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

Li X, Li Z, Zhou H, Gaynor SM, Liu Y, Chen H, Sun R, Dey R, Arnett DK, Aslibekyan S, Ballantyne CM, Bielak LF, Blangero J, Boerwinkle E, Bowden DW, Broome JG, Conomos MP, Correa A, Cupples LA, Curran JE, Freedman BI, Guo X, Hindy G, Irvin MR, Kardia SLR, Kathiresan S, Khan AT, Kooperberg CL, Laurie CC, Liu XS, Mahaney MC, Manichaikul AW, Martin LW, Mathias RA, McGarvey ST, Mitchell BD, Montasser ME, Moore JE, Morrison AC, O'Connell JR, Palmer ND, Pampana A, Peralta JM, Peyser PA, Psaty BM, Redline S, Rice KM, Rich SS, Smith JA, Tiwari HK, Tsai MY, Vasan RS, Wang FF, Weeks DE, Weng Z, Wilson JG, Yanek LR; NHLBI Trans-Omics for Precision Medicine (TOPMed) Consortium; TOPMed Lipids Working Group, Neale BM, Sunyaev SR, Abecasis GR, Rotter JI, Willer CJ, Peloso GM, Natarajan P, Lin X. Dynamic incorporation of multiple in silico functional annotations empowers rare variant association analysis of large whole-genome sequencing studies at scale. Nat Genet. 2020;52(9):969-983. doi: 10.1038/s41588-020-0676-4. Epub 2020 Aug 24. PubMed

Weng LC, Hall AW, Choi SH, Jurgens SJ, Haessler J, Bihlmeyer NA, Grarup N, Lin H, Teumer A, Li-Gao R, Yao J, Guo X, Brody JA, Müller-Nurasyid M, Schramm K, Verweij N, van den Berg ME, van Setten J, Isaacs A, Ramírez J, Warren HR, Padmanabhan S, Kors JA, de Boer RA, van der Meer P, Sinner MF, Waldenberger M, Psaty BM, Taylor KD, Völker U, Kanters JK, Li M, Alonso A, Perez MV, Vaartjes I, Bots ML, Huang PL, Heckbert SR, Lin HJ, Kornej J, Munroe PB, van Duijn CM, Asselbergs FW, Stricker BH, van der Harst P, Kääb S, Peters A, Sotoodehnia N, Rotter JI, Mook-Kanamori DO, Dörr M, Felix SB, Linneberg A, Hansen T, Arking DE, Kooperberg C, Benjamin EJ, Lunetta KL, Ellinor PT, Lubitz SA. Genetic determinants of electrocardiographic p-wave duration and relation to atrial fibrillation. Circ Genom Precis Med. 2020 Aug 21. doi: 10.1161/CIRCGEN.119.002874. Online ahead of print. PubMed

Keene KL, Hyacinth HI, Bis JC, Kittner SJ, Mitchell BD, Cheng YC, Pare G, Chong M, O'Donnell M, Meschia JF, Chen WM, Sale MM, Rich SS, Nalls MA, Zonderman AB, Evans MK, Wilson JG, Correa A, Markus HS, Traylor M, Lewis CM, Carty CL, Reiner A, Haessler J, Langefeld CD, Gottesman R, Mosley TH, Woo D, Yaffe K, Liu Y, Longstreth WT, Psaty BM, Kooperberg C, Lange LA, Sacco R, Rundek T, Lee JM, Cruchaga C, Furie KL, Arnett DK, Benavente OR, Grewal RP, Peddareddygari LR, Dichgans M, Malik R, Worrall BB, Fornage M; COMPASS, SiGN, and METASTROKE Consortia. Genome-wide association study meta-analysis of stroke in 22 000 individuals of African descent identifies novel associations with stroke. Stroke. 2020;51(8):2454-2463. doi: 10.1161/STROKEAHA.120.029123. Epub 2020 Jul 22. PubMed

Dublin S, Walker RL, Floyd JS, Shortreed SM, Fuller S, Albertson-Junkans LH, Harrington LB, Greenwood-Hickman MA, Green BB, Psaty BM. Renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system inhibitors and COVID-19 infection or hospitalization: a cohort study. medRxiv. 2020:2020.07.06.20120386. doi: 10.1101/2020.07.06.20120386. PubMed

Wolters FJ, Chibnik LB, Waziry R, Anderson R, Berr C, Beiser A, Bis JC, Blacker D, Bos D, Brayne C, Dartigues JF, Darweesh SK, Davis-Plourde KL, de Wolf F, Debette S, Dufouil C, Fornage M, Goudsmit J, Grasset L, Gudnason V, Hadjichrysanthou C, Helmer C, Ikram MA, Ikram MK, Joas E, Kern S, Kuller LH, Launer L, Lopez O, Matthews FE, McRae-McKee K, Meirelles O, Mosley TH Jr, Pase MP, Psaty BM, Satizabal CL, Seshadri S, Skoog I, Stephan BC, Wetterberg H, Wong MM, Zettergren A, Hofman A. 27-year time trends in dementia incidence in Europe and the US: the Alzheimer Cohorts Consortium. Neurology. 2020 Jul 1:10.1212/WNL.0000000000010022. doi: 10.1212/WNL.0000000000010022. [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)

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