Paola Sebastiani, PhD
Professor
Boston University School of Public Health
Dept of Biostatistics

PhD, University of Rome
MSc, University College London (UCL)



Paola Sebastiani, Ph.D. joined the Department of Biostatistics in 2003 as an Associate Professor, after holding faculty positions in Italy, England and United States. She is author of more than 200 peer-reviewed publications in theoretical and methodological statistics, artificial intelligence, computational biology and genetics. She is statistical consultant for Circulation and also a regular reviewer for major journals in statistics and computer science, and serves on the program committee of several international conferences at the interface between statistics and artificial intelligence. When she joined the Department of Biostatistics at Boston University in 2003, Dr. Sebastiani had experience in interdisciplinary collaborations and a track record of developing novel methodologies in Bayesian statistics, machine learning, decision theory, graphical modeling and statistical experimental design. She leveraged this experience to develop a wide network of collaborations with investigators from the Bioinformatics program, the Genetics and Genomics program, and the Molecular and Translational Medicine Program. In these collaborations Dr. Sebastiani often introduced original solutions by developing innovative Bayesian techniques for the analysis of genomic and genetic data and for the joint modeling of the genetic, genomic and phenotypic basis of complex traits. This work has been supported by the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes for Health and is currently funded by grants of which Dr. Sebastiani is Principal Investigator. Her contributions include, among others, a Bayesian model-based clustering procedure of temporal expression profiles (CAGED), a robust Bayesian approach to analyze differential gene expression using model averaging (BADGE), and novel methods for analysis of genetic data. Dr. Sebastiani was a pioneer in using a Bayesian network approach to model the genetic and phenotypic basis of complications of sickle cell anemia. She developed the first network model for predicting stroke in patients with sickle cell anemia and a network-based prognostic model that integrates sub-phenotypes of sickle cell anemia patients into a score of the overall severity of disease. This model was successfully evaluated by independent investigators and has opened several new research areas in sickle cell disease. These results were the fruit of a long and productive collaboration with Dr. Steinberg to study the genetic basis of different clinical presentations of sickle cell disease.

Dr. Sebastiani has also cultivated a strong and growing reputation as a biostatistician in the fields of gerontology, biology and epidemiology of human aging and longevity. She is the primary statistician of the BU site of the Long Life Family Study, and of the New England Centenarian Study directed by Dr. Thomas Perls. Dr. Sebastiani used an original Bayesian approach to verify the “compression of morbidity hypothesis” that had long been debated in the field of gerontology, developed a method for scoring sibships for familial longevity that can be used to enroll the most informative families in observational studies of human longevity, and introduced a novel Bayesian approach to model the genetic and phenotypic basis of exceptional human longevity. The analysis provides evidence that extreme human longevity is not due to absence of disease variants but to rare combinations of large numbers of common protective variants. Her current work focuses on the generation of molecular profiles to predict patterns of aging, and the biology of aging using a system-based approach.

Boston Medical Center


Member
Boston University
Bioinformatics Graduate Program




New England Centenarian Study
07/01/2016 - 06/30/2020 (Co-PI)
PI: Thomas T. Perls, MD, MPH, FACP
The William M. Wood Foundation

Severity Index for Sickle Cell anemia in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia
01/01/2013 - 12/31/2018 (Co-PI)
PI: Martin H. Steinberg, MD
King Faisal University

Biomarker Profiles of Sickle Cell Disease
08/03/2016 - 06/30/2018 (PI)
NIH/National Heart, Lung, and Blood Inst
1R21HL128871-01A1

Interdisciplinary Training for Biostatisticians
07/01/2015 - 06/30/2018 (PI)
NIH/National Institute of General Medica
5T32GM074905-12

The Long Life Family Study
06/01/2014 - 05/31/2018 (PI)
Boston Medical Center Corporation NIH NIA
5U01AG023755-11

Boston OAIC: A Translational Approach to Function Promoting Therapies
07/01/2016 - 06/30/2017 (PI)
The Brigham and Women's Hospital, Inc. NIH NIA
2P30AG031679-06A1

Candidate protective factors for age-associated diseases (target discovery) or factors indicative of healthy aging
09/15/2016 - 04/26/2017 (PI)
Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Resea

Subphenotypes of Exceptional Longevity and Environmental and Genetic Associations
09/30/2011 - 06/30/2016 (PI)
Boston Medical Center Corporation NIH NIA
5U19AG023122-07

Effect of non genetic factors on genetic signatures of complex traits
02/16/2012 - 01/31/2016 (PI)
NIH/National Heart, Lung, and Blood Inst
5R21HL114237-03

Interdisciplinary Training for Biostatisticians
07/01/2010 - 06/30/2015 (PI)
NIH/National Institute of General Medica
5T32GM074905-10

Showing 10 of 16 results. Show All Results



Yr Title Project-Sub Proj Pubs
2017 APOE alleles and extreme human longevity 1R21AG056630-01
2017 Biomarker Profiles of Sickle Cell Disease 5R21HL128871-02
2016 Biomarker Profiles of Sickle Cell Disease 1R21HL128871-01A1
2016 Interdisciplinary Training for Biostatisticians 5T32GM074905-12 58
2014 Effect of non genetic factors on genetic signatures of complex traits 5R21HL114237-03 10
2014 Interdisciplinary Training for Biostatisticians 5T32GM074905-10 58
2013 Effect of non genetic factors on genetic signatures of complex traits 5R21HL114237-02 10
2013 Interdisciplinary Training for Biostatisticians 5T32GM074905-09 58
2012 Effect of non genetic factors on genetic signatures of complex traits 1R21HL114237-01 10
2012 Interdisciplinary Training for Biostatisticians 5T32GM074905-08 58
Showing 10 of 12 results. Show All Results
Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.

