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

Kilpeläinen TO, Bentley AR, Noordam R, Sung YJ, Schwander K, Winkler TW, Jakupovic H, Chasman DI, Manning A, Ntalla I, Aschard H, Brown MR, de Las Fuentes L, Franceschini N, Guo X, Vojinovic D, Aslibekyan S, Feitosa MF, Kho M, Musani SK, Richard M, Wang H, Wang Z, Bartz TM, Bielak LF, Campbell A, Dorajoo R, Fisher V, Hartwig FP, Horimoto ARVR, Li C, Lohman KK, Marten J, Sim X, Smith AV, Tajuddin SM, Alver M, Amini M, Boissel M, Chai JF, Chen X, Divers J, Evangelou E, Gao C, Graff M, Harris SE, He M, Hsu FC, Jackson AU, Zhao JH, Kraja AT, Kühnel B, Laguzzi F, Lyytikäinen LP, Nolte IM, Rauramaa R, Riaz M, Robino A, Rueedi R, Stringham HM, Takeuchi F, van der Most PJ, Varga TV, Verweij N, Ware EB, Wen W, Li X, Yanek LR, Amin N, Arnett DK, Boerwinkle E, Brumat M, Cade B, Canouil M, Chen YI, Concas MP, Connell J, de Mutsert R, de Silva HJ, de Vries PS, Demirkan A, Ding J, Eaton CB, Faul JD, Friedlander Y, Gabriel KP, Ghanbari M, Giulianini F, Gu CC, Gu D, Harris TB, He J, Heikkinen S, Heng CK, Hunt SC, Ikram MA, Jonas JB, Koh WP, Komulainen P, Krieger JE, Kritchevsky SB, Kutalik Z, Kuusisto J, Langefeld CD, Langenberg C, Launer LJ, Leander K, Lemaitre RN, Lewis CE, Liang J; Lifelines Cohort Study, Liu J, Mägi R, Manichaikul A, Meitinger T, Metspalu A, Milaneschi Y, Mohlke KL, Mosley TH Jr, Murray AD, Nalls MA, Nang EK, Nelson CP, Nona S, Norris JM, Nwuba CV, O'Connell J, Palmer ND, Papanicolau GJ, Pazoki R, Pedersen NL, Peters A, Peyser PA, Polasek O, Porteous DJ, Poveda A, Raitakari OT, Rich SS, Risch N, Robinson JG, Rose LM, Rudan I, Schreiner PJ, Scott RA, Sidney SS, Sims M, Smith JA, Snieder H, Sofer T, Starr JM, Sternfeld B, Strauch K, Tang H, Taylor KD, Tsai MY, Tuomilehto J, Uitterlinden AG, van der Ende MY, van Heemst D, Voortman T, Waldenberger M, Wennberg P, Wilson G, Xiang YB, Yao J, Yu C, Yuan JM, Zhao W, Zonderman AB, Becker DM, Boehnke M, Bowden DW, de Faire U, Deary IJ, Elliott P, Esko T, Freedman BI, Froguel P, Gasparini P, Gieger C, Kato N, Laakso M, Lakka TA, Lehtimäki T, Magnusson PKE, Oldehinkel AJ, Penninx BWJH, Samani NJ, Shu XO, van der Harst P, Van Vliet-Ostaptchouk JV, Vollenweider P, Wagenknecht LE, Wang YX, Wareham NJ, Weir DR, Wu T, Zheng W, Zhu X, Evans MK, Franks PW, Gudnason V, Hayward C, Horta BL, Kelly TN, Liu Y, North KE, Pereira AC, Ridker PM, Tai ES, van Dam RM, Fox ER, Kardia SLR, Liu CT, Mook-Kanamori DO, Province MA, Redline S, van Duijn CM, Rotter JI, Kooperberg CB, Gauderman WJ, Psaty BM, Rice K, Munroe PB, Fornage M, Cupples LA, Rotimi CN, Morrison AC, Rao DC, Loos RJF. Multi-ancestry study of blood lipid levels identifies four loci interacting with physical activity. Nat Commun. 2019;10(1):376. doi: 10.1038/s41467-018-08008-w. PubMed

