Professor Robert D. (Bob) Langer, M.D., M.P.H. is a preventive medicine physician, a family physician and a chronic disease epidemiologist. He is the Principal Scientist and Medical Director of the Jackson Hole Center for Preventive Medicine and a Clinical Professor of Family Medicine at the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine. Professor Langer has more than 30 years of experience in studies of postmenopausal hormone therapy, breast cancer, cardiovascular disease, colon cancer, osteoporosis, cognitive function and dementia, sleep and sedative-hypnotic agents. An author of approximately 200 manuscripts in the peer-reviewed literature, he has served as the principal investigator for more than 30 national and international clinical trials and observational studies.
Dr. Langer graduated from the University of Illinois School of Medicine in Chicago in 1978 and completed an internship in family medicine through the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. Soon after entering private practice as a family doctor he developed one of the first commercially successful electronic health record systems for use in outpatient medicine. His practice experience, enhanced by the capabilities of the electronic health record, led to an interest in studying longitudinal outcomes and the prevention of chronic diseases associated with aging. To acquire further education in that area Dr. Langer entered a residency in Preventive Medicine at the University of California at San Diego (UCSD) in 1986. Upon completing that program, and simultaneously earning the degree of Master of Public Health in Epidemiology, he joined the faculty of the UCSD Department of Family and Preventive Medicine where he served for nearly 20 years.
Shortly after joining the faculty at UCSD Dr. Langer became the Project Director for the UCSD Clinical Center in the Postmenopausal Estrogen Progestins Interventions (PEPI) trial under the mentorship of Dr. Elizabeth Barrett-Connor. A few years later Professor Langer’s proposal was selected in the first round of awards for the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) in 1993. He was the Principal Investigator of the UCSD Vanguard Clinical Center in the WHI for the entire primary study period (1993 – 2005). Professor Langer served as Chairman of the WHI National Investigators Committee (1995-96) and Chairman of the WHI Observational Study Committee (1996-2005).
Simultaneously, as a co-investigator with Dr. Barrett-Connor in the UCSD Rancho Bernardo Chronic Disease Study, Dr. Langer published several groundbreaking papers describing contrasts in characteristics associated with good health between younger elders and the ‘oldest old’. As an early member of the UCSD Peripheral Vascular Disease research group led by Dr. Michael Criqui, Dr. Langer published extensively on both Peripheral Arterial Disease and Peripheral Venous Disease. His decades long association with Dr. Daniel Kripke in Sleep Research has yielded a number of highly cited papers. And his career long interest in successful aging has led to extensive involvement as an investigator and author in studies assessing hormonal, pharmacologic, behavioral and nutritional strategies that might prevent late life diseases in both women and men.
In 2005 Professor Langer became the Founding Director of the Outcomes Research Institute for the Geisinger Health System in Pennsylvania, and in 2008 he founded the Jackson Hole Center for Preventive Medicine (JHCPM) in Wyoming. In 2011 he joined the faculty of University of Nevada School of Medicine as the Associate Dean for Clinical and Translational Research while continuing in his roles at JHCPM. He retired as Associate Dean in December 2017, continuing with the University of Nevada, Reno, as a Clinical Professor of Family Medicine.
Professor Langer lectures frequently internationally on topics in women’s health and was a member of the IMS Writing Groups for recommendations on women’s midlife health and menopausal hormone therapy in both 2013 and 2016. He is a Diplomate of the American Board of Preventive Medicine, and a Fellow of the American College of Preventive Medicine, the American Academy of Family Physicians, and the American Heart Association Scientific Councils, as well as a member of the American Society for Preventive Cardiology. He is a member of the American Heart Association Scientific Statement Writing Group for “The Menopause Transition and CVD Risk in Women: Implications on Ultimate Timing of Early Preventions,” a member of the Board of the Age Management Medicine Education Foundation, and a member of the IMS Board of Trustees.