Behavioral Research in Heart and Vascular Disease

The Johns Hopkins University

Director: David Levine, MD, MPH, ScD
Address, phone, e-mail


The primary objective of this Research Training Program continues to be the pre-and post-doctoral training of individuals for investigative careers directed at the improved understanding of behavioral mechanisms associated with cardiovascular health, illness, risk, and the investigation of interventions and community partnerships designed to prevent or control disease and promote enhancement of cardiovascular health status. The Program uses a model of early exposure of trainees to faculty mentors and their research as a means of socialization of trainees toward their future career activities. Trainees are recruited from the relevant health professions, in particular, Medicine, Public Health, Nursing, and disciplines which include Health Education, Behavioral Sciences, Nutrition, Psychology, Sociology, Economics, Anthropology, and Public Policy. The Program is designed to educate trainees with a background in the health professions to develop more behaviorally oriented research and trainees with a background in the behavioral sciences to apply their research to cardiovascular health and illness. These complementary emphases continue to be viewed as important to building the necessary multi-disciplinary research manpower base to address cardiovascular problems relevant to the heath of the public. The faculty have been recruited to reflect this interdisciplinary base and provide appropriate role models for trainee career development. The Program has been successful and remains committed to attracting highly qualified minority trainees and placing further emphasis on cardiovascular disease and risk in minorities and women. The Program continues to be a strong collaborative one between the Schools of Medicine, Public Health, and Nursing. To date, 87 postdoctoral and 54 pre-doctoral trainees have graduated with 7 current post-docs and 2 predoctoral trainees active. These include a mixture of individuals with MD's, PhD's, particularly in Behavioral Science and Public Health. A variety of research activities and facilities continue to be made available to trainees. This program is directly relevant to the health of the public in its training of future investigators to understand, prevent and treat heart and vascular diseases and their associated risk factors better. The new knowledge developed by these trainees and its application will improve the prevention and control of problems, such as hypertension, coronary artery disease and risk factors such as obesity.

Areas of Special Emphasis

The program continues to educate trainees with a background in the health professions to develop more behavioral, educational and preventive oriented research to control cardiovascular health problems and risks, as well as trainees with a background in the behavioral, social, economic, nutritional, or educational sciences to address issues relevant to cardiovascular disease and risk. These complementary emphases are viewed as important to building the necessary multi disciplinary research manpower base to address cardiovascular problems affecting the health of the public.

Type of Training: Pre-doctoral and Post-doctoral

Key Faculty Available as Preceptors

Jerilyn Allen, BSN, PhD, Professor ofMedicine, Associate Director of Nursing. Behavioral interventions to enhance recovery post CABG and post MI.

Lawrence Appel, MD, MPH, Professor of Medicine; Epidemiology and International Health. Dietary interventions in the prevention and control of CVD.

Eric Bass, MD, MPH, Professor of Medicine. Decision-making theory and analysis in treatment of CVD.

Diane Becker, RN, ScD, Professor of Medicine, Director, Center for Health Promotion. Prevention cardiology, heart disease in high risk families and communities, smoking cessation.

Roger Blumenthal, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine and Cardiology, Director, Preventive Cardiology. Prevention of cardiovascular disease.

Lee Bone, RN, MPH, Associate Professor, Health Policy & Management. Control of hypertension in high risk communities.

Frederick Brancati, MD, MHS, Professor of medicine and epidemiology, Director, General Internal Medicine. Obesity, diabetes mellitus, minority health.

Felicia Briggs-Hill, PhD, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Behavioral Science Rehabilitation. Behavioral aspects of CVD risk reduction.

Jeanne Clark, MD, MPH, Assistant Professor of Medicine. Obesity and diabetes.

Lisa Cooper-Patrick, MD, MPH, Associate Professor of Medicine. Psychosocial and cultural factors in cardiovascular risk in black and white populations.

Joseph Coresh, MD, PhD, Professor of Epidemiology, Medicine and Biostatistics. Cardiovascular risks and renal disease and lipid disorders.

Thomas Erlinger, MD, MPH, Assistant Professor of Medicine. Inflammation and cardiovascular disease.

Daniel Ford, MD, MPH, Professor of Medicine, Public Health, Psychology, Behavioral Science. Mood and cardiovascular disease.

Linda Fried, MD, MPH, Professor of Medicine, Director, Center for the Study of Aging and Health. Heart disease prevention and control in the elderly.

Jennifer Haythornthwaite, PhD, Associate Professor of Medicine and Psychiatry. Behavioral medicine.

Peter Kwiterovich, MD, PhD, Professor of Pediatrics and Medicine, Director, Atherosclerosis Research Center. Atherosclerosis, lipids and dietary behavior.

Edgar Miller, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Medicine and Epidemiology, Co-Director, Hypertension Clinic. Dietary behavioral interventions to reduce cardiovascular risk.

Neil Powe, MD, MPH, MBA, Professor of Medicine, Epidemiology and Health Policy & Management. Chronic kidney disease patient outcomes, disparities in chronic kidney disease, transplantation.

Kerry Stewart, EdD, Professor of Medicine, Director of Cardiac Rehabilitation. School-based interventions to improve cardiovascular health promoting behaviors, physical activity.

Jeremy Sugarman, MD, MSc, MPH, Professor of Medicine. Ethical segues in research.

Moises Szklo, MD, DrPH, Professor of Medicine and Epidemiology. Investigation of atherosclerosis in communities.

J. Hunter Young, MD, MPH, Assistant Professor of Medicine. High blood pressure control genetic influences.

Scott Zeger, PhD, Professor and Chair, Department of Biostatistics. Biostatistical issues in community based research.

Last updated: January, 2009

Back to the top

Skip footer links and go to content
Twitter iconTwitterExternal link Disclaimer         Facebook iconFacebookimage of external link icon         YouTube iconYouTubeimage of external link icon