Cardiovascular Health

“One in four deaths in the United States is attributed to heart disease. Our researchers study how behavior, environment, and genetics affect heart health and how screening and treatment can reduce risk.”

Laura B. Harrington, PhD, MPH
Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute Assistant Investigator

Research overview

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for Americans. Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute (KPWHRI) scientists are working to understand how to reduce our risk of heart attacks, stroke, irregular heartbeats, deep-vein blood clots, and other cardiovascular diseases.

“We’re studying how genes, medications, and everyday choices influence cardiovascular health,” says  Bruce M. Psaty, MD, PhD, KPWHRI senior investigator and co-director of the University of Washington Cardiovascular Health Research Unit. “One of our goals is to know when people are especially susceptible to either the benefits or risks of a drug, so they receive the safest and most effective therapies."

Beverly B. Green, MD, MPH, senior investigator, is finding simple, practical, innovative ways to help people control their blood pressure. “We’ve found that helping patients and health care teams work together on personalized care plans is the best path to lifelong heart health,” she says.

Kaiser Permanente Washington cardiovascular research includes studies by:

Recent publications on Cardiovascular Health

Shah S, Henry A, Roselli C, Lin H, Sveinbjörnsson G, Fatemifar G, Hedman ÅK, Wilk JB, Morley MP, Chaffin MD, Helgadottir A, Verweij N, Dehghan A, Almgren P, Andersson C, Aragam KG, Ärnlöv J, Backman JD, Biggs ML, Bloom HL, Brandimarto J, Brown MR, Buckbinder L, Carey DJ, Chasman DI, Chen X, Chen X, Chung J, Chutkow W, Cook JP, Delgado GE, Denaxas S, Doney AS, Dörr M, Dudley SC, Dunn ME, Engström G, Esko T, Felix SB, Finan C, Ford I, Ghanbari M, Ghasemi S, Giedraitis V, Giulianini F, Gottdiener JS, Gross S, Guðbjartsson DF, Gutmann R, Haggerty CM, van der Harst P, Hyde CL, Ingelsson E, Jukema JW, Kavousi M, Khaw KT, Kleber ME, Køber L, Koekemoer A, Langenberg C, Lind L, Lindgren CM, London B, Lotta LA, Lovering RC, Luan J, Magnusson P, Mahajan A, Margulies KB, März W, Melander O, Mordi IR, Morgan T, Morris AD, Morris AP, Morrison AC, Nagle MW, Nelson CP, Niessner A, Niiranen T, O'Donoghue ML, Owens AT, Palmer CNA, Parry HM, Perola M, Portilla-Fernandez E, Psaty BM; Regeneron Genetics Center, Rice KM, Ridker PM, Romaine SPR, Rotter JI, Salo P, Salomaa V, van Setten J, Shalaby AA, Smelser DT, Smith NL, Stender S, Stott DJ, Svensson P, Tammesoo ML, Taylor KD, Teder-Laving M, Teumer A, Thorgeirsson G, Thorsteinsdottir U, Torp-Pedersen C, Trompet S, Tyl B, Uitterlinden AG, Veluchamy A, Völker U, Voors AA, Wang X, Wareham NJ, Waterworth D, Weeke PE, Weiss R, Wiggins KL, Xing H, Yerges-Armstrong LM, Yu B, Zannad F, Zhao JH, Hemingway H, Samani NJ, McMurray JJV, Yang J, Visscher PM, Newton-Cheh C, Malarstig A, Holm H, Lubitz SA, Sattar N, Holmes MV, Cappola TP, Asselbergs FW, Hingorani AD, Kuchenbaecker K, Ellinor PT, Lang CC, Stefansson K, Smith JG, Vasan RS, Swerdlow DI, Lumbers RT. Genome-wide association and Mendelian randomisation analysis provide insights into the pathogenesis of heart failure. Nat Commun. 2020 Jan 9;11(1):163. doi: 10.1038/s41467-019-13690-5. PubMed

