Daniel Levy, MD, joined the Framingham Heart Study in 1984 after completing his cardiology fellowship at Harvard's Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard School of Public Health.
Dr. Levy is a Medical Officer of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and has a faculty appointment at Boston University School of Medicine, where he is Professor of Medicine. Dr. Levy has published over 200 articles in leading medical journals, and edited a book on the Framingham Heart Study titled 50 Years of Discovery. He serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Hypertension and the American Journal of Medicine.
He became the Framingham Heart Study's fourth director in 1994. Dr. Levy is a fellow of the American College of Cardiology and an active member of the American Heart Association's Council on Hypertension and the American Society of Hypertension.
In addition to his research and administrative responsibilities, Dr. Levy has become actively involved as a policy maker. He served with the National High Blood Pressure Education Program and the National Cholesterol Education Program in the formulation of national hypertension and cholesterol guidelines.
Dr. Levy has been the recipient of many awards including the National Institutes of Health Director's Award given for his research achievements at the Framingham Heart Study. His main areas of research interest include the epidemiology and genetics of hypertension, heart disease and heart failure.
Dr. Levy was recently part of an international consortium that identified 29 genetic variants that influence blood pressure and heart disease risk, included 16 previously unrecognized variants found in both expected and unexpected locations. Another smaller scale study identified the genetic variants in the mitochondrial genome potentially associated with blood pressure and fasting glucose levels. These and other efforts have provided new clues into how blood pressure is regulated.
Dr. Levy has also had a long-standing interest in the causes and manifestations of heart failure. Using the Framingham cohort and others, he has conducted extensive studies into the development of heart failure, as well as studies examining the clinical differences in risk factors and prognosis of people with heart failure in the setting of preserved versus reduced ejection fractions. One of his most recent discoveries was identifying galectin-3, a protein associated with cardiac fibrosis, as a predictor of heart failure.
Most recently, Dr. Levy has begun spearheading a new research program known as the SABRe CVD (Systems Approach to Biomarker Research in Cardiovascular Disease) Initiative, which seeks to identify new biomarkers and pathways involved in cardiovascular disease through the introduction of discovery proteomics and metabolomics, and gene expression and microRNA profiling. These resources will be united with the Framingham Study’s unparalleled genetic and phenotypic databases and will be made freely accessible to the scientific community at large. With these new resources available, Dr. Levy and his colleagues hope to contribute research discoveries to improve the options for primary and secondary prevention of coronary heart disease.