Austin Argentieri

austin argentieri



DPhil Student, Medical Anthropology

Green Templeton College

Thesis: An ecological life course perspective on human aging and chronic disease-related mortality


My research focuses on understanding how diverse environmental factors in the human exposome form an ecological network that contributes to human aging and the development of chronic disease. My current PhD work is focused on using big data statistics, machine learning, and artificial intelligence to characterize and analyze the exposome and chronic disease risk using the UK Biobank dataset.

I am also a Research Associate at the Harvard/MGH Center on Genomics, Vulnerable Populations, and Health Disparities, located within Harvard University and Massachusetts General Hospital, where I conduct epigenomics and molecular epidemiology research on psychosocial stress and social adversity. This research has also focused on identifying positive sources of resiliency, such as social support and spirituality, that function to improve human health in the face of adversity.

Previous Education

Master of Philosophy (MPhil) in Medical Anthropology, University of Oxford (2015)

Other Research Interests: exposome research; epigenomics; public health; health disparities; genomics; embodiment; local biologies; ontology; structural violence and global health; resiliency


1. Argentieri MA, Nagarajan S, Seddighzadeh B, Baccarelli AA, Shields AE. Epigenetic Pathways in Human Disease: The Impact of DNA Methylation on Stress-Related Pathogenesis and Current Challenges in Biomarker Development. EBioMedicine. 2017; 18: 327–350. PMID: 28434943.

2. VanderWeele TJ, Yu J, Cozier YC, Wise L, Argentieri MA, Rosenberg L, Palmer JR, Shields AE. Attendance at Religious Services, Prayer, Religious Coping, and Religious/Spiritual Identity as Predictors of All-Cause Mortality in the Black Women's Health Study. American Journal of Epidemiology. 2017; 185(7): 515–522. PMID: 28338863.

3. Argentieri MA. Embodiment and Ontologies of Inequality in Medicine: Towards an Integrative Understanding of Disease and Health Disparities. Body & Society. 2018; 24(3): 125–152. doi:10.1177/1357034X17746468.

4. Cozier YC, Yu J, Wise LA, VanderWeele TJ, Balboni T, Argentieri MA, Rosenberg L, Palmer JR, Shields AE. Religious and Spiritual Coping and Risk of Incident Hypertension in the Black Women’s Health Study. Annals of Behavioral Medicine. 2018; 52(12): 989–998. PMID: 30418522.

5. Spence D, Argentieri MA, Greaves N, Cox K, Chin SN, Munroe M, Watson G, Harewood H, Shields AE. Palliative Care in the Caribbean Through the Lens of Women with Breast Cancer: Challenges and Opportunities. Current Breast Cancer Reports. 2018; 10(3): 157–169. doi:10.1007/s12609-018-0280-0.

6. Spence D, Argentieri MA et al. Advancing Cancer Care and Prevention Strategies in the Caribbean: A Survey of Promising Strategies in the Region. Lancet Oncology. 2019; 20(9): E522–E534. PMID: 31395471.

7. Spence D, Dyer R, Andall-Brereton G, Barton M, Stanway S, Argentieri MA et al. Cancer control in the Caribbean island countries and territories: some progress but the journey continues. Lancet Oncology. 2019; 20(9): E503–E521. PMID: 31395473.

8. Spence N, Farvid MS, Warner ET, VanderWeele TJ, Tworoger SS, Argentieri MA, Shields AE. Religious Service Attendance, Religious Coping, and Risk of Hypertension in Women Participating in the Nurses’ Health Study II. American Journal of Epidemiology. 2019; 189(3): 193–203. PMID: 31595952.

9. Stoltenberg M, Spence D, Daubman BR, Greaves N, Edwards R, Bromfield B, Perez-Cruz PE, Krakauer EL, Argentieri MA, Shields AE. The Central Role of Provider Training in Implementing Resource-Stratified Guidelines for Palliative Care in LMICs: Lessons from the Jamaica Cancer Care and Research Institute (JACCRI) in the Caribbean and Universidad Católica in Latin America. Cancer. 2020; 126: 2448–2457. PMID: 32348569.

10. Argentieri MA, Seddighzadeh B, Philbrick SN, Balboni TA, Shields AE. A Roadmap for Conducting Psychosocial Research in Epidemiological Studies: Perspectives of Cohort Study Principal Investigators. BMJ Open. 2020; 10(7): e037235. PMID: 32723742.

11. Ngo LH, Argentieri MA, Dillon ST, Kent BV, Kanaya AM, Shields AE, Libermann TA. Plasma protein expression profiles, cardiovascular disease, and religious struggles among South Asians in the MASALA study. Scientific Reports. 2021; 11: 96. doi:10.1038/s41598-020-79429-1.

12. Argentieri MA, Lock M, Shields AE. The contribution of ethnography to epigenomics research: Toward a new bio-ethnography for addressing health disparities. Epigenomics. 2021 (In Press).