Michael J Pencina
Professor of Biostatistics & Bioinformatics

As vice dean of data science and information technology, Dr. Pencina is responsible for developing and implementing quantitative science strategies as they pertain to the education and training, and laboratory, clinical science, and data science missions of the School of Medicine. He leads the School’s IT strategic direction and investments, working in collaboration with the vice presidents and chief information officers of Duke Health and Duke University’s Office of Information Technology.

Dr. Pencina is a professor of Biostatistics and Bioinformatics at Duke University and served as director of Biostatistics at the Duke Clinical Research Institute (DRCI). He is an internationally recognized expert in risk prediction model development and evaluation. Expert panels and guideline groups such as the American Heart Association frequently recommend methods for quantifying improvement in model performance proposed in his research.

He is actively involved in the design, conduct and analysis of clinical studies with particular focus on novel and efficient designs and applications of machine learning for medical decision support. He interacts regularly with investigators from academic and industry institutions as well as with the Food and Drug Administration.

In 2003, Dr. Pencina received his PhD in Mathematics and Statistics from Boston University. He holds masters degrees from the University of Warsaw in actuarial mathematics and business culture.  Dr. Pencina joined the Duke University faculty in 2013. He served as an associate professor in the Department of Biostatistics at Boston University and the Framingham Heart Study and as director of Statistical Consulting at the Harvard Clinical Research Institute.

With nearly 350 peer-reviewed publications in data and social sciences, Thomson Reuters/Clarivate Analytics recognized Dr. Pencina as a Highly Cited Researcher in two fields, social sciences and clinical medicine, in 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019.  Researchers have cited his work nearly 50,000 times in peer-reviewed articles and professional publications as of April 2020.

Dr. Pencina serves as Associate Editor for Statistics in Medicine, Deputy Editor for Statistics for JAMA-Cardiology, and Statistical Consultant for Journal of the American Medical Association.  He is a Reviewer for the American Journal of Epidemiology, Archives of Internal Medicine, Biometrics, Biostatistics, Circulation, Journal of the American Dietetic Association and New England Journal of Medicine.

His professional affiliations include the American Heart Association, which selected him to provide the Remington Methodology Lecture at its 2016 symposium. He is a Charter Member of the Scientific Council of the Medical Research Agency of the Republic of Poland. He serves as an expert on Independent Data Monitoring Committees for the Clinical Trials Transformation Initiative (CTTI), a public-private partnership to develop and drive adoption of practices that increase the quality and efficiency of clinical trials.

Current Research Interests

  • Development and assessment of performance of risk prediction models
  • Use of electronic health records (EHR) for predictive medicine
  • Assessment of the usefulness of new biomarkers
  • Optimal treatment guidelines and resource utilization
  • Risk communication strategies:  novel approaches
  • Design of clinical trials with composite outcomes
  • Data monitoring committees (DMC):  role, mandate and operation

Current Appointments & Affiliations

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