Epidemiology and Community Health Branch

The mission of the Epidemiology and Community Health Branch (ECHB) is to deploy innovative multimodality ascertainment and analytical approaches with a unifying focus on the phenotypic expressions of heart, lung, blood and sleep (HLBS) diseases, their occurrence and outcomes in populations.

The ECHB leverages interdisciplinary collaborations and apply methods grounded in epidemiology, population “omics’, and health services delivery research. In doing so, the ECHB works on elucidating the mechanisms of HLBS diseases while evaluating the intersection of HLBS diseases with aging, multimorbidity, equity and social determinants of health in diverse populations.

Our Labs

Heart Disease Phenomics

The Laboratory of Heart Disease Phenomics focuses on defining clinical and biological heart disease phenotypes, their determinants, and associated outcomes in populations with the goal of advancing treatment and prevention.


Genomic Instability and Cardiopulmonary Outcomes

The Laboratory of Genomic Instability and Cardiopulmonary Outcomes conducts multidisciplinary epidemiologic studies aimed at explaining the biological mechanisms by which exposures influence cardiopulmonary disease risk and progression in humans, with focus on genomic instability, investigates whether the impact of exposures on cardiopulmonary outcomes differ across racial/ethnic groups and by geographic location, and assesses how atmospheric conditions characteristic of climate change affect cardiopulmonary outcomes in humans.


Minority Health and Health Disparities

The Minority Health and Health Disparities Laboratory focuses on health and health care disparities among racial and ethnic minority populations. The three main areas of lab research are: (1) Tobacco use behavior and its relation to other substance use, unhealthy behaviors, migration-related social determinants, chronic stress, and mental health among Latinos of different national heritages; (2) Differential risk of lung cancer in racial and ethnic minority populations, as shown by metabolic biomarkers of nicotine and tobacco-specific carcinogens; and (3) Relationships of migration- and environment-related social determinants of health with chronic diseases, such as diabetes. The Minority Health and Health Disparities Laboratory is led by Dr. Eliseo Pérez-Stable, who is also the director of the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities.