Ellen M. Lavoie Smith, PhD, MSN, RN, AOCN®, FAAN, is a Professor, Assistant Dean for Research and Scholarship, and the Marie O’Koren Endowed Chair at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) School of Nursing. Dr. Smith has lectured nationally and internationally regarding multiple cancer-related topics and has published 90 peer-reviewed manuscripts. Her research is well recognized as pioneering and pivotal in identifying interventions for chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN), a life-altering complication of neurotoxic chemotherapy for which no known treatments have been discovered. She has received independent extramural research funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and foundation and industry sponsors. Her research revealed duloxetine efficacy for painful CIPN (JAMA, 2013). As a result, duloxetine is remains the only treatment for painful CIPN recommended by the American Society of Clinical Oncology (JCO, 2020). Further, she has led multiple instrument development studies involving both adults and children with CIPN. She currently leads an NCI/R01-funded Phase II-III trial to test duloxetine to prevent CIPN through the Alliance NCI-funded Cooperative Group network. As recognition for her pioneering work, Dr. Smith has received numerous national awards including the 2018 Fellows of the National Institute of Nursing Research Welch/Woerner Path Paver Award.
Cancer Symptom Science Chemotherapy-Induced Peripheral Neuropathy Assessment and Treatment Neuropathic Pain Psychometric Methods Electronic Data Collection Methods in Multi-site Trials
Dr. Smith's record as an educator provides strong evidence of sustained excellence in teaching, including experience with advanced students. Her commitment to the teaching mission is evidenced by excellence in classroom teaching, and by deep and effective mentoring of highly successful undergraduate, doctoral, and post-doctoral students. Prior to her hire at the UAB School of Nursing, she served as the PhD Program Director at the University of Michigan School of Nursing. Her creative and inclusive leadership led to exciting innovations within the University of Michigan PhD program. Now as the Assistant Dean for Research and Scholarship and Marie O'Koren Endowed Chair at the UAB School of Nursing, she contributes to UAB's teach mission by establishing infrastructure to support faculty scholarship. She co-leads the Office of Research and Scholarship’s Faculty Scholar and Mentor Service Unit. This unit is establishing Scholarship Collaboratives--groups of early to senior career faculty with common interests in research, teaching, and clinical scholarship, who work together to produce enhanced scholarship. This Service Unit also provides faculty scholars with access to robust mentorship and support via educational seminars and lecture which build faculty skills. Over the years, she has served as the PI for several pre-doctoral training grants (e.g., American Cancer Society, Robert Wood Johnson, Jonas Foundation). Currently, she serves as the dual PI for the NIH-funded Cancer Prevention and Control T32 Training Program (T32CA047888). This grant provides support for 8 trainees per year (4 pre- and 4 postdoctoral) to expand their knowledge in cancer prevention and control research and to promote their success as future independent cancer research scientists.