Howard J. Cabral, PhD
Boston University School of Public Health

PhD, Boston University School of Public Health
MPH, Boston University School of Public Health
BA, College of the Holy Cross

Howard Cabral is Professor of Biostatistics at the Boston University School of Public Health, where he has been on the faculty in the Department of Biostatistics since 1998. He is the founding Director of the Biostatistics and Research Design Program of the Boston University Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute. He has over 30 years of teaching, consulting, collaborating, and statistical research experience in a variety of biomedical fields. These include public health, epidemiology, behavioral sciences, health services, and basic physical sciences research and practice. His students have included undergraduates, Master's and doctoral level students in biostatistics and all other public health disciplines, medical sciences and dentistry, biomedical post-doctoral and clinical fellows including many K grant awardees, and faculty seeking additional training in statistical methods and research design. He is a former director of the Biostatistics Graduate Program in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. Dr. Cabral received the Norman A. Scotch Award for Excellence in Teaching for 2017 from the School of Public Health.

Dr. Cabral’s research spans both observational studies and randomized clinical trials, including well known studies in cardiovascular health and studies of the effects of substance use on human health across the life span, with currently over 380 peer-reviewed publications. He has extensive experience in the analysis of longitudinal health data, especially those collected in urban areas with ethnic and socioeconomic diversity. His methodological interests are in the analysis of longitudinal data, randomized clinical trials in behavioral and health services research, risk prediction models in acute and chronic disease, the effects of missing data on statistical estimation, and statistical computing.

Dr. Cabral’s collaborative research has examined the effects of prenatal cocaine exposure on development from birth through age 22, randomized trials of problem solving education in treating parental depression, a randomized trial testing a peer-based model in retaining those infected with HIV in primary care, models to enhance the care of homeless patients living with HIV, differences in child and maternal health in those who did and did not received intervention through assisted reproductive technologies (ART) linking vital statistics, administrative public health and clinical databases in Massachusetts, randomized trials of computerized conversational agents in genetic counseling and pre-conception risk factor management, the use of advanced care directives in special populations, the relationship of health literacy to health care utilization, and the efficacy of patient navigation that addresses social determinants of health in women of race and ethnic minorities who are receiving care for breast cancer in all of the major hospitals in Boston. In addition, Dr. Cabral is an investigator on multiple new research projects that focus on the health of Black women: a randomized clinical trial of genetic counseling for cancer in the Black Women's Health study; a randomized trial of intervention modalities for Black immigrant women living with HIV; a national study of bundled interventions to improve the health and well-being of Black women living with HIV; a multi-phase study of severe maternal morbidity (SMM) in Massachusetts, with intervention studies studying safety-related bundles and enhanced care by doulas; and a randomized trial of virtual reality as a modality in the intervention for smoking cessation. Dr. Cabral is a developer of the BODE Index for risk assessment in patients with COPD, a nationally and internationally employed tool for risk prediction that has been cited in the literature over 2,500 times to-date. He is also a statistical consultant to the Institute of Community Health in Malden, MA and is a former statistical consultant to the Boston Public Health Commission.

Dr. Cabral has extensive experience as a peer reviewer for journals, NIH, and foundation-based research committees. Dr. Cabral provided his research and statistical methodologic expertise to a review panel of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies of Science that examined the effects of parental depression on parenting practices and child development and published a widely recognized book on its findings. He has been the statistical editor for the Journal of Cardiac Surgery, and is currently serving on the editorial boards of Birth and the Journal for Health Literacy Research and Practice as the statistical editor. He was a member of the grant review committee for the Hood Foundation and served its chair. He has served on grant review committees for the National Cancer Institute, the National Institute for Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), the National Institute on Drug Abuse, and the National Institute for Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR). Reflecting his breadth of experience as a peer reviewer, he was a recipient of the award for the top 1% of peer reviewers in clinical medicine from Publons for 2017, 2018, and 2019.

In addition to his administrative role in the Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute, Dr. Cabral has served Boston University as a member and current chair of the Financial Conflict of Interest Committee and on the Committee for Academic Program Review, the Responsible Conduct of Research Advisory Committee, and the Grievance Committee.

Testing the Efficacy of an Adapted Family-Centered Autism Transition Intervention in a Safety Net Hospital Setting
11/01/2022 - 10/31/2023 (Subcontract PI)
Boston Medical Center Corporation Deborah M Noonan Mem

Comparative Effectiveness of Individual Versus Group-level Interventions to Reduce HIV Risk among African Immigrant Women
06/01/2021 - 05/31/2023 (Subcontract PI)
The Brigham and Women's Hospital, Inc. Patient-Cnt.Out. Res

Translating Research Into Practice: A Regional Collaborative to Reduce Disparities in Breast Cancer Care
09/01/2017 - 05/31/2023 (Subcontract PI)
Boston Medical Center Corporation NIH NCATS

Community-based design and evaluation of a Conversational Agent to Promote SARS-COV2 Vaccination in Black Churches
04/23/2021 - 01/31/2023 (Subcontract PI)
Northeastern University NIH NIMHD

Thalamo-cortical circuitry in PVL
09/01/2020 - 10/31/2022 (Subcontract PI)
Mass Eye and Ear Infirmary NIH NEI

Meeting the Challenges of COVID-19 by Expanding the Reach of Palliative Care: Proactive Advance Care Planning with Videos for the Elderly and all Patients with Dementia
05/01/2021 - 08/31/2022 (Subcontract PI)
Boston Medical Center Corporation NIH NIA

