INRICH Member Profile Card

Karen Matthews

University of Pittsburgh

Dr. Matthews is currently Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry, Professor of Epidemiology, and Psychology at the University of Pittsburgh where she also is Director of the Cardiovascular Behavioral Medicine Research Training Program. She did her undergraduate and graduate work in psychology at the University of California, Berkeley, and University of Texas at Austin, respectively. Her research on the development of psychosocial risk factors in cardiovascular risk in relation to SES and ethnicity has been ongoing since 1983 and supported by NIH NHLBI. She is a member of Institute of Medicine and has served as President of American Psychosomatic Society and Health Psychology Division of APA, and Editor in Chief of Health Psychology. She was a member of the MacArthur Foundation Network on SES and health, which has now ended.

Type of member: Regular

Telephone: 412 648 7158 (USA)

Email Address:

Mailing Address: Department of Psychiatry, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh PA 15213 USA

Collaborative Projects

From time to time I have conducted studies with Edith Chen and Jen McGrath. None presently.

Current research interests
Development of psychosocial risk factors for heart disease and hypertension

SES and ethnic/racial differences in cardiovascular risk

Determinants of subclinical cardiovascular disease

Relationship of sleep and heart disease/hypertension

Changes in health during the menopausal transition and their determinants

Research priorities
Pathways and mechanisms: Cumulative and additive social risk exposures (e.g. transient v. persistent poverty). Stress and allostatic load. | Methodological issues: Need to study social gradients as well as poverty. Multi-level studies - Society, Family & Individual.

Selected publications

Sleep duration and ambulatory blood pressure in black and white adolescents.

Matthews, K. A., & Gallo, L. C. (2011). Psychological Perspectives on Pathways Linking Socioeconomic Status and Physical Health. Annual Review of Psychology, 62(1), 501-530. doi:10.1146/annurev.psych.031809.130711