Meet Our Researchers

Dr. Janice Kiecolt-Glaser, Ph.D (Principal Investigator)
Janice Kiecolt-Glaser, PhD, the Director of the Ohio State Institute for Behavioral Medicine Research, also holds the title of Distinguished University Professor as well as the Brumbaugh Chair in Brain Research and Teaching in the Ohio State College of Medicine. A clinical psychologist who works in the area of psychoneuroimmunology, she has published more than 250 articles, chapters, and books, with a Google Scholar h-index of 120. Her studies have demonstrated important health consequences of stress, including slower wound healing and impaired vaccine responses; she has also shown that chronic stress substantially accelerates inflammation which has been linked with many age-related diseases. In addition, her programmatic work has focused on how close personal relationships influence immune and endocrine function, and health. Her recent work has shown that stress and depression dysregulate energy metabolism following high-fat meals, promoting weight gain. Most notable among her honors is her elected membership in the National Academy of Medicine. She has also received the American Psychological Association’s Award for Scientific Contributions to Psychology, the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Academy of Behavioral Medicine Research, and the American Psychosomatic Society’s Distinguished Scientist Award for career contributions. A Fellow in the American Association for the Advancement of Science, she has served on the editorial boards of 11 journals. Her research has been supported by a series of NIH grants, including a MERIT award. She has published two mystery novels, Detecting Lies and Unconscious Truths.

Her current projects are addressing questions such as the longer-term mental and physical health of breast cancer survivors. In addition, a marital study with older adults is assessing molecular aging pathways in couples to better understand how marriage can produce both substantial health risks as well as health benefits. 

Another study addresses two key questions: Does the chronic stress of caregiving for a spouse with dementia accelerate molecular aging? Can caregiving-related distress propel molecular aging and shorten health span (the length of time that a person is healthy—not just alive)? This project will provide insight into the pathways through which dementia family caregiving can produce substantial health risks, and it will also explore possible paths to caregiving’s potential health benefits.

Michael Di Gregorio, M.S., CCRP
Michael has been with the lab since December, 2000. He is a clinical research manager and serves as the lab manager. He earned his Bachelor of Science from Santa Clara University in Northern California with a double major in Psychology and Mathematics. He continued on at Nova Southeastern University in South Florida where he earned a Masters of Science in Clinical Psychology with emphases in neuropsychology. He has taken additional classes in qi gong, Chinese medicine, yoga and massage therapy. Outside the lab, Michael enjoys drumming, yoga, soccer and live music.

Rosie Shrout, Ph.D.
Rosie is a postdoctoral researcher in the lab. She earned her Ph.D. in Social Psychology at the University of Nevada, Reno. Her research focuses on the health and relationship implications of stress among couples. Using dyadic and longitudinal methodological approaches, she examines how stressors like conflict and illness contribute to long-term mental and physical health consequences, health-compromising behaviors, and relationship instability. In addition to her research, Rosie enjoys camping at and floating on lakes, drinking coffee and tea, and brewing kombucha.

Megan Renna, Ph.D.
Megan is a postdoctoral fellow in the lab. She earned her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Teachers College, Columbia University. Her research interests lie in the intersection between anxiety/depression and health. She is particularly interested in understanding why and how these emotional experiences may contribute to altered immune, endocrine, and psychophysiological changes in physically healthy adults as well as cancer patients and survivors. In addition to her research, Megan enjoys cooking, doing yoga, and traveling.

Angelina Caradonna, B.S.
Angelina is a clinical research assistant in the lab. She recently graduated from Miami University in May of 2016 with a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology and Health, a major in Nutrition and Dietetics, and a minor in Italian. She is interested in the role of health and wellness in the mind-body connection, specifically how nutrition impacts those of all ages, ranging from everyday life to serious diseases. She is also an avid proponent of the Slow Food Movement and in her free time she enjoys cooking, writing, reading, spending time outdoors, knitting, and traveling.

Annelise Madison, B.A.
Annelise Madison is a clinical health psychology graduate student working towards a PhD. Originally from Nebraska, she received a Bachelor of Arts from Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia. Before arriving at OSU, Annelise worked with Teach for America in San Antonio, Texas, was a Therapeutic Mentor at a women’s drug rehab facility, and was a freelance writer on psychology, health, and spirituality-related topics. She is interested in how diet, trauma, and psychosocial stress impact the microbiome and immune system. In her free time, Annelise enjoys traveling, yoga, running, spending time in nature, and writing.

Dahlia Najjar, B.S.
Dahlia is a clinical research assistant and the IMPACT Study Coordinator in the lab. She graduated from The Ohio State University in 2020 with a Bachelor of Science in Neuroscience and a minor in Medical Pharmacology. She is interested in the bidirectionial relationship between neural and immune systems, specifically the connection between sleep, mental health, and health outcomes. Outside of the lab, she enjoys running, baking, painting and spending time with family and friends.

Jacqueline Caputo, B.S. 
Jacqueline is a clinical research assistant and the Scheduling Coordinator in the lab. She graduated from The Ohio State University in 2020 with a Bachelor of Science in Neuroscience. She is interested in learning about heart rate variability and mental health, and how both can play a role in predicting future health outcomes. In her free time, Jacqueline enjoys running, yoga, reading, drinking coffee, and exploring new cities with friends and family.

Aidan Ex-Willey, B.S.
Aidan is a clinical research assistant and the MAG Study Coordinator in the lab. She graduated from James Madison University in 2017 with a Bachelor of Science in Biophysical Chemistry and minors in music and math. She is interested in better understanding the specific impacts of stress and socioeconomic status on mental and physical health. In her free time, Aidan enjoys music, planting, yoga, being outdoors, and traveling.     

Kayla Verhoff, B.S.

Kayla is a Clinical Research Assistant and the CARE Study Coordinator in the lab. She graduated from The Ohio State University in May 2020 with a Bachelor of Science in Biology. She is particularly interested in how the chronic stress of caregiving accelerates the aging of the immune system and the emotional well-being of the individual. In her free time, she enjoys hiking with her two dogs, playing and watching sports, and spending time with friends and family. 

Kyleigh Sharpin, B.S.