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overview Since 2006, my research has heavily focused on stroke, encompassing the pre-clinical and clinical examination of new neuroprotectives and thrombolytics. However, to determine the feasibility of clinical implementation of our new therapies, I began broadening my focus in 2014 to include stroke population research across Arkansas. This research led to my participation in the Institute for Digital Health’s Stroke Telemedicine Program and the Arkansas Department of Health’s population health research on strokes, which is part of the American Heart Association’s Get-With-The-Guidelines program. Most recently, I also assisted with data analysis for the UAMS Department of Neurology’s stroke section. My efforts in these areas led to multiple publications, grant funding and 100% funding of my salary. Thus far, I know of two instances in which my research studies on paramedic stroke education saved a life. My funded study on paramedic video education on pre-hospital stroke care and procedures for hospital diversion prompted two paramedics to deliver their stroke patients to stroke-qualified hospitals. The ability to impact lives directly is a phenomenal achievement for a biomedical researcher. Other noteworthy projects include data analysis across the state to improve emergency services and pre-hospital care of all stroke patients. This effort led to my participation on the governor-appointed Arkansas Acute Stroke Care Stroke Task Force Committee of which I recently was appointed Chair. Further research funded by the Center for Translational Neurosciences led to my design and publication of two mobile phone apps, “WeTrain911” for training rural dispatchers on basic medical knowledge and “iClick911” to improve the accuracy of location notification to emergency medical services. I determined that Arkansas’s emergency 911 response in the poor delta counties had connection problems and/or poor response times. Both apps were designed to improve public health and reduce mortality due to poor emergency response. I still am dedicated to this area of research. In summary, I have contributed importantly to funded studies at UAMS that span translational and clinical research, for example, from using animal models of stroke and vascular disease, to the search for medications, to (most recently) helping to lead stroke initiatives in Arkansas’ communities to lower stroke incidence in the State. Notably, the common thread of my research interests is improving healthcare and reducing mortality. The majority of my work is centered on the early (acute) treatment period for ischemic stroke patients. There is an intense need for studies in this area, because treatment of stroke with thrombolysis and reperfusion is highly time dependent. Because the rural areas of our state experience higher incidences of strokes with less healthcare coverage, delivering optimal care is a major concern. Our telestroke program has accomplished much in overcoming this burden in the last decade. It has reduced the door to treatment time from 120+ minutes to approximately 65 minutes, thereby greatly improving patient outcomes. This is remarkable as 40% of the rural hospitals in Arkansas have 25 beds or less and have minimal resources. My programmatic review of the telestroke program led to evaluation of the state’s EMS system, which revealed areas in Arkansas with delays in medical care. Rural populations were particularly at risk. Subsequently, I developed two mobile app’s to improve emergency training through “WeTrain911” and to improve emergency medical response with “iClick911”. Both app’s were funded by the Center for Translational Neurosciences and the NIGMS-funded IDeA program. Although both app’s currently are currently closed I am continuing to evaluate emergency services in Arkansas and look for ways to improve emergency response in rural areas of the state. Additionally, to improve outcomes for ischemic stroke patients, I am assisting NuvOx Pharma with protocol development for the NVX-208 Phase II trial, which will begin at UAMS. My previous collaborations with Dr. William C. Culp, Professor of Radiology at UAMS, investigated the preclinical work of NVX-208’s neuroprotective properties. The ensuing positive results led to completion of a Phase I clinical trial and the drug’s first use to alleviate human stroke. I am continuing this clinical trial by assisting NuvOx with the development and initiation of a Phase II trial at UAMS and at other trial sites across the United States.
research overview My research studies include data analysis of the UAMS stroke database and other clinical population health-based research on stroke patients in Arkansas. As the leader in program evaluator for the Institute of Digital Technology’s stroke telemedicine program, and as a consultant for the Arkansas Department of Health and MEMS, I am evaluating pre-hospital and hospital care for stroke patients across Arkansas. In addition, as a member of the Center for Translational Neurosciences Telemedicine Core, I evaluate 911 emergency services in the state. Part of my efforts is dedicated to the clinical investigation of the neuroprotective NVX-208 drug for stroke patients. I developed the protocol for Phase II, with UAMS as the first site among nine in the study. The NuvOx pharmaceutical company awarded a contract to secure my assistance in development and initiation of the clinical Phase II trial in Arkansas.

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