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BAC

Biostatistics Analysis Center

People

People

Michael Kallan, MS
Acting BAC Managing Co-Director (Primary BAC Contact)

MS (Biostatistics), University of Michigan, 1998

Mr. Kallan joined the Biostatistics Unit upon receiving his degree in 1998. During his nineteen years at Penn, Mr. Kallan has worked on various collaborative projects, including (but not limited to those) in the fields of child passenger safety, geriatric psychiatry, rheumatoid arthritis, obesity, lymphedema, pneumonia, sepsis and liver disease. He has been a co-author on over eighty papers in the peer-reviewed literature, and was the lead author on three journal articles: “Seating patterns and corresponding risk of injury among 0 to 3 year old children in child safety seats” (Pediatrics, 2008), "Non-fatal and fatal crash injury risk for children in minivans compared with children in sport utility vehicles" (Injury Prevention, 2009), and “Child passenger safety practices and injury risk in crashes with father versus mother drivers” (Injury Prevention, 2014). Additionally, he has presented research findings from the Partners for Child Passenger Safety project at both scientific and statistical conferences.

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Warren Bilker, PhD
Professor of Biostatistics

Ph.D. (Biostatistics), Johns Hopkins University, 1992; M.S. (Statistics), Temple University, 1984; B.A. (Mathematics), Temple University, 1981.

Dr. Bilker's methodological research focuses on pharmacoepidemiology, survival analysis, psychiatric methods and correlated data. His primary applied research interests are in schizophrenia and in the analysis of pharmacoepidemiology data using large databases. He is the principal investigator of the biostatistics and data core of the Schizophrenia Center in the Department of Psychiatry, which emphasizes the study of the relationship between brain imaging findings and the clinical course of schizophrenia.

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John Farrar, MD, PhD
Associate Professor of Epidemiology

Ph.D. (Graduate Group - Biostatistics and Epidemiology), University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, 2004; M.S.C.E. (Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics), University of Pennsylvania, 2000. M.D., The University of Rochester School of Medicine, 1981. ScB. (Biology, Computer Science minor), Brown University, 1976.

Dr. Farrar has been involved in clinical research for more than 20 years, with a major focus on the study of the efficacy of pain therapeutics and on novel methodology in the design and execution of clinical trials.  As a neurologist and a pharmaco-epidemiologist, he has been involved in numerous studies including randomized trials (RCTs), cohort studies, and methodologic studies of pain and associated symptoms such as fatigue, depression, and quality of life in clinical research and practice, which have been conducted with funding he has received from the National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), private foundations, and industry sources. Currently he is the principal investigator of the Center of Excellence for Pain Education, he directs the evaluation component of Penn's current Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA), and he is a collaborator with the data coordinating center for the U54 multicenter Multidisciplinary Approach to the Study of Chronic Pelvic Pain (MAPP) study.  Nationally he has served on advisory boards for the FDA, on the National Academy of Science (NAS) committee on Missing Data in Clinical Trials, and on the Institute of Medicine’s (IOM) committee on Relieving Pain in America. He continues to serve roles as an ad hoc reviewer for NIH and the FDA, and as associate editor for the journal of Pharmaco-epidemiology and Drug Safety (PDS).

His current research is focused on the evaluation of new methodologies for understanding how patients report their pain, studies in a large population of patients with pelvic pain, and functional brain imaging in people with pain.  At the University of Pennsylvania, he also serves as the co-director of the Master of Science in Clinical Epidemiology program and of the Biostatistics and Epidemiology Consulting Center. He directs the Introduction to Epidemiology course for medical students.  In addition, he continues to see patients, predominately in a palliative care setting.

