Spring Laboratory

Spring Lab Group Photo

Our Team

(Left to right)Gleb Iakovlev, David Conroy, PhD, Miriam Davidson, MSCS, Angela Pfammatter, PhD, Jennifer Warnick, Ginne Meyers, Gene McFadden, Steven Driver, MD, MPH, Bonnie Spring, PhD, Elyse Daly, Tiara Adams, RD, LDN, Christine Pellegrini, PhD, Sara Hoffman, Claire Maby, Jeremy Steglitz, MPH, MS, Elena Garza

Our Research

Current trials Make Better Choices 2 and Opt-In are part of the lab's work in intervention development to reduce unhealthy diet and activity behaviors related to obesity.  Our work explores the efficacy of interventions on diet, exercise, and sedentary behaviors using feedback supplied via mobile technologies. EBBP, along with its sister project, Team Science, helps bridge gaps among research, policy, and clinical practice in the US and internationally.  Collaborative work with Erie Family Health Center in Chicago is securing physician input in order to improve provider tools for obesity intervention in electronic health records.

Major funding comes via grants from the National Institutes of Health, particularly NIDDK, OBSSR, and NHLBI, as well as foundations, such as the American Heart Association and American Cancer Society.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) announced awards for 11 Big Data (BD2K) Centers of Excellence on Oct. 9, 2014. We're proud to be part of a team of researchers from 11 universities (Cornell Tech, Georgia Tech, Memphis, Michigan, Ohio State, Northwestern, Rice, UCLA, UCSD, UCSF, UMass) and Open mHealth that has been awarded a grant for an NIH Center of Excellence on Mobile Sensor Data-to-Knowledge (MD2K). Congratulations to the entire team. You can find more details on our research agenda and the team on the MD2K website.

For an overview of the ongoing research and work within Bonnie Spring’s Center for Behavior and Health, visit www.springteam.org.

Spring Lab in the News:

January 2015 In our team's review of the top-ranked physical activity apps, two general types of apps emerged: (1) educational + support and (2) motivational + support.  News of our findings can be found in: American Journal of Preventive Medicine, Reuters, Huffington Post, Shape Magazine, Pop Sugar, ThinkProgress, Medical Xpress, PsychCentral, and Health24.

'Friending' Your Way Thin' news article captures our recently published research discovery on how even online friends whom you’ve never met can help you lose weight.

November 2014 Article in Medscape describes that most primary care patients have multiple health risk factors, with poor diet, inactivity, and sleep problems being the most common. On the bright side, most patients report valuing their health and being ready to change one risk factor.

October 2014 Feinberg announces Spring Lab's NIH Big Data to Knowledge (BD2K) initiative grant to develop sensors and adaptive feedback system targeting smoking relapse and overeating prevention.

July 2014 Dr. Bonnie Spring is interviewed by Healthy Day News for "Change Bad Habits Early, Save Your Heart Later".

Dr. Bonnie Spring is interviewed by the Feinberg School of Medicine News for Adopting Healthy Habits.

June 2014 Dr. Bonnie Spring is interviewed by NPR.org for "A Misspent Youth Doesn't Doom You to Heart Disease".

May 2014 Listen to an NIH "The Connector" podcast with Bonnie Spring as she discusses the major challenges of integrating technology into intervention development. 

April 2014 Bonnie Spring quoted by Fox News in a piece about the benefit of adding tech to weight-loss programs.

January 2014 A mobile messaging software company seeking an outside evidence-base for describing the "power and potential of mHealth technology", cited Spring Lab's research as published in JAMA Integrating Technology Into Standard Weight Loss Treatment: A Randomized Controlled Trial.

April 2013 Spring Lab is hiring postdoctoral fellows and research assistants in preparation for launching our new Opt-In trial.  For more information, please see the departmental employment page.

February 2013 Bonnie Spring interviewed by Chicago Magazine.

December 2012 Interview with Bonnie Spring on smartphones and weightloss in Boston Globe.  Also read Bonnie Spring's comments on the intersection between mobile health and RCTs "Is the RCT Too Slow for Mobile Health?" and "mHealth Developers Point to Need for Better, Faster Testing"

November 2012 Tribune article about holiday eating in the office.  Bonnie Spring is interviewed.

August 2012  Make Better Choices 2 has begun to make headlines.  Bonnie Spring was interviewed by Fox News on 8/15.  See the video here.

July 2012   The original Make Better Choices study has garnered significant media attention.  A selection includes this ABC interview aired on 27 July 2012.  A US News & World Report piece can be read here, the Chicago Sun Times reported on the study here.   Other pieces can be found here, here, and here.

Bonnie Spring

Bonnie J Spring, PhD, ABBP

Dr. Spring is a Professor of Preventive Medicine, Psychology, & Psychiatry and also the Director of Northwestern University’s Center for Behavior and Health.  She also serves as the Chief of Behavioral Medicine in Preventive Medicine, Co-Program Leader for Cancer Prevention and Director of Team Science, NUCATS.  For more information, visit www.springteam.org

View profile