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Contact Information

Steven Hawken, PhD
613-798-5555 Ext. 10672


Steven Hawken

Scientist, Clinical Epidemiology Program
Ottawa Hospital Research Institute
Assistant Professor, School of Epidemiology, Public Health and Preventive Medicine
University of Ottawa
Adjunct Scientist
Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences

Research Interests

My research interests include:
1)  Linking large health administrative databases to clinical and biological databases to answer important health questions. 
2)  Using metabolomics and perinatal data from Newborn Screening Ontario (NSO) and Better Outcomes Registry and Network (BORN) coupled with ICES health administrative data to predict newborn health status (gestational age, infections, complications) as well as future health outcomes in childhood.
3)  Methodological challenges of vaccine safety surveillance in health administrative data.                            

Brief Biography

I completed my Master of Science in Applied Statistics at the University of Guelph in 2001, and then began the first phase of my career as a biostatistician with the Population Health Research Institute (PHRI) at McMaster University/Hamilton Health Sciences under the leadership of Salim Yusuf, Sonia Anand and Hertzel Gerstein, providing statistical expertise for large international clinical trials and epidemiological studies.  I later joined the University of Ottawa to work with Dr. Julian Little as Biostatistician and Research Manager for his Human Genome Epidemiology Research program.  I served as the founding Lead Analyst for ICES uOttawa, the Ottawa satellite unit of the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences from 2010 to 2015, under the leadership of Carl van Walraven and Kumanan Wilson, during which time I completed my PhD in Epidemiology at the University of Ottawa, which I completed in 2014.

Career Highlights:  

  • While at the PHRI, I served as the study statistician for the INTERHEART study, a global case-control study of risk factors for acute myocardial infarction. This landmark study led to several high impact publications in The Lancet, co-authored with and Salim Yusuf and Sonia Anand, which have collectively been cited more than 10,000 times.
  • Working with Julian Little at uOttawa, I helped to evaluate the utility of germline genomic profiling as an adjunct screening tool in colorectal cancer screening. The results of this research were published in Human Genetics and the Journal of the National Cancer Institute as well as a book chapter in Human Genome Epidemiology.
  • Upon joining the OHRI, working with Carl van Walraven, I contributed to the successful launch of the ICES uOttawa satellite unit, which opened in the spring of 2010. I have served as the Lead Analyst for ICES uOttawa since its inception, where I have had primary responsibility for the recruitment, training and day to day management of a team of 10 highly skilled statistical analysts/SAS programmers.
  • At ICES uOttawa, working with Kumanan Wilson, I have helped build a successful research program in vaccine safety and newborn screening metabolomics using ICES health administrative data linked to screening metabolite and perinatal data from Newborn Screening Ontario (NSO) and the Better Outcomes Registry and Network (BORN). This research has led to numerous publications in high impact journals including Vaccine, Pediatrics and The American Journal of Epidemiology, as well as forming the core of my PhD thesis work. 

Selected Publications

1: Wilson K, Hawken S, Potter BK, Chakraborty P, Walker M, Ducharme R, Little J.
Accurate prediction of gestational age using newborn screening analyte data. Am J
Obstet Gynecol. 2016 Apr;214(4):513.e1-9. doi: 10.1016/j.ajog.2015.10.017. Epub
2015 Oct 28. PubMed PMID: 26519781.

2: Hawken S, Kwong JC, Deeks SL, Crowcroft NS, McGeer AJ, Ducharme R, Campitelli
MA, Coyle D, Wilson K. Simulation study of the effect of influenza and influenza
vaccination on risk of acquiring Guillain-Barré syndrome. Emerg Infect Dis. 2015
Feb;21(2):224-31. doi: 10.3201/eid2102.131879. PubMed PMID: 25625590; PubMed
Central PMCID: PMC4313628.

3: Hawken S, Potter BK, Benchimol EI, Little J, Ducharme R, Wilson K. Seasonal
variation in rates of emergency room visits and acute admissions following
recommended infant vaccinations in Ontario, Canada: a self-controlled case series
analysis. Vaccine. 2014 Dec 12;32(52):7148-53. doi:
10.1016/j.vaccine.2014.09.059. Epub 2014 Nov 1. PubMed PMID: 25446834.

4: Hawken S, Kwong JC, Deeks SL, Crowcroft NS, Ducharme R, Manuel DG, Wilson K.
Association between birth order and emergency room visits and acute hospital
admissions following pediatric vaccination: a self-controlled study. PLoS One.
2013 Dec 4;8(12):e81070. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0081070. eCollection 2013.
PubMed PMID: 24324662; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3852020.

5: Kwong JC, Vasa PP, Campitelli MA, Hawken S, Wilson K, Rosella LC, Stukel TA,
Crowcroft NS, McGeer AJ, Zinman L, Deeks SL. Risk of Guillain-Barré syndrome
after seasonal influenza vaccination and influenza health-care encounters: a
self-controlled study. Lancet Infect Dis. 2013 Sep;13(9):769-76. doi:
10.1016/S1473-3099(13)70104-X. Epub 2013 Jun 28. PubMed PMID: 23810252.

6: Benchimol EI, Hawken S, Kwong JC, Wilson K. Safety and utilization of
influenza immunization in children with inflammatory bowel disease. Pediatrics.
2013 Jun;131(6):e1811-20. doi: 10.1542/peds.2012-3567. Epub 2013 May 6. PubMed
PMID: 23650306.

7: Hawken S, Wilson KR. The self-controlled case series method for evaluating
safety of vaccines. Med J Aust. 2012 Nov 19;197(10):578-9. PubMed PMID: 23163690.

