Loren B

Research Mentor

Loren builds on her extensive research experience to take a personalized approach with her students, working with them to showcase their individual strengths through their research projects to help them craft compelling applications for both traditional and direct medical programs.

Chapel Hill, North Carolina

MD/PhD Candidate, University of North Carolina School of Medicine
MS, Global Health, Duke University
BS, Biology, Florida Atlantic University


Loren is currently an MD/Ph.D. student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she focuses on health behaviors and disparities. Prior to medical school, Loren was a research assistant at Duke University, where she wrote and published scientific manuscripts, conducted and led qualitative and quantitative research studies, and edited the writing of non-native English speakers. She has experience working as a team manager in Tanzania, where she presided over a local research team where her work was published. With a background in global health, Loren has also worked on research projects on traumatic brain injuries, mental health, healthcare systems, and snakebite envenomations, making her a valuable resource to students exploring research and publishing opportunities.

Loren’s Research Focus   

  • Public health
  • Mental health
  • Substance use
  • Wounds and Injuries

Loren’s Scholarly Activity  

El-Gabri D, Barcenas LK, Meier B, Mvungi M, Haglund M, et al. (2020) Injury patients’ perceptions of drink-driving: A qualitative assessment of drink-driving behavior in Moshi, Tanzania. PLOS ONE 15(5): e0230662.

Strand E, Murta F, Tupetz A, Barcenas L, Phillips AJ, Farias AS, Santos AC, Rocha GDS, Staton CA, Ramos FR, Machado VA, Wen FH, Vissoci JRN, Sachett J, Monteiro W, Gerardo CJ. Perspectives on snakebite envenoming care needs across different sociocultural contexts and health systems: A comparative qualitative analysis among US and Brazilian health providers. Toxicon X. 2022 Dec 9;17:100143. doi: 10.1016/j.toxcx.2022.100143. PMID: 36578905; PMCID: PMC9791583.

Zimmerman A, Barcenas LK, Pesambili M, Sakita F, Mallya S, Vissoci JRN, Park L, Mmbaga BT, Bettger JP, Staton CA. Injury characteristics and their association with clinical complications among emergency care patients in Tanzania. Afr J Emerg Med. 2022 Dec;12(4):378-386. doi: 10.1016/j.afjem.2022.08.001. Epub 2022 Aug 29. PMID: 36091971; PMCID: PMC9445286.

Barcenas LK, Appenteng R, Sakita F, O’Leary P, Rice H, Mmbaga BT, Vissoci JRN, Staton CA. The epidemiology of pediatric traumatic brain injury presenting at a referral center in Moshi, Tanzania. PLoS One. 2022 Oct 5;17(10):e0273991. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0273991. PMID: 36197935; PMCID: PMC9534435.

Barcenas LK, Tupetz A, Behrens S, Kozhumam AS, Strand E, von Isenburg M, Sakasaka PA, Rubach MP, Vissoci JRN, Park LP, Bettger JP, Mmbaga BT, Staton CA. HIV Prevalence among Injury Patients Compared to Other High-Risk Groups in Tanzania. Trauma Care. 2022; 2(3):487-509.