Rollins School of Public Health | Faculty Profile
Emory Rollins School of Public Health

A. Cecile J.W.  Janssens

Research Professor

Faculty, Epidemiology

My research concerns the translation of genomics to applications in clinical and public health practice, with a focus on the genetic prediction of multifactorial diseases (e.g. diabetes, cardiovascular disease, asthma). My research focuses on theoretical and methodological questions in prediction and the assessment of the clinical validity and utility of predictive testing. This includes (1) methodological studies on test performance measures; (2) simulation studies investigating the theoretical and potential predictive ability of polygenic risk models; and (3) empirical studies on the performance of polygenic risk models, mostly in cancer and cardiovascular diseases. I co-chaired a workshop that developed reporting guidelines for genetic risk prediction studies, the GRIPS Statement, and chaired a workshop for the European Commission that proposed quality criteria for health checks.

I have a strong interest in research methodology, statistics, research integrity and research ethics. I have written many invited commentaries about the appropriate use and interpretation of research methods and statistics. I recently developed a fundamentally new citation-based search method for scientific literature that was equally effective but more efficient than keyword searches in two pilot studies (BMC Med Res Methodol 2015). This method has the potential to strenghten the connections between studies and faciliate evidence synthesis.

At the Rollins School of Public Health, I (co-)teach Critical Reasoning: Exploring the Science behind the News, Prediction Research, and Grant Writing, and I moderate the journal club for our PhD students. The course on critical reasoning is also part of the undergraduate course Critiquing Health Evidence in the News at Emory College.


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Contact Information

1518 Clifton Road, CNR 4041 ,

Atlanta , GA 30322


Phone: 404-727-6307

Fax: 404-727-8737



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Areas of Interest

  • Assessment
  • Genetics
  • Research Methods
  • Risk Assessment
  • Statistical Modeling


  • PhD 2003, Erasmus University Rotterdam, the Netherlands
  • MSc, Epidemiology 2001, Erasmus University Rotterdam, the Netherlands
  • MA, Psychology 1996, Utrecht University, the Netherlands

Courses Taught

  • EPI 553: Wrtg & Pres. EPI Research
  • EPI 598C: Capstone
  • EPI 730: Epidemiology Grant Writing Crs
  • EPI 790R: Doctoral Seminar-EPI Practice