John J Grefenstette

  • Senior Scientist, Public Health Dynamics Lab

Research interests include the design, implementation and analysis of large-scale simulation models with applications to public health dynamics, infectious disease epidemics, changes to community health, and open access public health databases. My major project has been the development of the FRED public health simulation platform. I also helped design the Tycho database of infectious disease reports.


1980 | University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA | PhD, Computer Science
1975 | Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA | BS, Mathematics and Philosophy

Selected Publications

Espana G, Grefenstette J, Perkins A, Torres C, Campo Carey A, Diaz H, de la Hoz F, Burke DS, van Panhuis WG. Exploring scenarios of chikungunya mitigation with a data-driven agent-based model of the 2014-2016 outbreak in Colombia. Sci Rep. 2018 Aug 15;8(1):12201. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-30647-8. PubMed PMID: 30111778; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6093909.

He T, Li K, Roberts MS, Spaulding AC, Ayer T, Grefenstette JJ, Chhatwal J. Prevention of Hepatitis C by Screening and Treatment in U.S. Prisons. Ann Intern Med. 2016 Jan 19;164(2):84-92. doi: 10.7326/M15-0617. Epub 2015 Nov 24. PubMed PMID: 26595252; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4854298.
Kumar S, Piper K, Galloway DD, Hadler JL, Grefenstette JJ. Is population
structure sufficient to generate area-level inequalities in influenza rates? An examination using agent-based models. BMC Public Health. 2015 Sep 23;15:947. dos: 10.1186/s12889-015-2284-2. PubMed PMID: 26400564; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4579639.

van Panhuis WG, Paul P, Emerson C, Grefenstette J, Wilder R, Herbst AJ, Heymann D, Burke DS. A systematic review of barriers to data sharing in public health. BMC Public Health. 2014 Nov 5;14:1144. doi: 10.1186/1471-2458-14-1144. PubMed PMID: 25377061; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4239377.

Lukens S, DePasse J, Rosenfeld R, Ghedin E, Mochan E, Brown ST, Grefenstette, J, Burke DS, Swigon D, Clermont G. A large-scale immune-epidemiological simulation of influenza A epidemics. BMC Public Health. 2014 Sep 29;14:1019. dos: 10.1186/1471-2458-14-1019. PubMed PMID: 25266818; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4194421.

van Panhuis WG, Grefenstette J, Jung SY, Chok NS, Cross A, Eng H, Lee BY, Zadorozhny V, Brown S, Cummings D, Burke DS. Contagious diseases in the United States from 1888 to the present. N Engl J Med. 2013 Nov 28;369(22):2152-8. dos: 10.1056/NEJMms1215400. PubMed PMID: 24283231; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4175560.

Yonas MA, Burke JG, Brown ST, Borrebach JD, Garland R, Burke DS, Grefenstette JJ. Dynamic simulation of crime perpetration and reporting to examine community intervention strategies. Health Educ Behav. 2013 Oct;40(1 Suppl):87S-97S. doi: 10.1177/1090198113493090. PubMed PMID: 24084404; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3964320.

Grefenstette JJ, Brown ST, Rosenfeld R, DePasse J, Stone NT, Cooley PC, Wheaton WD, Fyshe A, Galloway DD, Sriram A, Guclu H, Abraham T, Burke DS. FRED (a Framework for Reconstructing Epidemic Dynamics): an open-source software system for modeling infectious diseases and control strategies using census-based populations. BMC Public Health. 2013 Oct 8;13:940. doi: 10.1186/1471-2458-13-940. PubMed PMID: 24103508; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3852955.

Burke DS, Grefenstette JJ. Toward an integrated meta-model of public health dynamics for preparedness decision support. J Public Health Manag Pract. 2013 Sep-Oct;19 Suppl 2:S12-5. doi: 10.1097/PHH.0b013e31828a842f. PubMed PMID: 23903387; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3800176.

Kumar S, Grefenstette JJ, Galloway D, Albert SM, Burke DS. Policies to reduce influenza in the workplace: impact assessments using an agent-based model. Am J Public Health. 2013 Aug;103(8):1406-11. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2013.301269. Epub 2013 Jun 13. PubMed PMID: 23763426; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3893051.