Skip Navigation

COVID-19 Update

Find a Doctor

Find a Researcher

Researchers

Sara B. Johnson, M.P.H., Ph.D.

Photo of Dr. Sara B. Johnson, M.P.H., Ph.D.
  • Director, General Academic Pediatrics Fellowship
  • Associate Professor of Pediatrics

Research Interests

Child health; Adolescent health; Lifecourse; Self-regulation; Developmental origins of health and disease; Health disparities; Neurodevelopment; stress and health; Injury prevention ...read more

Background

Dr. Sara B. Johnson is an associate professor of pediatrics at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine with joint appointments in the Department of Population, Family and Reproductive Health and the Department of Mental Health in the Bloomberg School of Public Health. She serves as Co-Director of the Rales Center for the Integration of Health and Education, the Johns Hopkins Consortium for School-Based Health Solutions and Director of the General Academic Pediatrics Fellowship Program.  

Dr. Johnson’s research focuses on understanding the biological and social mechanisms that perpetuate health inequalities across the life course and across generations and ways to interrupt them. Current projects include an investigation of maternal stress in pregnancy and its impact on child growth via epigenetic mechanisms, and a three-generation study of families in Baltimore focused on understanding pathways to success in the context of early adversity. Her school-based work is focused on evaluating new models of school health to reduce health and educational inequality in Baltimore.

...read more

Titles

  • Director, General Academic Pediatrics Fellowship
  • Co-Director, Rales Center for the Integration of Health and Education
  • Co-Director, Johns Hopkins Consortium for School-Based Health Solutions
  • Associate Professor of Pediatrics

Departments / Divisions

Centers & Institutes

Education

Degrees

  • Ph.D., Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (Maryland) (2005)
  • M.P.H., Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (Maryland) (2001)

Research & Publications

Research Summary

Dr. Johnson’s research focuses on understanding how chronic stress in early life shapes the biology of child health and development. She is particularly interested in understanding the biological and social mechanisms that help perpetuate health disparities across the life course and across generations and ways to interrupt them. Current projects include an investigation of maternal stress in pregnancy and its impact on child growth via epigenetic mechanisms, and a three-generation study of families in Baltimore focused on understanding pathways to success in the context of early adversity. Dr. Johnson's previous research focused on brain development in adolescence and its implications for adolescent health policy, social influences on neurodevelopment, and adolescent injury and violence prevention.

Selected Publications

Johnson SB, Blum RW, Giedd J. Adolescent maturity and the brain: The promise and pitfalls of neuroscience research in adolescent health policy. J Adolescent Health, 2009; 45(3): 216-221.[PMCID: 2892678]

Johnson SB, Riis JA, Noble K. State of the art review: Poverty and the developing brain. Pediatrics, 2016; 137(4): e20153075. [PMCID: 4811314]

Johnson SB, Riley AW, Granger DA, Riis JA. The science of early life toxic stress for pediatric practice and advocacy. Pediatrics, 2013;131(2):319-327. [PMCID: 4074672]

Johnson SB, Spin JP, Connolly F, Stein M, Cheng TL, Connor KA. Asthma and attendance in urban schools. Preventing Chronic Disease. 2019; 16: 190074

Cheng TL, Johnson SB, Goodman E. Breaking the intergenerational cycle of disadvantage: The three-generation approach. Pediatrics.2016;137(6):e20152467

Contact for Research Inquiries

David M. Rubenstein Child Health Building
200 N Wolfe St, Rm 2017
Baltimore, MD map
Phone: 410-614-8437

Email me

Academic Affiliations & Courses

Graduate Program Affiliation

Population, Family and Reproductive Health

Activities & Honors

Honors

  • Children's Health Pioneer Award, Ashoka/Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, 2016
  • Advising, Mentoring and Teaching Recognition Award, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, 2013
  • Excellence in Teaching Award, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, 2011 - 2014
  • Delta Omega, Alpha Chapter, Honorary Society in Public Health, 2006
  • William Haddon, Jr. Fellowship in Injury Prevention, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, 2004 - 2005
  • Phi Beta Kappa, 1997
Is this you? Edit Profile
back to top button