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Scott Appel, MS
Acting Co-Director, Senior Triage and Consulting Manager

MS (Biostatistics), University of Michigan School of Public Health, 1997

Mr. Appel joined the BAC in December 2016, bringing with him twenty years of experience as a consultant, statistician, and manager.  As the Senior Triage Manager for the BAC, Scott is responsible for meeting with new clients, setting project scopes, creating timelines, and assisting with budgets.  He also serves as the primary statistician for the majority of these projects.  Scott also has long-term project management roles for the BAC, including a Novartis clinical trial-related project and a large-sample study for the American Heart Association.  His applied statistical experience is diverse, and his management experience includes leading two statistics teams while working at Nielsen, including one team centered in Mumbai, India.  

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Michael Kallan, MS
Acting Co-Director, Senior Project Manager and Budget Manager

MS (Biostatistics), University of Michigan, 1998

Mr. Kallan joined the Biostatistics Unit upon receiving his degree in 1998. During his nineteen years at Penn, Mr. Kallan has worked on various collaborative projects, including (but not limited to those) in the fields of child passenger safety, geriatric psychiatry, rheumatoid arthritis, obesity, lymphedema, pneumonia, sepsis and liver disease. He has been a co-author on over eighty papers in the peer-reviewed literature, and was the lead author on three journal articles: “Seating patterns and corresponding risk of injury among 0 to 3 year old children in child safety seats” (Pediatrics, 2008), "Non-fatal and fatal crash injury risk for children in minivans compared with children in sport utility vehicles" (Injury Prevention, 2009), and “Child passenger safety practices and injury risk in crashes with father versus mother drivers” (Injury Prevention, 2014). Additionally, he has presented research findings from the Partners for Child Passenger Safety project at both scientific and statistical conferences.

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Qing (Jean) Liu
Programming Unit Manager

SAS Certificates, Philadelphia University, 2001; BS (Medical Laboratory Technologist), Hunan Medical University, 1987, Changsha, Hunan, China

Ms. Liu joined the BAC as a SAS programmer in March 2002. Prior to coming to the CCEB, she worked at GEN Trak, Inc. Ms. Liu currently works on collaborative projects including The Impact of Healthy Food Marketing Strategies in Supermarkets, CART-19, research studies of drug to drug interactions, lung cancer studies, and the use of Optum data for research projects.

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Ann Tierney, MS
Senior Biostatistician Manager

MS (Applied Statistics), West Chester University of Pennsylvania, 2008

Ms. Tierney joined the Biostatistics Unit in August 2010. Previously she worked several years as a project manager in schizophrenia research and two years as a statistician at a pharmaceutical CRO. Currently she is working on several clinical studies including the Time to Reduce Mortality in End-Stage Renal Disease (TiME) Trial, the CART19 immunotherapy trials, a trial of Peg-IFN-α2b in the treatment of HIV (BEAT-HIV) and the Safety and Cardiovascular Efficacy of Spironolactone in Dialysis-Dependent ESRD (SPin-D) Trial.

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Scott Appel, MS
Senior Biostatistician/Acting Co-Director

See Bio above in the BAC Management Staff section.

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Colleen Brensinger, MS
Senior Biostatistician

MS (Statistics), Ohio State University, 1997

Ms. Brensinger joined the Biostatistics Unit within the CCEB upon receiving her degree in July of 1997. Prior to graduate school, she worked for two years as at the Center for Biostatistics and Epidemiology at the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine in Hershey, PA. Ms. Brensinger currently works on collaborative projects involving drug-drug interactions, dietary interventions for predicting relapse in stable Crohn's disease (CD) patients and inducing remission in CD patients with active disease, survival benefit of kidney transplant in HCV+ and HIV+ patients, and surveillance patterns in women with uterine, cervical, and ovarian cancer.

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Xiaoyan (Sherry) Han, MS
Senior Biostatistician

MS (Statistics), University of Cincinnati, 2002

Ms. Han joined the Biostatistics Unit in January 2005 after serving two years as a Biostatistician at the Center for Health Equity Research and Promotion at the VA in Pittsburgh, PA. Ms. Han currently works on collaborative projects involving The sustained aeration of infant lungs study(SAIL), the risk factors for prolonged CO-MRSA colonization in subjects with a CO-MRSA SSTI study, University of Pennsylvania Prevention Epicenter project, Pharmacogenetics and HIV treatment outcomes study, Studies in Neonatal Resuscitation, Alzheimer’s Disease Core Center study, Frontotemporal Dementia study and DM & Biocore for Parkinson’s center projects and some short consulting projects.

