Loyola University Chicago

Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing


Midwest Conference Highlights Research by Loyola Nursing Faculty

Midwest Conference Highlights Research by Loyola Nursing Faculty

Professor Sue Penckofer, PhD, RN, FAAN (right) and Assistant Professor Thao Griffith, PhD, RN (left).

Research from Professor Sue Penckofer, PhD, RN, FAAN, and Assistant Professor Thao Griffith, PhD, RN, will be featured as “Distinguished Abstracts” at the April Midwest Nursing Research Society virtual conferenceThe annual conference typically attracts more than 1,000 health care professionals from across the United StatesThis year, the conference will move online due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control to limit large gatheringsAmong the 234 abstracts that will be featured at this year’s virtual conference, only 14 received the “Distinguished Abstract” distinction, which is awarded based on the overall scientific impact of the research.  

Griffith describes the distinction as “encouraging and looks forward to sharing her findings with colleagues. “The recognition motivates me to work harder and make more positive contributions to the scientific community, especially in nursing research,” she saysGriffith’s study focuses on the oral-feeding challenges of preterm infants. The Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric, and Neonatal Nurses recently awarded Griffith a $10,000 grant to fund this study. The long-term goal of her research is to develop innovative approaches to reducing the impact of early life stress exposure on preterm infant development. 

While Penckofer has dedicated 35 years to studying women’s cardiovascular health at Loyola, her MNRS abstract focuses on the urinary microbiome of women with type 2 diabetes. “The MNRS conference will provide an excellent opportunity to discuss these findings and their impact on the assessment and evaluation of urinary tract infections in women with type 2 diabetes,” says PenckoferHer team’s findings also will soon be published in the Journal of Diabetes and Its Complications. 

“We are proud of our two faculty who received the Distinguished Abstract award for outstanding scientific contributions,” says Associate Dean for Research Karen Saban, PhD, RN, APRN, CNRN, FAHA. 

In 2019, only one team from Loyola was featured as a “Distinguished Abstract,” for their abstract, “The Transition of Asthma Self-Care in College Students.” The Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing is a co-host the 2020 Midwest Nursing Research Society Annual Conference.