Melanie Wall, PhD

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Overview

Dr. Wall has worked extensively with modeling complex multilevel and multimodal data on a wide array of psychosocial public health and psychiatric research questions in both clinical studies and large epidemiologic studies. She is an expert in longitudinal data analysis and latent variable modeling, including structural equation modeling focused on mediating and moderating (interaction) effects where she has made many methodological contributions. She has a long track record as a biostatistical mentor for Ph.D. students and NIH K awardees and regularly teaches graduate level courses in the Department of Biostatistics in the Mailman School of Public Health attended by clinical Masters students, Ph.D. students, post-docs, and psychiatry fellows. Her current research mission is improving the accessibility and application of state-of-the-art and reproducible statistical methods across different areas psychiatric research.

Academic Appointments

  • Professor of Biostatistics (in Psychiatry)

Gender

  • Female

Research

My current research mission is improving the accessibility and application of state-of-the-art and reproducible statistical methods across different areas psychiatric research. For example, I am currently the Quantitative Unit Methods Core director of the OPAL NIMH funded center grant aimed at improving care for people with schizophrenia. The quantitative methods core aims to use flexible and data-adaptive statistical and machine learning methods to determine who will benefit most from each intervention by identifying (possibly high-dimensional) tailoring variables as well as develop statistical methods suitable for building optimal multistage treatment regimens for patients with schizophrenia. Another example is my leadership in the statistical analyses of national data monitoring the impact of drug policy change (i.e. medical and recreational marijuana laws, opioid prescribing practices, Affordable Care Act) on substance use disorder rates, mortality, and treatment.

Research Interests

  • Biostatistics

Selected Publications

  • Sarvet A, Wall M, Fink D, Greene E, Le A, Boustead A, Pacula R, Keyes K, Cerda M, Galea S, Hasin D. Medical marijuana laws and adolescent marijuana use in the United States: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Addiction. 113(6): 1003-1016. 2018.
  • Wall MM, Hu M, Griesler P, Cheslack-Postave K, Feng T, Kandel D. Nonmedical Prescription Opioids and Pathways of Drug Involvement in the US: Generational Differences. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 182, 103-111. 2018.
  • Nossel I, Wall MM, Scodes J, Marino L, Zikha S, Bello I, Malinovsky I, Lee R, Radigan M, Smith T, Sederer L, Gu G, Dixon L. Results of a coordinated specialty care program for early psychosis and predictors of outcomes. Epub ahead of print in Psychiatric Services, 2018.
  • Olfson M, Wall M, Liu S, Wang S, Crystal S, Blanco C. Risks of fatal opioid overdose during the first year following nonfatal overdose. Epub ahead of print in Drug and Alcohol Dependence. 2018.
  • Raffo C, Hasin D, Appelbaum P, Wall M. A data-driven method for identifying shorter symptom criteria sets: The case for DSM-5 alcohol use disorder. Epub ahead of print in Psychological Medicine, 2018