- Associate Professor, Epidemiology
PhD, Epidemiologic Science, University of Michigan-School of Public Health, Ann Arbor, MI
MPH, International Health Epidemiology, University of Michigan-School of Public Health, Ann Arbor, MI
BA, Political Science/Women's Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI
Dr. Simanek's research centers around gaining better understanding of social patterning of infectious disease, building evidence regarding the etiologic links between infectious and chronic diseases and identifying novel pathways by which social disparities in health are perpetuated across generations and persist across the lifecourse. She has examined the association between herpes viruses as well as other chronic bacterial and parasitic infections and chronic diseases including cardiovascular disease, cognitive impairment, and mood disorders as well as mortality using data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, Detroit Neighborhood Health Study and Sacramento Area Latino Study on Aging. Dr. Simanek was most recently funded by the National Institute of Minority Health and Health Disparities (1R21MD012345-01A1) for a study which examines the association between maternal socioeconomic disadvantage during pregnancy, adverse birth outcomes and fetal programming of a pro-inflammatory phenotype in offspring in a Michigan population-based birth cohort. From 2019-2020 she was a Marmot Prince Mahidol Fellow in the Institute for Health Equity at University College London which supported her work on a project examining the association between prenatal socioeconomic disadvantage and epigenetic modifications at birth among the UK-based Born in Bradford cohort. Since March 2020 she has been a contributing writer for the social-media based COVID-19 science communication campaign, Dear Pandemic, a project that aims to 1) To disseminate trustworthy, comprehensive, and timely scientific content about the pandemic to lay audiences via social media, and 2) To promote media literacy and information hygiene practices, equipping readers to better manage the COVID-19 infodemic within their own networks.