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Michael Kallan, MS
Senior Biostatistician/Acting Co-Director

See Bio above in the BAC Management Staff section.

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Craig Newcomb, MS
Senior Biostatistician

M.S. (Applied Statistics) West Chester University 2006; BA (Mathematics) West Chester University 2004; BS (Business Economics), Grove City College 1999

Mr. Newcomb joined the BAC in 2004 as a SAS programmer. In 2006 he started working as a biostatistician. He currently works on collaborative projects involving pelvic pain, HBV, cancer, and various eye diseases.

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Lynne Taylor, PhD
Senior Biostatistician

PhD (Measurement, Evaluation and Techniques of Experimental Research), University of Pennsylvania, 1987

Dr. Taylor joined the Biostatistics Unit in September 2000.  She has over 25 years of experience in research design and statistical analysis in psychometrics, program evaluation, and biostatistics.  Her current collaborative projects include providing biostatistics and program evaluation services to the   Center of Excellence for Diversity in Health Education and Research.  As program faculty she   lectures, and provides program evaluation and biostatistics services for the Occupational Medicine Residency Program. Other collaborations includes the management of hyperlipidemia in Rheumatoid Arthritis, examining HPV vaccination rates of underserved populations, examining HIV treatment and outcomes in Philadelphia, and pain assessment (treatment and outcomes). Psychometric analyses include reliability, validity, and scaling. Statistical methods include multivariate and multivariable modeling, on both surveillance and longitudinal clustered data. 

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Ann Tierney, MS
Senior Biostatistician

See Bio above in the BAC Management Staff section.

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Xingmei Wang, MS
Senior Biostatistician

MS (Biostatistics), University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), 2004

Ms. Wang joined the Biostatistics Analysis Center as a Staff Biostatistician in August 2004. She has experience in both clinical trials and observational studies. She has been providing analytic and programming support for the Abramson Cancer Center on various projects and has been working on a simulation study to simulate novel clinical trials for psoriatic arthritis (PsA) that account for the complexity of outcomes.  She also serves as the primary analyst on the study that replicates the results from several clinical trials and pioneers new methods of adjusting unmeasured confounding using THIN database. In addition, she also provides statistical support for short term consulting projects.

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Min Du, MS
Application Developer

MS (Computer Engineering), New Jersey Institute of Technology, 2000; BS (Science in Physics), Tsinghua University, Beijing, China, 1998; SAS Certificates 2012                                                                                                               

Ms. Du joined the BAC as a SAS Programmer Analyst in April 2013. She is working on collaborative projects including Prop, Testosterone trials, DDI, DDID, AHA NRCPR Research, HAART in adults w/ HIV/TB. Prior to this, Ms. Du worked for Nokia Siemens Network (NSN) for eight years as a system test engineer.

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Qing (Jean) Liu
Senior Application Developer

See Bio above in the BAC Management Staff section.

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Qufei Wu, MS
Senior Application Developer

MS (Computer Engineering), University of Maryland, 2007

Mr. Wu joined the CCEB in October 2008. Prior to this, he worked at NIH for bioinformatics research projects during graduate school. He currently works on various collaborative projects involving patients with Type 2 Diabetes Initiating Saxagliptin, Ulcerative colitis, risk of memory loss for the class of Statin drugs with HealthCore Integrated Research Database (HIRD),  General Practice Research Database (GPRD), Health Improvement Network (THIN), and US Medicaid, Medicare data. He also works for other projects including trauma patients and lung transplant outcome.

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Mission

The mission of the BAC is to provide high quality and timely biostatistical programming and analysis support for the University of Pennsylvania research community and externally.

 

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