How sensitive are DNA methylation clocks to the strongest risk factors for mortality? Webinar, 29 April 2021


April 29, 2021


16.00-17:30 CET

A common problem in research on risk factors for mortality is the potentially long duration of time between exposure and mortality. An approach for addressing this issue is the use of surrogate outcomes, which in the field of health and aging most often includes biological markers. This is a difficult problem, as surrogate outcomes need to be related to both exposures and outcomes. One emerging potentially important area for surrogate outcomes is using DNA methylation clocks. While associations with clinical endpoints and death are being established, there is little systematic work on the extent to which particular clocks are associated with different risk factors. In this ongoing work I will present results from a systematic examination of how 57 economic, behavioral, social and psychological risk factors are associated with 13 different DNA methylation clocks.

David Rehkopf

Is currently an Associate Professor (with tenure) at Stanford University, in the Departments of Epidemiology and Population Health, Medicine, and Sociology (by courtesy). I am the Co-Director of the Stanford Center for Population Health Sciences, and a member of Stanford Bio-X and the Center on Poverty and Inequality. The aim of my research is to understand the mechanisms and processes linking socioeconomic disadvantage with adult chronic disease risk and aging. My work integrates statistical and conceptual strengths of public health, economics and epidemiological methods with consideration of the underlying pathobiology of aging and chronic disease. I am currently Principal Investigator on an R01 from the National Institute on Aging titled The long-term health effects of the New Deal: An 80 years follow-up of 4 cohortsThe goal of this project is to examine the effects of new deal employment policies on the long-term health of children whose households and regions benefited from those policies. I am also Principal Investigator on an R21 from the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities titled Using census data linkages to study long-term impacts on disparities in DNA methylationThe goal of this project is to examine the effects of early life environment on DNA methylation, and to examine how this may contribute as a biological mechanism underlying health disparities.