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Tufts University School of Medicine

Mei Chung

​Associate Professor of Public Health and Community Medicine
Department: Public Health & Community Medicine
Programs: Public Health

Mei Chung

​Associate Professor of Public Health and Community Medicine
Department: Public Health & Community Medicine
Programs: Public Health

Phone ​​617-636-7000

Biography

I​ have long-standing research interests in advancing evidence synthesis methods (e.g., systematic review, meta-analysis, decision analysis) with a special focus on nutrition epidemiology and nutrition-related chronic diseases.  My current research focuses are on applying and advancing systematic review and meta-analytical methods to inform and support developing of evidence-based dietary guidelines and nutrient reference values (e.g. Dietary Reference Intake values [DRIs]).  I am also interested in the research area of engaging stakeholders in research, as well as collaborative research to perform policy impact analyses or data analyses to support public health nutrition policy decision-making.

My current research areas can be broadly categorized into three related fields:
Evidence Synthesis
Most of my publications reflect evidence generation and synthesis to inform policy and clinical guideline developments across diverse health questions. Because of my long-standing interests in nutrition science and policy, I led and published several evidence reports and associated publications that have impacted public health nutrition policy, and Medicare/Medicaid or Affordable Care Act coverage decisions.
Methodological Studies to Advance the Role of Evidence Synthesis in Nutrition Research and Applications
The medical and clinical communities have effectively used systematic reviews to develop clinical and practice guidelines, set research agendas, and develop scientific consensus statements. However, the use of systematic reviews in nutrition applications is more recent and limited. In addition to leading or co-leading evidence reports on a range of nutrition-related topics including omega-3 fatty acids, B-vitamins, berries, soy protein and isoflavones, and vitamin D and calcium, I also played a lead role in a series of methodological research to advance the understanding of the challenges involved in conducting nutrition-related systematic reviews and in integrating these reviews with nutrition applications. Among these, the most notable work was the creation of an analytical framework for synthesizing nutritional evidence to set DRIs. More recently, I have conducted a series of studies to integrate an evidence mapping with a structured research prioritization framework with input from a diverse stakeholder panel in hope to promote knowledge translation from nutrition science to policy.
    c. Epidemiological Studies on Chronic Diseases
I have a broad range of interests in epidemiological studies relating diet/nutrition or other lifestyle factors to chronic disease and conditions, such as cardiovascular diseases, metabolic syndrome, and obesity.

Education

  • ​PhD, Tufts University
  • MPH, Boston University

Research synopsis

My teaching area is in systematic review to inform public health policy and practice, and applied meta-analysis methods in public health.

Publications

Chung M, Tang AM, Fu Z, Wang DD, Newberry SJ. Calcium intake and cardiovascular disease risk: An updated systematic review and meta-analysis. Ann Intern Med. 2016; 165(12):856-866.

Chung M, Wang DD, Archer E, Higgins J, Kim S, Laughlin M, Qi Lu, Raatz S, Siegel RD, Slavin J, Steffen D, Warshaw H, Tang AM. Research needs and prioritizations for studies linking dietary sugars and potentially related health outcomes. BMC Nutrition. 2016;2(1):66.

Wang DD, Shams-White M, Bright OJ, Parrott JS, Chung M. Creating a Literature Database of Low-calorie Sweeteners and Health Studies: Evidence Mapping. BMC Medical Research Methodology. BMC Med Res Methodol. 2016 Jan 5;16(1):1. PMID: 26728979. PMCID: PMC4700619

Tang A, Quick T, Chung M, Wanke C. Nutrition assessment, counseling, and support interventions to improve health-related outcomes in people living with HIV/AIDS: A systematic review of the literature. J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr. 2015 April 68;3:S340-349. PMID:25768873

Chung M, Wang DD, Rizzo AM, Gachette D, Delnord M, Parambi R, Kang CM, Brugge D. Association of PNC, BC, and PM2.5 Measured at a Central Monitoring Site with Blood Pressure in a Predominantly Near Highway Population. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2015 Mar 3;12(3):2765-80. doi: 10.3390/ijerph120302765. PubMed PMID: 25741638

Chung M, Ma J, Patel K, Berger S, Lau J, Lichtenstein AH. Fructose, high-fructose corn syrup, sucrose, and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease or indexes of liver health: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Am J Clin Nutr. 2014 Sept:100(3):833-49. Epub2014 Aug 6. PMID: 25099546; PMCID: PMC4135494