Dr. Sherry Pagoto is a tenured Professor of Medicine in the Division of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine in the Department of Medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. She is co-founder of the UMass Center for mHealth and Social Media and co-chair of the National Indoor Tan-Free Skin Smart Campus. She is also a licensed clinical psychologist and expert in health behavior change. Her research is focused on leveraging digital health in the treatment of obesity and cancer prevention. She has published 148 papers on these topics in top journals including JAMA, New England Journal of Medicine, JAMA Internal Medicine, JAMA Dermatology, American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, American Journal of Preventive Medicine and others. She has also published a book called, Psychological Comorbidities of Physical Illness (Springer, 2011). Dr. Pagoto's work has been federally funded for 13 years. She teaches graduate courses in Team Science and Behavioral Randomized Clinical Trials, and co-leads the K Award Writing Group for junior investigators. She has earned several awards including the Obesity Society Pioneer in mHealth/eHealth Award in 2014, SBM Early Career/Young Investigator Award in 2006, the SBM Distinguished Service Award in 2009, and the Western Michigan University Distinguished Alumni Award in 2011. She is a social media expert with over 11K followers on Twitter and as contributor to US News and World Report, KevinMD, Psychology Today, and Salon. She runs two blogs, FUdiet.com and Shrink. She travels nationally and internationally to speak about how social media may be leveraged to promote health behavior and facilitate health communication.
Currently Funded Research
Get Social: Randomized Trial of a Social Network Delivered Lifestyle Intervention
The purpose of this project is to conduct a non-inferiority trial to compare a lifestyle intervention delivered entirely via private groups on the online social network Twitter to a traditional in-person group-based lifestyle intervention. We will also compare the costs of the interventions, and explore predictors of weight loss in the online social network condition.
Likes Pins and Views: Engaging Moms on Teen Indoor Tanning Thru Social Media
This study proposes to develop and evaluate the effectiveness of a social media indoor tanning campaign to decrease mothers’ permissiveness for, and prevalence of, indoor tanning by daughters and increase mothers’ support for policy restrictions on indoor tanning by minors to improve the effectiveness of indoor tanning regulations.
Mentoring in mHealth and Social Networking Interventions for CVD Risk Reduction
This mid-career development award is designed to support a mentorship plan in mHealth research for cardiovascular disease prevention that leverages the resources and transdisciplinary faculty of the UMass Center for mHealth.
RELAX: A mobile application suite targeting obesity and stress
The purpose of this proposal is to develop and test the feasibility and proof-of-concept of RELAX Application Suite (AS), a mobile-, cloud- and web-based companion to a brief visit lifestyle intervention for obese individuals. RELAX-AS will be designed to reduce clinical visit time and cost by identifying and displaying behavior patterns that account for the greatest deviations in energy balance.
Feasibility and acceptability of health mobile technology in African Americans with obesity
DIVERSITY SUPPLEMENT TO R01HL122302-S1, 12/28/15-11/30/17
Diversity supplement for an adjunctive project to RELAX: A mobile application suite targeting obesity and stress, in which we will explore the feasibility and acceptability of health mobile apps in African Americans.
Center for mHealth-Based Behavioral Sensing and Interventions
UMass President’s Science and Technology Fund
6/12 - 5/16
“Center for mHealth-Based Sensing and Behavioral Interventions”This center grant is to provide the resources for investigators to create an intercampus mHealth research center at the University of Massachusetts.
Feasibility Trial of a Problem-Solving Weight Loss Mobile Application
1R21DK098556-01, 9/13 - 11/16
We propose to develop and test the feasibility of Smart Coach, a weight loss mobile application that includes common features such as self-monitoring, goal setting, and a social network, but even more importantly an avatar-facilitated, idiographic problem solving feature that processes information intelligently to help patients identify solutions to their weight loss problems.
Implementation Research Training Program in Cancer Prevention and Control
1 R25 CA172009-01A1 (Lemon/Houston) 6/1/14-5/31/19
This education and training grant intends to establish a postdoctoral training program at UMMS focused on community and clinical implementation science in cancer prevention and control.
UMass Worcester Prevention Research Center
1 U48 DP005031-01 (Lemon/Rosal) 09/30/14 – 09/29/19
This proposal will support a comprehensive core infrastructure for the UMass Worcester Prevention Research Center that fosters applied public health research partnerships to target the CDC Winnable Battles of nutrition, physical activity and obesity in Worcester, MA and the surrounding Central MA communities.
Integrated Smoking Cessation and Mood Management for Cardiac Patients
K23HL107391 (Busch), 4/11- 3/16, Role: Mentor
Self-care management: Patient-Centered Diabetic Wound Care Using Smart Phones
National Science Foundation
1065298 (Ignotz), 09/01/11 - 08/31/16
An Appearance-Based Intervention to Reduce Teen Skin Cancer Risk
1R01CA134891-01A2 (Hillhouse, J), 7/1/10-12/31/15, Role: Consultant
Transdisciplinary Training in Cardiovascular Research
1 T32 HL120823-01 (Keaney and Kiefe), 09/01/13-08/31/18,
The goals of this program are to train pre- and postdoctoral fellows in cardiovascular research that spans basic science to the T2+ translational arenas.
Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, Oakland University, 1995
Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology, Western Michigan University, 1998
Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology, Western Michigan University, 2001
Post-Doctoral Fellowship, University of Illinois at Chicago, 2001-2003
Clinical & Population Health Research PhD Program
Course: Randomized Clinical Trials in Behavioral Research
Masters in Clinical Investigation Program
Course: Team Science
Jessica Oleski, MA, Program Director
Effie Olendzki, Research Coordinator/Data Manager
Jean Villa, Research Coordinator
Ashley Palumbo, Social Media Specialist
Martinus Evans, Clinical Research Assistant
Zachary Michaels, Clinical Research Assistant
Amanda Okpoebo, Clinical Research Assistant