Sadaf Milani, PhD, MPH
Assistant Professor
Department of Epidemiology

Physical address:
UHC, Suite 4.208
1005 Harborside Drive
Galveston, TX

Mailing address:
301 University Boulevard
Galveston, TX 77555-1150

Phone: (409) 747-8316
Fax: (409) 772-5272

Sadaf Milani

  • Sadaf Milani, PhD, MPH is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Epidemiology. Dr. Milani received a Master of Public Health and PhD in Epidemiology from the University of Florida. She also completed an NIA T32 postdoctoral fellowship on health of older minorities at the UTMB Sealy Center on Aging.

    Dr. Milani studies sex/gender differences in life course pathways for cognitive decline, dementia, and Alzheimer’s disease. Her recent work is focused on pain and pain medication as potentially modifiable risk factors for cognitive decline and dementia. She is a Fellow of the Sealy Center on Aging and the Center for Interdisciplinary Research on Women’s Health.

    • BS, Biology, University of Florida, 2013
    • MPH, Epidemiology, University of Florida, 2015
    • PhD, Epidemiology, University of Florida, 2018
    • T32 Postdoctoral Fellowship in Health of Older Minorities, University of Texas Medical Branch, 2020
    • Epidemiology of aging
    • Cognition, dementia, and Alzheimer’s disease
    • Health disparities, minority health, and gender disparities
    • Pain and prescription opioid use
    • Mental health
    • Department of Epidemiology
    • Sealy Center on Aging
    • Center for Interdisciplinary Research in Women’s Health
  • Grants


    K01AG075254- National Institute on Aging
    “Gender Disparities in Pain and Treatment and their Association with Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias (ADRD)”
    (PI: Milani, SA; 75% effort for the period 09/01/2022-05/31/2027)

    University of Texas Medical Branch/University of Texas Austin Aging CollaborationsPilot Project Title: “Sociodemographic and Neurocognitive Characterization of Mexican-American Bilinguals and Monolinguals Presenting with Typical and Pathological Cognitive Aging”
    (Role: Pilot Project Co-PI; MPI: Downer, B & Grasso, S; 5% effort for the period 07/01/2022-06/30/2023)

    P30ES030285- National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
    Title: “Gulf Coast Center for Precision Environmental HealthPilot Project Title: “Environmental Exposures and Health Outcomes among Older Mexican Americans”(Pilot Project PI: Milani; Grant PI: Walker, C; 0% effort for the period 04/01/2023- 03/31/2024)


    K12HD052023 –National Institutes of Health/Office of the Director/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, and Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
    “Building Interdisciplinary Careers in Women’s Health Research (BIRCWH)”
     (Role: Trainee; PI: Berenson, A; 75% effort for the period 08/2020 – 07/2022)

    P30 AG059301 - National Institute on Aging
    Title: “Texas Center on Minority Aging Research (RCMAR)”
    Pilot Project Title: “Gender Differences in Pain and its Relation to Cognitive Function among Aging Mexicans”
    (Pilot Project PI: Milani, S; Grant PI: Markides, K; 12% effort for the period 07/2021-06/2022)

    T32 AG000270-National Institute on Aging
    “Health of Older Minorities”
    (Role: Postdoctoral trainee; PI: Wong; 100% effort for the period of 09/2018-07/2020)

    Selected Publications

    Milani SA, Bell TR, Crowe M, Pope CN, Downer B. Increasing Pain Interference Is Associated With Cognitive Decline Over Four Years Among Older Puerto Rican Adults. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2023;78(6):1005-1012. doi:10.1093/gerona/glac141.  [selected as Editor’s choice]

    Milani SA, Howrey B, Rodriguez MA, Samper-Ternent R, Wong R. Gender differences in activity-limiting pain trajectories over a 17-year period in the Mexican Health and Aging Study. Pain. 2022;163(2):e285-e292. doi:10.1097/j.pain.0000000000002292

    Milani SA, Cantu PA, Berenson AB, Kuo YF, Markides KS, Raji MA. Gender Differences in Neuropsychiatric Symptoms Among Community-Dwelling Mexican Americans Aged 80 and Older. Am J Alzheimers Dis Other Demen. 2021;36:15333175211042958. doi:10.1177/15333175211042958

    Milani SA, Raji MA, Chen L, Kuo YF. Trends in the Use of Benzodiazepines, Z-Hypnotics, and Serotonergic Drugs Among US Women and Men Before and During the COVID-19 Pandemic. JAMA Netw Open. 2021;4(10):e2131012. Published 2021 Oct 1. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2021.31012

    Milani, SA, Marsiske, M, Cottler, LB, Chen, X, & Striley, CW. (2018). Optimal cutoffs for the Montreal Cognitive Assessment vary by race and ethnicity. Alzheimer's & dementia (Amsterdam, Netherlands), 10, 773–781.

    Note: A complete list of all publications can be found at