Research Staff

Dzubur, Eldin

Eldin Dzubur, PhD

Project Scientist Email: eldin.dzubur@cshs.org

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Eldin Dzubur, PhD, is a mobile health methodologist with a background in ecological momentary assessment and physical activity measurement. Dzubur completed his PhD at the University of Southern California in health behavior research, where he worked on studies using novel approaches with mobile technology to answer questions about behavior in children and adults in the context of their everyday lives. Dzubur also has developed a smoking cessation application for emerging adults and has experience in clinical innovation at a digital health startup focused on lifestyle interventions to prevent diabetes. His primary research interest lies at the intersection of health-related behavior and technology, where he seeks to use his expertise to bridge the gap between theory-driven research and bleeding-edge methods to promote behavioral change and improve mental and physical health outcomes.

Dzubur received his bachelor of science in psychology from Wayne State University and his master of science in health psychology from the University of Michigan-Dearborn. At CS-CORE, Dzubur extends his research interests and expertise to the healthcare setting, where he contributes to the design, proposal and dissemination of digital health services research.

Garth Fuller, MS

Garth Fuller, MS

Research Biostatistician III Email: garth.fuller@cshs.org

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Garth Fuller received his bachelor of science in domestic animal biology from Cornell University. After earning a master of science in life sciences from the University of Maryland, he began work at CS-CORE. Having received a grant for doctoral training through the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and the RAND Corp., Fuller is pursuing his PhD in the Health Policy and Management program at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health. Fuller serves as a "utility man" at CS-CORE, lending his knowledge of statistics, SAS programming and qualitative research analysis to a wide range of projects.

Michelle Keller, MS

Michelle Keller, MPH

Clinical Research Specialist II Email: michelle.keller@cshs.org

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Michelle S. Keller is a health services researcher with a background in epidemiology and qualitative research methods. Keller's current work at CS-CORE includes a project examining how patients and physicians differ in terms of their beliefs and knowledge about opioid use, and several projects that utilize conjoint analyses to assess how patients and physicians rank the risks and benefits of various types of medications for chronic diseases. Keller's research interests include implementation and dissemination research, the treatment and management of chronic pain, the use of patient-reported outcomes in clinical care, and physician-patient communication. Prior to working in the health services and health policy field, Keller worked as a journalist for several national newspapers, including the Los Angeles Times and the Chicago Tribune. Keller is finishing her doctoral studies at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health in the Department of Health Policy and Management. She also received her master of public health degree from UCLA. She received her BA degree in human biology from Stanford University.

Mayra Lopez, MPH

Clinical Research Coordinator II Email: mayra.lopez@cshs.org

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Mayra Lopez received her bachelor of arts degree in psychology from UCLA. She completed a dual-degree master's program and received her master of public health and master of social work degrees from Washington University in St. Louis. While in St. Louis, Lopez worked as a biomedical research coordinator leading research studies with Washington University School of Medicine, Adult Epilepsy Center. In St. Louis she also served as a patient advocate in community health clinics, developed service evaluation tools that helped identify service needs, and looked at overall patient outcomes. She comes to CS-CORE with skills in health literacy, program development, implementation, and evaluation, community health education, and data management. Her research interests include community health disparities, patient education, and physician-patient communication among Limited English Proficiency patients and its effects on health outcomes. At CS-CORE, Lopez links her background with research monitoring to bridge the gap between patients and research and ensures proper execution of research studies.

Jennifer Soares, MSPH

Jennifer Soares, MSPH

Research Program Administrator Email: jennifer.soares@cshs.org

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Jennifer Soares completed her undergraduate degree at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. She received her master of science degree in public health with honors from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She moved to the West Coast upon completing her degree to pursue a career in health services research. Soares joined CS-CORE as a research coordinator in 2003 and has been involved in the development of patient reported outcome measurement instruments in a variety of GI conditions for eventual use in clinical trials. Since she became the center's deputy director, much of Soares' work relates to the contracting, budgeting and management of the center's staff members, fellows and affiliates.

Anna Wu, PhD

Anna Wu, PhD

Academic Program Advisor Email: juan.wu@cshs.org

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Anna Wu, PhD, is dedicated to Health Delivery Science because of her strong desire to impact the daily lives of patients. Wu received her bachelor of science in biomedical engineering from the Central South University in China. She subsequently moved to the United States and received her master of science and PhD from UCLA in biomedical engineering with a specialization in medical informatics. Over the course of her graduate career, Wu completed a variety of research projects focused on the automatic extraction of information from medical records, visualization of temporal data for lung cancer patients, representation design for integrating evidence from medical records and scientific literature, and predictive modeling for diagnostic and prognostic problems.

Wu has presented her work at several international conferences, including the Radiological Society of North America Annual Meeting and the IEEE international conference on healthcare informatics, imaging and systems biology.

Wu is passionate about communicating across disciplines and successfully mediating interdisciplinary collaboration between physicians, biostatisticians and graduate students. Wu is currently the academic program advisor of Cedars-Sinai Master’s Program in Health Delivery Science (MHDS), a joint effort by the Cedars-Sinai Center for Outcomes Research and Education and the Department of Biomedical Sciences. The overarching objective of the MHDS program, under the leadership of Brennan Spiegel, MD, and stewardship of Wu, is to educate future leaders in the rapidly transforming field of healthcare.

Benjamin Noah, BS

Clinical Research Associate I Email: benjamin.noah@cshs.org

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Benjamin Noah graduated from the University of Oregon with a BS in economics in 2016. He worked as a research associate in the Department of Economics on various studies related to health including drunk driving laws and the legalization of marijuana. Shortly after graduating, Noah joined the CS-Core team as a research associate. He assists in a variety of areas including data analysis, economic modeling, and literature reviews. His research interests include behavioral economics, chronic pain management, and cost-effective analysis.

Michelle Chen

Clinical Research Coordinator II Email: michelle.chen2@cshs.org

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Michelle Chen is a research coordinator at CS-CORE and recent graduate of the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, where she received her master's degree from the Department of Health Policy and Management. She completed the program's summer internship requirement at CS-CORE, collaborating on a three-phase project to develop a decision tool to help inflammatory bowel disease patients make informed, value-concordant medication choices. Chen's current work includes leading a project to develop a multi-site prostate cancer-specific disease registry for Southern California and conducting social media-driven qualitative analyses to understand the knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs of patients with ankylosing spondylitis regarding medications. Previously, she conducted research in diagnosing IBD using genotoxicity markers and in signaling pathways mediating oncogene-induced senescence. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from UCLA in 2015, with a major in Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics and minor in Cognitive Science.

Alma Jusufagic

Clinical Research Coordinator II Email: alma.jusufagic@cshs.org

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Alma Jusufagic received her master of public health from the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health in the Department of Health Policy and Management. She also received her bachelor of science degree in neuroscience with a minor in Spanish from UCLA. During her time at UCLA, Jusufagic served as an intern coordinator for the Ronald Reagan Medical Center's largest patient safety program, leading a group of over 100 volunteers working to prevent nosocomial infections and errors in the hospital. Her interests in patient-centered care led Jusufagic to join CS-CORE as a graduate student research intern working on a project exploring how patients and clinicians differ in their knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs regarding opioid use and how they weigh the risks and benefits of different chronic pain therapies. Jusufagic brings knowledge of health system organization and financing, qualitative research, and project management to her work at CS-CORE. Jusufagic's passion is leveraging technological innovations to improve access to and quality of care. Her broad research interests include patient-provider communication, mental health, chronic pain care, cost-effectiveness, and dissemination, implementation, and improvement science.