Séverine Sabia
  • E-mail :[email]
  • Phone : 0145595152
  • Location : Paris, France

Scientific topics



Last update 2019-10-04 15:48:23.088

Séverine Sabia PhD epidemiology and public health

Course and current status


2015-           : Researcher, CR1, Inserm – Team Epidemiology of ageing & neurodegenerative diseases, Inserm U1153, Paris, France.

2010 –         : Research associate, UCL Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, University College London, London, United Kingdom.

2009 – 2010: Post-doctoral position, Inserm – U687, Villejuif.

2006-2009:    PhD in Public Health, option Epidemiology, University of Paris XI, France. 

2004 – 2006: Statistician Inserm – Equipe ERI 20, Villejuif, France. 



2006-2009:    PhD in Public Health, option Epidemiology, University of Paris XI, France. 

2001-2004:    Master in general engineering (option statistics), Centrale Marseille, France.



2019-2023: Principal Investigator, grant ANR JCJC Activ'Health, Role of intensity, duration and pattern of accelerometer-assessed physical activity for cardiometabolic health (357k€)

2018-2023 : Co-Investigator, grant R01AG056477, “Education, socioeconomic status and Aging: transitions from multimorbidity to functional limitations and mortality”; NIH, USA ($1.8M)

2017-2019 : Co-Investigator, grant R56AG056477, “Education and aging: transitions from multi-morbidity to functional limitations”, NIH, USA ($365k)

2016 :         Prinicpal Investigator, “Physical activity measure by accelerometer: from Big data to epidemiological data.”, Aviesan, Inserm  (€50k)



R package GGIR: this is an open access R package allowing extraction and analysis of accelerometer data developped in collaboration with Vincent van Hees (Netherlands escience center).


PUBLICATIONS: 90 publications (22 as first author, h-index=33) https://publons.com/researcher/2919595/severine-sabia/

Scientific summary


  • Health behaviours as determinant of health
  • Objective measures of physical activity
  • Ageing
  • Statistical methods 


The core of my work is on the impact of health behaviors on aging outcomes. I have shown the importance of the combined effect of health behaviors, and the importance of duration of unhealthy behaviors on both cognitive and motor function. My longstanding interests are in methodological issues of statistical analysis in order to study aging outcomes: cubic splines, bootstrap method, longitudinal analyses with repeated data, missing data, etc. This has led to better modeling of longitudinal data, for both the exposure and the outcome. For example, in order to explore changes over time in exposure variables before an event onset, I used mixed models with a backward timescale to test for differences in trajectories of an exposure between those who will develop dementia and the others (Sabia et al, BMJ, 2017). Attrition over the course of a study is common in longitudinal data and I have shown that the impact of smoking on cognitive decline might have been underestimated previously due to higher risk of drop-out among current smokers (Sabia et al, Arch Gen Psychiatry, 2012). Over the past seven years, I have also led a project on the measure of physical activity by accelerometer in the Whitehall II Study. Such measures show much stronger association with health outcomes than measures of physical activity assesed by questionnaire (Sabia et al, JAMDA 2015). In addition, they allow an in-depth characterisation of physical activity patterns and are likely to contribute to a better understanding of the aspects of physical activity that shape health outcomes. 



1. Sabia S, Fayosse A, Dumurgier J, Dugravot A, Akbaraly T, Britton A, Kivimaki M, Singh-Manoux A. Alcohol consumption and risk of dementia: 23 year follow-up of Whitehall II cohort study. BMJ. 2018; 362: k2927. https://www.bmj.com/content/362/bmj.k2927

2. Sabia S, Dugravot A, Dartigues JF, Abell J, Elbaz A, Kivimaki M, Singh-Manoux A. Physical activity, cognitive decline, and risk of dementia: 28 year follow-up of Whitehall II cohort study. BMJ. 2017;357:j2709. https://www.bmj.com/content/357/bmj.j2709

3. Bell JA, Hamer M, van Hees VT, Singh-Manoux A, Kivimaki M, Sabia S. Healthy obesity and objective physical activity. Am J Clin Nutr. 2015;102(2):268-75. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4515867/

4. Sabia S, Cogranne P, van Hees VT, Bell JA, Elbaz A, Kivimaki M, Singh-Manoux A. Physical activity and adiposity markers at older ages: accelerometer vs questionnaire data. J Am Med Dir Assoc. 2015;16(5):438.e7-13. https://www.jamda.com/article/S1525-8610(15)00093-6/fulltext

5. Sabia S, Elbaz A, Dugravot A, Head J, Shipley M, Hagger-Johnson G, Kivimaki M, Singh-Manoux A. Impact of smoking on cognitive decline in early old age: the Whitehall II cohort study. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2012;69(6):627-35. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3675806/

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