Nancy W Glynn

  • Associate Professor and Director, Master's Degree Programs
  • Faculty in Epidemiology

Contributions to Public Health

  • I am an Associate Professor in the Department of Epidemiology and have been the Director of Master’s Degree Programs since 2012.  As an established Physical Activity Epidemiologist with nearly 30 years of experience, my research program focuses on the measurement of fatigability, physical activity, fitness, and physical function in older adults.
    • Glynn NW, Qiao YS. Measuring and Understanding the Health Impact of Greater Fatigability in Older Adults: A Call to Action and Opportunities. Fatigue. 2023;11(2-4):188-201. doi: 10.1080/21641846.2023.2252612. Epub 2023 Sep 4. PMID: 38074079; PMCID: PMC10707490.  
    • Glynn NW, Gmelin T, Renner SW, Qiao YS, Boudreau RM, Feitosa MF, Wojczynski MK, Cosentino S, Andersen SL, Christensen K, Newman AB. Perceived Physical Fatigability Predicts All-Cause Mortality in Older Adults. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2022 Apr 1;77(4):837-841. doi: 10.1093/gerona/glab374. PMID: 34908118; PMCID: PMC8974332. 
  • I have made landmark scientific contributions by developing and validating the Pittsburgh Fatigability Scale (PFS) and Pittsburgh Performance Fatigability Index (PPFI). The validated PFS, a unique assessment tool translated into 20 languages, has been implemented in many large-scale studies worldwide. The PPFI is a patent-pending, validated novel accelerometry-derived measurement of cadence decline during walking tasks.
    • Glynn NW, Santanasto AJ, Simonsick EM, Boudreau RM, Beach SR, Schulz R, Newman AB. The Pittsburgh Fatigability Scale for older adults: Development and validation. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2015 Jan; 63(1):130-5. PMCID: PMC4971882.
    • Qiao YS, Harezlak J, Moored KD, Urbanek JK, Boudreau RM, Toto PE, Hawkins M, Santanasto AJ, Schrack JA, Simonsick EM, Glynn NW. Development of a Novel Accelerometry-Based Performance Fatigability Measure for Older Adults. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2022 Oct 1;54(10):1782-1793. doi: 10.1249/MSS.0000000000002966. Epub 2022 Jun 24. PMID: 35763596; PMCID: PMC9481701 
  • I am also a leader in the physical activity sphere, where my work centers on identifying optimal measurement methods by applying innovative techniques using raw accelerometry. My long-term expertise in measuring and interpreting data from objective wearable devices has led to major collaborations on NIH-funded studies and the establishment of the Glynn Accelerometry Reading Center.
    • Urbanek JK, Zipunnikov V, Harris T, Crainiceanu C, Harezlak J, Glynn NW. Validation of gait characteristics extracted from raw accelerometry during walking against measures of physical function, mobility, fatigability, and fitness.  The Journals of Gerontology, Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences. 2018 Apr 17;73(5):676-681. doi: 10.1093/gerona/glx174. PMID: 28958000; PMCID: PMC5905654. 
    • Graves JL, Qiao YS, Moored KD, Boudreau RM, Venditti EM, Krafty RT, Shiroma EJ, Harezlak J, Glynn NW. Profiles of Accelerometry-Derived Physical Activity Are Related to Perceived Physical Fatigability in Older Adults. Sensors (Basel). 2021 Mar 2;21(5):1718. doi: 10.3390/s21051718. PMID: 33801352; PMCID: PMC7958607. 
  • As a mentor, in my role as Director of Master’s Degree Programs I serve as the primary academic advisor for 70-90 students annually. Additionally, I am currently the doctoral advisor/dissertation chair for 3 students. I have provided extensive training in design, methodology, analysis, and reporting of results, as evidenced by the 75+ theses, essays, and dissertations authored by my mentees under my direction.
    • Qiao YS, Harezlak J, Cawthon PM, Cummings SR, Forman DE, Goodpaster BH, Hawkins M, Moored KD, Nicklas BJ, Toledo FGS, Toto PE, Santanasto AJ, Strotmeyer ES, Newman AB, Glynn NW. Validation of the Pittsburgh Performance Fatigability Index in the Study of Muscle, Mobility and Aging (SOMMA). J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2023 Aug 11:glad197. doi: 10.1093/gerona/glad197. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 37566383.
    • Garcia RE, Cawthon PM, Nicklas BJ, Goodpaster BH, Coen PM, Forman DE, Cummings SR, Newman AB, Glynn NW. Usual-paced 400 m long distance corridor walk estimates cardiorespiratory fitness among older adults: The Study of Muscle, Mobility and Aging. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2023 Dec 27. doi: 10.1111/jgs.18713. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 38149438.  
  • I am committed to inclusive excellence and diversity in the rigorous training of future epidemiologists as they transition into research careers consistent with their interests and skills, including in academic positions. I highly value diversity in my trainees as it provides innovative, balanced, and informed perspectives that enhance scientific productivity and fosters the growth of my team and the field.

May 1987 | University of Massachusetts at Amherst, MA | Bachelor of Science, Exercise Science
May 1993 | University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA | Masters of Education, Exercise Physiology
April 1994 | University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA | Doctor of Philosophy, Epidemiology
April 1995 | University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA | Post-Doctoral Fellow, Epidemiology of Aging

  • Course Director, EPIDEM 2210 Master's Essay/Thesis
  • Course Director, EPIDEM 2214 MPH Internship/Practicum
  • Guest Lecturer, EPIDEM 2900 Advanced Epidemiology of Aging
  • Guest Lecturer, EPIDEM 2981 Epidemiology of Aging Methods
  • Guest Lecturer, EPIDEM 2950 Epidemiology fo Aging Workshop
Selected Publications

Complete Listing of Publications go to my GOOGLE SCHOLAR PAGE

Updated publications and information related to the PITTSBURGH FATIGABILITY SCALE