Brigham and Women's Hospital
Division of Preventive Medicine

Director: Paul M Ridker, MD, M.P.H.
Address, phone, e-mail
Co-Director: Julie E. Buring, ScD
Address, phone, e-mail


The Training Program in Cardiovascular Disease Epidemiology at Brigham and Women's Hospital, established in 1984, combines training through existing graduate degree programs in epidemiology at an outstanding institution with hands-on interdisciplinary research in the epidemiology of cardiovascular disease, with a focus on prevention, and on molecular and genetic epidemiology. The program admits two pre-and three post-doctoral trainees who will obtain an advanced degree in public health (MPH, DrPH) or epidemiology (MS, ScD) from the Harvard School of Public Health and who will work intensively with experienced cardiovascular epidemiologists within the Division of Preventive Medicine at Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School. In addition to formal course work in cardiovascular epidemiology and strongly recommended course work in molecular and genetic epidemiology, all trainees participate in scheduled seminars and tutorials on the epidemiology of cardiovascular and other chronic diseases, as well as on substantive areas and methodologic issues relevant to cardiovascular disease epidemiology and prevention. All trainees also collaborate with one or more established preceptors to develop and execute research projects leading to publication in peer-reviewed journals. Opportunities are also available to work with primary mentors at the Harvard School of Public Health and the Framingham Heart Study.

Research activities available to trainees include the design, conduct, and analysis of case-control and cohort studies, randomized clinical trials, and community surveys, as well as the development of epidemiologic and statistical methodology. Research activities will leverage the many large-scale epidemiologic studies currently funded to the Division of Preventive Medicine, which include both observational and randomized clinical trials, as well as their associated plasma and DNA banks. These latter resources will provide significant opportunities for trainees to meld the practical research techniques of large-scale epidemiology with emerging molecular and genetic approaches.

Current studies underway in the Division of Preventive Medicine include the Physicians' Health Study I, a completed trial of aspirin and beta carotene in the prevention of cardiovascular disease and cancer and its substudies; the Physicians' Health Study II, an ongoing trial of vitamins C, E, beta carotene and a multivitamin in the chemoprevention of cancer, cardiovascular disease, and eye disease; the Women's Health Study, a completed trial of aspirin and vitamin E in the prevention of cardiovascular disease and cancer in women, which is now in extended follow-up; the Women's Antioxidant Cardiovascular Study, a completed trial of antioxidant therapy of CVD in women; the Women's Health Initiative Observational Study; the Prevention of Recurrent Venous Thromboembolism Trial; and the Pravastatin Inflammation CRP Evaluation Trial. Other ongoing trials include JUPITER, a multi-national randomized trial of rosuvastatin in the primary prevention of cardiovascular disease among patients with low levels of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and elevated high sensitivity C-reactive protein; and LANCET, a randomized clinical trial of Lantus for C-reactive protein reduction in early treatment of type 2 diabetes. Data are also available from the Nurses' Health Study; Framingham Heart Study; and Health Professionals Follow-Up Study.

Upon completing the program, trainees will be prepared to function effectively as independent investigators and teachers of cardiovascular epidemiology in academic and clinical settings.

Areas of Special Emphasis

Molecular and genetic epidemiology, nontraditional/emerging risk factors, inflammation, women's health, diabetes, obesity and nutrition.

Type of Training: Pre-doctoral and Post-doctoral.

Key Faculty Available as Preceptors

Paul M. Ridker, MD, MPH, Program Director. Eugene Braunwald Professor of Medicine at Brigham and Women's Hospital with joint appointments in the Division of Preventive Medicine and in the Division of Cardiovascular Diseases. Dr. Ridker serves as Director of the Center for Cardiovascular Disease Prevention and co-directs the Harvard-Reynolds Foundation Center for Cardiovascular Research. Dr. Ridker's primary interests include molecular and genetic approaches to cardiovascular disease prevention, epidemiology, and risk assessment. He has extensive experience in the conduct of plasma- and genetic-based epidemiologic investigations of inflammation.

Julie E. Buring, ScD, Program Co-Director. Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women's Hospital, and Professor of Epidemiology at the Harvard School of Public Health. Dr. Buring's research focuses on the epidemiology of chronic disease, primarily cardiovascular disease and cancer, and especially among women. She has been involved in a number of large-scale clinical trials of the prevention of these diseases, including the Women's Health Study, a large-scale randomized trial of the benefits and risks of low-dose aspirin and vitamin E in the primary prevention of cardiovascular disease and cancer. Dr. Buring is actively involved in the teaching and training of students and fellows.

Senior Faculty
Nancy R. Cook, ScD
J. Michael Gaziano, MD, MPH
Robert J. Glynn, PhD, ScD
Francine Grodstein, ScD
David J. Hunter, MBBS, ScD
I-Min Lee, MBBS, ScD
Daniel Levy, MD
JoAnn E. Manson, MD, DrPH
Christopher J. O'Donnell, MD, MPH
Eric B. Rimm, ScD
Meir J. Stampfer, MD, DrPH
Walter C. Willett, MD, DrPH
Robert Y.L. Zee, MD, MPH

Junior Faculty
Christine M. Albert, MD, MPH
Michelle Albert, MD, MPH
Claudia U. Chae, MD, MPH
Tobias Kurth, MD, ScD
Simin Liu, MD, ScD
Tianhua Niu, ScD
Kathryn M. Rexrode, MD, MPH
Howard D. Sesso, ScD

Last updated: January, 2007

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