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Lisa Chasan-Taber - University of Massachusetts Amherst. Amherst, MA, US

Lisa Chasan-Taber

Professor and Chair, Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology | University of Massachusetts Amherst


Lisa Chasan-Taber is an internationally recognized expert on physical activity during pregnancy.

Expertise (5)

Physical Activity and Pregnancy

Reproductive and Perinatal Epidemiology

Gestational Diabetes Mellitus

Physical Activity Epidemiology

Health Equity


Lisa Chasan-Taber is a reproductive and perinatal epidemiologist and an internationally recognized expert on physical activity during pregnancy. She has spent the past 20 years actively leading national research teams in the conduct of lifestyle interventions among high-risk, ethnically diverse pregnant women.

Her book, "Writing Grant Proposals in Epidemiology, Preventive Medicine, and Biostatistics," now in its second edition, has been widely praised.

Social Media

Education (3)

Harvard University: Sc.D., Epidemiology

University of Massachusetts Amherst: M.P.H., Health Policy and Management

University of Pennsylvania: B.S.

Select Recent Media Coverage (1)

Epidemiologist updates and validates 'gold standard' of prenatal physical activity tools

Medical Xpress  online


Lisa Chasan-Taber, professor and chair of biostatistics and epidemiology, and her research group used novel and innovative tools—an advanced accelerometer and wearable camera—to assess PPAQ performance. The researchers developed the PPAQ in 2004 as the first validated pregnancy physical activity questionnaire. Listed on the UMass Amherst timeline of research breakthroughs, the PPAQ is considered the gold standard in the field of prenatal physical activity epidemiology.

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Select Publications (7)

Women Need Better Menopause Guidance. Here’s What Doctors Should Do.

Ms. Magazine

Lisa Chasan-Taber


"Gynecologists in the U.S. receive little formal education about menopausal health, how to reduce symptoms, and the fear around those symptoms. As a result, women and their partners often have misconceptions about how these normal hormonal changes will affect them. I am a researcher who has focused her career on women’s health and, even for a public health professional like myself, it’s been hard to find guidance."

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Update and Novel Validation of a Pregnancy Physical Activity Questionnaire

American Journal of Epidemiology

Lisa Chasan-Taber and others


The aim of this study was to update and validate the Pregnancy Physical Activity Questionnaire (PPAQ) using novel and innovative accelerometer and wearable camera measures in a free-living setting to improve the measurement performance of this self-report physical activity (PA) method.

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The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on physical activity and sedentary behavior during pregnancy: a prospective study

BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth


Prior studies evaluating the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on pregnancy physical activity (PA) have largely been limited to internet-based surveys not validated for use in pregnancy. This study used data from the Pregnancy PA Questionnaire Validation study conducted from 2019–2021.

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The Association Between Acculturation and Diet and Physical Activity Among Pregnant Hispanic Women with Abnormal Glucose Tolerance

Journal of Women's Health


Hispanic women are disproportionately affected by gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), yet few studies have assessed the impact of acculturation on health behaviors that may reduce GDM risk.

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Influence of prenatal exercise on the relationship between maternal overweight and obesity and select delivery outcomes

Scientific Reports


Women with overweight or obesity (OWOB) have an increased risk of cesarean birth, preterm birth (PTB), and high birth weight infants. Although regular exercise decreases this risk in healthy weight women, these associations have not been explored in OWOB.

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Writing Grant Proposals in Epidemiology, Preventive Medicine, and Biostatistics

Book – Chapman and Hall/

Lisa Chasan-Taber


Competition for research funds in epidemiology, preventive medicine and biostatistics is highly competitive and at the same time, the grant application and review process at such agencies at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has undergone substantial revisions. Writing Grant Proposals in Epidemiology, Preventive Medicine, and Biostatistics, Second Edition targets effective grant proposal writing in this highly competitive and evolving environment.

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Factors Associated with Risk of Perinatal Depressive Symptoms Among Puerto Rican Women with Hyperglycemia

Maternal and Child Health Journal


Rates of perinatal depression and pregnancy hyperglycemia are higher in Hispanic women as compared to non-Hispanic white women. In turn, depressive symptoms may reduce a woman’s ability to engage in lifestyle changes that could reduce their subsequent diabetes risk.

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