Active Grants and Projects

Palmer Clinics Registry
Funding source: Palmer College of Chiropractic
Project period: 8/2/2016 – 8/2/2018 
Principal Investigator: Robert Vining, D.C.
Co-investigators:  Ron Boesch, D.C., Christine Goertz, D.C., Ph.D., Cynthia Long, Ph.D., Elissa Twist, D.C., M.S., C.C.R.P., Lance Corber, M.S.I.T.M.
     In this project, researchers will use health-care records of Palmer Clinic patients with military benefits to learn more about conditions treated, types of care provided, costs, and procedures used during treatment. Over the course of one year, participants also will complete a monthly online questionnaire about their health.

Kiernan Chiropractic Care in Rehabilitation at Crotched Mountain
Funding source: Dr. William J. Kiernan
Award amount: $2,000,000
Funding period: 1/2015 - 12/2018 
Co-Principal Investigators: Robert Vining, D.C., Carl Cooley, MD
Co-investigators:  Christine Goertz, D.C., Ph.D., Stacie Salsbury, R.N., Ph.D.
     The primary goals of this project are to add chiropractic care to the multi-disciplinary care model at Crotched Mountain Specialty Hospital in Greenfield NH and to provide evidence that will help future care teams improve meaningful clinical outcomes for individuals with brain and spinal cord injury, and other acquired or developmental disabilities.

Expanding EBCP and Research across the Palmer College of Chiropractic
Funding source: NIH/NCCIH 
Grant number: 2-R25-AT003580
Award amount: $1,600,000
Funding period: 9/2007 - 8/2016
Principal Investigator: Cynthia Long, Ph.D.
Collaborators: Kevin Lyon, Ph.D.; Mark Wilson, M.D., M.P.H.; Kristi Ferguson, Ph.D.
Program Manager: Katie Hoyt, M.O.L. 
     In collaboration with the University of Iowa and Thomas Jefferson University, this grant supports an on-going faculty development program toward enhancing the integration of evidence-based clinical practice (EBCP) and research content into the Doctor of Chiropractic curriculum at all three Palmer campuses. 

Assessment of Chiropractic Treatment for Low Back Pain, Military Readiness, and Smoking Cessation in Military Active Duty Personnel (ACT I, II, III)
Funding source: Department of Defense
Grant number: W81XWH-10-DHP-CCTA
Award amount: $7,500,000 ($5,100,000 to Palmer)
Funding period: 2/2011 - 8/2016
Principal investigator: Ian D. Coulter, Ph.D., RAND Corporation
Co-principal investigators: Christine Goertz, D.C., Ph.D.,: Joan Walter, J.D., P.A., Samueli Institute
Co-investigators: Cynthia Long, Ph.D.; James DeVocht, D.C., Ph.D.; Ram Gudavalli, Ph.D.; Ting Xia, Ph.D.; Robert Vining, D.C.
Lead Project Managers: Julie Hartman, D.C., Amy Minkalis, D.C.
     ACT comprises 3 separate randomized controlled trials, a collaborative effort between Palmer and the Department of Defense. The overarching goal is to assess the effectiveness of chiropractic manipulative therapy for pain management and improved function in active duty service members with low back pain. This study looks at the role of chiropractic care within the military health care system and has applications for a diverse population in a real-world setting.


The total targeted enrollment for all 3 studies is 980 participants. Recruitment  commenced in the fall of 2012 for ACT I and the fall of 2014 for ACT II. A pilot study testing ACT III protocols has been completed at the Palmer Research Clinic with community participants; research staff are preparing to launch the ACT III study with active military in the summer of 2015.

ACT I: Assessment of Chiropractic Treatment for Low Back Pain and Smoking Cessation in Military Active Duty Personnel
• Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, MD 
Project Manager: Elissa Twist, D.C., M.S., C.C.R.P.
Principal Investigator: LTC Keith Myers, M.D.
• Naval Medical Center San Diego, San Diego, CA 
Project Manager: Erin Cesario, B.A., C.C.R.C.
 Principal Investigator: CAPT Michael Rosenthal, P.T., D.Sc.
• Naval Hospital Pensacola, Pensacola, FL 
Project Manager: Wendy Freiberger, R.N., C.C.R.C.
Principal Investigator: CDR Joseph Penta, M.D. 

