Pepper Cores

Our research objectives are to:

  1. Assess, using translational research (between basic and clinical disciplines) multiple factors such as biological, co-morbid, psychosocial, and behavioral that contribute to sarcopenia, physical function decline, and progression to disability.
  2. Develop and reliably test in clinical and pre-clinical studies interventions that target sarcopenia in order to prevent, delay or recover the age-related declines in physical function and progression to disability.

To address these objectives, the UF IOA Pepper Center is organized around several Cores, which support investigators, train Junior Scholars, support external studies, research development projects and pilot/exploratory studies.

The Pepper Center Cores are:

The Leadership and Administrative Core, led by Marco Pahor, M.D.,and Lauren Crump, MPH, is responsible for strategic planning, organization, administrative operations and evaluation of the IOA’s Pepper Center.

Upcoming geriatricians and gerontology researchers are mentored and guided by the efforts of the Research Career Development Core, led by Christiaan Leeuwenburgh, Ph.D., which promotes and augments the development of future research leaders.

Christy Carter, Ph.D. leads the Pilot and Exploratory Studies Core, which administers pilot studies that are intended to result in larger independently funded studies, and supports research to acquire information to select or design future crucial studies in the IOA areas of focus.

Data entry, database maintenance, analyses and quality control procedures are handled by the Biostatistics and Bioinformatics Core,  led by Sam Wu, Ph.D. To request Biostatistics support for grant preparation and data analysis, please click here for the initial contact form.

The Clinical Research Core led by Stephen Anton, Ph.D., coordinates the center’s focus of managing clinical research facilities for projects with a particular emphasis on epidemiologic studies and randomized controlled trials.

The main role of the Metabolism and Translational Science Core, led by Christiaan Leeuwenburgh, Ph.D., is to identify and obtain genetic, gene expression, metabolic and biological measures to be assessed in the basic and clinical research studies.

The Data Science Core‘s purpose is to use information from collections of large data to monitor, evaluate and enhance the health of older adults.  The Data Science Core is led by Dr. Todd Manini.

Our Pepper Center cores foster multidisciplinary collaborations and integrate and bridge the many available resources at UF and its affiliates.  One of our Center’s major strength is the concerted action of the interdisciplinary cores, projects and investigators, that all address one common research theme to be explored through the whole spectrum of biomedical investigation.