Unpacking black box epidemiology

Join Professor Ioanna Tzoulaki, online or in person, for her Imperial Inaugural.

We have limited in-person spaces available so please ensure you register in advance.

Please use the link below to join us online.
Link: https://bit.ly/MS-IoannaTzoulaki


An important focus of epidemiological research is testing links between risk factors and disease outcomes to identify potential interventions. The academic literature reports myriads of these associations every year. How can we disentangle the important ones and translate them into treatment targets and prevention tools for chronic diseases?

Professor Ioanna Tzoulaki has worked since 2002 to show how we can shine a light on the black box linking risk factor and disease associations using larger studies, novel methodologies, and molecular high-resolution data. In her inaugural lecture, she will describe her journey in using epidemiological data to better understand causes of chronic diseases and prevention tools to identify high risk individuals. She will describe her experience in working on setting up large biobank studies, using novel molecular measurements to understand disease mechanisms and leading large scale evidence base investigations.

As well as her academic story, Ioanna will chart her own personal journey from Greece wanting to become a doctor, through to learning how not to give up and use failure to seek new opportunities. She will also reflect on different biases in science and her aspirations to train the next generation of researchers.


Ioanna Tzoulaki is Professor of Chronic Disease Epidemiology in the School of Public Health at Imperial College London. Her research aims to improve the understanding of chronic disease aetiology and to improve disease prevention through better risk stratification strategies. She has worked with genetic and other molecular data to identify disease biomarkers and biological pathways underlying diseases such as cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases. She is also leading the Population Health theme of the BHF Centre of Excellence at Imperial and is collaborating with several UK and US partners leading consortia funded by the European Commission and US National Institute of Health. She has contributed as expert and advisor in several organisations and committees including the European Food and Safety Authority and was a member of the UK Biobank Enhancement Subgroup which worked on the enhanced phenotyping of UK Biobank participants. She is also committed to widening opportunities in academic careers having led the School of Public Health ATHENA SWAN (Scientific Women’s Academic Network) application and the Opportunities Committee.

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