ACT II:  Assessment of Chiropractic Treatment Using Reaction and Response Times in Members of the Special Operation Forces
Site: Blanchfield Army Community Hospital, Chiropractic Clinic, Ft. Campbell, KY 
Project Manager: Darla Freehardt, B.S., L.P.N., C.C.R.P.
Principal Investigator: Thomas Jones, D.C.
ACT III: Assessment of Chiropractic Treatment: Strength and Balance
Site: Naval Hospital Pensacola, Pensacola, FL 
Project Manager: Crystal Franklin, M.P.H.
Principal Investigator: CDR Joseph Penta, M.D. 

Collaborative Care for Veterans with Spine Pain and Mental Health Conditions (COCOV)
Funding source: NIH/NCCIH
Grant number: 1-R34-AT008427
Award amount: $718,000
Funding period: 9/1/2014 - 6/30/2017
Principal Investigator: Christine Goertz, D.C., Ph.D.
Co-Investigators: Cynthia Long, Ph.D.; Stacie Salsbury, Ph.D., R.N.; Robert Vining, D.C.; Richard Branson, D.C.; Lucile Burgo-Black, M.D.; Anthony Lisi, D.C.; Robert Wallace, M.D., M.Sc.; Catherine Woodman, M.D.
     This project is a collaboration between the PCCR, Veterans Health Administration at the VA Connecticut Healthcare System, the VHA in Minneapolis, MN, University of Iowa, and the Iowa City VA Health Care System.

Central Neuroimmune Mechanisms Underlying Nerve Growth Factor Induced Low Back Muscle Pain
Funding source: Saint Louis University
Award amount: $6,516
Funding period: 9/1/2015 - 8/31/2016
Co-Principal Investigator: William Reed, PhD
     In this project, we will determine if the central effects of NGF-induced muscle pain occur through inflammatory processes within the spinal cord (hyperactivation of glial cells and enhanced pro-inflammatory cytokines). This proposal will also begin to examine if commonly used non-pharmacological treatments for LBP such as manual therapy can prevent and/or limit the extent of spinal cord neuronal hyperexcitability and inflammation. 

2015 Conference: Process of Integrating Evidence (PIE) for CAM Educators
Funding source: NIH/NCCIH
Award amount: $29,100
Funding period: 2/1/2015 - 1/31/2016
Principal Investigator: Cynthia R Long, Ph.D.
Co-Investigators: Belinda J. Anderson, Ph.D.; Jerrilyn A. Cambron, D.C., M.P.H., Ph.D.; Renee M. DeVries, D.C.; Deborah Hill, M.S.; Katie Hoyt, M.O.L.; Dana J. Lawrence, D.C., M.Med.Ed, M.A.; Ronald LeFebvre, D.C.; Michael J. Schneider, D.C., Ph.D.; John S. Stites, D.C.; Mark C. Wilson, M.D., M.P.H.
     This project provides the opportunity for Palmer to host a 3-day conference designed to provide CAM educators training in the principles, practice and teaching of evidence-informed practice.

Epigenetic regulation of neuronal differentiation by HVLA and LVVA forces
Funding source: Australian Spinal Research Foundation
Award amount:$40,000
Funding period: 2/1/2015 - 1/31/2016
Principal Investigator: Liang Zhang, M.D., Ph.D.
     This project examines the cell's response to variations in mechanical force.

Chiropractic Integration into Multidisciplinary Healthcare Systems
Funding source: NCMIC Group
Award amount: $100,000
Funding period: 10/1/2014 - 12/31/2015
Principal Investigator: Christine Goertz, D.C., Ph.D.
Co-Investigators: Anthony Lisi, D.C.; Stacie Salsbury, Ph.D., R.N.
Project Managers: Elissa Twist, D.C., M.S., C.C.R.P., Virginia Smith, M.S., M.A.T., M.S.
     This project is a Private Sector Integrated Chiropractic Study with the goal to describe and assess the delivery of chiropractic services in a group of private healthcare facilities using a qualitative case study approach.

Completed Grants and Projects of Note

Effect of Lumbar Hypo & Hypermobility on Sensory Response to Spinal Manipulation 
Funding source: NIH/NCCIH 
Grant number: 5-K01-AT005935
Award amount: $646,000
Funding period: 9/2010 - 8/2016
Principal Investigator: William Reed, D.C., Ph.D.
Mentor: Joel Pickar, D.C., Ph.D.
     This study is directed toward understanding the consequences of restricted or excessive spinal joint mobility on neural responses to spinal manipulation for back pain. 

Distance Education OnLine Intervention for Evidence Based Practice Literacy (DELIVER)

Funding source: NIH/NCCIH 
Grant number: 1-R21-AT007547
Funding period: 9/2012 - 8/2015
Principal Investigator: Michael Schneider, D.C., Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh
Co-investigator: Cynthia Long, Ph.D.
     This project will test an online intervention for increasing doctors of chiropractic attitudes, knowledge and skills regarding evidence-based practice.  

Developmental Center for Clinical and Translational Science in Chiropractic (DCRCI)
Funding source: NIH/NCCIH 
Grant number: 1-U19-AT004663
Award amount: $3,500,000
Funding period: 6/2008 - 5/2015
Principal Investigator: Christine Goertz, D.C., Ph.D.
     The goal of these collaborative projects (University of Iowa, Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine and Hines VA Hospital) is to understand the appropriate clinical role of chiropractic manipulation therapies (CMT) in our evolving healthcare system.

DCRCI: Project 1: Patient Response to Spinal Manipulation (PRiSM)
Co-leaders: Ting Xia, Ph.D. and David Wilder, Ph.D.
Co-investigators: Cynthia Long, Ph.D.; James DeVocht, D.C., Ph.D.; Ram Gudavalli, Ph.D.; Robert Vining, D.C.

DCRCI: Project 2: Conservative Treatment of Patients with Temporomandibular Disorders 
Co-leaders: James DeVocht, D.C., Ph.D. and Clark Stanford, D.D.S., Ph.D.
Co-investigators: Cynthia Long, Ph.D.; Maria Hondras, D.C., M.P.H.; Walter Schaeffer, D.C.

DCRCI: Project 3: Cervical Distraction Sham Development: Translating from Basic to Clinical Studies 
Co-leaders: Ram Gudavalli, Ph.D. and Avinash Patwardhan, Ph.D.
Co-investigators: Cynthia Long, Ph.D.; Charles Henderson, D.C., Ph.D.; Robert Havey, B.S.; Leonard Voronov, M.D., Ph.D.; Alexander Ghanayem, M.D.; Robert Vining, D.C.

DCRCI: Clinic and Data Core
Co-leaders: Cynthia Long, Ph.D. and Robert Vining, D.C.

Effect of Chiropractic on Costs of Medicare Patients with Multiple Comorbidities
Funding source: NIH/NCCIH
Grant number: 1-R21-AT008287
Award amount: $319,000 ($42,000 to Palmer)
Funding period: 9/2/2013 - 4/30/2015
Principal Investigator: William Weeks, M.D., M.B.A.
Co-investigators: Jon Lurie, M.D., M.S.; Rand Swenson, M.D., Ph.D.; Christine Goertz, D.C., Ph.D.; Nancy Morden, M.D., M.P.H.
     This project will use a serial cross sectional design to identify patients with low back pain and multiple comorbidities and will compare mean annual Medicare costs (Part A, Part B, and Part D) in patients who did and who did not use chiropractic care during the year.

Board of Chiropractic Examiners Practice Analysis Survey and Research Overview Chapter
Funding source: NBCE
Award amount: $18,000 
Funding period: 6/1/2014 - 12/31/2014
Principal Investigator: Christine Goertz, D.C., Ph.D.
Co-investigators: William Reed, D.C., Ph.D., Robert Vining, D.C., Elissa Twist D.C., M.S. and Nicole Holmb D.C., M.S.
     This project focuses on the role of doctors of chiropractic, surveying practice patterns and demographics. The project also includes a current summary of the chiropractic literature. This research summary will be included in the Practice Analysis of Chiropractic 2015.  

Effect of Spinal Manipulation on Thalamic Mechanical Response Threshold
Funding source: Australian Spinal Research Foundation 
Grant number: LG2010-11
Award amount: $20,000
Funding period: 6/2011 - 5/2013
Principal Investigator: William Reed, D.C., Ph.D.
Key technical support: Randy Sozio, B.S., L.A.T.G.
     Manual therapy has been shown to provide a hypoalgesic effect as measured clinically by reduced pressure pain thresholds in both symptomatic and asymptomatic subjects. The objective of this study is to determine the effects of simulated spinal manipulation on thalamic mechanical response thresholds using electrophysiological techniques.