Thematic Research Networks

Thematic Research Networks are a type of special interest project that fund several Prevention Research Centers (PRC) to work together on a specific health issue. One PRC in the network is the coordinating center and manages the initiative. The networks assign a technical advisor from the funding agency to work with the network members. There are currently five thematic research networks. Past networks have addressed oral health, tobacco use prevention, school health, women’s health, healthy aging, and cardiovascular health.
Cancer Prevention and Control Research Network (CPCRN)

Eight PRCs focus on reducing the burden of cancer, especially in underserved populations. The network was established in 2002 and is funded by CDC’s Division of Cancer Prevention and Control and the National Cancer Institute’s Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences.

What Members Do

Members conduct research on the dissemination and implementation of evidence-based programs proven to increase cancer prevention and control. Members aim to increase the use of these programs among communities and public health partners.

Young boy and grandfather blowing bubbles outside

Members

  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (coordinating center)
  • Case Western Reserve University
  • Oregon Health & Science University
  • University of Iowa
  • University of Kentucky
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • University of South Carolina
  • University of Washington

Learn more about the Cancer Prevention and Control NetworkExternal.

Healthy Brain Research Network (HBRN)

Five PRCs combine their expertise in research, training, and outreach to achieve the goals of the Healthy Brain Initiative Road Map. The network was established in 2014 and is funded by CDC’s Division of Population Health.

What Members Do

Members establish and advance a public health, translation, and dissemination agenda that promote cognitive health, addresses cognitive impairment, and helps meet the needs of care partners. Members also build a strong evidence-base for policy, communication, and programmatic interventions.

two people working together

Members

  • University of Washington Health Promotion Research Center (coordinating center)
  • Oregon Health and Science University
  • University of Arizona
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • University of South Carolina

Learn more about the Healthy Brain Network.

Managing Epilepsy Well (MEW) Network

Eight PRCs work together to improve the quality of life for people with epilepsy. The network was established in 2007 and is funded by CDC’s Division of Population Health.

What Members Do
Members develop and test epilepsy self-management tools and programs to help people with epilepsy manage challenges such as stress, depression, complex medication regimens, memory problems, and following healthy sleep habits.

A group of workers in a meeting

Members

  • Dartmouth College (coordinating center), in collaboration with Emory University
  • Case Western Reserve University
  • University of Arizona
  • University of Illinois at Chicago
  • University of Minnesota
  • Morehouse School of Medicine
  • New York University and City University of New York School of Public Health
  • University of Washington

Learn more about the Managing Epilepsy Well NetworkExternal.

Nutrition and Obesity Policy Research and Evaluation Network (NOPREN)

Five PRCs aim to improve nutrition and reduce obesity through policy research and evaluation. The network was established in 2009 and is funded by CDC’s Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity.

What Members Do
Members identify policies that foster or inhibit healthy lifestyles; describe policy development and implementation, and assess whether they are effective, cost-efficient, equitable, and sustainable.

man in a garden

Members

  • University of California-San Francisco (coordinating center)
  • Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
  • University of Illinois at Chicago
  • University of Minnesota
  • University of New Mexico

Learn more about the NOPREN network: NutritionExternal and Obesity Network.External

Physical Activity Policy Research Network Plus (PAPRN+)

Five PRCs focus on increasing physical activity among communities. The network was established in 2004 and is funded by CDC’s Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity.

What Members Do
Members conduct research on physical activity policies, specifically walking, to determine their effectiveness and best translation, dissemination, and implementation practices. Members aim to increase the number of people who meet the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans.External

A happy woman jogging

Members

  • Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (coordinating center)
  • University of Illinois at Chicago
  • University of Arizona
  • University of Rochester
  • University of Massachusetts Worcester

Learn more about the Physical Activity Policy NetworkExternal.