He KY, Li X, Kelly TN, Liang J, Cade BE, Assimes TL, Becker LC, Beitelshees AL, Bress AP, Chang YC, Chen YI, de Vries PS, Fox ER, Franceschini N, Furniss A, Gao Y, Guo X, Haessler J, Hwang SJ, Irvin MR, Kalyani RR, Liu CT, Liu C, Martin LW, Montasser ME, Muntner PM, Mwasongwe S, Palmas W, Reiner AP, Shimbo D, Smith JA, Snively BM, Yanek LR, Boerwinkle E, Correa A, Cupples LA, He J, Kardia SLR, Kooperberg C, Mathias RA, Mitchell BD, Psaty BM, Vasan RS, Rao DC, Rich SS, Rotter JI, Wilson JG; NHLBI Trans-Omics for Precision Medicine (TOPMed) Consortium, TOPMed Blood Pressure Working Group, Chakravarti A, Morrison AC, Levy D, Arnett DK, Redline S, Zhu X. Leveraging linkage evidence to identify low-frequency and rare variants on 16p13 associated with blood pressure using TOPMed whole genome sequencing data. Hum Genet. 2019 Jan 22. doi: 10.1007/s00439-019-01975-0. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Lindström S, Brody JA, Turman C, Germain M, Bartz TM, Smith EN, Chen MH, Puurunen M, Chasman D, Hassler J, Pankratz N, Basu S, Guan W, Gyorgy B, Ibrahim M, Empana JP, Olaso R, Jackson R, Braekkan SK, McKnight B, Deleuze JF, O'Donnell CJ, Jouven X, Frazer KA, Psaty BM, Wiggins KL, Taylor K, Reiner AP, Heckbert SR, Kooperberg C, Ridker P, Hansen JB, Tang W, Johnson AD, Morange PE, Trégouët DA, Kraft P, Smith NL, Kabrhel C; INVENT Consortium. A large-scale exome array analysis of venous thromboembolism. Genet Epidemiol. 2019 Jan 19. doi: 10.1002/gepi.22187. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Timmers PR, Mounier N, Lall K, Fischer K, Ning Z, Feng X, Bretherick AD, Clark DW; eQTLGen Consortium, Agbessi M, Ahsan H, Alves I, Andiappan A, Awadalla P, Battle A, Bonder MJ, Boomsma D, Christiansen M, Claringbould A, Deelen P, van Dongen J, Esko T, Favé M, Franke L, Frayling T, Gharib SA, Gibson G, Hemani G, Jansen R, Kalnapenkis A, Kasela S, Kettunen J, Kim Y, Kirsten H, Kovacs P, Krohn K, Kronberg-Guzman J, Kukushkina V, Kutalik Z, Kähönen M, Lee B, Lehtimäki T, Loeffler M, Marigorta U, Metspalu A, van Meurs J, Milani L, Müller-Nurasyid M, Nauck M, Nivard M, Penninx B, Perola M, Pervjakova N, Pierce B, Powell J, Prokisch H, Psaty BM, Raitakari O, Ring S, Ripatti S, Rotzschke O, Ruëger S, Saha A, Scholz M, Schramm K, Seppälä I, Stumvoll M, Sullivan P, Teumer A, Thiery J, Tong L, Tönjes A, Verlouw J, Visscher PM, Võsa U, Völker U, Yaghootkar H, Yang J, Zeng B, Zhang F, Agbessi M, Ahsan H, Alves I, Andiappan A, Awadalla P, Battle A, Bonder MJ, Boomsma D, Christiansen M, Claringbould A, Deelen P, van Dongen J, Esko T, Favé M, Franke L, Frayling T, Gharib SA, Gibson G, Hemani G, Jansen R, Kalnapenkis A, Kasela S, Kettunen J, Kim Y, Kirsten H, Kovacs P, Krohn K, Kronberg-Guzman J, Kukushkina V, Kutalik Z, Kähönen M, Lee B, Lehtimäki T, Loeffler M, Marigorta U, Metspalu A, van Meurs J, Milani L, Müller-Nurasyid M, Nauck M, Nivard M, Penninx B, Perola M, Pervjakova N, Pierce B, Powell J, Prokisch H, Psaty BM, Raitakari O, Ring S, Ripatti S, Rotzschke O, Ruëger S, Saha A, Scholz M, Schramm K, Seppälä I, Stumvoll M, Sullivan P, Teumer A, Thiery J, Tong L, Tönjes A, Verlouw J, Visscher PM, Võsa U, Völker U, Yaghootkar H, Yang J, Zeng B, Zhang F, Shen X, Esko T, Kutalik Z, Wilson JF, Joshi PK. Genomics of 1 million parent lifespans implicates novel pathways and common diseases and distinguishes survival chances. Elife. 2019;8. pii: 39856. doi: 10.7554/eLife.39856. PubMed

de Vries PS, Sabater-Lleal M, Huffman JE, Marten J, Song C, Pankratz N, Bartz TM, de Haan HG, Delgado GE, Eicher JD, Martinez-Perez A, Ward-Caviness CK, Brody JA, Chen MH, de Maat MPM, Frånberg M, Gill D, Kleber ME, Rivadeneira F, Soria JM, Tang W, Tofler GH, Uitterlinden AG, van Hylckama Vlieg A, Seshadri S, Boerwinkle E, Davies NM, Giese AK, Ikram MK, Kittner SJ, McKnight B, Psaty BM, Reiner AP, Sargurupremraj M, Taylor KD, Fornage M, Hamsten A, März W, Rosendaal FR, Souto JC, Dehghan A, Johnson AD, Morrison AC, O'Donnell CJ, Smith NL. A genome-wide association study identifies new loci for factor VII and implicates factor VII in ischemic stroke etiology. Blood. 2019 Jan 14. pii: blood-2018-05-849240. doi: 10.1182/blood-2018-05-849240. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Researchers in Cardiovascular Health

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)

Katherine M. Newton, PhD

Senior Investigator (Emeritus)
206-287-2973
Katherine.M.Newton@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)

Sascha Dublin, MD, PhD

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

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Aruna Kamineni, PhD

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)

Laura Harrington, PhD, MPH

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