Robert S. Gordon, Jr. Lecture in Epidemiology

2021 Awardee

Portrait of Kristine Yaffe, M.D.
Kristine Yaffe, M.D.

Scola Endowed Chair and Vice Chair, Professor of Psychiatry, Neurology, and Epidemiology 
University of California, San Francisco

Lecture Title

Epidemiology of Cognitive Aging: Why Observational Studies Still Matter

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February 10, 2021

About This Lecture

Observational studies have contributed to groundbreaking findings on the role of modifiable risk factors for cognitive aging including cardiovascular risk factors, sleep, and traumatic brain injury. Drawing from a multidisciplinary perspective, Dr. Yaffe highlights how epidemiological studies can advance the field by generating hypotheses, applying innovative methods across the life course, and investigating populations often not included in trials.

About Dr. Kristine Yaffe

Dr. Yaffe is an internationally recognized expert in the epidemiology of dementia and cognitive aging. She serves as a principal investigator of almost a dozen NIH, U.S. Department of Defense, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, and foundation grants, and is the foremost leader in identifying modifiable risk factors for dementia. Dr. Yaffe was the first to determine that potentially 30% of dementia risk is preventable. With over 500 peer-reviewed articles dedicated to improving population brain health (H-index=142; recognized by Clarivate Analytics as one of the most highly cited researchers in her field), her transformative research, bridging neurology, psychiatry, and epidemiology, has formed the cornerstone for dementia prevention trials worldwide. In recognition of her groundbreaking work, Dr. Yaffe has received multiple honors including the Potamkin Prize for Alzheimer’s Research in 2017, and election to the National Academy of Medicine in 2019.

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