Dina Tell, PhD
Title/s: Clinical Associate Professor
Specialty Area: Psychosocial stressors, including childhood adversity; social determinants of health; stress reduction intervention such as mindfulness stress reduction; statistical model for longitudinal data analysis
Office #: Lake Shore Campus, BVM Room 1011
CV Link: Dina Tell CV 2022
Dr. Tell is a Clinical Associate Professor in the Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing. She received her PhD degree in developmental psychology from Loyola University Chicago and completed two post-doctoral fellowships in psychoneuroimmunology at the Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing.
Her first postdoctoral research was supported by a National Cancer Institute American Recovery and Reinvestment Act 2009 supplement to R01-CA125455 grant (Drs. Linda Janusek/Herbert Mathews, Multiple Principal Investigators). That project evaluated the psychological and biological (i.e., inflammatory markers, cortisol, heart rate variability) response of women recently diagnosed with breast cancer to a laboratory stress paradigm in order to understand the mechanism whereby mindfulness-based stress reduction practice influenced the immune response. Dr. Tell was awarded a 3-year American Cancer Society Fellowship Grant, PF-12-261-01-CPP, to investigate the extent to which exposure to childhood adversity, neighborhood violence, and economic disadvantage predicted a proinflammatory cytokine response and increased risk for inflammation-related behavioral symptoms as well as an epigenetic link between childhood adversity and bio-behavioral symptoms in women with breast cancer.
Dr. Tell has actively engaged in a variety of multidisciplinary research projects (as a Co-investigator) at the School of Nursing. These projects examined epigenomic pathways linking social adversity and stress to health disparities in young African American men (MPIs: Drs. Janusek and Mathews); Race-Based Stress Reduction and Resilience Program for African American Women at risk for cardiovascular disease (PI: Dr. Saban); and reducing disparities in postpartum care (MPIs: Drs. Garfield and Tenfelde).
Dr. Tell is also interesting in innovative analytic strategies including growth curve modeling, latent mixture variable analysis, latent class/profile analysis and multi-level data analysis that allow for more precise ways to address complex research questions.
Dr. Tell’s research interests focus on understanding psycho-biological mechanisms of stress, particularly understanding developmental psycho-biological vulnerabilities and social determinants that negatively impact adult health.