Helayne Feferman, MD, MPH is a clinical fellow in the UCSF Department of Pediatric Critical Care, and a postdoctoral fellow in the UCSF Center for Vulnerable Populations. She is a pediatrician, currently training in pediatric intensive care, with a research focus on head and neck trauma and acute ischemic stroke in vulnerable populations.
Dr. Feferman is the recipient of a UCSF NINDS Stroke Prevention/Intervention Reseach Program (SPIRP) pilot grant to collaborate with Drs. Fullerton and Fox of UCSF Department of Neurology, and Dr. Sidney of Kaiser Permanente Division of Research to examine the role of head and neck trauma and stroke disparities in the pediatric & young adult population. Recent large cohort studies indicate that acute ischemic stroke is on the rise, specifically in the African American population. Head and neck trauma is a significant risk factor for acute ischemic stroke. Dr. Feferman’s research will focus on the evaluation of temporal trends of trauma and address disparities in ischemic stroke prevention. She will contribute to an overarching project funded by the American Heart Association focusing on developing a novel screening protocol for acute stroke in the pediatric & young adult population.
Helena Lyson, PhD, MA
Phone: (415) 206-7867
Helena C. Lyson, PhD, joined the Center for Vulnerable Populations in 2017 as a Postdoctoral Scholar. She supports Dr. Urmimala Sarkar’s research on patient safety in outpatient settings, health information technology and social media to reduce health disparities among disadvantaged populations and improve the safety and quality of outpatient care, and implementation of evidence-based innovations in safety-net care settings. Dr. Lyson is passionate about conducting solution-oriented, applied research that addresses issues of poverty and inequality and works to promote equitable health outcomes. Prior to joining CVP, Dr. Lyson’s research focused on food, health, nutrition, agriculture, and inequality at the disciplinary nexus of sociology and political science. In particular, her mixed-methods dissertation explored how recently enacted changes to federal school-food policy in light of childhood obesity concerns affect local-level school food program implementation and the growing farm-to-school movement in the U.S. Dr. Lyson also previously worked in the nonprofit sector at Public Allies Arizona, where she supported the professional development of young adults from diverse backgrounds to become the next generation of social-change leaders, and at Project C.U.R.E., where she helped to improve the quality of healthcare in developing countries by distributing donated and surplus medical supplies from the U.S. to clinics and hospital around the world.
Dr. Lyson received her PhD and MA in Sociology from the University of California, Berkeley, and dual bachelor’s degrees in Political Science and International Studies from the University of Chicago.
Elizabeth Rose Mayeda, PhD, MPH
Elizabeth Rose Mayeda, PhD, MPH is a postdoctoral fellow in the UCSF Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics and the UCSF Center for Vulnerable Populations. She is an epidemiologist focused on identifying modifiable determinants of cognitive aging, dementia, and cerebrovascular disease in diverse populations and understanding health disparities by race, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status.
Dr. Mayeda is a recipient of a UCSF Center for Aging in Diverse Communities pilot grant to collaborate with Dr. Rachel Whitmer of the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research to examine racial and ethnic inequalities in dementia and survival after dementia diagnosis among Kaiser Permanente Northern California members. Inequalities in survival after dementia diagnosis may in part reflect differences in timing of diagnosis and thereby help frame the interpretation of racial and ethnic inequalities in dementia incidence. The diversity of the Kaiser Permanente Northern California population provides a unique opportunity to compare risk factors for and outcomes of dementia among Latinos, Asian Americans, African Americans, American Indians/Alaska Natives, and Whites in a single data source.
Another theme of Dr. Mayeda’s research is the impact of selection bias in aging research. Selection bias is especially important in understanding and interpreting health disparities in older adults. She leads a working group focused on selection bias as part of MELODEM (Methods in Longitudinal Research on Dementia), an international initiative to harmonize analytic approaches across longitudinal studies of cognitive decline and dementia risk. With her primary mentor, Dr. Maria Glymour, and MELODEM colleagues, Dr. Mayeda has developed a simulation platform to quantify potential biases in studies of determinants of cognitive decline and cerebrovascular disease. The simulation platform can be applied to a range of substantive questions. Dr. Mayeda is currently collaborating with Dr. Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo to assess the role of survival bias in explaining age attenuation of racial disparities in stroke: at younger ages, African Americans have substantially higher stroke incidence than Whites, but this inequality is not observed among older adults. Additional projects on selection bias in aging research include a project examining whether selection bias can plausibly explain widening disparities in life expectancy by educational status among women in the United States and a project supported by an American Heart Association Postdoctoral Fellowship Award to evaluate the extent to which selection bias and confounding by pre-stroke characteristics contribute to the obesity paradox in stroke (i.e., why obese stroke patients have lower mortality risk than normal weight stroke patients).