studies took place at Penn State CRCs that impacted thousands of lives in areas of cancer, liver disease, movement disorders, tobacco research and more. Before a study can begin at a CRC, all research protocols must be approved by the Clinical Research Center Advisory Committee and the Penn State Institutional Review Board.

Exercise Research Center

An exciting addition to the CRC at the Milton S. Hershey Medical Center is the Exercise Research Center (ERC). This 4,500-square-foot space is designed for exercise-based research activities. Study participants can expect to experience exercise testing equipment including stationary and portable VO2 metabolic systems, a Biodex, resting ECG, treadmills, weight machines, bikes and a multi-station, resistance training unit. The ERC is equipped to measure body composition through a variety of ways including a DXA scanner, resting metabolic rate system, BODPOD, anthropometric measures, skinfold calipers and bioelectrical impedance analysis. Imagine achieving your physical activity goals while contributing to research – a win-win!

Ready to make a difference? Check out the ONE group’s ongoing studies or the Volunteer Repository on Studyfinder, a one-stop shop to learn about research opportunities at Penn State. Signing up is easy. The only required information is your name, email address and date of birth. There are options to provide additional information if you are interested. Consider contributing to a healthier future today.

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