Gerardo Moreno, MD, MSHS
Assistant Clinical Professor, UCLA Department of Family Medicine
10880 Wilshire Blvd. St. 1800
Los Angeles, CA 90024
Gerardo moreno, MD, MSHS
Co-Director, Community Liaison Core.
NIH/NIA Research Supplement to Promote Diversity in Health Related Research: “Analysis utilizing data from a unique NIA-funded community-based randomized trial -Caminemos- of an interdisciplinary behavioral intervention aimed at increasing walking among sedentary older Latinos.”(2009-2011)
Co-mentors: Carol M. Mangione, MD, MSPH, and Patrick T. Dowling, MD, MPH, UCLA Deparment of Family Medicine
Diversity Supplement Mentor: Catherine A. Sarkisian, MD, Division of Geriatrics, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.
Dr. Gerardo Moreno received his medical degree from the University of California at Los Angeles, completed a residency at the University of California at San Francisco and completed a post-doctoral fellowship in the UCLA Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Clinical Scholars Program (CSP). In 2009, he received a Master of Science in Health Services (UCLA School of Public Health) and in mid 2009 he began his career in the UCLA Department of Family Medicine.
During his Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program fellowship study, "Improving Diabetes Care in the Central Valley," he collected primary data on middle-aged and older Latinos who were migrant farm workers with diabetes, which strengthened his awareness of importance of aging-related issues for Latinos with chronic disease, stimulated his interest in the role of biological markers of health and aging research, and interested him in contributing to our understanding of the socioeconomic determinants of premature disability among Latinos with chronic conditions.
Diversity Supplement Description
Latinos who are 65 years or older are projected to increase from 2 million in 2003 to 15 million in 2050 and will compose the second largest racial-ethnic group of older Americans only second to non-Latino Whites. They have a disproportionately high prevalence of diabetes and obesity that leads to increased risk of disability, lower health related quality of life (HRQOL), and frailty. Encouragingly, there is evidence that diabetes and obesity can be delayed or prevented with increased physical activity.
Dr. Gerardo Moreno is using multi-level statistical modeling to examine the relationships between biological markers of health (collected at baseline and at 6 months), physical activity levels, health-related quality of life, disability, and functional status for the subset of Caminemos participants (n=127) who enrolled in a supplemental study, Caminemos Dos. Though physical activity is related to physical function, morbidity, and mortality among older adults, relatively little is known about the biological mechanisms by which increased physical activity may improve health. Although studies have found a relationship between physical activity and biological markers of health in-non-Latino elderly individuals, this is not known for elderly Latinos.The specific aims of Dr. Moreno’s pilot study which are hypotheses generating and as such do not set out to disprove a null hypothesis, are as follows: 1) To examine in exploratory fashion the cross-sectional relationships between biological markers of health (Interleukin - 6[IL-6], C-reactive protein [CRP], Tumor Necrosis Factor -alpha [TNF-alpha], blood pressure, and the metabolic syndrome), physical activity levels, physical and cognitive function and health-related quality of life; 2) To examine in exploratory fashion the relationship between longitudinal changes (6 months) in biological markers of health (IL-6, CRP, TNF-alpha, blood pressure, the metabolic syndrome) physical activity levels, disability and health-related quality of life; and 3) To examine if biological markers of health act as mediators between changes in physical activity levels and changes in disability and health-related quality of life.
This pilot study would be one of the first to examine these relationships among a unique cohort of elderly Latinos. Dr. Moreno believes that if this study identifies a relationship suggesting that increases in physical activity are associated with low inflammation and less metabolic syndrome, then the results may help inform the direction of future research and guide future inventions aimed at increasing physical activity and preserving function among older Latinos.
1. Hablamos Juntos (Together we speak): Interpreters, provider communication, and satisfaction with care. J Gen Intern Med. 2010 Dec;25(10):1282-1288. PMID: 20703951. PMICID: PMC 2977060.
2. Are physical activity and physical performance associated with biological markers of health among elderly sedentary Latinos? Under review with Journal of Behavioral Medicine.