Saint Louis University

Saint Louis University Doctoral Student Receives NRSA Grant to Study Tobacco Use and Cardiovascular Disease in Sexual Minority Men

Grant Farmer, doctoral student in public health studies at Saint Louis University School of Public Health has been awarded a Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awardsaint louis university school of public health (NRSA). This award is specifically for students pursuing a research doctorate.

This NRSA grant is unique in that it is a mentored award. It combines both a research proposal with a training plan. "At the end of the award period, I will have gained the skills and research experience necessary to be successful as I move forward into a postdoctoral or junior faculty position," Grant elaborated. He was particularly interested in this award mechanism, not only to fund his dissertation research, but also to gain experience in applying for NIH funding.

The award will support a two-year study that examines the role of tobacco use and risk for cardiovascular disease in sexual minority men. "Sexual minority men smoke at more the twice the rate of their heterosexual counterparts," shares Grant, "but there is little research that has examined the role this disparity may play in CVD for sexual minority men." In addition, a portion of the fund will be utilized to research the potential effect of HIV status on the relationship between smoking and the development of hypertension and heart disease in sexual minority men.

Following the reception of his PhD, Grant is interested in pursuing an academic career with a research focus in LGBT health and health disparities.