A.T. Still Research Institute

Consistent with the tenets of osteopathic medicine, the mission of the Still Research Institute is to advance whole person healthcare and wellness through development and support of premier clinical and translational research.

Osteopathic Research

The vision for the A.T. Still Research Institute began in 1997 with the arrival of James J. McGovern, PhD, as president of Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine (KCOM), now an entity of ATSU.. Dr. McGovern came with a vision of transforming KCOM into a world-class, clinical research mecca. At the KCOM Convocation for the Second Century, two specific research focal areas of exceptional strength emerged – osteopathic manipulative medicine and family/senior healthcare.

In 2001, after financial support through the Strategic Research Initiative, the A.T. Still Research Institute (SRI) was created as an overarching research entity under which clinical and interdisciplinary research activities are organized. The SRI, the namesake of the first osteopathic research institute, is the first modern osteopathic research center and embodies the spirit and mission of the first osteopathic research institute directed by Louisa Burns, DO, as well as the professions leading research pioneers Drs. J.S. Denslow, I. M. Korr, M.O. Gutensohn.

Building the Infrastructure of the A.T. Still Research Institute

The SRI has worked closely with the University’s Office of Research Support and the Interdisciplinary Research Committees to promote mechanisms to provide mentorship and internal funding for new researchers or new research directions. To this end, the University-wide research focus of which the SRI plays a major role has been built on the Disablement Model. The Disablement Model is derived from the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF), developed by the World Health Organization. This framework is intended to encourage and promote interdisciplinary research efforts, to support ATSU’s osteopathic legacy and one of its core institutional value of “Advancing Whole Person Healthcare.”

The following two University-wide Centers were originally established within the SRI. The two original centers within the Institute have achieved significant successes.

  • The Center for Healthy Aging Research under the leadership of geriatrician Don Noll, D.O., initiated the profession’s most extensive and best supported multi-center osteopathic manipulation study on the elderly hospitalized patient with pneumonia. The Multicenter Osteopathic Pneumonia Study in the Elderly (MOPSE). Other research in this center included the effect of Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment (OMT) on patients with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease and identifying immune responses secondary to OMT. This center has matured over time into the Center for Clinical Outcome Studies
  • The second center, the Still Osteopathic Research Center, was designated to evaluate and report on the effects of osteopathic diagnostic and therapeutic palpation. Significant advances have been achieved in this research area, developing novel methodologies using the latest technologies to establish reliable, objective, and valid methods to evaluate palpation. These technologies have been incorporated into the educational programs at 4 training institutions, including one international location. To facilitate the successes being achieved within this center, a 4M dollar endowment has been established between the Osteopathic Heritage Foundations and ATSU to support the work occurring within this center. Based on this center’s growth, it is now identified as the Center for the Advancement of Osteopathic Research Methodologies.

Currently the Institute has flourished into four centers:

  • Center for Advancement of Osteopathic Research Methodologies (CORM), Directed by Brian Degenhardt, DO, Endowed Chair of the Still Research Institute (ATSU)
  • Center for Clinical Outcomes Studies (CCOS), Directed by Alison Snyder Valier, PhD, Associate Professor, Interdisciplinary Health Sciences (ASHS)
  • Center for Mechanistic Studies (CMS), Directed by Jeremy Houser, PhD, Associate Professor, Anatomy (KCOM)
  • Center for Research in Osteopathic Manual Medicine Education (CROME), Directed by Eric Snider, DO, Associate Professor, Neurobehavioral Sciences (KCOM)

As the two inaugural centers, each of the four centers prioritize collaborative and interdisciplinary clinical research. They promote the establishment of on-going collaborative research programs which span multiple disciplines within the university and globally, providing administrative and research support for clinical research projects.

Establishment of the External Board of Scientific Counselors

Upon its establishment, the SRI commissioned the External Board of Scientific Counselors (EBSC), a non-partisan board involved in the strategic planning of the Institute providing Institute Researchers expert guidance, insight, and assistance on advancing premier osteopathic clinical and translational research for the advancement of whole person healthcare.

The EBSC has included:
*Indicates a present member of the EBSC

  • Leonard Calabrese, DO. Professor of Medicine, Cleveland Clinic, Lerner College of Medicine, RJ Fasenmyer Chair of Clinical Immunology, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Department of Rheumatic and Immunologic Diseases. Cleveland, OH.
  • Angela DeRosa, DO, CPE. Medical Director, Sub Acute Care Division, American Physicians, Inc. Phoenix, AZ.
  • Larry A. Green, MD. University of Colorado, Department of Family Medicine, Health Science Center. Aurora, CO.
  • Stepehn Hochschuler, MD. Chairman, Texas Back Institute, Plano TX.
  • Jay Moskowitz, PhD. Associate Vice President for Health Sciences Research, Vice Dean, Research, Penn State University, College of Medicine, Hershey, PA
  • David I. Kaufman* DO. Professor and Chair, Department of Neurology & Opthalmology, Michigan State University – Colleges of Osteopathic and Human Medicine. East Lansing, MI.
  • William C. Meeker, DC, MPH. Vice President for Research, Palmer Chiropractic University. Davenport, IA.
  • Lori A. Michener,* PT, PhD, ATC, SCS. Associate Professor, Department of Physical Therapy, Virginia Common Wealth University School of Allied Health Professions. Richmond, VA.
  • Vert Mooney, MD, QME. Medical Director, US Spine & Sport. San Diego, CA.
  • Jay Moskowitz* PhD. Associate Vice President, Health Sciences, Research and Vice Dean of Research, Penn State College of Medicine. Hershey, PA.
  • Wilson Pace,* MD. Professor, University of Colorado-Denver, Anschutz Medical Campus, Department of S/M Family Medicine. Aurora, CO.
  • Michael D. Pierschbacher, PhD. President and Chief Executive Officer, American Life Science Pharmaceuticals (ALSP), Inc. San Diego, CA
  • Maureen J. Simmonds,* PhD, PT. Professor, Physical Therapy, School of Health Professions, University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio, TX.
  • John J. Triano,* MA, DC, PhD, FCCS (C). Dean, Graduate Education & Research Programs, Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College. Ontario, Canada.
  • Dennis C. Turk, PhD. John and Emma Bonica Professor of Anesthesiology and Pain Research, Department of Anesthesiology, University of Washington, School of Medicine Seattle, Washington.
  • Robert B. Wallace, MD. Irene Ensiminger Stecher Professor of Epidemiology and Internal Medicine Department of Epidemiology. Iowa City, IA