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Sanford Seed program selects new research to support

Five to receive grants for research ingenuity and innovation

(Sioux Falls) – Proposals from five Sanford clinicians have been selected for funding by the Sanford Seed Grant Research Fund, established in 2011 to grow and evolve underfunded research ideas of Sanford physicians.

The selection process considers proposals based on purpose and priority, scientific integrity, potential for future funding and feasibility.

“Advancing new ideas and ingenuity to improve patient care is at the heart of the Sanford Health Seed Grant Research Fund,” said David Pearce, PhD, vice president of Sanford Research. “This important program gives all Sanford clinicians a potential platform to pursue innovations in patient care that would otherwise go undiscovered.”

This year’s recipients include the following:


  • Sanford Health - Robert Edwards, ODRobert Edwards, OD, Sanford Downtown Eye Center (Bemidji), “The Use of Yoked Prisms Incorporated into Glasses for the Enhancement of Mobility in a Population of Parkinson's Disease Patients.” Many patients who suffer from Parkinson’s disease exhibit a visual midline shift. The perceptual shift of the visual midline can be corrected with yoked prisms incorporated into glasses. Dr. Edward’s work will analyze and statistically define the meaningful improvement in gait achieved by neutralizing Parkinson ‘s patients’ visual midline shift with these yoked prisms.


  • Sanford Health - Kathryn Florio, DOKathryn Florio, DO, Sanford Neurocritical Care (Sioux Falls), “Comparison of the 2 channel EEG vs 21 channel EEG (cEEG) in Detection of Shivering during Therapeutic Hypothermia.” The goal of Dr. Florio’s work is to both improve health outcomes and reduce the cost of care for patients receiving therapeutic hypothermia (TH). Early intervention to cease shivering increases the effectiveness of TH; therefore, Florio and her team are studying the use of the Philips 2 channel EEG with compression spectral array to detect shivering rather than the continuous 21 channel EEG (cEEG).


  • Sanford Health Akran Khan, MDAkran Khan, MD, Sanford Children’s Specialty Clinic (Sioux Falls), “Neuromuscular Electrical Stimulation (NMES) for Dysphagia in Neonates.” The goal of Dr. Khan’s work is to ensure less invasive therapies for infants with dysphagia (difficulty swallowing). NMES involves direct electrical stimulation to the skin to re-educate the neuromuscular pathways involved in swallowing. Electrical stimulation has been proposed as a treatment for dysphagia in adults and children; however, to date, there has been little research in use on newborns.


  • Sanford Health Benjamin Noonan, MDBenjamin Noonan, MD, Sanford Orthopedics & Sports Medicine (Fargo), “The Reliability and Validity of the Reed Sprint Skate Test on Ice Hockey Fitness.” The Reed Sprint Skate (RSS) test is a commonly used, but not vigorously evaluated, measure of anaerobic power and resistance to fatigue. The goal of Dr. Noonan’s work will evaluate the reliability of RSS; assess the validity of the RSS by measuring performance improvements over the course of a season and to compare this to an off-ice measure of repeat sprint performance; and determine the accuracy of photocell, stopwatch, and video methods of timing.


  • Sanford Health Shelby Terstriep, MDShelby Terstriep, MD, Sanford Roger Maris Cancer Center (Fargo), “Health Coaching for Breast Cancer Patients Undergoing Treatment to Decrease Insulin Resistance.” Obesity, elevated insulin levels and insulin resistance are associated with a poorer prognosis in breast cancer patients. Breast cancer patients have higher insulin levels at the start of treatment and become more insulin resistant throughout treatment. Dr. Terstriep’s objective is to decrease the development of insulin resistance through a low glycemic diet intervention with the aid of a health coach during breast cancer treatment.

Each awardee will begin research during the 2013 calendar year.

About Sanford Research/USD
Sanford Research/USD is a non-profit research organization formed between Sanford Health and the University of South Dakota. Sanford Health is an integrated health system headquartered in Fargo, ND and Sioux Falls, SD and represents the largest, rural, not-for-profit healthcare system in the nation with a presence in 111 communities, eight states and three countries.



Tim Gerszewski
Sanford Media Strategist – Sioux Falls Region
(605) 366-2432 /
Follow me on Twitter @SanfordTimG