Kowalski MH, Qian H, Hou Z, Rosen JD, Tapia AL, Shan Y, Jain D, Argos M, Arnett DK, Avery C, Barnes KC, Becker LC, Bien SA, Bis JC, Blangero J, Boerwinkle E, Bowden DW, Buyske S, Cai J, Cho MH, Choi SH, Choquet H, Cupples LA, Cushman M, Daya M, de Vries PS, Ellinor PT, Faraday N, Fornage M, Gabriel S, Ganesh SK, Graff M, Gupta N, He J, Heckbert SR, Hidalgo B, Hodonsky CJ, Irvin MR, Johnson AD, Jorgenson E, Kaplan R, Kardia SLR, Kelly TN, Kooperberg C, Lasky-Su JA, Loos RJF, Lubitz SA, Mathias RA, McHugh CP, Montgomery C, Moon JY, Morrison AC, Palmer ND, Pankratz N, Papanicolaou GJ, Peralta JM, Peyser PA, Rich SS, Rotter JI, Silverman EK, Smith JA, Smith NL, Taylor KD, Thornton TA, Tiwari HK, Tracy RP, Wang T, Weiss ST, Weng LC, Wiggins KL, Wilson JG, Yanek LR, Zöllner S, North KE, Auer PL; NHLBI Trans-Omics for Precision Medicine (TOPMed) Consortium; TOPMed Hematology & Hemostasis Working Group, Raffield LM, Reiner AP, Li Y. Use of >100,000 NHLBI Trans-Omics for Precision Medicine (TOPMed) Consortium whole genome sequences improves imputation quality and detection of rare variant associations in admixed African and Hispanic/Latino populations. PLoS Genet. 2019 Dec 23;15(12):e1008500. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1008500. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed

Kalani R, Bartz TM, Suchy-Dicey A, Elkind MSV, Psaty BM, Leung LY, Rice K, Tirschwell D, Longstreth WT Jr. Cholesterol variability and cranial magnetic resonance imaging findings in older adults: the cardiovascular health study. Stroke. 2020 Jan;51(1):69-74. doi: 10.1161/STROKEAHA.119.026698. Epub 2019 Dec 17. PubMed

Pase MP, Himali JJ, Beiser AS, DeCarli C, McGrath ER, Satizabal CL, Aparicio HJ, Adams HHH, Reiner AP, Longstreth WT Jr, Fornage M, Tracy RP, Lopez O, Psaty BM, Levy D, Seshadri S, Bis JC. Association of CD14 with incident dementia and markers of brain aging and injury. Neurology. 2019 Dec 9. pii: 10.1212/WNL.0000000000008682. doi: 10.1212/WNL.0000000000008682. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

de Las Fuentes L, Sung YJ, Sitlani CM, Avery CL, Bartz TM, Keyser C, Evans DS, Li X, Musani SK, Ruiter R, Smith AV, Sun F, Trompet S, Xu H, Arnett DK, Bis JC, Broeckel U, Busch EL, Chen YI, Correa A, Cummings SR, Floyd JS, Ford I, Guo X, Harris TB, Ikram MA, Lange L, Launer LJ, Reiner AP, Schwander K, Smith NL, Sotoodehnia N, Stewart JD, Stott DJ, Stürmer T, Taylor KD, Uitterlinden A, Vasan RS, Wiggins KL, Cupples LA, Gudnason V, Heckbert SR, Jukema JW, Liu Y, Psaty BM, Rao DC, Rotter JI, Stricker B, Wilson JG, Whitsel EA. Genome-wide meta-analysis of variant-by-diuretic interactions as modulators of lipid traits in persons of European and African ancestry. Pharmacogenomics J. 2019 Dec 6. pii: 10.1038/s41397-019-0132-y. doi: 10.1038/s41397-019-0132-y. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Researchers in Cardiovascular Health

Sascha Dublin, MD, PhD

Senior Investigator
206-287-2870
Sascha.Dublin@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Beverly B. Green, MD, MPH

Senior Investigator
206-287-2997
Bev.B.Green@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Laura Harrington, PhD, MPH

Assistant Investigator
206-287-2066
Laura.B.Harrington@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Aruna Kamineni, PhD, MPH

Assistant Investigator
206-287-2922
Aruna.S.Kamineni@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Ellen O'Meara, PhD

Research Associate
206-287-2938
Ellen.S.O'Meara@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Jennifer C. Nelson, PhD

Director of Biostatistics; Senior Investigator
206-287-2004
Jen.Nelson@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Michael L. Parchman, MD, MPH

Senior Investigator, MacColl Center for Health Care Innovation
206-287-2704
Michael.X.Parchman@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Bruce M. Psaty, MD, PhD

Senior Investigator, KPWHRI; Professor of Medicine, Epidemiology, and Health Services, University of Washington
206-221-7775
psaty@uw.edu

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Affiliate researchers

James Floyd, MD, MS
Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine
Adjunct Assistant Professor, Department of Epidemiology
University of Washington

Susan Heckbert, MD, PhD
University of Washington (UW) Department of Epidemiology; UW Cardiovascular Health Research Unit

Nicholas L. Smith, PhD, MPH
UW Professor, Epidemiology, Cardiovascular Health Research Unit
Director, Seattle Epidemiology and Information Resource Center, VA Puget Sound Health Care System