January 2013 Awards

Human Sciences
Project Title: Dairy fat as a mediator of vitamin E adequacy in individuals with metabolic syndrome
Project Dates: 12/1/2012 – 11/30/2015
Anticipated Total Award Amount: $252,140
Project Sponsor: Dairy Research Institute Project Abstract: The objective of this project is to define the extent to which dairy fat facilitates adequate vitamin E status in individuals with metabolic syndrome, a population at high-risk for NASH, by improving α-tocopherol bioavailability. Our central hypothesis is that full-fat dairy will substantially increase α-tocopherol bioavailability to the extent needed to facilitate production of α-carboxyethyl-hydroxy-chromanol (α-CEHC), a metabolite of α-tocopherol validated to predict α-tocopherol status. We will therefore complete the following specific aims: 1) define milk fat-mediated improvements in α-tocopherol bioavailability, and 2) define dairy fat-mediated improvements in α-tocopherol status. Work proposed herein utilizes blood and urine specimens collected from a common study design. We will enroll healthy adults and those with metabolic syndrome to complete a randomized cross-over study. Our studies will be conducted in the Clinical Research Center at The Ohio State University Medical Center to take advantage of its intellectual and physical resources that better enable the successful completion of controlled human interventions. Our work will utilize deuterium-labeled α-tocopherol coupled with LC-MS analysis to define that whole milk, compared to low-fat and fat-free milk, increases α-tocopherol bioavailability in a milk fat-dependent manner. We also expect to show that co-ingestion of deuterium-labeled α-tocopherol with low-fat milk compared to soy milk, significantly improves α-tocopherol bioavailability. These studies are also expected to show that milk fat-dependent increases in α-tocopherol bioavailability result in greater production and excretion of α-CEHC, thereby demonstrating milk fat promotes vitamin E adequacy. The PI and his research team are ideally prepared to undertake this important problem. We have significant experience conducting clinical trials and the expertise and infrastructure to successfully complete all the proposed biochemical markers and procedures outlined in this novel project. More Information

KENNEL, JULIE ANNE; Gunther, Carolyn Woods
Human Sciences
Project Title: Smarter lunchroom audits and smarter lunchroom implementation plans
Project Dates: 12/10/2012 – 6/30/2013
Anticipated Total Award Amount: $2,000 (anticipated)
Project Sponsor: OH Department of Education
Project Abstract: The Smarter Lunchrooms Movement was started in 2009 with the goal of creating sustainable research-based lunchrooms that guide smarter choices. It is a grassroots movement of those concerned with the way children eat and wish to change these behaviors through the application of evidence-based lunchroom focused principles that promote healthful eating. More Information

LOIBL, CAEZILIA; Moulton, Stephanie Marie
Human Sciences
Project Title: Travel expenses for AmeriCorps members conducting community outreach and providing program enrollment assistance for the Save the Dream Ohio, Restoring Stability initiative
Project Dates: 12/1/2012 – 6/30/2013
Anticipated Total Award Amount: $20,000
Project Sponsor: OH Housing Finance Agency Project Abstract: Travel expenses for AmeriCorps members conducting community outreach and providing program enrollment assistance for the Save the Dream Ohio, Restoring Stability initiative. More Information

Educational Studies
Project Title: The ethics of cash-for-grades
Project Dates: 10/1/2012 – 9/30/2013
Anticipated Total Award Amount: $40,000
Project Sponsor: Spencer Foundation
Project Abstract: A growing number of schools have begun experimenting with providing “conditional cash transfers” to students to improve their academic performance. This practice has come to be known as cash-for-grades, although the desired outcomes can go beyond grades to include showing up for class, test performance, or reading books. This study will examine the ethical questions involved with providing conditional cash transfers to students. The aim is to go beyond the question of whether the programs “work” and also beyond the initial gut reactions — both positive and negative — that many educators have to these programs, moving toward a more nuanced understanding of the moral and political issues at stake. The study will involve two central projects. The first project will uncover the hidden assumptions being made in the debate about cash incentives. The central question: What is being presupposed about human action and motivation, about the role of a “student,” and about the goals of education in a democratic society? The second project will examine the practice of paying students as it relates to educational justice. Can paying underserved students contribute to justice and educational equality? Does justice, in fact, require that we pay students for their now exploited “educational labor”? Or does paying students undermine needed systemic reforms and send the wrong message about the nature of democratic citizenship? More Information