Julia Fridman Simard, ScD, is an Associate Professor of Epidemiology & Population Health, and, by courtesy, of Medicine in Immunology and Rheumatology at Stanford University School of Medicine.
Dr. Simard earned her Masters and Doctorate of Science in Epidemiology degrees at the Harvard School of Public Health. During that time she trained with investigators at the Section of Clinical Sciences, Division of Rheumatology, Immunology, and Allergy at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the Cardiovascular Epidemiology Research Unit at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. In 2008, Dr. Simard relocated to Sweden to begin a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Clinical Epidemiology at the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm. She became an Assistant Professor in their Clinical Epidemiology Unit in 2011, and was later honored with a Karolinska Institutet Teaching Award. Leveraging the population-based registers of Sweden, Dr. Simard initiated a national register linkage study to examine the utility of registers in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) research and develop an extensive data repository for future epidemiologic investigations.
While maintaining a close collaboration with the Karolinska Institutet, she joined Stanford’s Epidemiology faculty in 2013. Dr. Simard studies outcomes such as malignancy, stroke, infection, and mortality, in patients with systemic autoimmune rheumatic diseases with a focus on systemic lupus erythematosus. Recently her primary research focus has shifted to the intersection between reproductive epidemiology and rheumatic disease fueled by a K01 career development award from the NIH (NIAMS) to study maternal and fetal outcomes in systemic lupus pregnancy. This led to collaborations with colleagues at Stanford, throughout the US, and abroad, and a series of projects focused on the diagnosis of preeclampsia and associated risks in pregnant women with systemic lupus. Dr. Simard was awarded a Peter Joseph Pappas Research Grant from the Preeclampsia Foundation for her lab's work examining preeclampsia risk in high-risk populations, and a McCormick Faculty Award from Stanford Medicine to take important steps towards disentangling preeclampsia from lupus nephritis. Dr. Simard is leading an international study of hydroxychloroquine in lupus pregnancy leveraging mixed methods in partnership with qualitative researchers, patients, clinicians, and epidemiologists in Sweden, Canada, and in the United States.
In addition to these issues of misclassification in reproductive rheumatology questions, Dr. Simard's lab is also interested in how misclassification, missed opportunities, and misdiagnosis contribute to disparities in complex conditions such as systemic lupus. In addition to methodologic issues around misclassification and bias and the largely clinical epidemiology focus of her work, Dr. Simard's work examines social determinants of health and health disparities. Dr. Simard was recently awarded an R01 from NIH (NIAID) to study the role of cognitive and unconscious bias in clinical decision making for female-predominant diseases including lupus.
Honors & Awards
Discovery Innovation Fund, Biomedical Innovation Initiative, Stanford Medicine (2017-2018)
McCormick Faculty Award, Stanford Medicine (2018-2020)
Peter Joseph Pappas Research Grant Award, Preeclampsia Foundation (1/2020-12/2020)
PostDoc, Karolinska Institutet, Clinical Epidemiology (2010)
ScD, Harvard School of Public Health, Epidemiology (2008)
SM, Harvard School of Public Health, Epidemiology (2004)
BA, University of California at San Diego, Math - Applied Science (1999)