  1. Denis GV, Sebastiani P, Andrieu G, Tran AH, Strissel KJ, Lombardi FL, Palmer JR. Relationships Among Obesity, Type 2 Diabetes, and Plasma Cytokines in African American Women. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2017 Aug 25.View Related Profiles. PMID: 28840653.
  2. Marron MM, Singh J, Boudreau RM, Christensen K, Cosentino S, Feitosa MF, Minster RL, Perls T, Schupf N, Sebastiani P, Ukraintseva S, Wojczynski MK, Newman AB. A novel healthy blood pressure phenotype in the Long Life Family Study. J Hypertens. 2017 Aug 23.View Related Profiles. PMID: 28837423.
  3. Shaikho EM, Farrell JJ, Alsultan A, Qutub H, Al-Ali AK, Figueiredo MS, Chui DHK, Farrer LA, Murphy GJ, Mostoslavsky G, Sebastiani P, Steinberg MH. A phased SNP-based classification of sickle cell anemia HBB haplotypes. BMC Genomics. 2017 Aug 11; 18(1):608.View Related Profiles. PMID: 28800727.
  4. Shaikho EM, Farrell JJ, Alsultan A, Sebastiani P, Steinberg MH. Genetic determinants of HbF in Saudi Arabian and African Benin haplotype sickle cell anemia. Am J Hematol. 2017 Sep; 92(9):E555-E557.View Related Profiles. PMID: 28612458.
  5. Bae H, Gurinovich A, Malovini A, Atzmon G, Andersen SL, Villa F, Barzilai N, Puca A, Perls TT, Sebastiani P. Effects of FOXO3 Polymorphisms on Survival to Extreme Longevity in Four Centenarian Studies. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2017 Jul 18.View Related Profiles. PMID: 28977569.
  6. Fagan E, Sun F, Bae H, Elo I, Andersen SL, Lee J, Christensen K, Thyagarajan B, Sebastiani P, Perls T, Honig LS, Schupf N. Telomere length is longer in women with late maternal age. Menopause. 2017 May; 24(5):497-501.View Related Profiles. PMID: 27922939; DOI: 10.1097/GME.0000000000000795;.
  7. Sebastiani P, Gurinovich A, Bae H, Andersen S, Malovini A, Atzmon G, Villa F, Kraja AT, Ben-Avraham D, Barzilai N, Puca A, Perls TT. Four Genome-Wide Association Studies Identify New Extreme Longevity Variants. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2017 Mar 15.View Related Profiles. PMID: 28329165; DOI: 10.1093/gerona/glx027;.
  8. Sebastiani P, Bae H, Gurinovich A, Soerensen M, Puca A, Perls TT. Limitations and risks of meta-analyses of longevity studies. Mech Ageing Dev. 2017 Jul; 165(Pt B):139-146.View Related Profiles. PMID: 28143747; DOI: 10.1016/j.mad.2017.01.008;.
  9. Park S, Gianotti-Sommer A, Molina-Estevez FJ, Vanuytsel K, Skvir N, Leung A, Rozelle SS, Shaikho EM, Weir I, Jiang Z, Luo HY, Chui DHK, Figueiredo MS, Alsultan A, Al-Ali A, Sebastiani P, Steinberg MH, Mostoslavsky G, Murphy GJ. A Comprehensive, Ethnically Diverse Library of Sickle Cell Disease-Specific Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells. Stem Cell Reports. 2017 Apr 11; 8(4):1076-1085.View Related Profiles. PMID: 28111279; DOI: 10.1016/j.stemcr.2016.12.017;.
  10. Sebastiani P, Thyagarajan B, Sun F, Schupf N, Newman AB, Montano M, Perls TT. Biomarker signatures of aging. Aging Cell. 2017 Apr; 16(2):329-338.View Related Profiles. PMID: 28058805; DOI: 10.1111/acel.12557;.
Showing 10 of 132 results. Show More

This graph shows the total number of publications by year, by first, middle/unknown, or last author.

Bar chart showing 132 publications over 21 distinct years, with a maximum of 16 publications in 2012

YearPublications
19941
19961
19991
20001
20014
20021
20034
20041
20056
20066
20076
20088
20099
20106
20119
201216
201314
20147
201512
20169
201710
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801 Massachusetts Ave Crosstown Center
Boston MA 02118
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