Michael Wirth, PhD
Michael is the Director of Research & Development. He also serves as a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics and the College of Nursing, as well as a Core Faculty Member of the Cancer Prevention and Control Program. He received his BS in biology from Wingate University in 2007, his MSPH in epidemiology from the University of South Carolina, Arnold School of Public Health, in 2009 and his PhD in epidemiology from the University of South Carolina, Arnold School of Public Health, in 2012. He has worked closely with Dr. Shivappa and others at the CPCP with respect to the DII®. He is first author on several DII®-based manuscripts that are currently under review at top peer-reviewed occupational and environmental health journals. His focus on circadian biology has evolved to incorporate the effect of diet on inflammatory outcomes through pathways related to circadian rhythmicity. The CPCP sees the connection to circadian biology as essential to this work because the most common sequelae of stress is disturbance in sleep, which in turn has dire implications for health-related behaviors such as diet and physical activity. The DII® has evolved to become a major component of this research. Indeed, his work on the relationship between sleep, stress, and the DII® (and diet more generally) will inform the current study in important ways. His experience in statistical software programs (e.g., SAS®, which was used to develop the DII® and has formed the basis for virtually all DII®-dependent analyses) and database management has been an important part of analyzing and maintaining datasets through which DII® results have been generated.