I kua na'u "Let Me Carry Out Your Last Wishes" Advance Care Planning for Native Hawaiian Elders
03/29/2021 - 08/31/2022 (Subcontract PI)
Boston Medical Center Corporation NIH NINR

Subfertility and Assisted Conception Study of Parent and Child Health Outcomes
10/01/2018 - 03/31/2022 (Subcontract PI)
Dartmouth-Hitchcock Clinic NIH NICHD

Conversational Agents to Improve Quality of life in palliative care
04/22/2016 - 02/28/2022 (Subcontract PI)
Boston Medical Center Corporation NIH NINR

Improving Outcomes for Low-Income Mothers with Depression: A Comparative Effectiveness Trial of Two Care C
05/01/2017 - 12/31/2021 (Subcontract PI)
Boston Medical Center Corporation Patient-Cnt.Out. Res

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Yr Title Project-Sub Proj Pubs

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.

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  1. Streed CG, King D, Grasso C, Reisner SL, Mayer KH, Jasuja GK, Poteat T, Mukherjee M, Shapira-Daniels A, Cabral H, Tangpricha V, Paasche-Orlow MK, Benjamin EJ. Validation of an administrative algorithm for transgender and gender diverse persons against self-report data in electronic health records. J Am Med Inform Assoc. 2023 Mar 15.View Related Profiles. PMID: 36921287
  2. Sampson L, Gradus JL, Cabral HJ, Rosellini AJ, Fink DS, Cohen GH, Liberzon I, Galea S. Stressful life events and incident depression among U.S. military personnel. Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol. 2023 Mar 10.View Related Profiles. PMID: 36897335
  3. Thurman AR, Moench TR, Hoke M, Politch JA, Cabral H, Mausser E, Nador E, Morton J, Hamorsky K, Swope K, Bratcher B, Anderson DJ, Whaley KJ. ZB-06, a vaginal film containing an engineered human contraceptive antibody (HC4-N), demonstrates safety and efficacy in a phase 1 postcoital test and safety study. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2023 Mar 02.View Related Profiles. PMID: 36870409
  4. Gibson G, Jones JA, Wehler CJ, Cabral HJ, Orner MB, Jurasic MM. Addressing the discrepancy between efficacy and effectiveness of 1.1% sodium fluoride toothpaste or gel in adults as part of a caries prevention program. J Am Dent Assoc. 2023 Feb 28.View Related Profiles. PMID: 36863992
  5. Bauer CM, Manley CE, Ravenscroft J, Cabral H, Dilks DD, Bex PJ. Deficits in Face Recognition and Consequent Quality-of-Life Factors in Individuals with Cerebral Visual Impairment. Vision (Basel). 2023 Jan 25; 7(1). PMID: 36810313; PMCID: PMC9944076; DOI: 10.3390/vision7010009;
  6. Peterkin AF, Jawa R, Menezes K, You J, Cabral H, Ruiz-Mercado G, Park TW, Kehoe J, Taylor JL, Weinstein ZM. Pre-Paid Phone Distribution: A Tool for Improving Healthcare Engagement for People with Substance Use Disorder. Subst Use Misuse. 2023; 58(4):585-589.View Related Profiles. PMID: 36695079; DOI: 10.1080/10826084.2023.2170184;
  7. Yuan M, Hu FB, Li Y, Cabral HJ, Das SK, Deeney JT, Moore LL. Dairy Foods, Weight Change, and Risk of Obesity During the Menopausal Transition. J Nutr. 2023 Mar; 153(3):811-819.View Related Profiles. PMID: 36931753
  8. Yuan M, Hu FB, Li Y, Cabral HJ, Das SK, Deeney JT, Moore LL. Dairy Food Intakes, Postpartum Weight Retention, and Risk of Obesity. Nutrients. 2022 Dec 27; 15(1).View Related Profiles. PMID: 36615778; PMCID: PMC9824318; DOI: 10.3390/nu15010120;
  9. Diop H, Declercq ER, Liu CL, Cabral HJ, Cui X, Amutah-Onukagha N, Meadows A. Trends and inequities in severe maternal morbidity in Massachusetts: A closer look at the last two decades. PLoS One. 2022; 17(12):e0279161.View Related Profiles. PMID: 36538524; PMCID: PMC9767362; DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0279161;
  10. Farland LV, Stern JE, Liu CL, Cabral HJ, Coddington CC, Diop H, Dukhovny D, Hwang S, Missmer SA. Polycystic ovary syndrome and risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes: a registry linkage study from Massachusetts. Hum Reprod. 2022 Oct 31; 37(11):2690-2699. PMID: 36149255; PMCID: PMC9627555; DOI: 10.1093/humrep/deac210;
Showing 10 of 390 results. Show More

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

Bar chart showing 390 publications over 36 distinct years, with a maximum of 30 publications in 2016


2019 Publons Peer Review Award, top 1% of peer reviewers
2018 Publons Peer Review Award, top 1% of peer reviewers
2017 Boston University School of Public Health: Norman A. Scotch Award for Excellence in Teaching
2017 Publons Peer Review Award, Top 1% of peer reviewers
2016 Boston University School of Public Health: Excellence in Teaching Award
2015 Boston University School of Public Health: Excellence in Teaching Award
2011 Boston University School of Public Health: Excellence in Teaching Award
2010 Boston University School of Public Health: Excellence in Teaching Award
1995 Boston University School of Public Health: Excellence in Teaching Award
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