8: Hawken S, Manuel DG, Deeks SL, Kwong JC, Crowcroft NS, Wilson K.
Underestimating the safety benefits of a new vaccine: the impact of acellular
pertussis vaccine versus whole-cell pertussis vaccine on health services
utilization. Am J Epidemiol. 2012 Dec 1;176(11):1035-42. doi: 10.1093/aje/kws167.
Epub 2012 Nov 1. PubMed PMID: 23118103.

9: Theodoratou E, Montazeri Z, Hawken S, Allum GC, Gong J, Tait V, Kirac I,
Tazari M, Farrington SM, Demarsh A, Zgaga L, Landry D, Benson HE, Read SH, Rudan
I, Tenesa A, Dunlop MG, Campbell H, Little J. Systematic meta-analyses and field
synopsis of genetic association studies in colorectal cancer. J Natl Cancer Inst.
2012 Oct 3;104(19):1433-57. doi: 10.1093/jnci/djs369. Epub 2012 Sep 26. Review.
PubMed PMID: 23019048.

10: Simard T, Hibbert B, Pourdjabbar A, Ramirez FD, Wilson KR, Hawken S, O'Brien
ER. Percutaneous coronary intervention with or without on-site coronary artery
bypass surgery: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Int J Cardiol. 2013 Jul
15;167(1):197-204. doi: 10.1016/j.ijcard.2011.12.035. Epub 2012 Jan 10. Review.
PubMed PMID: 22240768.

11: Wilson K, Hawken S, Kwong JC, Deeks SL, Manuel DG, Henningsen KH, Crowcroft
NS. Impact of birth weight at term on rates of emergency room visits and hospital
admissions following vaccination at 2 months of age. Vaccine. 2011 Oct
26;29(46):8267-74. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2011.08.107. Epub 2011 Sep 9. PubMed
PMID: 21907256.

12: Hawken SJ, Greenwood CM, Hudson TJ, Kustra R, McLaughlin J, Yang Q, Zanke BW,
Little J. The utility and predictive value of combinations of low penetrance
genes for screening and risk prediction of colorectal cancer. Hum Genet. 2010
Jul;128(1):89-101. doi: 10.1007/s00439-010-0828-1. Epub 2010 May 1. PubMed PMID:
20437058; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2885303.

13: McQueen MJ, Hawken S, Wang X, Ounpuu S, Sniderman A, Probstfield J, Steyn K,
Sanderson JE, Hasani M, Volkova E, Kazmi K, Yusuf S; INTERHEART study
investigators. Lipids, lipoproteins, and apolipoproteins as risk markers of
myocardial infarction in 52 countries (the INTERHEART study): a case-control
study. Lancet. 2008 Jul 19;372(9634):224-33. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(08)61076-4.
PubMed PMID: 18640459.

14: Warfarin Antiplatelet Vascular Evaluation Trial Investigators, Anand S, Yusuf
S, Xie C, Pogue J, Eikelboom J, Budaj A, Sussex B, Liu L, Guzman R, Cina C,
Crowell R, Keltai M, Gosselin G. Oral anticoagulant and antiplatelet therapy and
peripheral arterial disease. N Engl J Med. 2007 Jul 19;357(3):217-27. PubMed
PMID: 17634457.

15: Teo KK, Ounpuu S, Hawken S, Pandey MR, Valentin V, Hunt D, Diaz R, Rashed W,
Freeman R, Jiang L, Zhang X, Yusuf S; INTERHEART Study Investigators. Tobacco use
and risk of myocardial infarction in 52 countries in the INTERHEART study: a
case-control study. Lancet. 2006 Aug 19;368(9536):647-58. PubMed PMID: 16920470.

16: Steyn K, Sliwa K, Hawken S, Commerford P, Onen C, Damasceno A, Ounpuu S,
Yusuf S; INTERHEART Investigators in Africa. Risk factors associated with
myocardial infarction in Africa: the INTERHEART Africa study. Circulation. 2005
Dec 6;112(23):3554-61. PubMed PMID: 16330696.

17: Yusuf S, Hawken S, Ounpuu S, Bautista L, Franzosi MG, Commerford P, Lang CC,
Rumboldt Z, Onen CL, Lisheng L, Tanomsup S, Wangai P Jr, Razak F, Sharma AM,
Anand SS; INTERHEART Study Investigators. Obesity and the risk of myocardial
infarction in 27,000 participants from 52 countries: a case-control study.
Lancet. 2005 Nov 5;366(9497):1640-9. PubMed PMID: 16271645.

18: Rosengren A, Hawken S, Ounpuu S, Sliwa K, Zubaid M, Almahmeed WA, Blackett
KN, Sitthi-amorn C, Sato H, Yusuf S; INTERHEART investigators. Association of
psychosocial risk factors with risk of acute myocardial infarction in 11119 cases
and 13648 controls from 52 countries (the INTERHEART study): case-control study.
Lancet. 2004 Sep 11-17;364(9438):953-62. PubMed PMID: 15364186.

19: Yusuf S, Hawken S, Ounpuu S, Dans T, Avezum A, Lanas F, McQueen M, Budaj A,
Pais P, Varigos J, Lisheng L; INTERHEART Study Investigators. Effect of
potentially modifiable risk factors associated with myocardial infarction in 52
countries (the INTERHEART study): case-control study. Lancet. 2004 Sep
11-17;364(9438):937-52. PubMed PMID: 15364185.

Diseases, conditions and populations of interest

Global health; Newborn and child health; Population health; Pregnancy

Research and clinical approaches

Big data; Biostatistics; Epidemiology; Health research methods; Health services research; Immunization