Marshall faculty member to lead team of experts for the National Children’s Study

RoseRineDr. Rose Rine  a faculty member in the College of Health Professions has been selected to lead a team of experts in the sensory domain for the National Children’s Study (NCS).

The National Children’s Study, a multi-year research study, will examine the effects of environmental influences on the health and development of more than 100,000 children across the United States, following them from before birth until age 21. The goal of the study is to improve the health and well-being of children, according to the NCS website. The National Institutes of Health (NIH), an agency of the United States Department of Health and Human Services, was charged by Congress to plan and implement this study in accordance with the Children’s Health Act of 2000.

Dr. Jerry Slotkin, scientific director for the South Regional Operations Center of the NCS, said the study will build a unique set of data that investigators can use to better understand the factors – known and not yet imagined – that affect children as they grow.

Rine, an associate professor in the  School of Physical Therapy, was selected to serve on the Scientific Coordinating Committee for Health Measurement based on her expertise in the area of vestibular function and pediatrics, according to Dr. Richard Gershon, co-primary investigator for the study.

“Dr. Rine was instrumental in developing measures of vestibular function and balance for the NIH Toolbox project which was completed in 2012,” Gershon said. “As a result of her success on that project and her knowledge of the field, she was nominated for her current position on the NCS. She continues to play an important role in the identification, selection and development of measurements in the area of sensory function.”

Rine said her involvement with the NCS serves as confirmation her contribution to these worthwhile research efforts are appreciated and valued.

“A long-standing study of this nature can have a major impact on how we care for our children and youth from an educational standpoint, a social standpoint and in general, who they become,” Rine said. “Throughout my career I’ve worked with the health and welfare of children and this is what I’ve worked toward…being asked to sit on this was truly a compliment and something I couldn’t say no to.”

Rine said she believes the most rewarding feeling will come many years from now.

“Who knows what we will know in ten or twenty years down the road thanks to this study,” Rine said. “We will be able to look at the measure we identified and say ‘Ah-ha!’ – it did work and we did identify how this problem came about and maybe we can work toward making that problem go away. That’s going to be amazing.”

According to the NCS website, the National Children’s Study will be one of the richest research efforts geared towards studying children’s health and development and will form the basis of child health guidance, interventions and policy for generations to come. To learn more about Rine and her work in the Marshall School of Physical Therapy,  visit online.