Honglei Chen headshot

Dr. Chen is an MSU Foundation Professor at the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics of Michigan State University. Dr. Chen works with large population-based prospective studies to understand the etiology and natural history of neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s with the ultimate goal of disease prevention and healthy aging. In pursuit of this goal, Dr. Chen has recently focused his research on olfactory impairment and other prodromal symptoms of neurodegeneration to critically understand the decades-long neurodegenerative process and factors involved. He is also interested in defining risk factors and potential health consequences of olfactory impairment in older adults above and beyond neurodegenerative diseases.

Dr. Chen earned his medical degree from TianJin Medical University in TianJin, China, and Master’s degree from the Chinese Academy of Preventive Medicine in Beijing, China. In 2001, he earned his Ph.D. in Nutritional Epidemiology from Tufts University in Boston, MA, and then worked as a Research Fellow and Instructor at the Harvard School of Public Health. Prior to his current job, Dr. Chen worked at the Epidemiology Branch of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and received his Tenured Senior Investigator appointment from NIH in 2013. Dr. Chen’s research at MSU has been generously supported by the NIEHS, NIA, DoD, Parkinson Foundation, the MSU Research Foundation, the Gibby versus Parky Project, and the MSU start-ups.