Epidemiology

A recent study co-led by researchers from the Department of Epidemiology found that, after the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) added a black-box warning to all antidepressants in 2004, more young people initiated treatment on low doses of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). Co-authors Greta A. Bushnell, MSPH, doctoral student, Til Stürmer, MD, PhD, professor, Alice White, PhD, adjunct associate professor, and Virginia Pate, MS, applications analyst, are all with the Department of Epidemiology. Read more...
Message from the Chair
"Our goal is to train the next generation of leaders to address health challenges here and across the world. We offer an array of programs designed to meet student needs at different points in their career, from master’s to doctoral degree programs." Read more.
Andrew Olshan
Andrew Olshan, PhD
Chair and Professor

Our Department of Epidemiology is one of the world’s leading academic departments in epidemiology.

Renowned faculty members provide students with training in effective research practices and methods. We conduct innovative research and provide classroom and real world educational interdisciplinary opportunities that emphasize the integration of substantive area knowledge and cutting-edge epidemiologic methods. We also work with our students to apply their epidemiology research to a variety of health problems here in North Carolina and across the world. Our research resources include diverse studies of disease endpoints (cancer, cardiovascular, infectious disease, injury, and Reproductive/perinatal/pediatric epidemiology) and factors and methods that impact patterns of disease and population health (environmental, occupational, pharmacoepidemiology, genetic, social, and methods). Read more about our research strengths…


Marie-Josèphe Horner, PhD Student in the Department of Epidemiology writes about her experiences in the UNC-Project Malawi.

MJHornerThe people here are kind-hearted and friendly, and although resources are scarce people are generous with what they have. Read more about, Malawi -The Warm Heart of Africa.


The latest issue of the Department of Epidemiology Newsletter, Episode, in available on-line.


What Our Students Say
Sydney Jones, PhD Student

Sydney Jones

Sydney Jones, Doctoral Student

“Epidemiology at Gillings has been the right choice for me. When you enter this department, you join a community of scholarship forged from collaboration between students, faculty and disciplines. Our training starts in the classroom and extends to support public health in North Carolina, the U.S. and abroad.”

Read more student stories…

News Spotlight

Gammon and colleagues respond to international study on exercise and cancer risk reduction. An invited commentary, co-written by two UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health researchers and a Gillings School alumna now at Emory University, concurs with the “exciting findings” of a major international study. Those findings “underscore the importance of leisure-time physical activity as a potential risk-reduction strategy to decrease the cancer burden in the United States and abroad”. Read more…

Stamm discusses Zika virus in JAMA ‘Viewpoint’. Much media attention has been given to the spread of Zika virus in South America, but the mosquito-borne virus also poses a seasonal threat to more than 192 million people living in the southern United States. Becoming educated about the virus and its potential impact is an important step toward defending against it. Read more…

Read more spotlight stories

Promise of nearly a year of life on targeted drug not reality for all liver cancer patients, study finds. For advanced liver cancer, there’s a single approved drug shown to offer patients a chance at longer life. But a new study co-authored by two researchers in the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health found that this drug was notably less effective in a group of Medicare patients, who likely had more extensive cancer and serious liver disease, than it was for patients included in clinical trials. Read more…

Study finds no evidence that phthalates are responsible for increased childhood obesity. Jessie Buckley, PhD, a postdoctoral research associate in the UNC Department of Epidemiology, was featured in the “Science Selection” section of Environmental Health Perspectives for her recent research on phthalates and obesity in children. Read more…

UNC epidemiology study: New SARS-like virus may be nearly ready to infect humans. The study, titled “SARS-like WIV1-CoV poised for human emergence”, was published in the latest issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science (PNAS). The study’s primary investigator is Ralph Baric, PhD, Professor of Epidemiology at UNC’s Gillings School of Global Public Health. Read more…

Gillings researchers find link between number of births and heart disease risk factors in Hispanic/Latina population. Six researchers at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health are co-authors of a recently published article linking the numbers of times Hispanic/Latina women give birth with their likelihood of developing a specific set of risk factors for heart disease. Read more…

Causal Inference Research Laboratory awarded new funding for Gillings Innovation Labs. Stephen R. Cole, PhD, Professor of Epidemiology, and Michael G. Hudgens, PhD, Associate Professor of Biostatistics will work with team members M. Alan Brookhart, PhD, and Daniel Westreich, PhD, associate professors of epidemiology, and Stephanie Wheeler, PhD, assistant professor of health policy and management, to address two significant topics in biostatistics and epidemiology, namely, “big data” analysis and causal inference. Read more…

Study finds different genetic mutation patterns for HPV-positive throat cancer patients based on smoking history. UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health co-authors include Andrew Olshan, PhD, Professor and Chair, Jose P. Zevallos, MD, MPH, FACS, Adjunct Assistant Professor and Angela L. Mazul, doctoral student, all in the Department of Epidemiology. Read more…

Department of Epidemiology faculty, students and staff are an active bunch! How do our people stay fit? Faculty and staff members – and students – took time recently to report some of the physical activities they enjoy. From the routine to the more exotic, their favorite sports and activities keep them healthy – and, they report – happy. Read more…

Gillings School researchers engaged in NCI grant to address cancer disparities. Dr. Anissa I. Vines, Research Assistant Professor of Epidemiology at the Gillings School, was named a regional coordinating co-director of one of two three-year funding awards from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) that will bolster work by the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center to address disparities in cancer incidence and mortality in North Carolina and across a three-state region. Read more…

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Why do students attend UNC Epidemiology?

Why do students attend UNC Epidemiology?
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Events Calendar

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Cancer Epidemiology Seminar Series

Fridays, 1:00-2:00 PM

2101G McGavran-Greenberg Hall

Cardiovascular Epidemiology Seminar Series

Tuesdays, 12:30-1:30 PM

0001 Michael Hooker Research Center

Environmental/Occupational Epidemiology Seminars

Fridays 2:00 – 3:00 PM

2005 Michael Hooker Research Center

Environmental/Occupational Epidemiology Journal Club

Mondays 2:30 – 3:30 PM

3005 Michael Hooker Research Center

Pharmacoepidemiology Seminars

Mondays 3:30 – 4:30 PM

2301 McGavran-Greenberg Hall

Social Epidemiology Research Seminar

Wednesdays, 12:20 – 1:10 PM

1305 McGavran-Greenberg Hall